The Importance Of Design In Manufactured Homes

Article By:

Principal | Chief Executive Officer

In recent years, the housing landscape has massively evolved with significant increases in housing options and manufactured homes emerging as a solid alternative to traditional site-built homes. The era of cookie-cutter home design is no more! Today, manufactured homes provide many customization options and innovative design features. Furthermore, anyone who has explored the evolution of manufactured housing through research can attest to the transformative power of thoughtful and informed design in creating appealing and functional manufactured homes. This blog will dive into the importance of design in manufactured homes, expand on some design principles, debunk common myths surrounding manufactured homes, examine successful case studies, and collectively envision the future of manufactured homes.

What Is a Manufactured Home?

As the name suggests, a manufactured home is a home that has been constructed off-site in a factory before its placement on a permanent site. Manufactured homes have replaced mobile homes in name, as the latter refers to any manufactured home built before June 15, 1976. Modern manufactured homes adhere strictly to the building codes the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) sets. These regulations help ensure the highest safety, quality, and energy efficiency.

Myth Debunking About Manufactured Homes

Even though manufactured homes have significantly improved in terms of safety, durability, quality, and aesthetics, they still suffer from an undeserved negative reputation from their past. However, on paper, the data tells a different story. Compared to their cost, contemporary manufactured homes offer high value and quality. In studies, manufactured homes often outperform their traditional site-built relatives in energy efficiency and cost-effectiveness measures despite being built to the same standards and safety codes as traditional homes using high-quality materials. The data proves that a manufactured home can provide many families with a safe, durable, and long-lasting housing option with proper care and maintenance.

The Importance of Design in Manufactured Homes

Design is vital in enhanced functionality, market value, and manufactured homes' appeal. Purposeful design often elevates the living experience for homeowners while also addressing the practical concerns of energy efficiency and efficient utilization of space. With a few fundamental design principles in view, designers can create unique spaces within the footprint of the manufactured home they are designing. With the ability to customize and personalize these spaces, homeowners can express their unique tastes, fostering a larger sense of pride and ownership in their communities.

Design Principles for Manufactured Homes

Lighting: Adequate lighting creates a welcoming and comfortable living space. Designers can utilize natural and artificial lighting systems to elevate the ambiance and utility of each space.

Color Schemes: Selecting the perfect color pallet for a manufactured home can significantly change the perceived size of the internal spaces and, subsequently, a room's atmosphere. By selecting lighter, more neutral colors and selective accent hues, interior spaces can feel more expansive and inviting.

Maximizing Space: Space is a premium in manufactured home design, so being clever and strategic is necessary. Design strategies such as open floor plans, built-in storage solutions, and multi-function furniture can provide more open and usable space to help make the most of every square inch.

The Future of Manufactured Home Design

The future of manufactured home communities is bright with the current demand for affordable and sustainable housing options. With the rise of off-grid living, modular construction, and smart home technology, homeowners can enjoy more flexibility and customization options. These innovations are set to revolutionize the industry, making manufactured homes more accessible and desirable. As the industry continues to evolve, industry professionals and homeowners alike must embrace a more design-centered approach to manufactured home design. By prioritizing design elements such as functionality, aesthetic appeal, and sustainability, manufactured home builders can create homes that are not only beautiful but also functional and efficient. This shift toward a more design-focused approach will enable homeowners to fully customize their homes to suit their unique needs and preferences, ultimately driving the industry's growth.


Modularity has revolutionized the manufactured home design industry, providing homeowners greater customization and flexibility in their living spaces. Modular homes are built in sections or modules, then transported to the final location and assembled on-site. This approach allows various design options, from single-story ranch-style homes to multi-level contemporary residences.

In addition to the aesthetic appeal, modular homes offer several practical benefits. They are typically more energy-efficient than traditional stick-built homes, with better insulation and sealed windows. They are also built to withstand the rigors of transportation, making them more durable than homes constructed on-site.

Smart Home Technology

Smart home technology has brought about a dramatic transformation in the manufactured home industry. With the advent of smart home technology, homeowners can now access various innovative features and products that make their homes more comfortable, convenient, and secure. Smart home technology enables homeowners to control their home appliances, lighting, heating, and cooling systems using their smartphones or voice commands, making it more convenient to manage their homes. In the manufactured home industry, smart home technology has significantly impacted the overall quality of homes. With the integration of smart home devices, homeowners can enjoy a more energy-efficient, connected, and automated home environment. For instance, smart thermostats can automatically adjust the temperature of a home based on the homeowner's preferences and daily routines, which can help reduce energy costs and improve overall comfort. Smart home technology has also enhanced the security of manufactured homes. With smart locks and video surveillance systems, homeowners can now monitor their homes remotely and receive alerts when suspicious activity occurs. This provides a sense of security and peace of mind to homeowners, especially those who live in remote areas.

Case Studies: Design Innovations in Manufactured Homes

The industry has countless examples of successful and innovative living situations requiring special awareness and design knowledge. From innovative floor plans to studies on sustainable building materials, these demonstrate the breadth of versatility inherent to modern manufactured home design.


The term "CrossMod" comes from the combination of "crossover" and "modern," as these homes are designed to blend the efficiency of off-site construction with the durability and aesthetics of on-site construction. CrossMod homes are built in state-of-the-art facilities, just like manufactured homes. However, they have additional features that make them look and feel more like traditional site-built homes. Once the home is constructed, it is secured to a permanent foundation at the final home site, offering buyers the best of both construction methods. A garage and covered porch are finished on-site, adding to the home's appeal and functionality. One of the primary benefits of a CrossMod home is its potential to appreciate similarly to site-built homes. This is because the homes' features meet specific requirements that allow appraisers to compare them to site-built homes, creating the potential for similar appreciation over time. As a result, a CrossMod home can be a comparable investment to a traditional site-built home and is eligible for conventional financing. 

In addition to potential appreciation, CrossMod homes offer many other benefits. For example, they are built to strict quality standards, ensuring they are durable, energy-efficient, and safe for occupants. They also offer a range of customization options, allowing buyers to personalize their homes to meet their unique needs and preferences. So, what features do CrossMod homes have? First and foremost, they are built to HUD code and designed to permanently attach to land. In addition, they offer a range of interior and exterior features that distinguish them from other prefabricated housing options. For example, Clayton CrossMod homes feature a site-built covered porch and garage, durable cabinets, concealed marriage lines, and smooth ceilings. They also meet energy-efficient standards and feature a minimum 5/12 roof pitch and a permanent foundation.

Overall, CrossMod homes are an exciting and innovative option for buyers looking for the best on-site and off-site construction methods. With their modern features, fast construction times, and potential for appreciation, they offer another compelling alternative to traditional site-built homes. 

Detail Image

The Belmont model by Clayton Homes

Double Shed Roof

Double shed roofs can be used in manufactured homes as a way to provide additional space and headroom while also creating a modern and stylish look. The double shed roof design can be used to create a spacious and open living area. The design allows for large windows and skylights, which can provide natural light and ventilation while also creating an open and airy feel. Additionally, the double shed roof design can be used to create a contemporary look that is both stylish and functional. One of the advantages of using a double shed roof in a manufactured home is that it allows for additional headroom in the upper level of the home, which can be especially useful in homes with a second story. This is a relatively simple and cost-effective design. The roof can be constructed off-site in a factory and then transported to the final location for installation. This approach can save time and money compared to traditional site-built homes.

A house with grass and trees in the backgroundDescription automatically generated


In conclusion, the importance of design in manufactured homes can always be emphasized. By prioritizing thoughtful and principled design, homeowners can create functional and beautiful spaces that reflect their unique personalities. By continuing to debunk myths about manufactured homes and embracing these challenges, we can push the boundaries of manufactured home design together and create a brighter and more sustainable housing landscape. Give our urban design firm a call today!

3150 Livernois Road,
Unit 136
Troy, Michigan
Toll: 844-669-6234

289 Garry Street,
Unit 300
Winnipeg, Manitoba
R3C 1H9
Toll: 844-669-6234

Thank you for subscribing to our newsletter,
please check your inbox for a confirmation email.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Copyright © Nadi Group. All Rights Reserved.