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 What Are Site Built Homes?

  • They are constructed entirely at the building site.
  • They conform to all state, local or regional codes where the house is located.
  • Often called ‘stick-built’ houses.
  • A well-built, cared for site-built home generally increases in value over time, although its location plays a key role in value.

What Are Modular Homes?

  • Modular homes are built in sections at a factory.
  • Modular homes are built to conform to all state, local or regional building codes at their destinations.
  • Sections are transported to the building site on truck beds, then joined together by local contractors.
  • Local building inspectors check to make sure a modular home’s structure meets requirements and that all finish work is done properly.
  • Modular homes are sometimes less expensive per square foot than site built houses.
  • A well-built modular home should have the same longevity as its site-built counterpart, increasing in value over time.

What Are Manufactured Homes?

  • Formerly referred to as mobile homes or trailers, but with many more style options than in the past.
  • Manufactured houses are built in a factory.
  • They conform to a Federal building code, called the HUD code, rather than to building codes at their destinations.
  • Manufactured homes are built on a non-removable steel chassis.
  • Sections are transported to the building site on their own wheels.
  • Multi-part manufactured units are joined at their destination.
  • Segments are not always placed on a permanent foundation, making them more difficult to refinance.
  • Building inspectors check the work done locally (electric hook up, etc.) but are not required to approve the structure.
  • Manufactured housing is generally less expensive than site built and modular homes.
  • Manufactured homes sometimes decrease in value over time.

What Do the Differences Mean to You?

Restrictive Covenants and Deed Restrictions

Communities generally have no restrictions against traditional, site built homes.  Many housing developments do set minimum size requirements and stipulate you must build a house that conforms to published restrictive covenants or be approved by an architectural review committee.

  • Most developments allow modular homes.  Some do not, but in those cases the restrictions seem to have been imposed because of an ongoing confusion about the differences between modular homes and manufactured homes.
  • Restrictive covenants and deed restrictions often exclude manufactured homes.

Investigate the deed restrictions thoroughly before purchasing land for any type of new home.


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Information contained on this web site has been compiled in good faith by the Bitterroot Valley Board of REALTORS®.  However, no representation, warranty or guarantee of any kind is made as to the completeness or accuracy of the information presented.  Users of this web site must verify the current completeness and accuracy of all information provided.  Users should be aware that the information provided may, among other things, be incomplete, may contain errors or may have become out of date.  The Board reserves the right to add, modify or delete any information on this web site at any time but disclaims any duty to do so or to update the site.  Additionally, as to companies, organizations or government agencies listed on this web site, users must make their own independent evaluations of them.  The Board does not recommend or endorse any company or organization, or the services or products it provides.