Buying a home is a huge financial decision in a person’s life, regardless if you are a first time home buyer or you’re shopping for your retirement home. Modular homes in PA are becoming a popular option for many home buyers because of the lower cost of construction, and the level of customization available from most home builders today. However, home buyers can easily become overwhelmed if they are not properly prepared to begin their modular home shopping.
RidgeCrest Home Sales wants all home buyers to be prepared so their home buying experience is a good memory to share. Before visiting a modular home builder in PA, be prepared with these 5 things:
1. What modular home style are you considering?
Modular homes, like stick-built homes, come in a large variety of styles. When choosing a floor plan, it’s important to first consider what type of space and style you need. The size of your family, how you plan to utilize the space, and your available budget should all be considered before beginning your floor plan search. Cape Cod, Ranch, & Two-Story styles are available, and can be completely customized to fit your needs. Although some new home buyers are unaware of the flexibility of modular home building, we can certainly build multiple levels in a variety of roof pitches and exterior finishes.
When shopping for your new modular home, it’s important to consider the lot you’ll be placing your home on. Depending on the size and shape of your property, you may want an end entry home with a porch, or a walk out basement with French doors. The lay of the land will also determine whether or not a crane is necessary or if the home can be rolled onto the foundation. In addition, it’s important to have your builder visit the property to
determine if there are any obstacles to overcome during delivery and set up of the home such as narrow roads, overhanging trees, or power line wires.
Depending on whether or not your lot is located in a development, there may be a homeowner’s association rules governing minimum square footage requirements or exterior add-ons such as a garage or porch.
3. What are your “must-haves”?
Regardless of whether you are shopping for a stick-built home or a modular home, you need to have a list of amenities and space you absolutely must have. For example – if you are a family of three but you are considering growing to four, you’ll want an additional bedroom now, rather than struggling to find space later. Do you enjoy cooking and find you have a need for storage space in your kitchen? You may want to consider homes that have, or have the option of adding, a pantry, and a kitchen design with plenty of counter space.
Common customizable options include:
- Optional kitchen designs
- Optional master suite designs
- Butler’s pantry
- Porch space
- An office/study
- A spare bedroom
4. What is your budget?
When considering your overall budget, it’s important to consider that the cost of the home is only a portion of the total price. Your foundation, excavation, utility hookups, steps/decks, etc. are all necessary items that must be completed prior to occupying the home. Depending on whether or not you want the project completed “to meet code requirements”, or want to include construction add-ons such as a covered porch, breezeway, or garage, the site work could be as much as the cost of the home. In addition, your site may require additional work to properly prepare for the home’s arrival. Your builder should be able to give you a budget allowance for site work so you can plan how much you’ll be able to spend on the home.
5. Are you able to obtain financing?
Buyers interested in purchasing a modular home should be able to obtain financing from any mortgage lender, assuming they have good credit history and meet the income requirements. Modular homes are comparable to stick-built homes and will be held to the same appraisal standards. Prior to beginning your new home search, you may want to contact a few lenders to inquire about their construction loan programs. Once you find someone you’re comfortable working with, it’s a good idea to get a preapproval. This doesn’t bind you to a particular lender or builder, but lets you know how much you’re eligible to borrow. You’ll have a clearer picture of what you can comfortably afford and be able to narrow down your home search.