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Modular Home Building Costs

Modular Home Design Costs

Floor Plan Design - Modular home design costs will depend on who designs your new modular home. You have three primary choices on who designs your new prefab home: builder, architect or a modular home designer.

  • Builder Designed Modular Homes - This is the least expensive of the design services for modular homes. Often builder designed homes originate from standard modular home floor plans with modifications to the homes floor plan and exterior. The engineered drawings are completed at the factory to conform to the modular home factories systems package which is a pre approved building system.
  • Architect Designed Modular Homes - There are a number of architects who specialize in designing ground up modular home design services. Not all architects have modular home experience to conform to the factories' system packaged. An architect can take your new modular home to the next level not only in floor plan design, but interior and exterior finishes which will make you home truly unique and functional.
  • Modular Home Designed Homes - Often these homes are designed by individuals who understand modular home construction and specialize in sustainable design. Modular home designers can often perform the same services the builder or the architect provide at a lesser price.

If you contact with a designer or architect, you will be able to shop the home to multiple modular home manufactures and builders. This will allow you to control the cost of the home by making apples to apples comparisons for your new modular home.

Modular Home Engineering Costs

Engineering and Permit Set Costs - Regardless if you have your new modular home is totally custom or a modified factory plan, you will be required to pay for engineered drawings from the factory. Modular home factories use third party engineering firms to approve and stamp the homes to meet state and local building codes. The cost for modular home engineering usually cost less than $1500 dollars and is built into the price of the home.

If your home is complex and requires outside engineering for clear spans and complicated roof systems, there could be additional engineering costs if your home does not fit into the factories systems package. If you were building a site built home, you would incur the same additional costs.

What is included In Factory Engineered Drawing Costs

The engineering fees include preliminary drawings, revisions and permit sets. Even though you might have paid a designer or modular home architect for design services, the factory will still need to create engineered drawings for the permit sets and also the as built plans for the factory construction of your new prefab home.

Foundation Drawings for Modular Homes - The modular home factory will provide you with a proposed foundation drawing showing the dimensions of the prefab home. A local engineer will need to draw the foundation drawings and add any windows, bulkhead, or other options you would like to add to the foundation. Since soil conditions are different from building site to building site the modular home factory is qualified to provide these sets. Foundation drawings can cost as little at $100 dollars to a thousand smackers.

Modular Homes and Construction Upgrades - Each factory has their standard specifications. This means two identical houses from different modular home factories will have different base prices. Construction upgrades could be as little at to three percent to as much at thirty percent above the base price of the home. Upgrades are optional so it is best to discuss your construction needs with your builder or dealer.

Interior Up Grades for Modular Homes - Interior upgrades for a modular home could drive the cost of the home through the roof. The big variables include kitchen and bathroom options. However adding solid core doors, over sized trim, nine foot ceilings or cathedral ceilings could drive the price much higher as well. It is best to have a list of wants and needs when discussing what upgrades you desire and then making choices that will fit your building budget.

Exterior Options and Finishes for Modular Homes- The standard exterior modular home finish is a middle grade of vinyl siding and the windows are usually ENERGY STAR vinyl windows. The number of finish options include wider trim, stone or masonry finishes, cement board or cedar siding, chimneys, porches, decks, awnings and the list goes on. Before you visit your modular home builder or dealer you should have a list of your wants and needs.

Survey, Permits and Legalities - Depending on where you are building and the local requirements will tell you the prices and cost for surveys, permits and other legalities. Contact your local building department and request a building permit application.

Site Clearing - If you are building the modular home in a subdivision your site clearing cost will be very little. In fact the excavation cost will usually be included in the excavation and foundation cost. But, if you have a heavily wooded site with a couple of junk cars on the site your cost will be higher. Have your builder or dealer visit the site to give you a ball park price to clear you site so you can prepare your site for the excavation and your foundation.

Porta Potty - a cost that should be added to every job is a place to do business. If you are building in a secluded location you still will need a porta potty on location so the modular home foundation will not be used as a toilet.

Excavation and Foundation - The cost for the excavation has many variables. The standard issues will be if fill needs to be added or if fill It is next to impossible to know what is underground and therefore this cost is always and estimate. If the excavator starts digging the modular home foundation and hits a rock ledge, blasting it away could cost thousands of dollars. If a underground spring is discovered, a drainage system will need to be installed.

Site Drainage - Depending on the topography of your building lot, drainage issues could lead to additional excavation cost to build the prefab home. The installation of swells or a french drain could add thousands to the cost of your project.

Flat Work - Your home will need to have poured cement in the foundation, so this cost should be covered in the foundation costs. But if you are going to have a cement driveway or walkways, these will be additional cost to be added to the price of the modular home.

Tool Rental - This cost is directed at people who plan on being their own modular home general contractor and will be completing some of the work themselves. It is often better to rent equipment you use once to finish your prefab home. Often tool costs are never taken into consideration when building your home.

Land Fill - Bringing in or removing fill can be a huge cost. You will have three costs to take into consideration: heavy equipment to move the dirt either on or off the site, trucks to haul dirt in or out and where you are going to dump the dirt or get the fill from. Often those who are acting as their own general contractor find this as a sneaky cost of building.

Staging Area for Modular Homes - If your lot does not have enough space to hold the modules when they are delivered, you will need to find a staging area for the modular home when it is delivered. This cost could be free if a local church or fire department will let you use their parking space or it could cost you if you don't have any nice people around.

Delivery Costs for Modules - The delivery of the modular home is charged by the factory and is often included in the price of the home from a builder or dealer, however often when people are shopping for the price of a modular home dealers leave this variable out as part of the cost. The variables to delivery cost include the distance away from the factory and the type of escorts needed. Some state require state police escorts which will drive the price of modular home delivery up.

Preparation for Set - Preparing the site for the set includes a pad for the crane, egress to the site for the carriers, a toter or front loader to move the modules into place for the set. A staging area to watch the modular home being set. Making sure their are no obstacles to the site: trees; wires; fences; telephone poles and etc.

Crane Costs - Crane costs vary with the size of the crane and the distance to the building site from the cranes location. We recommend a 100 ton crane to set modular homes. A ball park figure for a crane for an eight hour day (portal to portal) depende on the number of cranes in your area, but it can range from $1,800 to $5,000. If you are using a builder, he will most likely get a better price than if you are being the general contractor.

Set Costs - The cost of setting a modular home includes tearing the protective plastic covering from the home to installing the shingles on the home in most cases. The cost to set a house is around a thousand smackers a pick. A pick includes modules, dormers, chimney and etc. Once you have your plans completed you will be able to get a solid quote from your set crew. Some factories perform their own set with either employees or sub contractors and the cost of the set is included with the price of the home.

Garages - If you are attaching a garage to the modular home, you will need to add this cost into the price of the house as well. The cost of the garage can vary depending on the level of finish and the size of the garage. In addition to the cost of the garage the modular home factory will also install a fire wall on that side of the home which will be an additional modular home construction cost.

Porches and Decks on Modular Homes - Porches and decks will need to be added to list of onsite construction prices for the modular home. Rarely is it cost effective to have the modular home factory provide either. You will need to contact a carpenter to give you an estimate for the price of porches and decks to be added to the price of the house.

Exterior Button Up Costs - The cost to button up the exterior of the home depends on the finishes you have chosen. If you selected standard modular home vinyl siding your cost to button up the exterior is nominal. If you have gable end returns, fancy cornice, Columns, wide window trim, the price will increase. If you are a do it yourself modular home builder make sure you add the cost for ladder jacks at a minimum to the finish cost.

Interior Button Up Costs - The cost to button up the interior of the home is nominal, it easy. Install drywall areas on walls and ceilings, paint all drywall, install trim, install ledger strips at doorways, adjust windows and doors, install doors located on the modular home's mate wall, etc. The price on the interior button up and finish will depend on the size of the home.

Electrical Connections -This cost will vary from location to location. Use a licensed electrician to complete the electrical connections. Electricity scares the hell out of me and it should scare you too.

Plumbing Connections - The cost to make plumbing connections will vary with the number of bathrooms and the locations of the bathrooms. If you have a two story modular home, your plumbing cost will be more than a ranch. You will need to talk to a plumber as to the cost to make plumbing connection in the modular home.

Flooring Costs - Most of the time carpeting and vinyl siding is included in the price of the modular home. But, if you want hard wood flooring, ceramic tile, cork or another type of flooring you will need to get estimates from the modular home factory or a local supplier.

Appliances - We include appliances as a cost because you can order them through the modular home factory and include them in the mortgage and write the interest off rather than paying for them with a credit card later on. Appliances can be a sneaky cost.

Landscaping - This all depends on what you want or your HOA requires. This is a cost that has jumbo variables. Wanna fish pond it will cost you more.

Water and Sewer - No home is complete without a way to get water into the house and used water out. The cost for water supply could be a tap in fee for water and sewer or it could be the cost for a well and a septic system. Sand mound septic systems could add twenty thousand bucks to the cost of the home.

Heating and Air Conditioning -The cost of the heating and air conditioning system will vary for every modular home. Call an HVAC dude and they won't be able to give you a rock solid price without completing heat calculations for your home. How can you expect a modular home builder be able to shoot off the hip with a price.

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