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Modular Homes vs Site Built Homes

People all over the world are starting to go with modular built homes over site built homes and for some very good reasons! Prior to working for Palm Harbor Homes if you would have asked me what a modular home was, I would have told you it was a fancy name for a good old fashioned trailer home, and oh, how wrong I would have been. So, here is my go at explaining the differences between Modular and Site Built homes.

I’ll start by saying your end product is the same. Modular and Site Built refer to the type of construction, not the style of home. So why choose one over the other?

  • The main thing to keep in mind, is that modular homes are built in a factory, well, 80% of your home is built in a factory, then delivered to your home site. That’s were the last 20% of the construction is completed, it mostly consists of setting your house because, it is delivered in parts. By building in a factory, you have a lot of advantages that make modular homes cheaper, stronger, greener, and faster to build.
  • With a site build home, you have to wait for your site work to be done before you can ever start construction. With Palm Harbor, and most modular home builders, we send a crew out to your home site to lay the foundation and complete the site work while construction has already been started in the factory. This helps make the process much quicker!
  • Another great feature is that modular construction stays unaffected by weather in a factory. Not only does it keep us on schedule to not stop for rain, but it also wastes less materials and eliminates the chance of mold, mildew and rust being built into your new home. Not to mention, the folks building your home are far happier in a climate controlled work space!
  • Speaking of our factory workers, they are another great perk! With a site built home, your contractors will hire groups of workers at different experience levels, who are working on different projects all the time, and the man in charge isn’t typically on site to make sure things are going as planned, from experience, I can say that’s usually a mess. Because we build in a factory, the same employees show up everyday to do the same job over and over. This helps them be very consistent and very good at what they do!  There are always supervisors with their teams to ensure that everything is completed to our standards. This saves time because less mistakes are made, and because we are making less mistakes, less materials are wasted.
  • Because Palm Harbor is a large corporation, we have the buying power to get our materials in bulk and at discounted prices and those savings get passed down to you. While we can build anything you can dream of, for the most part, we build the same homes again and again, which is good for costs and the environment because we know exactly the amount of materials needed to build each project. As the materials come into the factory, they are always inspected and measured to make sure everything is usable, then it is all stored indoors where it stays safe from bad weather and theft. At Palm Harbor, no building materials go to waste. The scrap bins are sorted through to pull everything usable, the bit that is left over and unusable is recycled.
  • Here in Texas, a lot of homes being built are in remote locations, on ranches and such, and it is much easier to build modular in these situations. Instead of the crew and materials having to go back and forth long distance everyday, it’s built in a factory, then moved once.
  • The fact that modular homes have to travel is also a major factor in their construction. Because the homes have to travel, they are built to withstand a good beating! Modular homes are usually built with 10-20 percent more lumber making them more stable. Most companies will also use screws over nails, as well as, gluing and strapping the joints. After Hurricane Andrew in 1992, FEMA confirmed that modular housing is built stronger than site built housing. A strong home is great news for anyone, but especially for those of you living in areas that deal with frequent natural disasters.

Once a modular home is set and sealed, it is virtually indistinguishable from a site built home. But, if you choose modular, you get it faster, stronger, cheaper, and greener! The next time you are considering a new home, give modular a second look, you’ll be glad you did! For more information, contact your nearest Palm Harbor Homes model center. We would love to help you build the home of your dreams!

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