Double wide homes are at least 20 feet wide and are 90 feet in length or less. They are two separate components, brought to the homesite separately and then connected. If you are thinking about purchasing a double wide home there are some things to take into consideration including financing, investment potential, zoning and home maintenance.
Financing for double wide and other mobile homes is hard to arrange. Many banks refuse to finance the purchase of a mobile home unless the deal also involves the purchase of the land the home will be placed on. This is because mobile homes depreciate in value over time and if you default on the loan, the bank will lose money on your loan.
Because mobile homes are not permanently affixed to the ground, tornadoes and hurricanes are going to be a bigger concern than they would be in a site built home because they can be picked up by the strong winds and destroyed. If you are looking into buying a used double-wide, check the electrical system for aluminum wiring as this was commonly used in the 1970s. Aluminum wiring is considered a fire hazard and should be replaced.
Each county has individual zoning rules that specify both if mobile homes can be placed there safely and if they can whether or not tie-downs will be necessary. In areas considered "high-wind" zones mobile home owners are required to use spun steel cable, wrapped around the trailer frame and fastened to driven or screw anchors to secure their homes to the ground safely. Check with your local government for your specific zoning laws.
Double wide homes are constructed of vinyl siding, vinyl windows and are very low maintenance and that saves you money. Vinyl is a finished siding material that is termite, weather and fire resistant. Because the ceiling heights in mobile homes are less than 10 feet high, re-roofing the home is going to cost less than it would cost to re-roof a site built home that has a higher ceiling height.
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