Modular Home Construction
Exterior Site Work
Modular Home Basement Stairs - The stairs to the basement is considered to be exterior work if the basement is an unconditioned space. The carpenter will be required to purchase pre-assembled stairs or build the steps on site. Often it is less expensive to purchase prefabricated stairs for the basement. Make sure the builder install pressure treated lumber at the bottom of the stair stringers.
Basement and Garage Windows Modular Homes - Installing the basement windows after the home is set allows the concrete in the foundation to cure. By installing the windows after the home is set the foundation space will be dryer in the short run. We recommend keeping the basement windows out of the house as long as possible to help building materials dry. Some builders will install chicken wire to keep animals from the foundation space.
Panelized Garages - Some modular homes have garages built into the modular home or partially built in. If the home has a no garage or a partial garage, The garage will need to be constructed on site. Building the garage will require framing, roofing, window and door installation, flat work and potentially the installation of a fire wall to the the home.
Masonry, Stone and Stucco Finishes - Some modular home manufacturers install masonry finishes on the homes they produce at the factory. We highly recommend contracting with a local mason to complete all of the work on site. It is easier for to tie the foundation and the modular home together on site. If the work is completed in the factory, the mason is required to piece his work into the modular home and potentially leaving telltale indications between the house and the foundation.
Porches - Modular home porched can be both constructed in the factory and on site. If a porch is on a gable wall, the factory can build the roof and install pressure treated lumber for the floor. The advantage to having the factory manuracture, the porch is all but complete when the home is set on the foundation. Homes with porches on the front of the homes often have the modular home factory build the roof system at tehe factory and have the set crew install the roof and complete the shingles. The porch roof will be temporarily supported until the floor system and columns can be installed by your local contractor.
Decks for Modular Homes - Decks on modular homes are typically constructed on site after the home has been set. It is important to inform your modular home builder if you are considering a deck in the immediate future so that the factory can lay off siding on your home to accomodate the deck on your modular home. If a deck on your new modular home is going to be located on the gable walls of your home, the factory can often build the entire deck system and a roof for the deck at the factory.
Vinyl Siding - If your new home is going to have vinly siding, you have two choices. You can have the modular home factory install some of the sideing and have local vinyl installers install what can not be completed at the factory or you can have a local carpenter or vinyl installed side your intire home on site. Ranch homes and single story modular home will have colse to seventy percent of the siding completed in the factory. Two story modular homes and buildings will only have around thirty five percent of the home sided at the factory. In addition to siding the home, you should take into consideration trim options.
Chimneys and Dog Houses - If your modular home is going to have a wood or gas fire place, you will need to exhaust the fireplace to the outside. Wood burning fireplaces will require a chimney either located on the outside wall, within and exterior wall or through a chase in the inside of the home. If your modular home has a gas fireplace, and the fire place is flush with an exterior wall, you will be required to have a bump out or dog house to house the firebox or fireplace. These dog houses then have a vent system installed. If your prefab home has a gas fireplace installed on an interior wall it will be mandatory to have a chase installed to exhaust spent fuel. A two story modular home with a gas fire or wood fireplace located on an exterior wall, the chase will impinge on the second floor often leading to design frustrations. Exterior wall chimneys on two story homes are the easiest and often the least expensive option for fireplaces in modular homes.
Shutters - Modular home companies offer both louvered and panel style shutters on their homes. Some prefab house factories include shutters on the front elevation of the home and others provide shutters as a standard option. Shutters can add color and dimension to any home. Modular ranch homes without shutters look plain and boring. Adding shutters to a two story modular home adds height and dimension to the home. In addition to the style of shutter it important to choose a shutter color that will contrast and compliment the exterior siding, trim and roof. Of all the trim options available on a modular home, the shutters are the least expensive option with the most impact on curb appeal.
Soffit and Fascia - The soffit and fascia is installed at the factory as part of the roof overhang. On narrow modular homes, twenty four and twenty six feet wide homes, the soffit and fascia is 100% installed at the factory and after your prefab home is set it is ready for gutters and downspouts to be installed. On wider modular homes, some of the fascia will need to be installed on site depending on the manufacturer. On both narrow and wider modular homes, the fascia will need to be installed at the peak of the roof to where the roof is "flipped" into place. The standard color for soffit and fascia on modular homes is white. Most factories offer a variety of colors at a nominal cost.
Gutters and Down Spouts - Gutters and downspouts are always installed on site rather than at the modular home factory. When a modular home is set, the cable would crush the gutter. Installing gutters and downspouts is imperative to have a dry home. Many foolish people spend thousands of dollars on wet basement repairs and never look at the number one culprit to wet basements: roof drainage systems. It is recomended to hire a gutter company who will form seamless gutters for your modlular home on site. Seamless gutters will not have ugly seams requirering caulk and regular maintenance. In addition to gutters, you might decide to have gutter protection installed on your prefab house gutters to minimize gutter cleaning and seasonaly clogged gutters.