Pros and Cons: Park Model Homes vs. HUD Spec Homes
There are two distinct standards for manufactured home and park model construction, ANSI (American National Standards Institute) and HUD (U.S. Dept of Housing and Urban Development). ANSI is for Park Model RVs. These units that are less than 400 square feet are considered RVs (Recreational Vehicles), even though they are moved infrequently once placed. RVs use their original wheels for transport and can be installed in a variety of ways when in their final destination. Manufactured homes fall under HUD standards which are very comprehensive from building to installation.
Park Model Homes
- Relatively inexpensive.
- Common in mobile home parks.
- Smaller footprint so more versatile in terms of fitting into a location.
- There are restrictions in many localities on placing Park Model RV’s on your property. Since they are considered RVs, there are often ordinances against permanently locating them as buildings, even though this is their intended purpose.
- The ANSI specifications are not as stringent as HUD specs, but Park Models are built in a similar assembly line process as HUD homes. Therefore, the quality of construction is more dependent on the manufacturer than the regulations. If you buy from a quality manufacturer like Cavco, Athens Park, or Fairmont, the quality of Park Models is at the same high standards as the HUD homes or perhaps more significant since there is less red tape involved. But you need to trust the manufacturer to assure higher quality.
- The HUD building code requires compliance with very stringent and high standards.
- HUD homes are preapproved for most situations, so permitting will be more straightforward.
- HUD homes are larger and may have more features.
- HUD homes cost more. This is because they are larger in square footage and are designed for year-round living in any given climate.
- Because they are larger, a HUD home may not fit into the available lot if it is to be placed in a community more designed for RVs.