Renting out your single-wide can be a fantastic way to provide some extra income. In the current housing crunch, there is no shortage of people and families looking for affordable, yet homely accommodation. Which today’s mobile homes certainly offers. If you want to create a home that’s irresistible to future tenants and will increase in value, we’d like to provide you with single wide mobile home renovations that will do just that.

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What to consider before renovating a single-wide:

  • Cost: Since we are only talking about a single-wide and since you will be recovering the renovation cost with rent; you probably don’t want to spend thousands.
  • Value: If possible, you’d want renovations to also add to the value of your home in case you want to sell it one day.
  • Wow factor: To attract and sell potential renters on your property, you should make noticeable renovations that will catch the eye.
  • The HUD Code: You should always consider the Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards 1976 when renovating to ensure your home stays up to code.
  • Style: You might be tempted to let your creative side out and design the heck out of your home. However, it’s not recommended to style a home too much as you are limiting who will find it appealing. Remember, tastes differ.

Paint!

Before you install anything, make additions or start ripping off any part of your home, consider painting it first. Paint can have an almost miraculous effect on a home. It can make it look brand new or completely change its mood.

You can even do exciting things with paint like create textures, make shapes with stencils, etc. It’s standard and proper practice to repaint a home in between long tenancies as it can mask damage, cover stains, and refresh the house as a whole.

The best part is that it requires less budget and effort than most other items on this list, making one of the best single wide mobile home renovations to start with!

Renovate the bathroom

Faucets and showerheads

Another small, yet unskippable feature of a beautiful bathroom is modern and stylish faucets, shower heads, and other bathroom fixtures. At the very least, your old ones can probably do with a good scrubbing down to remove buildup and caulk.

If you want to add some utility, pick water-saving faucets like these. You can also go for something unique. For example, waterfall faucets are all the rage right now. You also don’t need to stick with silver but can go bronze or black for special effect.

Sinks

Unlike the kitchen sink that needs to be all about practicality, you can go a little more creative when it comes to the bathroom sink. Glass bowl sinks are a trendy choice right now. If you have a rustic bathroom, you can even put in mad-of-stone or faux stone material. A real showstopper is to install a geode sink, although it is usually very pricey.

Bathtubs and shower pans

As big parts of your bathroom, you should definitely consider your bathtub and shower pans if you decide to renovate. The cost will largely depend on whether you can install it yourself or need a contractor. However, bathtubs can be quite expensive whereas shower pans are relatively cheap. An alternative might be to simply create an impressive exterior wall for your bath using faux stone panels.

stone tiles bathtub

Vanity and storage

You don’t need tons of storage in your bathroom, but a useful vanity with decent amounts of storage space is absolutely essential. Not only can it be a decorative centerpiece for your bathroom, but it’s one of the areas where someone will spend most of their bathroom time.

Depending on the style you’re going for, you’ll either want to contrast it with the room or have it blend in. If it has some sort of exterior towel rack, even better. If it doesn’t, consider adding some of these to your walls or install open sided towel shelves.

What else?

  • Freshen up grout: The grout in bathrooms can get moldy and dirty with time. Make sure you give them a good scrubbing.
  • Check for water damage: Water damage or mold is a huge turnoff and can lead to severe damage so make sure it’s eliminated.

Renovate the kitchen

The kitchen has become an important factor when buying or renting a space both for its utility and looks. Single-wides usually have small kitchens that share an open plan space with a living or dining room. Check out these fantastic small kitchens by Elle Decor.

Install (designer) appliances

Yes, new appliances are pretty expensive investments. However, you will see these translate almost directly to value for new renters as well as if you decide to sell the home. On this end of the housing scale, potential tenants would rather pay a little more than have to buy their own appliances when they move. Also, new appliances will make the kitchen look much better, especially if you can afford designer models.

Upgrade the cabinets

Your kitchen cabinets take up a lot of the surface area in your kitchen and play a significant role in how attractive your kitchen is. Unfortunately, most mobile homes come with very bland cabinets installed by default. Luckily, however, you can make even exceptionally dull wooden kitchen cabinets look 100 times better with a coat of paint or a nice wood treatment.

Replacing cabinets isn’t too expensive, and they are easy to install, so you don’t need to hire a contractor. The same goes for their handles.

New surfaces

We probably don’t need to tell you that granite/soapstone/marble countertops in kitchens are all the rage right now. However, this can be a pretty expensive upgrade. However, you can quite easily find faux versions of these decorative stone countertops for much cheaper. Even wood countertops can look fantastic. However, you will need to hope for mindful tenants as they can be easily damaged.

Always renovate your surfaces with your cabinets and backsplashes in mind to get a desirable look.

Backsplash

Another very modern, very appealing renovation you can make in the kitchen is to install a backsplash. It’s surprising what a difference a bit of decorative wall covering between your countertops and cabinets can make to a room. It will immediately bring something special to the table. Wood or stone slate designs are particularly in right now.

What else?

As the place where you do most of your cooking, a kitchen needs to be very functional. You can read post like this one with advice from real contractors as a starter. You can add some of the following to make your kitchen more productive and appealing:

  • Kitchen island: Portable kitchen islands are great for adding additional storage and working space, particularly in a smaller kitchen.
  • Hanging pot hooks: Again, a fantastic way to save space, and provides a nice rustic feel.
  • Utensil racks: Will make the kitchen look more professional and save space too.

rustic kitchen theme with items hanging on hooks

What if I have a spare room?

You can go about this one of two ways: you can pre-furnish a certain room in the home (other than the master bedroom, living room, and kitchen) for a certain function. Or leave it as bare as possible. It depends on whether you want to add value for tenants by already providing a decent office space or kids room. You could also give them the opportunity to do with it what they like.

If you have a spare room, approach it cautiously. Even if you make it out to be a home office, kids’ room, baby room or study, don’t make it irreversible. You probably don’t know what type of tenants you’ll be coming across. Not being able to repurpose it for their needs may be a huge turnoff.

Make it tech-savvy

Mobile homes do have a certain stigma of being more outdated or of not being appropriate housing for those who live high tech lifestyles. Nothing could be further from the truth. Most tenants will appreciate a home that makes it easy to live a modern lifestyle.

Power outlets

Make sure that your house has enough power outlets and that it’s easy to organize electronics and appliances based on them. You can find power outlets with special features like USB charging ports for little more than standard outlets.

Phone and internet ports

Although home phones are becoming rarer, it’s still a must-have for most households. Also, it’s hard to imagine anyone or any family nowadays living without internet. Usually, phone and internet ports come together. You could even arrange internet for the property yourself; many prospective tenants will find it a very valuable extra.

Central heating/cooling

Central air-conditioning is another relatively expensive feature that will also translate well into an actual increase in the home’s value. This is particularly important if your home is located in an area that experiences extreme heat or cold. Pair with good insulation or a roof wrap for better effect and lower energy consumption.

It’s a good investment since it’s something too expensive for a tenant to buy themselves for a rental.

Interior improvements

Light fixtures

Once again, many older or lower end mobile homes come with very plain or outdated light fixtures. It might also be the case that your home’s lighting is a little inadequate. Whatever the case may be, lighting fixtures are just as much a decorative aspect as a practical one.

You don’t have to install something as flashy or over-the-top as a chandelier. But, make sure every room has adequate lighting and that it suits the style of the home. As a bonus, proper lighting will make the home look and feel more inviting. And that’s something you want when showing your home.

Crown/floor molding and trim

This is another relatively inexpensive and easy-to-do renovation task that will immediately up the class of your home. Pair new molding and trim with new floors and a paint job to really light up your home’s interior.

New flooring

Our floor is constantly being scraped, bashed or splashed. As such, it tends to pick up more damage than any other part of the home. Wood or laminate wood flooring is particularly susceptible, which is unfortunate since they are the floors of choice in most mobile homes.

mats on wooden flooring in a home

If you don’t want to spend the money to replace flooring completely and the damage isn’t severe, installing a carpet in the room or strategically placing mats can go a long way. Whether damage or no, a few well-placed mats can help break up the monotony of a room and is a good design choice.

New furniture

It’s safe to assume that most people looking for a single-wide to rent are in the market for affordable housing. They are probably not in the position to buy furniture every time they move. If you want to furnish your home without it costing a bomb, put in the effort and look at minimalist designs as well as DIY furniture projects.

You can hunt for cheap furniture in good condition at second-hand stores or bank auctions. You will also be surprised at the creative home DIY storage projects you can undertake that are comfortable and affordable. Just look at these examples on Pinterest.

Improve the curb appeal

To someone renting a mobile home, the curb appeal may not be as important to someone who is in the market to buy. After all, it’s technically not theirs to show off, and they will be spending most of their time inside. Also, improving the curb appeal of a home can be a bit more expensive and labor-intensive than updating the interior.

However, we do recommend that you at least properly clean and paint the outside of the house in between long tenancies. If you really wanted, you could also:

  • Install new skirting: Undamaged and attractive skirting gives a home a very classy and polished look. It also has numerous physical benefits.
  • Install a new roof: Pitched roofs are much more attractive than the flat, boxy roofs that most mobile homes come with. It’s also more structurally sound and has better drainage.
  • New windows and doors: Standard mobile home windows and doors can be dull or not warm enough. You can freshen up the look, improve energy efficiency, and enhance security by upgrading them.
  • Landscape: Be careful when landscaping, you don’t want to create a garden or yard that is too high-maintenance. It will frustrate tenants or could leave you with an unsightly mess once they move.

Where to go after your single wide mobile home renovations

If you want some more advice on the technicalities and legalities of renting out a mobile home, you might want to read the following articles:

Whenever you renovate or remodel your home, it’s also important to assess your priorities. Lastly, if you want to take even more drastic steps to improve your single-wide and attract tenants, you might want to make a few additions.

We hope that these renovations help you keep your home at 100% occupancy so that you get the most out of your investment.

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.

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