In Lower Mainland or the Fraser Valley Region of British Columbia, we have one of the highest prices of property in the world. It is therefore prudent for anyone who is downsizing or getting into the market to consider the option of buying a manufactured home. Approximate cost of a manufactured home varies between $75,000 to $150,000 for a single wide and double wide respectively.
In most cases, the owner owns the home and not the land. Manufactured homes are mostly located on land owned by private owners. The Manufactured home park is managed by a manager or the owner himself and it is essential to take approval of the Park Manager before you get into a contract to buy a manufactured home.
In a manufactured home purchase, you pay to have space in the park and you need to pay the pad rental fee. This fee ranges from location to location. In rural areas, it is approximately $300, whereas in urban areas close to Vancouver it is approx. $500 and higher.
A manufactured home is classified as personal property. The conveyancing process is therefore different from real property. In BC we have a Manufactured Home Registry based at Victoria. The Property Transfer tax is not applicable and if the buyer is buying real property he or she can still claim First Time Home Buyer grant on any future purchases. It is utmost important for a Manufacture Home to have Canadian Standards Association Certification label. This label shows the number of the home. If the label is missing or is worn off or damaged, the BC Safety Authority allows a licensed electrical contractor to undertake inspection and confirm that the home meets the safety standards.
Financing the purchase of a Manufactured home is a problem area as the collateral of land is missing here. A lender, therefore, would generally insist for an appraisal and would only fund a manufactured home which has at least 20 years of economic life. However, to play it safe the financial institution restricts amortization period to economic life minus 5 years.
Despite the above disadvantage, a manufactured home is a great downsizing option in the current market conditions.