It would appear the OP has become convinced that 'modular' homes are
not built well?
There is one in our area that was delivered in two sections some 25+
years ago from its factory some 500 miles away. It looks completely
normal and apart from an approximately eight inch thick middle wall
appeared to be built to normal Canadian housing standards for a 'stick'
home. It has served its original and present owners without any
problems or sagging etc. It took less than a day to place it on its
previously poured concrete basement and no damage occurred. Within a
few days the electricity water and sewer was hooked up and people were
living in it.
I happened to visit the factory on other business and saw nothing that
was below standard or seemed to use excessive wood! Just ordinary
houses built all year round, each in two pieces etc. inside a big dry
I would emphasize this is a 'factory built home' not a factory built
sometimes called tow able or flat bed transportable 'mobile' home; some
of which are of the flimsy (per the reference to entry with a box
cutter utility knife!) construction akin to that of a cheap camper!
As people have built and bought more elaborate homes in recent years
the 'factory builts' never seemed to catch on in this province. Also at
that time period (1970s) I guess so many of us were willing and capable
with the help of a couple of local carpenters to 'build our own'. We
did twice (including wells and septic tanks) sticking with single
storey construction. And even now in my 70s I can maintain most of it
with just a step ladder.
Stick with simple construction; avoiding things such as roof dormers,
bay windows. Avoid if possible roof gutters by using a larger overhang
to get water away from footings, gutters cause rot in soffit edge
board. Make sure you have good drainage 'before' you pour (or concrete
block build your basement) Weeping tile and a sump essential most
But IMO there is nothing wrong with modular construction. Many were
built to slightly more economical standards (e;g. slightly lower
ceilings to reduce heating cost) and were shipped to northern
communities. Also some 'design' modular homes have been built and
shipped from Canada to places such as Iceland, Denmark etc.
Personally have found that wood frame (either 2 by 4 or now more
commonly 2 by 6) homes are easy to build; easy to modify and maintain,
can be well insulated and stand up well in this cold windy climate.
Wood frame, with very occasionally some brick veneer, is the commonest
building method here. In our capital city and larger towns there many
traditionally built several storey wooden homes which are well over 100
years old. Most of them need ladders and safety ropes/slings to work on
their roofs and chimneys etc. We also have some flat roofed two storey
homes; some of which were built abutting each other quickly after a
major fire around 1895? Still in use but much modified many were built
with raw stick flattened on two sides to for nailing to. Some boards
are well over a foot wide; don't see lumber like that these days in
this norther climate.
Looks to me like he is exagerating grossly the installer. Any
purchaser that accepted that disaster would be out of his mind.
As to the description of the constructions standards of that one house
he supposedly looked at - that builder would be out of business by the
time he sold only a few.
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