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Manufactured (Mobile) Homes and Modular Homes - Building Code Administration

WHAT IS A MANUFACTURED (MOBILE) HOME?

  • The federal HUD Definition of a Manufactured (Mobile) Home:

    "Manufactured home" means a structure, transportable in one or more sections,
    which, in the traveling mode, is eight body feet or more in width or forty body feet or more in length, or, when erected on site, is three hundred twenty or more square feet, and which is built on a permanent chassis and designed to be used as a dwelling with or without a permanent foundation when connected to the required utilities, and includes the plumbing, heating, airconditioning, and electrical systems contained therein; except that such term shall include any structure which meets all the requirements of this paragraph except the size requirements and with respect to which the manufacturer voluntarily files a certification required by the Secretary and complies with the standards established under this chapter; and except that such term shall not include any self-propelled recreational vehicle.
     
  • A manufactured home is built on a permanent chassis and is transportable in one or more sections.
  • Manufactured homes are designed to be used as dwellings with or without permanent foundations when connected to the required utilities.
  • The homes are built in a factory with federal standards enforced by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD Code). The HUD regulates the home's design and construction, strength and durability, transportability, fire resistance, energy efficiency and quality control.
  • The HUD code pre-empts local building codes relating to federal construction codes for manufactured homes.
  • Manufactured homes are transported and delivered to the home sites in one or more sections.
  • If a home has multiple sections, the sections are joined at the site, with minimal finish work completed by an installer.
  • A manufactured home may move from site to site or may be set on a foundation permanently.
  • A manufactured home may be placed on private property or in a manufactured home community called manufactured (mobile) Home Park.
  • A manufactured home displays a red certification label provided by the HUD (HUD label) on the exterior of each transportable section.

WHAT IS A MODULAR HOME?

  • A Modular Home is an Industrialized/Modular building.
     
  • The state of Maryland definition of an Industrialized/Modular building:

    “Industrialized building" means a building assembly or system of building subassemblies manufactured in its entirety, or in substantial part, off site and transported to a site for installation or erection, with or without other specified components, as a building or as part of a finished building that comprises two or more industrialized building units.

    “Industrialized building" includes the electrical, plumbing, heating, ventilating, insulation, and other
    service systems of the building assembly or system of building subassemblies if the service systems are installed at the off site manufacture or assembly point.

    “Industrialized building" does not include:
    1. (i) open frame construction that can be completely inspected on site; or
    2. (ii) a manufactured home
       
  • A modular home is built with or without a chassis and is transportable in one or more sections.
  • A modular home is designed to be used as a dwelling with a permanent foundation when connected to the required utilities.
  • The modular homes are built in a factory to State standards and enforced by the State using State laws and regulations. For the state of Maryland, the state Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation regulates the home’s design and construction, strength and durability, ransportability, fire resistance, energy efficiency and quality control by using Maryland regulations. The state of Maryland regulates by using a Model Performance Code which includes International Codes (published by International Code Council) and National Electrical Code (published by National Fire Protection Association).
  • The Maryland State Standards pre-empt local jurisdiction building codes for modular homes.
  • Modular homes are transported and delivered to home sites in one or more sections.
  • The sections of the modular home are joined at the site, with minimal finish work completed by the installer.
  • A modular home is not designed to move from site to site once set on a permanent foundation.
  • A modular home may be placed on a private property just as a site built home.
  • In Maryland, a modular home displays green certification labels provided by the State in the interior of the home, generally inside the cabinets under the kitchen sink.

For additional information, contact:
Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation
Division of Labor and Industry
Building Codes Administration

1100 N. Eutaw Street, Room 606
Baltimore, MD 21201
410-767-2185
e-mail: dldlibuildingcodes-dllr@maryland.gov