"Manufactured housing is the largest source of unsubsidized housing in the country, home to 18 million people in 8.6 million units. But uncompetitive lending practices prevent residents from enjoying the many benefits that come from homeownership, including building family wealth."- Doug Ryan - Director of affordable homeownership at the Corporation for Enterprise Development.
To explain in greater detail what these reforms are, and how they may greatly impact your ability to finance a manufactured home, continue reading today's borrowed blog at the National Mortgage News.
Your new modular home will be only as good as the manufacturer who assembles it, and the home builder who sells and sets it up. That’s why it’s important to choose a home builder who is knowledgeable, well-experienced in the industry and has a good customer-satisfaction reputation. Although modular homes are assembled in the factory, it is up to the home builder to ensure the home is set up and finished off properly. This requires a thorough knowledge of the set up process, as well as relationships with experienced third party participants, such as city/state officials, surveyors, plumbers, electricians, brick masons and others who will have a part in helping to build the finished product. So how do you go about selecting the RIGHT home builder to build and set the single most important investment you’ll probably ever make? Below are some helpful pointers and things to consider when choosing a modular home builder.
Customer Satisfaction Reputation
When considering a builder, ask for previous customer testimonials or references. You can find out quickly how good a reputation the builder has in the area by talking to a few of his past customers. Most builders will gladly give you references, or have customer testimonials posted on their website. Make sure you “interview” enough to get a fair evaluation, and not just go by the word of two or three who may be disgruntled over petty things that were not the fault of the builder. Ask past customers how well the builder interacted with them, how quickly phone calls were returned or information was given, how realistic costs were quoted, and how well the builder handled problems that arose during the set up process, as well as problems that may have arisen AFTER the customer moved in. The builder should also be an active participant in the ENTIRE sales process—from evaluating your proposed home site to accompanying you to the set up site when your home is ready to be set.
Industry Experience and Years in Business
Although the number of years a builder has been in business may not have any bearing on how well a builder they are, usually the longer they have been in business, the more knowledgeable and experienced they are in the home selling and set up process. Highly experienced builders have established firm relationships with others who are an integral part of the home buying process, including city/state officials, surveyors, attorneys, mortgage lenders and third party contractors. Builders are also required to take continuing education classes and keep their licenses renewed on a regular basis, as well as keep up with changes in local and state code and inspection laws and regulations. A good builder always has his finger on the pulse of the manufactured and modular home industry and keeps up with industry news and current marketing and advertising techniques. Also make sure your builder is properly licensed, bonded and insured to cover any costly problems that may arise with the set up process.
Good Set Up Crew
Behind every good builder is an even better set up crew, composed of contractors who are experienced in setting up manufactured and modular homes. Each should be properly licensed, bonded and insured, as well as have the tools, equipment and experience to do the job required, with little or no mistakes. Third party contractors should be knowledgeable in their area of expertise, timely and easy to get along with. Some builders have their own in-house set up crew with their own trucks and equipment, and may be more reliable than someone who is working on other outside projects while they are working on your set up. Try to be on-site when your home is first brought in to see the set up process in action, and note how well the set up crew work together to set your home. A well experienced set up crew will be on time and ready to set your home when it arrives, as well as be prepared for any last minute problems that may arise.
Integrity and Fair Dealing
When making the single most costly purchase of your life, it goes without saying you want to get a fair price, as well as deal with a builder who is honest and has integrity. But you would be surprised at the dealers and builders out there are who are only in the business to make money - at YOUR expense! These double dealing dealers can be the proverbial rotten apple in the bottom of the barrel, and give other credible dealers a bad rap. That’s why its important to probe a little into the personal as well as professional background of the dealer/builder you’re considering. A good place to start is the local BBB the dealer is associated with. You can gain a lot of valuable information about the integrity of a dealer through their BBB report, including problems that may have arisen from deceptive sales practices, service complaints and issues on pricing. Beware of dealers/builders who make “guarantees” on price, service or products, and make sure to get any such promises in a written form. Most home dealers/builders ARE trustworthy, and will go a long way to earn your business, as well as maintain a solid reputation in their community—and their industry. By doing a little detective work ahead of time, you can quickly found out whether you’re dealing with a builder of integrity, or a wolf in sheep’s clothing!
Buying a modular home can be one of the most exciting events in your life—and one riddled with emotions. Frank's Home Place has a combined 95 years experience in the manufactured and modular home business, is an award-winning, reputable dealer in its industry, and has hundreds of happy, satisfied customers! Knowing you are dealing with a trusted home builder, like Frank's Home Place, can help alleviate much of the stress and anxiety that comes with such an overwhelming event, and give you peace of mind throughout the entire home buying process.
Call or visit us for more information about the modular home buying process, or visit our website for more information about Frank's Home Place!
By Dave Bumpers, Guest Mortgage Lender
The Connected Home July 2015
Technology is infiltrating every aspect of our lives. Twenty years ago, who could have predicted we’d have the Internet in our pockets? Or a refrigerator that tracks our purchases? There are so many choices when it comes to connecting your home and finding fun ways to let technology make your life easier. But which new tech tools are really worth the cost?
GE has come out with a range of connected appliances. Smart ovens can be turned on to preheat while you’re still driving home from the grocery store, and you can also change the temperature or get a notification that dinner is done right from your phone, too.
According to thewirecutter.com, they’re just not worth it — yet. GE’s Wi-Fi enabled fridges, due out in fall 2015, will let you know when the water filter needs changing or if the door has been left open. One day your fridge will be able to order more milk when you’re running low and check you’ve got all the ingredients for pasta primavera. Currently, though, fancy refrigerators mostly play music and post notes for the next person nearby to buy that milk. Plus, thewirecutter says, the software in general can’t be upgraded. Wait until these things have developed further.
Huh? Do you really need an alert when your dishwasher is done? Personally I set mine to run either overnight or in the morning before I leave for work. I find it’s usually done by the next time I’m in the kitchen
Kwikset, a pretty well-known maker of locks, has developed an ekey system. You can share a key with anyone, so no more fake rocks in the yard or placing a spare above the front door (or sending your five-year-old through the doggy door, ahem). Keys can be assigned to multiple people and can be revoked right from your phone. Know when your door is opened when you’re not home. You can even create a “scheduled” ekey that only allows access on certain days at certain times. Pricey, but super-convenient for key losers, especially if your car is also keyless.
The Nest is still the top pick for most people when it comes to home technology. The Nest Learning Thermostat is not only attractive, it’s smart—it can learn your preferences, and your daily schedule, and adjust the temperature in your home accordingly. So it saves you money as well as helping to keep you comfortable. Its interface with your phone is considered the best of all the smart thermostats out there, as well.
Control color to suit your mood, turn lights on when you’re out late or away on vacation, or schedule lighting changes from your phone or tablet. Cree, GE, and Belkin make smart LED bulbs that get pretty good reviews.
Of course, you can’t really hook up your smart home without a hub. Hubs help you get all of your smart devices controlled under one app, making life easier, which is really the ultimate goal of a smart home, right? PCMag recommends the SmartThings Hub and devices from IControl, and Logitech. There’s also the Wink Connected Home Hub, Apple’s Homekit, and the Insteon Hub to turn your Wi-Fi enabled home features into remotely controlled smart accessories that you access on the go. If you’re working on a budget, the Quirky Pivot Power Genius is a smart power strip that you can use to control plug-in items you already have in your home.
Our lives are getting easier — or are they getting more complicated? Either way, these smart, connected home appliances and features can help you take care of your home with the touch of a few buttons, and soon these tools will be taking care of us!
David Bumpers Regional Manager CountryPlace Mortgage Limited Partnership PO Box 1405 Cornelius, NC 28031
Office: 704-728-1062 Cell: 704-728-1062 Fax: 877-887-1997 NMLS: 2124 License: NC-SC-TN Contact Me My Website
This Newsletter is for informational purposes only. The information contained herein may not be applicable to every situation or jurisdiction, and we urge you to consult your professional advisor prior to acting on information contained herein. The content, accuracy and opinions expressed herein are not verified or endorsed by the sponsor hereof.
A home buyer's warranty provides invaluable protection for the most important investment you'll ever make - your home and your family's safety. Unexpected problems with household systems such as heating/cooling, plumbing, water heater, appliances, etc. can cost homeowners undue stress, inconvenience and money. A home buyer's warranty gives the buyer peace of mind that should something happen, their home is covered from frame to foundation, interior systems to exterior finish.
Any new doublewide or modular home purchased from Frank's Home Place is eligible for a 2-10 Home Buyers Warranty, which provides risk reduction for the homebuyer, increases the resale value of your home, and can save homebuyers money after the closing.
Specifically, the 2-10 Home Buyers Warranty offers coverage for the following:
An extended warranty plan is also available to offer added protection against most unexpected repair and replacement costs for covered systems and appliances for up to 5 years AFTER the original manufacturer warranty runs out - usually after the first year.
For more information on the specific coverages offered by the 2-10 Home Buyers Warranty, call or visit our office and speak to a Housing Specialist.
Besides better weather, first time home buyers will have another good reason to celebrate Spring 2015 - the roll out of Fannie Mae's My Community Mortgage program! Available in March 2015, this program was designed by Fannie Mae to provide low rates, minimal risk-based price adjustments, and reduced mortgage insurance costs to qualified. first time home buyers.
There are many reasons why this program is a good fit for first time home buyers, but today we'll address three MAJOR benefits of this program:
Low Rates & Risk-Based-Price Adjustments
The My Community Mortgage program has NO loan-level price adjustments, which are all the reasons you may have to pay more for your loan due to being "bad risk" for the lender. These LLPA's can include:
More Affordable PMI (Private Mortgage Insurance)
When a lender orders mortgage insurance for a conventional loan - also known as PMI - the cost is determined by many factors, one of which is the coverage requirements. Because the coverage required with a MCM loan is considerably less, this results in cheaper PMI costs for the buyer. On a 3% loan consumers should expect to pay a little over 1% of the loan as premium.
Reduced Down Payments
The MCM program has reduced down payment requirements, allowing Down Payment Assistance (DPA) to assist in a down payment that can provide as little as zero down on a home purchase. This could be a huge help for those home buyers who may otherwise qualify for a loan, but are unable to come up with a large down payment.
A few last footnotes: Even though the My Community Mortgage is designed to help first time home buyers overcome the high down payment required when purchasing a new home, it is still subject to Fannie Mae's eligibility requirements including underwriting, income documentation and risk management standards. The program also requires that if all buyers are first time home buyers, then ONE buyer must complete and submit a Pre Purchase Home Buyer Education and Counseling Certificate.
To learn more about the My Community Mortgage, visit Fannie Mae My Community Mortgage (MCM), and as always, enlist the help of a qualified and knowledgeable mortgage lender to assist you when considering ANY type of home mortgage loan!
It's been a tough year for anyone in the home industry - especially home buyers. The market has been controlled mainly by investors, scouting out deals on foreclosures, and bartering with desperate sellers to get whatever they can for a home that is no longer worth its weight in brick and mortar. But as you'll read in today's borrowed article from the US News & Report, buyers can take heart in 2015, as home buying trends are expected to tip back in their favor! With investment property being less desirable going into the new year, and lenders like Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae offering more obtainable home financing programs, it's finally looking like a stellar year for home buyers! Read more about what to expect in the home market in 2015 in this exciting report!
And when shopping for a new home, don't forget the advantages and benefits of buying a manufactured or modular home from Frank's Home Place! Besides getting a high-quality home, built by some of the leading manufactured and modular home builders, you'll also get 60+ years combined sales experience, and guaranteed "service after the sale" with every home purchased! Frank's Home Place is proud to have been chosen Independent Retailer of the Year this past year, and is looking forward to serving local home buyers in 2015 with the same excellence in service it has built its reputation on for the past 35+ years! With things finally starting to look up in the housing industry, we're more committed than ever to providing our customers with the experience, education and dedication they need to make a sound buying decision. If you're considering purchasing a new home in the coming year, we invite you to visit us soon. We promise we'll do everything we can to help make your home buying experience a positive and fun experience!
Happy New Year from all of us at Frank's Home Place!
A Personal Message from Frank Brown, President - Frank's Home Place, Inc.
"I have hopefully reached the end of a very challenging bout with cancer this year. I would like to take this opportunity to thank my wife, daughters, extended family, business partner and business associates, and my many friends and customers for their tremendous outpouring of love, caring and support, as well as all the skilled doctors and nurses that have taken such good care of me. I also appreciate all those who added me to their thoughts and prayers - both at home and in their churches. Most of all I would like to give thanks to God for the blessing of healing he has bestowed on my life, and the love, kindness and support of those He put in my path to walk along this journey with me. It is one I could not have walked alone, and I know He was there with me every step of the way.
It is truly a blessing indeed to witness the support and love from family and friends that I have had during this very difficult and stressful time. Through it all, if there's one thing I have learned, it is that live must be lived not day by day, but breath by breath - one breath at at time...
I love you all!
Frank's Home Place has always strived to provide our customers with the best quality homes and outstanding customer service, as well as be a voice for the manufactured and modular home industry in our community. Our efforts were recently honored by our peers and associates at the 2014 NCMHI Annual Meeting held at the Grandover Resort in Greensboro in June, when we were chosen as the proud recipient of the distinguished Independent Retailer of the Year award! We'd like to take this opportunity to humbly "toot our horn" a little!
This award was created to recognize one independent retail lot in the state for demonstrating a commitment to professionalism and to educating consumers and elected officials about the manufactured and modular housing industry. The independent retailer of the year’s sales team should show consistent involvement in serving NCMHA, its local community, and the industry as a whole. To qualify as an independent retailer nominee, the retailer must only operate two or less sales centers in North Carolina.
It is truly an honor and privilege to be presented with this award, and we humbly thank all those who saw fit to recognize Franks Home Place as worthy of this honor. It is our goal to continue to provide our industry, our community and our customers with the same commitment to excellence that we have for the past 35+ years. From the bottom of our hearts, we humbly and gratefully say, "thank you".
To our customers, if you're looking for "award-winning" service when considering the purchase of your next home, please give us a call! We want to be your #1 resource for all your manufactured and modular home needs! To our community, we remain dedicated to educating our citizens and those in the housing and building industry, of the values and benefits of buying a manufactured or modular home, as well as lobbying for positive changes in the manufactured and modular industry in North Carolina.
Visit the NCMHA or NCIRG for more information about the manufactured and modular home industry in North Carolina, and the role independent retailers play in this valuable industry!
Unless you "custom build" your new modular home, chances are you'll select a floor plan exactly like someone else, especially if you choose a basic model right off the dealer's lot! But with a few simple and affordable options added, your new manufactured or modular home can become "uniquely yours".
Below are a few easy and unique ways to add custom options to your new home, while still keeping your overall cost down:
Living Room/Entryway - Add elegance and an "Old World" feel to your home's entrance with columns, either free standing or mounted on knee-walls on each side of your doorway. Arched headers, either squared or rounded, are also a great way to add an inviting feel leading from room to another.
Kitchen/Dining Room - Since the kitchen and dining room are two of the most used rooms in the house, it makes sense to add extra touches to these frequently gathered rooms. As in the living room, columns can add classic style, as well as serve as a "room divider", especially if your kitchen is closely connected to your living room or dining room. And in the dining room, consider a trey ceiling, trimmed in the same color paint as the walls to add synchronicity and a formal feel. Drop lighting or unusual light fixtures all add a personal touch and unique look to any kitchen!
Bathroom- Your bathroom should be a place of comfort, relaxation and luxury. A few simple touches can make a "blah" bathroom suddenly go GORGEOUS! Consider a round tub instead of the usual elongated tub, especially if you're limited for space. Add a bottom beaded wallboard and you've created a private retreat that you'll never want to leave! For a more elegant feel, many manufacturers offer a "luxury spa" version which includes a fireplace and spa-like features such as a rainwater shower head.
Exterior Options- Dormers, chimneys, porches and siding are all easy ways to set your home apart from other houses on the block, using unique colors, styles and materials. Consider a stone chimney if you have a fireplace for a rustic and warm look. Torn between vinyl and brick? Why not use both to add character and style. Dormers can add the illusion of space, created added light or add interest to a boring roofline. And if you're really bold, consider an "untraditional" brightly colored front door to really attract attention!
Just keep in mind when adding options that costs can escalate very quickly! You may have to sacrifice features in one room in order to get "bonus" features in others. Determine which options will be used the most by your family, as well as which ones will add the most long-term value to your home. Frank's Home Place always shows you the cost of your selected options UP FRONT, so you can "pick and choose" the options you want, while still keeping within your home buying budget!
Visit our website for other great interior and exterior home options! http://www.frankshomeplace.com/custom-options.html
There are many factors to consider when selecting a home site for your new manufactured or modular home. Whether its land you already own, or raw land you're considering purchasing, certain criteria must be met to make sure it is suitable to build on. Besides location, other considerations also need to be made that will greatly impact the new home builder, both financially and personally.
An experienced and knowledgeable manufactured or modular home dealer should be able to advise you on general lot/land specifications, but you should also enlist the help of a trained surveyor and local building inspector, as certain zoning regulations and building codes MUST be met before any construction can begin.
Other factors to consider include the following:
Frank's Home Place offers a FREE lot evaluation to its buyers to insure that the property you want to build on is suitable for the type home you want to build. Call us for more information, or to schedule your free evaluation!