Modular Homes and Traditional Homes Compared

CMHNE BLOG

21 Jun 2011

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Building Codes

Modular homes: Modular homes are treated as traditional homes and must follow the local building codes and regulations. Also it must follow local zoning regulations.

Traditional homes: Traditional homes are subject to the local buildings codes and to the local zoning regulations.

Floor Plans/Design

Modular homes: No construction occurs until the homeowners pick the design. Most builders provide sample plans to help guide you in your customization. Modular homes are normally highly customized in their interior and exterior appearances.

Traditional homes: Can be customized to the owners’ preferences. Sometime developers will buy large plots of land, divide it into smaller plots and build identical homes next to each other. You can also hire an architect to design your home according to your preference or purchase home plans online and then hire a contractor to follow those plans.

Maintenance Cost

Modular homes: These homes are built in a climate controlled factory using high quality materials and more precise building techniques that are capable inside a factory. Modular homes are intentionally designed with additional insulation and other energy savings to reduce your maintenance costs.

Traditional homes: Since they are built on-site in all types of weather the quality of the product varies greatly. Research has shown that traditional homes are more likely to require repairs and higher maintenance costs.

Resale Value


Modular homes: Modular homes increase in value over time. Once they are completed it is near impossible to tell the difference between traditionally built homes and modular homes. These homes can also be improved or expanded.

Traditional homes: Traditional homes will increase in value over time. They can be improved and expanded to accommodate new owner’s preferences.

Construction Timeframe


Modular homes: This normal timeframe is 8-14 weeks. There are some time savings since construction can begin in the factory at the same time your foundation is being created on your site. Also weather has almost no impact on the schedule.

Traditional homes: The normal timeframe is several months to a year. Since all construction occurs on site, work projects can not start until the previous project is completed. The work schedule is dependent on the weather conditions.

Finished Appearance


Modular homes: Appearance can be the same as any traditional site-built home. You can add any style of window, door, wall or architectural feature you prefer. Once completed you cannot tell the difference between modular and traditional homes.

Traditional homes: The appearance can be customized to the home owner’s preference. Traditional homes can accommodate any architectural preference.

Building Process

Modular homes: It enjoys the benefits of assembly-line building in a manufacturing factory. This removes delays cause by the weather and vandalism damages. This more efficient process reduces the cost when compared to traditional homes.

Traditional homes: The most costly building process. It will require more people which will take more time since they do not work on the same type of house every day. It is also vulnerable to weather delays and vandalism costs. This process is the most likely to result in damaged building products like warped wood from rain exposure.

source: Modular Today