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Foundations for manufactured and modular homes

The foundation is exactly that - the foundation of your home. Placement of support piers is very important to distribute the weight correctly and level the home. Footers, runners and slabs are not just nice, flat places to put the pier blocks on. They redistribute the weight of the home and determining the load bearing capacity of the soil is the first step toward a solid foundation.They must be installed in such a manner so as to provide a stable environment for your home. Improper placement leads to cracked sheetrock, doors that do not operate properly and improper drainage of waste water. The manufacturer's setup manual MUST be consulted by qualified setup crews for this critical information.

One can often hear that a "foundation" is required by a certain lender or a governmental agency. Generally, the true meaning of this type "foundation" is a block or brick perimeter skirting instead of fabricated skirting for the home. In other words, concrete block skirting. It would be wise, if someone mentions that a certain type of foundation is required, to ask exactly what is meant by their definition of "foundation". Foundation is what the home sits upon and generally is considered the piers, runners or slab, the blocking to hold up the home and includes the proper anchoring to hold the home in place permanently.

Anchoring the manufactured home is done to help secure the home on its permanent foundation. Several types are used, depending on what HUD building codes and the manufacturer's recommendations require. There are also wind zones to be considered. Spacing of anchors is dependent on which wind zone you are in. The most common type of anchor is called a "Minuteman." It is an auger-type of anchor that has a strap going from it to the I-beam of the home. If properly anchored, a manufactured home should be as sturdy as a site-built home. No home is going to do well during a hurricane/tornado strong enough to throw a tractor trailer into it. In extreme situations like this, it is still wise to find cover. This type of anchor is not used on modular homes.

There are 4 basic types of foundations for a manufactured home plus a different method of placing the home:

  1. Footer

  2. Runner

  3. Slab (or Pad)

  4. Basement

  5. Pitset Manufactured Homes - a different method of home placement

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