Understanding Home Building Terminology

 

Before you embark in a home-buying journey, it’s best you know the home-building lingo before purchasing a home. When you first start looking into home construction for your modular or manufactured homes, there will be tons of new terms that you’ll need to know to make sure you’re making responsible decisions to avoid costly mistakes. Here are some common constructions terms you should know before purchasing a home:

 

IRC – Also called the International Residential Code, which have been adopted by most states. The IRC is updated every three years. However, a state may adopt one version of the IRC and can choose to wait several years to adopt the next version.

 

Traditional, or Site-Built Homes – These are homes that are built on the onsite construction. Onsite construction is how homes are traditionally built. Each part and fixed, constructed, and delivered upon the home-site. Ba

 

Factory-built, or Offsite Homes – Homes constructed within a factory are built in a controlled environment, transported to the site the home-buyer desires, and installed. Manufactured homes are built under a federal building code administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The HUD Code also sets performance standards for heating, plumbing, air conditioning, electrical systems and so on. Modular homes are factory-built homes built in modules to local or state codes, which is determined by where the home will be located.

 

Dormer – A dormer is added on top of roofs. It comes in various styles to reflect the roof style. They provide a way for the light to get under the roofed area, as well as create more space under the roof area.

 

Sub Floor – Boards that are nailed to the joists over where the finished floor will lay.

 

Rafters – A-shaped figures that support the roof. They are more time consuming and expensive to make than trusses.

 

Trusses – Triangular shaped structures used as an alternative for rafters. Trusses tend to be stronger than dimensional lumber and are used mainly on the floor and roof.

 

Grading – Before starting to build on your lot, there must be initial preparation to the ground surfaced around the home, including the driveway. The final grading takes place after the installation on site.

Manufactured Homes: An Investment Opportunity Millennials Should Jump On!

 

In America’s most booming cities, homebuyers have found a more affordable alternative to owning a home called manufactured housing! Manufactured homes are thought to be box-like, copy and paste homes on wheels; but that’s false! Manufactured home designs have evolved through the years and can be a great option for an affordable dream home, perfect for you and your family!

 

According to the Boston Consulting Group, Millennials make up the largest generational block in the U.S.! They also hold about $1.3 trillion in annual buying power. By 2020, they’ll compromise 53% of the U.S. workforce. Ignoring the sales opportunities millennials afford is a very bad idea.

 

Manufactured home construction can help create affordable housing for the millennial workforce. These homes arrive on your desired site nearly complete, with the kitchen, carpet, and bathrooms built-in already.

 

Rent costs are rising, with no real return of investment that goes into a rental. So just how much are you spending for your apartment? There’s nothing to show for it at the end of the lease. With purchasing a manufactured home, it’s an actual investment, and it’s far more affordable than site-built homes.

 

For more information, check this article: “To the Millennials Leaving Their Parent’s Homes, Modular Homes Should Be in Your Radar!

 

 

 

Safety Tips on Decorating for Halloween

 

It’s almost time to whip out the Halloween decorations, since the holiday is just around the corner! Time to turn your home into a haunted mansion! However, without the right precautions, Halloween decorations in your home and yard can pose a risk to you, your family, or your home. Here are some safety tips to follow when decorating for Halloween this year!

 

 

Create a well-lit path. The dark and scary Halloween night can be made less with the proper lighting lined up in your front yard! Make sure you check the lighting for your entryway and replace any bulbs that aren’t working. It’s important to be sure to use outdoor extension cords when decorating your entryway and front yard. The outdoor cords have been tested for severe weather conditions and have the electrical capacity for Halloween decorating. To get the cords out of the way, be sure to buy plastic hooks as nails or staples could potentially damage the cords and cause a shock or fire hazard.

 

 

Ditch the candles. If you’re going to have young trick-or-treaters around, never leave candles around where children can potentially knock over. Jack-o’-lanterns with burning candles require a lot of supervision and can pose a risk to your property due to flammable costumes. It’s easy to opt out to using glowsticks or a flashlight instead. Consider using battery operated candles or LED lights to ensure safety. It will be a lot safer, and once they’re inside a paper bag or jack-o’-lanterns, no one can tell the difference!

 

 

Keep your fur-friends safe! When decorating, make sure nothing hazardous is around your pets; such as open flames or dry ice. It’s easy for a jumpy, excited pet to knock something over. Be sure that if you do use potentially dangerous Halloween décor, it is out of reach and on a sturdy surface (this could be beneficial to keep your children safe, too!). Additionally, pets consuming any sweets can be dangerous, so keep those sweets out of their reach as well!

Have a Monster Mash. Who wouldn’t want to celebrate Halloween with either your friends or family? Before you get the part started, make sure you have a safe space to party. Check and ensure all the exits ae clear, not blocked by any Halloween décor. If you use any lit candles, make sure they’re out of reach, at least enough to make sure they’re not easily knocked over or brushed up against. Check if all the props that are hanging, dangling, draped, etc. are set and steadily secured. It would be dangerous if anyone had tripped!

 

 

Last Minute Prepping for Severe Weather

 

The signs of a storm often involve dark clouds and drizzle; there are other indications that you can look out for sometimes hours before the storm hits. Knowing these indications can help you take the proper precautions way before any severe storm hits your neighborhood. Here are some tips on what you can do in a short time to keep you and your family safe when you’re caught unprepared during a threatening storm.

 

Secure the outdoor furnitures. This includes umbrellas or decors such as hanging plants, as they can become projectiles during high winds. Move any unsecured items in your backyard (or perhaps your front yard). This includes patio furniture, lawn chairs, and so forth. If you can’t move any furnitures inside, make sure you securely tie them down.

 

Moving cars. Cars can often be damaged or destroyed by falling trees or debris during a threatening storm. Try to position cars closer to your home, and away from trees and powerlines. If you have a garage on the lot, park your cars inside and close the garage door.

 

Resources. Make a safety kit that has essential first-aid resources as well as flashlights, battery powered radio, and extra batteries. Be sure to also have enough bottled waters and non-perishable food items.

 

Find utility cutoffs. Identify the cutoff switches or valves for water, power, and gas, and learn how to turn them off just in case of an emergency. A storm can cause damage to your home and can cause a short or power surge, and that my result in a ruptured gas or water line.

How Manufactured Homes Can Keep You and Your Family Safe During a Storm

 

One of the most common misconceptions about manufactured homes are that they are not safe during storms; however, that is not the case. Manufactured homes are built with the different elements in mind to make sure you and your family stays safe. Manufactured homes are built to meet the construction standards and codes that takes in consideration elemental safety requirements to ensure your home is safe to live in.

 

 

According to Richard Jennison, President and CEO of MHI (Manufactured Housing Institute), “The standards for manufactured housing are subject to robust compliance and quality assurance regulations, sometimes more stringent than those for traditional site-built homes. The building materials in today’s manufactured home are the same as those used in site-built homes. The homes are engineered for wind safety based on the geographic region in which they are sold.” If you want to buy a manufactured home, you can rest easy knowing you, your family, and your home will be living somewhere energy efficient and engineered for any potential disasters or threats.

 

 

Prior to the building codes, regulations which are required by the Department Housing and Urban Development (also known as the HUD code), manufactured homes were used as a temporary housing for workers, hence why there is a misconception about how safe manufactured homes are. The HUD code was made and are followed by every manufactured home builder, as it is a requirement, including the home building facilities we work with! The HUD code contains the Body and Frame Construction Requirements, which details that builders are required during the building process to inspect and ensure that the manufactured homes are built to withstand any threats. Manufactured homes are so sturdy that, in a 2014 Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety test, found that modern manufactured homes are sturdier to high winds than site-built homes.

 

Proper installation is extremely important for maximum amount of safety, including additional structures and inspections from the homeowner. The structure can include the following: an awning, deck, carport, or even a sunroom.

 

 

 

 

Smaller Footprints with Smaller Homes!

 

Showcase Homes offers variety of diverse floor plans provided by many different manufacturers (The list of our manufacturers here). These high quality and affordable homes range from small to large; however, smaller homes have smaller environmental footprints. It greatly differs to traditional site-built homes, as smaller modular homes with smaller footprints have environmental impacts such as extracting, producing, and transporting building materials, as well as construction of the home itself.

 

 

The Benefits

 

According to the United States Green Building Council, it is estimated that for every doubling of square feet, a home uses 25% more energy and 50% more materials! So, one of the benefits of having a smaller home is that it uses less of both materials and energy, which also means that homebuyers end up saving money in the long run. That way, they can potentially invest more for the maintenance, furnishing, or utility bills for the home.

 

Another report, according to the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, 80% of greenhouse gas emissions over a home’s 70-year life span occur during occupancy and come from electricity and fuel consumption. If you reduce the size of the home by 50%, the lifecycle emission can shrink by 36%.

 

In the long run, this can benefit your energy and water savings. Plumbing and ductwork will have a compact design that can more efficiently cool and heat your home, making it more beneficial for your savings. Construction costs typically are lower with smaller homes as well, since it’s on a per square foot basis.

 

Decorating for Autumn: 7 Tips and Tricks

 

Say hello to autumn by adding these seasonal, cozy touches in your home! There are many various ways to decorate your home in a festive way for the fall. You can mix all the different elements of autumn together and stagger them artfully all around your home. When decorating for the fall, it’s best to get the most viable option to pick one style that will carry over from Halloween to the Thanksgiving seasons.

 

Adding Plaid Blankets. Instantly add warmth and coziness to your living room and bedrooms by adding a plaid throw blanket that feature red, orange, and golden colors.

 

 

Decorate the Front Porch. Line your front porch with pumpkins and gourds for a maximum curb appeal! Perhaps you can tell your guests they’ve arrived at fall with adorable pumpkin patch signs sitting next to your front door.

 

Hanging Wreaths. You can dress up doors, windows, empty nooks, or bare walls with a festive wreath! You can say a lot with little with an elegant initialed fall wreath hanged on your front door.

 

 

Dressing Up the Fireplace. Adding several banners, including ones with festive colors, textures, and patterns, can give you that little extra spice you want above your mantle! Before lighting the season’s first log, make sure to have your chimney and fire box both inspected and cleaned beforehand.

 

Farmhouse Style. Freshen up your home as a welcoming place to hang around and enjoy autumn’s cooler season. If you already have rustic elements throughout your home, this might be easier; there’s no reason why you can’t incorporate them into your fall festive décor!

 

Firewood for Décor. That’s right, firewood can not only functional, but decorative. Be sure to remove excess leaves or twigs and give them a quick brush off and trim to eliminate any unnecessary things such as bugs before bringing the firewood in your home.

 

A Rocking Chair. Let’s say you already have your plaid blankets and a bountiful amount of pumpkins at your door. What could possibly be missing from this festive scene? A rocking chair, and maybe some hot cocoa on the side.

 

 

Things that Home Buyers Should Never Compromise when Purchasing a Modular Home

 

When you build or buy a new modular home, there are many tough decisions to make. It all begins with a wish list, armed with an inventory of must-haves, you’ll be able to focus your search and recognize what you exactly want in a future home.

 

When you’re in the process of getting a new modular home, it’s important to stick to a specific budget, and it’s very unlikely you’ll have to check off absolutely everything on your lest; so, it’s nice to prioritize what you need vs. what you want. Buying a home perfect for you is not simple, and you’ll more than likely be compromising on a lot of things. However, there are certain things you shouldn’t compromise on.

 

Location

 

You can change any aspect in you home, but you can’t change the location once the foundation is laid on your lot. In fact, location should be the most important factor you should consider. Where you live also impacts greatly on your lifestyle, so spend time researching the area you want to live in until you find a lot that’s more appropriate for you and your family. It’s a good idea to have some flexibility and have a couple of options if possible, to give yourself a better chance of finding a suitable land at the most affordable price.

 

For starters, you should consider how close the land you want to buy is in relation to your work. The convenience of your commutes both in the morning and evening will rely heavily on where your home is located. Commute is critical when you’re thinking about buying land for your modular home. Regardless of distance from home to work, other factors such as proximity to freeways and public transit may come into play.

 

There are plenty of other factors that go into location, which includes area’s school district, crime rate, and greenspace will impact how desirable your modular home is in the neighborhood or land. Being close to important amenities is a factor to consider as well, such as groceries, restaurants, shops, hospitals, and more.

 

A Good School District

 

Even if you do not have children, you should keep in mine to place or buy a home where it has desirable schools nearby. Not only can things change, such as potentially having children in the future, but also because good school usually translate to a higher resale value. Potential buyers may want their families to be in a good school district. Be sure to do some research to find out whether your new home sits in the good school district boundaries. You can look at the school district’s website to get a map of the district boundaries.

 

The Floorplan

 

A house that’s already well-designed for your lifestyle is already essential. Having the right amount of space or rooms you need is very important. It’s easier to change a layout to make it an open floor plan, but it’s more difficult to change the number of bedrooms or bathrooms. The layout of your home can impact your enjoyment of your home. In the long run, you can potentially end up having a lot more problems taking on a big financial obstacle.

 

Consider the Lighting

 

Lighting may not be the first thing you think about when designing your new home, but it has a large impact on the overall style of your home. Once you figured out the placement of your lighting, you can visit a lighting showroom for ideas.

 

 

How to Get Your Home Ready for the Holidays

 

The holiday season is almost upon us! Prepping for it can get stressful, no doubt, but with proper planning and organizing, you can enjoy the holidays with friends and family without worries!

 

Prepare early. Whether it’d be preparing for holidays, family or friends joining for a get together, the most important step is to start preparing early! Things will always take much longer when you procrastinate, so when you start preparations early, you won’t be so stressed out last minute!

 

Clear the clutter. Before you decide to buy more decorations or bring them back down from the attic, it’s important to declutter. Organize your belongings by dividing them by category by room and use. Separate your belongings in what to keep, throw away, donate, or sell.

 

 

Jazz up the main spaces in your home. Put a lot of your focus on the main areas of your living space, especially in the areas that your guests will spend time in or will be seeing; such as the entryway, living room, kitchen, and bathrooms.

 

Do the big projects first. Have you been putting off some of the chores you need to do in the home, such as window washing or HVAC maintenance? Perhaps you should call professionals or experts to prep your home for the fall and winter. Make the appointments or head to the closest home improvement store and get started.

 

Seasonal scents. While you are organizing and cleaning your home, as well as any maintenance that needs to be done; perhaps you should start putting out a few scented candles this time of the year.

 

 

 

 

The Importance of Air Sealing your Modular Home

 

Reducing the amount of air that leaks out of your home is one of the most important steps for a homeowner or a contractor should take. It is the most cost-effective way to cut heating and cooling costs, as well as improve durability and comfort.

 

What Could Happen if you Don’t Seal your Home Properly?

 

Air leakage occurs when outside air enters, and conditioned air leaves your house through the cracks and openings. A leaky house causes higher energy bills and allows in excess moisture and contaminants. This could potentially help allow the air to flow, and heat to escape, in the middle of the colder seasons.

 

How to Properly Air Seal

 

Modular homes that are properly air sealed is more energy efficient than a traditional, site-built home. These are the places contractors check to seal out air:

 

  1. Interior marriage wall
  2. Basement and attic marriage wall
  3. Exterior marriage wall
  4. Exterior still plate
  5. Exterior bands

 

The most common infiltration paths include access to the attic and any air that can enter the modular home’s envelope. Insulation is important, but you still must air seal first, to make sure your home is energy efficient as well as comfortable. Three of the most common, and most high-quality materials are used to air seal a home:

 

  1. High-quality acrylic-latex caulk.
  2. Fire-rated caulk.
  3. Expandable polyurethane foam for the larger gaps.

 

Minimizing air movement in and out of your new modular home is key to building an energy-efficient modular home. We always emphasize air sealing to our contractors, and our manufacturers make sure to always inspect each step while building the modular homes within their factories.