Now that the market has begun to pick back up, we’ve noticed a lot of mobile (manufactured) homes for sale in Tucson. If you are considering buying a used Tucson manufactured home, keeping the following tips in mind when making your purchase can help ensure you make a quality, structurally sound, decision.
Check for soft spots
Often times in older manufactured homes, particle-board was used for the flooring. When particle-board flooring sustains water damage it becomes soft, sponge-like causing it to warp, or, worst case scenario, rot. Be sure to walk throughout the entire home giving attention to how the floor reacts to your footsteps. Pay particular attention to the bathroom floors around the toilets and the tubs. These areas tend to be problem areas due to condensation or overflows.
Proper sealing around window frames and doors
When manufactured homes are erected after purchased, they are often placed upon cinder blocks that stabilize the frame of the structure. Over time – and as a result of the Tucson heat – the manufactured home will shift, settle and sometimes move. This shifting can cause distortions within the frame of the structure resulting in gaps between the top and bottom of the door frames and window jams; as well as “Waves” in the interior walls. These are a good indication that the manufactured home may need to be re-leveled. Should this be the case, a good Tucson contractor or Tucson manufactured home dealer can re-level the home fairly inexpensively.
Warning: If the manufactured home has settled or shifted too much, it will inevitably be a poor purchase– even if it is re-leveled. Hire a Tucson professional manufactured home inspector to be sure.
Be sure to check the sealant wound the windows. The dry Tucson heat can often wreak havoc on sealants and beading materials around window frames and jams. Ineffective sealant or beading can result in higher electric bills, especially during the summer months. If the beading or sealant is worn, cracked or dried out, you will need to reseal the windows.
Don’t forget to look up
Stains on the ceiling of a manufactured home can indicate a leaking roof. With the amount of rain we get here in tucson during Monsoon season, it is a really good idea to make sure those leaks have been repaired. If the ceiling or wall stains have multiple rings around them, this is an indication of multiple leaks over time which could be a sign of much larger issues.
Tip: If it has recently rained but the stains on the ceiling appear to be dry, odds are the leak has been repaired. however, it’s always a good idea to have a professional come in and make sure.
Don’t overlook the roof
When shopping for manufactured homes in Tucson, people tend to focus on the interior part of things and often overlook the exterior– especially the roof. If the roof is made up of wood or composite shingles, be sure to check to see if any of the shingles are dried out, curled, or brittle. Often times this will be caused by heat build up in the attic do to poor ventilation, which is all too common in older Manufactured Homes. This is a good indication that you will need to replace the shingles and ensure proper ventilation.
Does the manufactured home have a metal roof? be sure to check for rust. If rust is present on a metal manufactured home roof, this will often be the result of improper sealing; something that should be done every 12 – 18 months.
Warning: If the roof appears to be sagging, this is a good indication of rotten wood within the support structure and it will need to be replaced.
Avoid wiring made from aluminum
A mobile home that was built in the 1970’s runs the risk of having aluminum wiring. Since aluminum wiring expands when it is hot and contracts when it is cool, it runs the risk of loosening over time creating a potential fire hazard. On top of that, aluminum tends to oxidize (corrodes) quicker when it comes into contact with certain other metals. This is a dangerous combination that can lead to a sparks, or flare ups, within the walls of the manufactured home.
Before checking to see whether or not the Manufactured Home has aluminum wiring, ensure the electricity has been turned off. Once you’ve confirmed the electricity is off, remove one of the light switch cover or electrical outlets and inspect. If the ends of the wiring appear to be silver in color, odds are you have aluminum wiring. If you’ve fallen in love with a particular home, don’t be discourage. Have a professional manufactured home Inspector in Tucson come and evaluate the situation.
Be sure to check the pipes
Gray, blue, or black, if the plumbing is either of these colors and is 1/2 inch to 1 inch in diameter we strongly recommend you call in a licensed plumber. Many used manufactured homes use Polybutylene (Poly) piping, which was used quite extensively due to its easy installation and low cost. Unfortunately, Poly piping has been the cause of countless leaks and pipe ruptures due to the fact that it breaks down over time and the tees, joint and elbows do seal properly and leak as well. Replacing Poly piping is a must as the home will be very difficult to insure or resell at a later date.
Considering PEX Piping? Read the article is PEX Piping the next plumbing solution for your Tucson Home.
We hope you found these tips useful. If you’re in the market and are considering purchasing a used manufactured home in Tucson, print these tips out and bring them with you. Just remember that these tips should in no way replace the evaluation of a professional Tucson Manufactured Home Inspection.