Is an RV Considered as a Mobile Home?
There are legal differences between a “mobile home” and an RV; in fact, a mobile home is an older term that has evolved into “manufactured home” today. Decades ago, a mobile home was more like a large trailer, but today, manufactured homes are more like a regular house; the only difference is, a manufactured home is built in a factory, then transported and set up permanently at its location.
Before 1976 mobile homes were mass-produced and subject to very few building regulations from the government. They looked like a large trailer with a trailer hitch and wheels to make it easily movable. As more people began living in mobile homes, they became larger, and the government restricted the building standards to ensure quality so that people could live safely in them. Furthermore, in 1976 government regulations went into effect that changed the name of this type of home to a manufactured home.
The closest thing today to a “mobile home” today would be a “park model” trailer; in the U.S., park models need to be under 400 square feet to qualify as an RV under both federal and various state laws. However, in Canada, park models need to be under 540 square feet. If the park model trailer is over these sizes, it would be a manufactured home and different regulations and taxes would apply. Likewise, a park model does not have holding tanks, they’re designed to be hooked up to an RV park’s water and sewer system. Today, many RV parks feature park models for rent.
There are still quite a few “mobile home parks” and these have both spaces for small manufactured homes and park models, as well as RVs. However, these parks were probably established before the terms were legally changed.
Is It Cheap to Live in a Manufactured Home or a Park Model?
Generally, yes, either a manufactured home or a park model is cheaper to buy than a regular house. Also, it’s easier to set one up on a remote piece of land.
Today’s manufactured homes range in price from $140,000 to $250,000 and are as large as a conventionally built home. While they are built in a factory and transported to the location, once set up, they are permanent.
If you want something like an old-fashioned mobile home, then a park model may fit the bill. The price of a park model ranges anywhere from $35,000 to $75,000, which is comparable to a high-end travel trailer. They are heavier than a comparably sized travel trailer, so you’ll need a heavy-duty truck to move it. Also, they need to be parked where there are water hook-ups and a sewer.
If you add together the monthly financing payments on your park model to the monthly rent at a mobile home park or an RV park, you will very likely come out cheaper than paying rent on a house or an apartment. Likewise, you have the option to move easily to a new place.