We often receive a lot of questions before people buy their ideal modular home. Here I will try to answer some of those questions for you! Modular Homes are increasing in popularity, as are Tiny Homes, Manufactured Homes, PreFab, Shipping Container Homes etc… It’s a lot to get your head around, so we are going to start with the basics.

What is a Modular Home?

A modular home is a home built in a factory, opposed to a regular home which would be built at the site. A modular home is built to specific factory regulations, then shipped to your location and constructed at the site. They generally will be transported on a flatbed truck, and will need a crane to help with assembly. 

Modular/PreFab homes are built to a higher precision rate than regular houses, and because they are precision built, there are a lot less resources needed to make them. This also means that Modular Homes are more environmentally friendly than a house made from bricks and mortar. 

Is a modular home the same as a manufactured home?

This is a question we get asked a lot and it is a rather interesting one. A Modular and Manufactured homes are fundamentally the same, in terms of how they are factory built, but the difference comes with the construction, and the permanence of their location. 

Modular Homes:

  • Are known as factory-built (or PreFab) Homes
  • Come in pre-built sections and have to be completed on site
  • Need a local building inspector to make a final assessment of the build
  • Are permanent
  • Must conform to local building laws and regulations.

Manufactured Homes:

  • Built complete and transported in full
  • No building required
  • On average, cheaper than a modular home
  • Have wheels & are portable

What is the difference between a modular and manufactured home?

Modular homes are built on a foundation, as with a regular home, and manufactured houses are often built on a steel chassis with wheels for transportation, so they are portable, and less permanent. Modular Homes are on average more expensive than manufactured homes and they are larger, more like a regular average house.

A Modular Home also generally has a basement, as it is built on a foundation, which, again gives it more space for storage, living area etc.

Difference between Modular and Mobile Home

It can be quite confusing, this overlap in terminology. A Mobile Home is now often called a Manufactured Home. As with the Manufactured home, the mobile home is portable , whereas a modular home requires a foundation for it to sit on. The mobile home requires no construction when it is delivered, it is simply ready to be lived in. It is not required to be viewed by a building inspector on completion.

Modular Home Cost

There are a lot of different answers for this question, as with any house, but generally speaking, modular homes are cheaper than other houses of their size. Having said this, there are a lot of optional extras that Modular Homes have that can add to your final bill. Extras often include roof materials, insulation, windows, and even extra modules. 

The construction can also be expensive with Modular Homes, but you do get what you pay for. There are specialist Modular Home Builders who are skilled at putting together Modular Homes. 

Modern Modular Home Plans

If this sounds like the thing for you, speak with a modular home architect to work on some plans with you, to get the home of your dreams. You can even style your Modular Home to look like a log cabin, or have more modern elements, such as a glass roof, or open plan living room/kitchen area. Size is not an issue with modular homes.

Running out of space? Buy another module! 4 bedroom modular home floor plans are the most popular size at the moment, but some families/groups of friends are often looking for a place that is big enough for them to all vacation together; and Modular homes with over 10 modules are very common in popular holiday spots. 

Small log cabin modular home


Small log cabin modular home

Small Modular Log Homes

Small log cabin style homes are the new 2019 trend. If you have a little area of land in the woods, a smaller log cabin is just the thing. Perfect for 2 people, they are a cosy space that has a log burning stove and solar powered lighting! It is the perfect getaway house. Modular log homes often have a porch which is great to BBQ on and enjoy the outdoors.

Farmhouse Modular Home Floor Plans

Similar to Log cabin style, farmhouse chic style is also in at the moment. This gives the, often precision feel of a modular home , a more rustic feel that some people like. Modular homes can be compact, but they can also be large, open spaces depending on your plans for them. For this farmhouse design, we have a large kitchen area that would be perfect for making a meal for the whole family. 

Modern Modular Home Kits

Modular kits are available and offer a less tailored PreFab to those of you who may not want to wait the 8 months average for your home. Whatever your reason, we think these kits are fabulous and really  great. You can construct these kits yourself, or hire some builders to do it for you so you can sit, relax, and think about decorating! Check out our designs for more PreFab and Modular home designs.

Does a Modular Home need a Foundation?

To cut a long answer short, yes. If you don’t want your modular home to blow away in a hurricane, your Modular Homes needs a foundation. Because of its lightweight manufacture, the Modular Home is a lot lighter than an average house, so you will need to lay a foundation before getting one.  This also gives you the option of having a basement, which is great because sometimes space can be limited in a Modular home depending on how big it is. 

Is it cheaper to build or buy a Modular Home?

If you are a skilled carpenter, you may be able to build a modular home yourself. But the truth is, that for the everyday person , this may not be the case. Modular Homes are precision made, factory built with little to no room for error. Human error is a big cause of discrepancies when it comes to making anything, and making a whole house is a big feat. 

Having said that, the added extras of modular homes mean they are not necessarily as cheap as they seem, the hidden costs put a lot of people off buying. The cost of materials alone would be high if you were to make a modular home yourself, but if you have the skills it may work in your favour. 

How long does it take to build a Modular Home?

That depends if you are building it yourself from a kit, or from scratch or from a manufacturer,. On average a manufacturer will take around 2 months for your home  to be completed. Then it will take a further 2 weeks for it to be assembled and safety tested. It will then need to be inspected by a building inspector depending on what state/where you live. This makes sure that everything is safe for you to live in and everything abides by the building guidelines.

Are Modular Homes a bad investment?

We don’t think so! Modular Homes , as with any more are a risk, but more often than not, the risk pays off. If your home is looking a little outdated, you could flip your modular home and sell it, and doing this can often make you money. Or there are quite a few companies cropping up that specialise in buying and selling modular homes, so you could get in touch with them and ask them for some advice before you commit to your own home.  

In 2019 Modular Homes are known to hold their value, and with the endless customisation options, and how easy it is to integrate other modules in to your Modular Home, they are actually a great investment if you can afford the initial construction costs.

Best rated Modular Home manufacturers

This is really a matter of opinion. I’m sure you have heard of the popular brands, but sometimes the more bespoke Home options will be better for you. It really depends on how much you want to invest in Modular Homes, and how much input you want in the plans/designing stage.

We also offer Modular Homes, with many of different options. Check out our best seller Tiny Home by clicking here.

Even building your own modular home may be the way forward for you, to get your perfect design. We think there is something great in everyone’s Modular Home, because they are all unique and make it their own.

Do Modular Homes decrease in value?

As with any other home, your modular home will increase in value, especially if it is a good vacation location, or an area where there is less affordable housing. They are also very easy to sell as the demand for modern Modular Housing is still growing. Hopefully this has inspired you to buy your first Modular Home!

With the current housing market being how it is, a Modular Home may be the best way for you to get on the property ladder. As we know; Modular Homes are currently doing well on the market so do relatively hold their value. 

This is the perfect way to learn about homemaking, decorating, and even designing homes. Because they are that bit much more Eco-friendly than a regular house, there is less guilt that comes with purchasing them. Whether you want a Modular Home for a vacation or to live in full time – PreFab Homes can fully recommend them as a lifestyle choice. 


PreFabulous happy to help you find your new dream Modular, PreFab, and Tiny Home!


Vancouver Office:

2780 Alamein Street
Vancouver, BC, V6L 1S2

Tel: 604-736-1171

Michigan office: Bay St, Traverse City, MI 49684, USA

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