Header

If you are thinking of selling your home, it’s only natural that you would want to get the best price possible. After all, even though they are considered “affordable housing”, you still paid a considerable amount when you bought the home and whatever your plans are after leaving the home, what you get for it will help set you up financially. Mobile home upgrades can help you increase the value of your home, making it easier to sell and more profitable.

Mobile Home Upgrades - Featured Image

We all know that mobile home’s generally depreciate in value and that the home is worth less as soon as it’s bought, but does that mean you have to resign yourself to a low selling price? Absolutely not!

A valid follow-up question you might have is “What can I do to improve the value of my home?”. That’s an excellent question. In this article, we will provide the answer (or answers more accurately).

The fact of the matter is, a lot of the home’s value comes down to pure curb appeal as much as actual home improvements. However, you don’t want to spend your time and effort on improvements that won’t increase your home’s worth. We will show you the most effective ones that will add value to your home and explain how to go about them.

Upgrade your location

As the people in the movie industry would say: “Location, location, location”. It’s just a cold, hard fact that when you move into a home, you move into the neighborhood as well. This means that there are various location-based factors that also influence the value of a mobile home.

Luckily for mobile home owners, unlike real estate, the homes can actually move to a new location. However, there are a few caveats.

First of all, it’s an expensive and stressful process. Even a local mobile home move will most likely cost a minimum $1000 and more likely around $2000. A move across states or the country can cost anywhere around $10000 and up. So, you will need to carefully consider the cost of the move compared with the possible pay off. Moving the home more than once can also result in it being virtually impossible to finance which will also drastically lower its value.

Although this might seem a crazy way to up your value, considering mobile home’s don’t sell for that much, the location can drastically improve the home’s value. For instance, moving the home to private land makes it easier to get financing than if the home is on a leased lot. If the home is in an area with high property values or is experiencing a property value boom, it’s even better.

As a side note, if your home is in a mobile home park, there is still a stigma surrounding these parks. For many buyers, it might be a complete turn-off. In general, having a home on personal property is just more desirable. A mobile home+land combo will get you the highest demand and the highest bids.

Upgrade your home to “real estate”

The fact that mobile homes aren’t seen as real estate is one of the biggest reasons that there are much less financing options. The lack of financing options also has a huge effect on the price as most people simply can’t afford something as expensive as a home without financing.

Mobile homes are built and regulated according to the HUD code brought into effect in 1976. It specifies the guidelines for building a mobile home and how to keep a home in lieu with them. For those who want to convert their home to real estate, there is also a uniform process under which you can do just that.

The Uniform Manufactured Housing Act (UMHA) spells out this process. By following its exact specifications you can legally convert your mobile home to real estate. One of the restrictions is that the mobile home needs to be on a parcel of land that is privately owned by the homeowner. It only makes sense that you can’t permanently attach a home to a piece of land you don’t own.

You then basically strip the mobile home of its ability to relocate. This is done by removing the chassis, axles, and wheels. The home also needs to be placed on a permanent foundation and affixed to it. Finally, you need to register the home as real estate with your local municipality.

Once the home is considered real estate, it should result in an increase of value. Real estate financing is more attractive and attainable. The fact that you are selling the home and the land together will also contribute to the value.

Upgrade the home’s energy efficiency

And by this, we don’t mean to start throwing out electronic appliances! Central AC and other types of appliances may use up more energy but also add to the value of your home. There are many other steps you can take to make your home more energy efficient. These solutions will make the home’s heating and cooling systems more efficient.

dog in front of fan

Anyone will view it as a huge bonus the lower the home’s monthly costs are on things like utilities and that they don’t have to go through the hassle of making it energy efficient themselves. Some of the other upgrades we discuss will already make your home more energy efficient, so let’s look at those we haven’t singled out.

Insulation

Insulation has an immense effect on your home’s overall energy performance. It’s not only important that you have insulation installed but you should also check it periodically. If only 5% of the insulation is missing it could result in a drop of 54% in efficacy. There are also a lot of options available of which we prefer insulation foam. You should have insulation present in the roof cavity, the subflooring, and the walls.

Energy-efficient windows and doors

This is one not many people think of. However, even small gaps to the outside can lead to dramatic energy losses. Windows and doors naturally have small gaps and windows themselves aren’t very insular. Storm doors and windows are also usually more energy-efficient. The effect helps all year round keeping the home cooler in summer and warmer in winter.

Weatherstripping and caulking

As an alternative to energy-efficient windows and doors, you can expect your home for crevices that let air through. This is prone to develop anywhere where your home has a corner, connections, and windows or doors as a result of mobile home’s always settling.

Insulated skirting

Insulated skirting helps control the temperature underneath your home. This is where the water heater, plumbing, and sometimes the AC unit is located, all things you want to properly insulate. Skirting also adds to curb appeal and keeps out rodents.

Energy-efficient appliances

When you buy new electronic appliances always check them for their energy rating.

Upgrade your home’s curb appeal

When you start posting ads for your home the first thing someone will look for is the pictures. There is no denying the fact that aesthetics play one of the most important roles when someone buys a home. If your home simply doesn’t look like an attractive option you won’t have someone enquiring further, no matter what a good buy it is.

Aside from drawing crowds of potential buyers to your home, beautifying it also can’t hurt your asking price. Everyone wants to live in a home they can be proud of and if they don’t have to go to great lengths to beautify the home themselves it’s always a plus.

Paint

The first project you should think of when trying to upgrade the look of your home is a DIY painting project. It’s a great way to completely change how your home looks and make it look cleaner and neater at the same time.

Many people are tempted to go all fancy when painting the home’s exterior. We recommend keeping it simple with bright and modern colors. This is what most people want and will get you the most interest. Window frames, door frames, and other details look nice when they are painted with a color that compliments the main one.

paint swatches

Landscape

The nice thing about landscaping is that it can be whatever you want it to be. It can be as simple as planting some new and carefully chosen plants around the garden or you can go all out and even change the geography of your yard.

A well-tended and mindfully created garden will not only dramatically improve your home’s curb appeal but also be relatively easy to maintain. Just remember to carefully consider each plant’s preferred climate, water requirements, and seasonality.

Skirting

The underside of a mobile home isn’t pretty. Adding attractive and good quality skirting can improve the home’s looks as well as provide better insulation, keep out pests, protect the underbelly and insulating material, and create a handy storage area.

Upgrade the roof

The roof of the home can have an effect on both the home’s curb appeal as well as its energy efficiency, structural integrity, and maintenance.

Install a pitched roof

Pitched roofs generally look much more attractive than flat roofs. Although it might not seem that way, they are also more structurally sound and require less maintenance. The simple reasons being that the triangular structure is very sturdy and water can’t pool and collect. Asphalt shingle roofs are good to look at but a nightmare to maintain so be mindful of this trade-off.

You can also install a TPO membrane which is a fantastic and inexpensive upgrade though it won’t contribute too much to the home’s value.

the home’s interior

This is arguably the home improvement project that will up your home’s value the most. While you can debate the actual value of upgrading the home’s looks, there is no disputing the value of a modern and stylishly renovated kitchen or bathroom.

Remodel the kitchen

The days of the kitchen simply being a place to cook are over. Nowadays the kitchen has become a status symbol and something to brag about. No matter what type of living arrangement a buyer is looking for, more often than not they are willing to splurge if the home has a designer kitchen.

designer kitchen

Remodel the bathroom

Another important area people look at is the bathroom. As the place where you prepare for the day, get comfortable at night, and where you take care of your cleanliness, everyone wants a clean, neat, and relaxing bathroom.

Upgrade your floor

Upgrading a floor is not quite as easy us upgrading your walls. In a mobile home, it’s also not as simple as in a stick-built home. You should make sure that both your sub-flooring (which usually consists of plywood) as well as the actual floor surface is in good condition.

Repair or replace flooring

Floors take quite a lot of beating from us on a daily basis and water damage is an ever-present threat. It’s quite possible that yours is in need of a remodel, especially if it’s made of wood, laminate wood, engineered wood, or vinyl. Tiles are obviously impressive but can make the home much colder in winter and are much harder and more expensive to install, although they can add some value to your home.

If you have a carpet, you should definitely check its state and consider replacing it. Carpets gather all kinds of dust and stains over the years as well as tears and dethreading.

Repair subflooring

A potential buyer will also be impressed and drawn to the fact that you have inspected and repaired the subflooring as this could be a huge problem down the road. Subflooring is under constant threat from structural as well as water damage. You should also double check on your insulation while you are at it.

Which of these mobile home upgrades will you tackle next?

So, that’s it for our list of mobile home upgrades to increase your home’s value. Remember that you never truly know how the market and potential buyers will respond to these upgrades. However, some remodeling projects, like a designer kitchen or bathroom, are more bulletproof than others.

About Dan Leighton

Dan Leighton has been working in the mobile home industry for over a decade. His focus has been on sales and customer relations - making sure each person in the transaction is comfortable and fully transparent. He has a wife and one son. Dan continues to look for innovative ways to help both sellers and parks get the most bang for their buck.