Before you begin
Let’s start our “buying a mobile home checklist” with a pretty simple task for you. Do yourself a favor and take some time to plan before you sign on the dotted line. Plan even before you start looking for a place. For instance, take time to think about the house you’re in now. What is it you want to change? Additionally, what is it you don’t want to change?
Accordingly, our first item in your mobile home checklist is to do just this:
- Sit down and plan. Have a brainstorming session and write down your thoughts about what you want in a house. Also, think about what you’d like the home buying process to look like, if possible. Take a break and come back to your list later. Then, keep the most important items on your list and prioritize them.
- Know how much you can afford to do in a week. Cover this in your planning phase. If you work 60 hours a week, don’t plan on seeing dozens of for-sale mobile homes in one week. Instead, take your time.
Others may be involved, too
- Run your thoughts by others. If you know other mobile home owners, talk to them about your hopes and expectations. This way, you can try to get a sense for whether you’re being reasonable.
- Decide whether you want to work with a real estate agent or not. If you do, get recommendations from friends. However, if you decide not to get your own agent, know that any home you want to buy may still be listed by an agent. In these cases, the listing agent may either ask to represent you or ask that you get another agent to represent you in the transaction.
- Keep tabs on who you’re supposed to communicate with. Whether you’re working with an agent or not, this is a good idea. In short, know who you should be calling, texting, or emailing and when and make a point to get and keep their contact information.
- Commit to being organized in your approach. For example, buy a notebook and a file folder specifically for your mobile home buying venture. This way, you can keep important information all in one place
Laws & rules
Next up in our list, take care to stay on the right side of the laws and rules.
- Discover rules that will apply to the mobile home park you’re thinking of moving into, if applicable.
- Research laws in your locality that apply to mobile homes. In brief, know what will and won’t be options for you legally.
Inspections & tests
You may not need all of these tests. Nevertheless, it helps to know that you may need them before you close on your home. As you look over prospective properties, keep these tests in mind. Also, check to see if the cost to have them completed is the buyer’s responsibility.
- Get the water tested
- Get the septic tested
- A termite inspection
- A home inspection
Utilities & more
Again, this will only apply in certain situations. If you’re moving into a mobile home that’s already hooked up to utilities, you probably don’t have to worry about this. However, it’s a good idea to find out who the providers are and approximately how much these services will cost you. Sometimes a past utility bill will provide the info you need.
- Water hookup
- Electrical hookup
- Septic hookup
- Garbage disposal/pickup
- TV provider
Property & Location
- Review property boundaries. Either ask about this or check with your county administration for property records.
- Calculate distance to work, shopping centers, activities, & family.
- Ask about the school district. Ideally, try to discover more than just what school district you’re in. You may want to know how it compares to other local schools.
- Discover the property taxes. Local city or county government websites should have information about these.
Buying a mobile home checklist – the mobile home
- Find out what kind of heating and air condition the mobile home has.
- Ask the age of the mobile home.
- Figure out how your current furniture or furniture you intend to purchase would fit in the house.
- Know what kind of mobile home layout you’re looking for.
- Note the age and condition of the roof.
- Note the age and condition of windows and doors.
- Keep your eyes peeled for signs of water damage.
- Find out what the parking situation is like around the home (if applicable).
- Notice the proximity of the neighbors and the condition of their homes. For instance, this could help you discover that a home you’re considering is in a windy area or an area prone to flooding. Plus, you can get a feel for whether you think the neighborhood would be pleasant.
Make the mobile home dream happen!
Don’t let purchasing a mobile home be just a dream left hanging. Go out there and make it happen. Use this “buying a mobile home checklist” to help you get the ball rolling. Then check out our other resources for buying a mobile home: