Over the past five years, manufactured housing has increased nationally by 47.1%, according to a new report by Construction Coverage. Manufactured homes, those built in factories and then transported to the site, are six times less expensive than the average site-built home, according to the report. The technique is also more cost effective on a square-footage basis, with manufactured housing averaging $50 per square foot as compared to $114 for a site-built home.
Trends in manufactured housing have always been volatile, according to the study, and tend to move with trends in mortgages. During periods such as the early 2000s, when buyers had easy access to loans, interest in manufactured housing decreased. In the past few years, though, that trend has reversed to some degree.
Historically this housing type is most popular in the south and west, and this is borne out in the local numbers: Massachusetts’ increase of 19% was lower than the national average . In 2019, only 1.3% of existing homes came to the job site from a factory, compared to the national average of 7.5%.