Frequently Asked Questions
- What are the benefits of building a modular home?
Modular homes are structurally stronger, faster and less expensive. See Benefits of Modular Homes for more information.
- Do you have contractors do all the work?
Our contractors can do all the work, some of the work or none of the work. This will depend on your preference and where your modular home is going.
- What do you need in order to order a modular home?
You must have a building permit and/or footings or foundation in and a solid closing date (in some cases have closed on your construction loan) from your bank, in order to put the house into the 8-10 foil business week factory production schedule. But since you need the blueprints to get the building permit, you must first make an appointment to come in to put a deposit down to get the blueprints started and prepare the paperwork for the bank.
Immediately following that appointment, you can bring our paperwork with our rough floor plan to the bank and we start the blueprints that you will need to apply for the building permit. The blueprints can take approximately 4-6 weeks to complete which is also the time it usually takes for a bank to give an unconditional commitment letter and a closing date. Then you submit the blueprints to the town for a building permit.
At the same time when you apply for your building permit, you come in to pick out your colors, and put the second deposit down. Then once you have closed on your construction loan or have a solid closing date, and your footings or foundation is in, we put your house into the 8-10 week production schedule at the factory. (All times quoted are approximate and can vary depending on the time of year, the factory production schedule and backlog, and holidays.)
- How much of a down payment do you require? (Not to be confused with the 5% - 20% down for the bank)
We require a minimum of $3,500-55,000. The first deposit is to get the initial process going, which is preparing the paperwork for the bank, and starting the state approved blueprints. The second deposit is when you apply for the building permit and come in to pick out the colors.
- So it's $2,500-$5,000 for the blueprints?
No, the deposit is on the modular home. We are not in the business of just doing blueprints. We expect that when you come in for the appointment to put the first deposit down, that you have done all your shopping and that you understand that the deposit is for the modular home and not just for blueprints.
- Do we have to have land to come in for a private consultation?
It is always best to have land already, or to have a piece of land under agreement, in order to do a more accurate design/price consultation. However, if you do not have land and are just trying to figure general budget, you can still set up a private consultation.
- Do you help in finding land?
No, we don't. We are strictly custom builders. People come to us already owning their land or they come to us with a piece of land in mind. We recommend that you go to a local fulltime broker, preferably one who specializes in land or new construction, to help you find land. However once you have a piece of land in mind we can advise you from there.
- Can we drive by some of your modular homes?
We suggest you first see the open house model home. After that if you feel you still need to see another house, we can set that up. Unfortunately, just driving by homes of people who have already moved in is not recommended.
- Does a modular home come with a guarantee or warranty?
Absolutely. Every modular home comes with a full one-year parts and labor warranty and a full ten year warranty on the structure. All product warranties such as appliances, shingles and siding are covered by the respective manufacturer.
- Are modular homes energy efficient?
Every modular home is constructed to be eligible to receive the Energy Star label that certifies energy efficiency. Our modular homes regularly exceed the standards put in place by Energy Star, a division of the Environmental Protection Agency.
- Are modular homes worth as much as a comparable site built home when they are built and resold?
The answer to both questions is yes. They are both constructed with the same specifications and in the same neighborhood. An appraiser applies the same rules for each type of home.
- Do you have any references?
References are available upon request. You can also read our testimonials.
- Do you build additions?
We are one of the only modular home companies on the east coast that builds additions. We can do 2nd floor additions on most existing homes, and standard expansions as well.
- What does the price include?
The turnkey price includes freight, flag cars, crane, taxes, kitchen cabinets, carpet, linoleum and bathroom fixtures, custom computer designing in 3D, state approved blueprints.
- How much should I figure for town water and sewer on an average well and septic?
Generally the average cost to hook up to town water and sewer is $1000 - $2000 each from your property line to your foundation (not into the street), However the average combined cost of a well and septic can be $ 10,000 -$ 15,000 which would be $4,000-$5,000 for a well and $5,000 - $ 10,000 for a septic. However this can vary greatly depending on your land. So for conversation sake for now, figure $ 15,000 for excavation, septic, and well.
- What about the cost of options such as hardwood floors, fireplaces, farmer's porches etc.?
The price of any option you choose with be given during your design/price consultation and/or included in your estimate. Any option you can get with a conventional stick built home you can also get with modular: for example: fireplaces, whirlpools, cathedral ceilings, farmers porches, hardwood floors, ceramic tile, wood siding, upgraded kitchen cabinets, corian or granite countertops, higher roof pitches, dormers etc.
- What about unknowns?
The only unknowns in building modular or traditionally are basically three: the excavation, the well and the septic to some degree. No builder can guarantee in advance of these unknowns. This unfortunately is the only down side to custom buildings. However, other local work costs that we quote are more predictable. We can however give you estimates from our past experiences on excavation, septic and well. Also ones you have a septic system design drawn by an engineer that becomes less of an unknown. The well and excavation will remain an unknown until they are attempted.
- How much do you charge per square foot?
Judging a modular home builder by his price per square foot is a serious mistake. It's like buying a car for the price per pound. Very rarely will a pricing formula work for every job. Our turnkey construction which includes start to finish construction as well as foundation, and finishing costs roughly $135/sq ft for larger homes (>2500sq ft) and $155/sq ft for smaller homes (<2500 sq ft). Additionally, we drop ship at $65-$85/sq ft based upon location, design and options.
- Why is the per square foot prices less, for larger homes?
The more house you buy, the less expensive the price is. The reason for this is that there is an economy of scale with modular homes. There are certain things that remain constant when you build a modular, such as freight and certain overhead costs. In other words, it costs the same to ship 4 small sections of a house as it does to ship 4 large sections of a house.
- How much are garages?
Garages are built locally and the cost ranges from $17,000 - $19,000 from ground up, for conventional roof (5/12 or 7/12 pitch truss roof) and $25,000 - $30,000 for 12/12-roof pitch with unfinished bonus from above the garage depending on size.
- Don't you get stress cracks with modular?
You will get stress cracks because sheetrock is the weakest medium in any construction, of course this is not structural, this is cosmetic and it is part of the modular process. After the house is set, whoever is doing the local button up takes care of the stress cracks. However, over time you will have less settlement cracks than you would have with a conventionally built house. The reason for this is because the plywood and sheetrock are glued to the studs and the ceiling joists and this restricts the movement of materials with expansion, contraction and moisture.
- Are the houses pre-wired and does the electrics panel come with the house?
The houses come pre-wired with the switches and outlets in place. The panel with the circuit breakers is attached in one of the modules and the other module(s) have home run wires that the local electrician connects.
- Does the boiler come with modular homes?
The modular homes come with the heating baseboard elements installed and stubbed through the floor. The heating connections of all the baseboard elements below the floor joists and the boiler needs to be done locally. The boiler and the heating connections will be included as part of your turnkey price as a separate line item called Plumbing & Heating connections.
Customizing and Options
- Can I custom design a floor plan?
Yes, almost any design is possible.
- Do you charge for custom designing?
We offer custom computer designing for all of our stock floor plans and our custom designed floor plans included in the price of our homes. However, if you add options such as Jacuzzi tubs, or recessed lighting or crown molding, those items would be added onto your final price as an itemized list.
- What about the options such as hardwood floors, fireplaces, fanner's porches etc.?
Any option you can get with a conventional stick built home you can also get with modular. For example: fireplaces, whirlpools, cathedral ceilings, fanners porches, hardwood floors, ceramic tile, wood siding, upgraded kitchen cabinets, corian or granite countertops, higher roof pitches, dormers etc.
- Do you have a list of all of your options?
No, but any option you may be thinking about you can discuss with your designer at your design price consultation and then it will be included in your estimate.
- How soon can we get a modular home?
If you could order a house today, it would be here in approximately 8-10 full business weeks, excluding several days for holidays since we are not allowed on the highway before and after holidays. We can only order a house after we have a building permit and/or footings, the foundation is in and you have a solid closing date from your bank or have closed on your construction loan.
- Is that all it takes? Only 8 weeks to 10 weeks?
It takes only eight to ten weeks to build the house in the factory then we install it with the crane in one day. HOWEVER, from the day it is installed, you need to figure a MINIMUM of 8-12 weeks to move in. For some houses it may take even longer.
- Why does it take so long after the house is set?
Because we have to do finishing work, and also rough, and final inspections of both local electrical and plumbing. Then we must tie into the water and sewer or septic. The work cannot be done in parallel, but needs to be done sequentially, with gaps in between for such things as, inspections, and utilities.
- So how long does the whole process take?
It takes about 4-6 months from the time you have a building permit.
- How long does it take to get an estimate once we have sat down for a design/price consultation?
In order to provide you with an accurate estimate, we would need any custom floor plan drawn at the factory.