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ItalianPrincess1217's avatar

Can you build an addition off a mobile home?

Asked by ItalianPrincess1217 (11964points) September 28th, 2018

I’m not sure if the home would be considered mobile or manufactured. I think it was built in the 70’s.

I found this beautiful location. 2 acres of land along with an apple orchard, right near a state park, and even near some gorgeous mountains. It has a mobile home on the land as well. All of this is for sale for 22k. We’re going to take a look tonight.

I have this idea, and call me crazy if I am, of moving into the trailer while we fix it up and add an addition over time. We certainly aren’t afraid of work or renovations but we aren’t familiar with what’s allowed with trailers. We’ve only dealt with home renovations in the past.

This sounds like a good deal. We could buy it cash, and it could potentially be the solution to our issues of not having a house to move into come our Nov 2nd closing date. The fact is, a house with land just doesn’t exist in our budget and we refuse to take out a mortgage. We want to live simply, downsize, and let our kids have land to run. If we can in fact add on to this place, I’m in!

Thoughts? Advice?

*And we completely understand trailers depreciate in value. We’re not in this to make a profit in the end. If we ever moved in the future, we would keep this as a camp to return to as a getaway. So that’s okay too.

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25 Answers

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Is it on wheels or does it have mounts underneath for wheels ? If so it is a mobile home.

I would not put an addition on except a porch or deck. Building code may not let you, find that out first before you spend money and find out can’t add on.

Living in the trailer while you build a new house would make sense.

canidmajor's avatar

Just an answer to the bare bones Q, yes (depending on local ordinances of course). I used to live in such a place. The owner a really nice addition onto a mobile home, then enlarged the door hole so it created a more natural walk-through to the add-on.
It was a bit odd, but it worked. It would never be a showplace type home, but it was comfortable.

zenvelo's avatar

An affordable alternative, rather than spend money on an addition that is questionable, is to buy a larger mobile home built of component trailers. My exes grandmother lived in a mobile home that was actually three bolted together, a full size house.

canidmajor's avatar

Also, look up pre-fab and modular homes. There are some much less expensive options.

ItalianPrincess1217's avatar

I can link a photo of it here if that might clear up the question of what kind it is. I’m honestly not sure.

KNOWITALL's avatar

Like @JLeslie said, check the planning and zoning. Some additions can only be removeable, not attached. Otherwise sounds fun for awhile.

ItalianPrincess1217's avatar

@KNOWITALL Would I contact the town building inspector for that kind of info?

janbb's avatar

Link didn’t work.

It would be the town planning board administrator that you would contact.

Without knowing much about the mobile home, I would think your best bet might be to see if you can live in it for a few years, get your finances on a solid footing and then build a small house on the land.

ItalianPrincess1217's avatar

@janbb Sorry I think it was hidden. This should work.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Italian Here it would be a call to local city hall for current zoning laws, or county if you are not in city limits. County usually is less picky.

ItalianPrincess1217's avatar

This would definitely be pretty “out there” in the country. So hopefully less strict. But it would certainly be a big disappointment to buy the place only to find out we can’t build off of it later on.

janbb's avatar

Looks pretty solid but I would live in it for a bit before deciding whether it is desirable to add on or build new.

KNOWITALL's avatar

Agreed, just a couple phone calls is worth the time for sure. Changing after the fact is not always easy.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Still can’t see, I’m getting Zoinks !

ItalianPrincess1217's avatar

@Tropical_Willie Grrr. I’m going to delete and re-post. Give me a second.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Looks like Single wide trailer (right side has triangle shaped bars? under the A/C)

Trailer tend to be built with thin insulation. They don’t have a foundation and can be blown over in wind storms, they are on posts or piled up cinder blocks.

ItalianPrincess1217's avatar

@Tropical_Willie It’s definitely a single wide. Most are up on cinder blocks (I’m guessing this one is) but I’ve seen some on a foundation. I’ve never heard of any blow over in our state! Those must be some strong gusts! Yikes. Seeing the kind it is, would that be something that’s able to have an addition? (Assuming the town has no issues with it).

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Good luck.
If you buy get, engineered anchors in the ground to keep it from blowing off blocks.

Gideon2017's avatar

I looked at the picture you posted, it will be a wonderful place to live.
Maybe you could reinforce and decorate the house in 2 or 3 years as it looks lack of safety. Could there be some beast hiding in the forest?

ItalianPrincess1217's avatar

@Gideon2017 I could only hope there’s a beast hiding in the forest! My kids would love to make friends with it.

ItalianPrincess1217's avatar


The trailer was built on a slab and the interior was definitely straight retro. But the potential once I got my creative hands on it is great. The land was absolutely beautiful. A mixture of pine trees oak trees, an apple orchard, open grass, and fields. She even raised goats and offered to let us have some if we wanted. (We’ll see about that lol). As soon as you pull off the road, you’re surrounded by beautiful mountains. It was like something something from a painting. So we put an offer in! She’s checking to see if it’ll line up with her moving dates and her buyers. (She needs our money before she’s able to move into her new place and we need our money before we’re able to move into hers). It’s a unique situation. I’m hoping it works out. It’ll be disappointing if it doesn’t!

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