Manufactured or Mobile Homes, which are factory built, require inspection on certain levels. These inspections assure that they are built in congruence with the criteria set under HUD federal building codes. Mobile homes are inspected at the factory, once they are brought on site during setup, and while they are being installed (just before the move-in of the residents). The exterior, interior, rating, warranties and utilities of the home are checked to make sure that they are up to the mark and safe to be used.
Here is a checklist that you must have and go through before you select a mobile home to buy or move in:
This would include the inspection of roof, railings, paneling and the surroundings of the mobile home. You checklist should include if:
- The roof has any shingles that are damaged or missing and if the aging has made a marked difference
- The paneling of the exterior trim are missing
- There is any water damage
- The entry and exit doorways and steps are deteriorating
- The surrounding has anything which may cause damage during high winds; low tree limbs, power line, etc.
- The home has any extra room or carport that was not in the original floor plan at the time of manufacturing
- There is any gas tank outside the home which has not been anchored to a concrete foundation
The interior would include several inspections like the walls and roof for discoloration, the floor for any loose or missing tile or wooden panel; even the carpet being worn out. The plumbing should also be on the checklist along with electrical switches, wiring and circuits. Any other hardware or ceramics set up in the home will need to be checked for aging or damage as well.
The above cover much of the important things required to be checked. The utilities like municipal services, electricity and gas lines, and external propane tank will also be liable to inspection. The checklist should also include warranties by previous owners and manufacturers. These inspections ensure that the home is safe to live in and you are being given a fair deal.
Usually the anticipation around buying a manufactured or mobile home is such that it makes you overlook something very important: its inspection. The mobile home you are about to buy might appear as the best one out there but what should remain your primary concern during the process are the factors you cannot see immediately; such as plumbing, electrical works, wiring and fixtures. It is only when you move in that you start to encounter these very practical problems.
Therefore, it is imperative that you hire a credible manufactured home inspector to come over and conduct a detailed inspection before you close the deal. You can judge how professional and credible the inspector is by looking for the following central factors;
Association with a Relevant Company
The most reliable home inspectors almost always belong to any of the good inspection companies/organizations found in your area. If an inspector works independently even in the presence of such organizations, chances are you are in for some risk and uncertainty.
As a general rule, it is safe to look for an association with a company so that you have a platform to report to in case anything goes wrong.
This is, without a speck of doubt, the most important aspect. Experience is something you cannot hide neither can it be shown untruthfully. Make sure that the home inspector you intend to hire has some substantial experience with him so that he better reports not just the apparent problem but the prospective ones as well that could show in the near future.
Coverage of Inspection
Before you go gaga over unexpectedly reasonable rates the inspector is offering, do make sure to ask him about the coverage of the inspection in detail. Any of the crucial aspects must not be left out of the inspection such as detailed plumbing and electrical inspection among others. It is not just the apparent problems the inspector must cover but he should ideally dig in deeper and try to look for hidden ones as well.
Don’t go for someone who promises a detailed inspection in an unusually short time. Usually, a detailed inspection takes no less than 2 to 3 hours. Apparently, you might be impressed with someone who claims a quick and thorough inspection, but chances are high that he will overlook quite a few things.