Milestones & Major Achievements Of The Manufactured Home Industry

by Feb 13, 2019

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“Once upon a time, there were no mobile homes. Obviously, the state of life was terrible with people living in abandoned shacks or having no homes at all. Then some heroic people dreamed up mobile homes. Soon, every person had a beautiful place to live, and the state of the world was turned around. Everyone lived happily ever after.”

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Of course, what you just read is the fairy-tale version of the history of mobile homes. That’s what happens when we make a humorous (and not quite factual) attempt at writing mobile home history in just five sentences. But just because that’s a bit of an imaginative rendition doesn’t mean there aren’t fun things to explore in the history (and future) of mobile homes. So let’s dabble in the happenings of the mobile home world.

The early days

Way back in the day, according to Mary Bellis at, gypsies used mobile homes. And when you take their nomadic lifestyle into consideration, you can see why a home that can move with you would be useful. She says other older mobile homes were houses for use by the beach.


Now, if you’re expecting us to launch into a spirited retelling of the legendary Greek people by this same name, you’ll be sadly disappointed. However, the logo for Spartan Aircraft Company does look like it may have been dreamed up with these fighters in mind.


According to, the company developed its first prototype for a Spartan trailer this year. And part of their reasoning for doing so was that at the end of the Second World War there was an increase in housing needed.

The company rolled out Spartans for years to come. And by now, these trailers have earned the name vintage. Want to see what kind of Spartans were produced during different years? Just check out’s database to view trailer photos.

Today, these trailers can range from thousands to tens of thousands of dollars. Of course, there’s also this 1951 Spartan with a pretty hefty price tag: $351,500.


Here’s the year that Champion Home Builders began. If you’ve read our Ultimate Mobile Home Manufacturers List {With Secrets On Buying}, you already know about Champion. Moreover, if you need convincing that this manufactured home builder has beautiful homes to offer the mobile home market, just check out these award-winning ones: The Kingsbrook and The Heron (a little home that packs a lot of punch).


We’ll call this a banner year for “mobile homes.” Or should we say a banner year for “manufactured homes?” Pardon the joke, but yes, that’s the fateful year that brought us not just the HUD code regulating mobile homes but also the name change from mobile home to manufactured home.


Jumping ahead quite a few years here, we arrive at the not-so-distant past: 2016. That’s the year the manufactured home building company Clayton celebrated this milestone—they hit their 60-year mark.

Then there’s even more recent history—like this achievement from “TRU Belton I and II, part of the Clayton Home Building Group.” Reaching a work quota is one thing, but how about reaching an enormous number of homes built, such as 15,000? Yes, according to, they hit the 15,000 homes built mark recently. Appropriately, they celebrated with cake and “a group photo in front of the milestone structure.”

Clayton & class

These days, Clayton brings us next-level class and style with homes like those in The Patriot Collection. From real tile in the bathroom to granite in the kitchen to a stand-alone tub in The Revere, take a moment to see just what these homes have to offer.

Then there’s Clayton’s The Tyler, a 2,100 square foot home with room for an island in the kitchen. Plus, it has double bathroom sinks and even a closet that brings the barn door look right to your mobile home.

More in our own day and age

Of course, there’s the tiny house phenomenon, too. Capturing the imaginations of many in the US and beyond, we say these homes set on wheels are “mobile” homes even if they aren’t technically “manufactured homes.”

Tiny House model ideal location by Tiny House UK

Tiny House by Mark Burton 2012 via Tiny House UK

Thanks to TV shows like Tiny House Nation and Tiny House, Big Living, people who don’t live in tiny homes can experience some of the fun vicariously. And lest you think tiny homes are limited to the United States, check out these other locations:


Earlier we mentioned Champion Home Builders’ Heron, which weighs in at 499 square feet. But what if you need something a little smaller than that? Oh, and you’re also looking for a loft that’s lowered from the ceiling because, of course, you want to sleep. Still, you don’t want your bedroom taking up all the space

Enter The Willow from ZeroSquared. While it may be an RV instead of a mobile home, who’s to say this couldn’t be your minimalist dream home (or at least your home away from home)?

What does the future hold?

When it comes to mobile homes of the future, what are you hoping for? Collapsible homes? Amphibious homes? Learning about what’s out there and dreaming about what could come about may be fun, but how about some things that you can do to change the mobile home you have now for the better? Check out our Why (& How) You Should Consider Remodeling Your Mobile Home.

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