Any one live in one? Plusses, minuses, what company did you use?
We're testing the water.
I have a lot experience with modular homes. What in particular would you like to know?
Are you looking at a true modular or a manufactured/double-wide home? There is a big difference between the two products and often people use the terms interchangeably and that leads to a lot of confusion and misinformation.
We have a true modular. Built in 3 pieces in a factory, put on a concrete/brick foundation with no metal frame. It won't ever move again and is deeded as a house- no title. We are super, super, happy with it. We put it on our 5 acres for double the square footage we would have gotten with a traditionally build simple home. It's a Palm Harbor/Discovery Custom Home. http://www.discoverycustomhomes.com/
We didn't go way over budget like many site built homes where prices go up before it's done. Hardly any weather delays. Guarantee, and built way better than many "instant" neighborhood tract homes around here.
I could right more, but I have a grouchy not NAK baby on my lap!
I mean a true modular home. DH were looking at a house that was on 2 acres and it's going for 320K and it's nearly falling apart. Driving away from the house I saw that land was for sale. Looked that up and it was 3 acres for sale for 50k!!! I figured a modular home wouldn't be 270K and even if it was it would be new, whereas this one needs additional funds to fix up.
I don't know anyone who lives in a modular and I'm not sure how to pick a "good" company. I've been poking around with green homes (solar passive, rain water capture etc) and found a couple of companies but they never list the price so I'm not sure if it's affordable.
The thought of the "seams" it's what worries me about the house itself.
Looking into discovery presently. Thanks.
Modulars are so common where I live, people truly don't make a distinction between modular and stick-built homes. (I live in PA) If anything, modulars are becoming the prefered choice because of the quality of construction, quick turnaround, cost controls, etc. Through my real estate and banking years, I worked with many builders and manufacturers. When it comes to true modulars, I think it is a very good product. (not so much for manufactured/double-wides)
Start with talking to a couple of builders in your area because you are going to need a local builder to coordinate the site work, set the boxes, manage the finishing work and so on. Ask them which companies they use and start your research from there. There are many manufacturers. Some focus more on standard designs, others are better at more customized, higher-end houses.
The house you describe sounds like the problem wasn't that it was modular, more like it was a crap job all around. Even if the boxes weren't properly jointed, the boxes can't just come apart, they are extremely heavy and don't just move with the wind. It is probably a foundation problem that caused excessive settlement and cracks in the drywall. That being said, it sounds like a place you don't want to buy.
Affordability depends on the style of house and quality of finishes. A simple one or two story with a plain roof line (like a classic colonial or ranch style) will be less than a house with bump outs and a complex roof. Upgrades will eat up cash too. One of my modular manufacturing clients told me that he never offers an upgrade that he can't make 40% profit on. So sticking with the stock kitchen cabinets, moldings, windows, etc. will keep costs down.