Whether you're buying or selling a mobile home, you may find that the lender involved in the transaction wants a manufactured home foundation certification before they will proceed. For those who have never dealt with these certifications before, they are typically required for HUD or FHA loans as a means to ensure that the mobile home is structurally sound and on a foundation that will maintain that stability. Here's a look at some of the things that you should understand about the manufactured home foundation certification.
Obtaining Certification Requires An On-Site Evaluation
You won't find an engineer that will offer you a certification without an on-site evaluation of the foundation and the home. Engineers who issue these certifications are bound by strict regulations, not the least of which include adequate anchors for wind and severe weather, support piers to maintain structural stability, and permanent skirting around the entire perimeter as a barrier against weather, pests, and other hazards.
Your Foundation May Need Retrofitting
If the foundation of the manufactured home does not meet the required guidelines for certification, the engineer handling the inspection can recommend retrofitting steps to help address the shortcomings. With proactive retrofitting, you can ensure that the foundation is stable and meets the necessary standards.
A Prior Certification Is No Guarantee
Some manufactured homeowners assume that, because they received certification in the past, their home is a lock for certification again. The fact is that the standards and expectations for adequate foundation structures change and evolve as manufacturing standards, weather hazards, and structural considerations change. Just because your home received certification in the past does not guarantee that it will meet the standards now. If anything has changed since your last certification, you may need to plan to retrofit to stay compliant.
You May Be Able To Have The Certification Cost Rolled Into Your Loan
The foundation certification comes at a cost, much like the standard home inspection. When you're required to get a foundation certification for loan eligibility, you might be able to have the cost of the certification assessment rolled into your loan. If your lender isn't willing to do so, be prepared to pay for the certification at the time of the initial inspection.
These are just a few of the things that every potential buyer or seller of a manufactured home should know. Consider whether or not you might need a manufactured home foundation certification for your home.