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Modular/Panelized


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By Bob in Arnold , CA on 11/10/2006


Building a spec home in Calaveras County. Making many calls and web searches, I’ve not been able to locate a local (California -- especially Central CA) factory-built modular or panelizer. Does anyone have experience with Central Valley manufacturers? Web links and or general contractor references are appreciated.


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By Dale in Richland, AZ on 1/28/2007


Check with the truss manufacturers in the area. Or call one of the big tract builders and ask them who does it.

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By Lana in Los Altos, CA on 9/8/2007


Hi Dale,

I'm researching MODULAR (UBC CODE) HOMES to put on a privately owned lot. Do you know in terms of return, if it is a good investment compared to a custom-build home?

Do you know any disadvantages of using such homes?

Sincerely,

Lana


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By Lana in Los Altos, CA on 9/8/2007


Hi Bob,

 

If you are looking for HUD Code Manufactured homes, check SilverCrest.

If you are looking for UBC Code Modular homes, check Altamonte Homes.

 

Both manufacturers are authorized in California.

 


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By Robert in Encinitas, CA on 9/12/2007


Hi Lana,

There can be many challenges with building a modular home.  But a lot depends on whether you are financing the project and if you have connections in the building industry.  To clarify, if you are financing the project, a lender will require an appraisal on the proposed home.  When they are reviewing your file, they want to ensure the home you are building is as close to comparable home sales as possible.  So, they will look for other modular homes, preferably within a five-mile radius of your project, in equal size.  With the tightening of the lending market, subtle differences such as conventional construction vs. modular can raise issues.  This is not to say the issues cannot be overcome, but delays can happen when trying to finance a modular project.

Second, many modular companies require payment in full when the delivery truck arrives.  Again, if you are financing the project the bank will be hesitant to release hundreds of thousands of dollars without proof the panels are on site.  This leaves two choices: 1) pay for the package out of pocket and seek reimbursement through a draw or 2) work out a payment plan between the modular company and bank.  With option #2, you are the mercy of the modular company's good will. 

The next challenge is finding someone to install the panels.  Some modular companies will send a crew to your site to install them.  If they do, and they are from out of state, make sure they are not paid in full until you pass inspection!  If the modular company does not supply labor, you will have to search for qualified modular package installers.  Not all framers are familiar with the packages, and most will not want to deal with them.  So, finding qualified individuals to install these packages can be challenging.

The obvious benefit of using a modular package is how quickly it goes up. 


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