Should You Buy a New or Pre-Owned Manufactured Home?

An exterior of a manufactured home with gray and green siding and a front porch.

Home buying is full of decisions. You have to make a budget, choose a location and know what style and features you’re looking for. And, whether you’re buying an off-site built or traditional site-built home, you’ll also need to choose between a brand new or existing one.

With the demand for more affordable housing continuing to increase, manufactured and modular homes are also becoming a more popular choice because of the wider range of options and lower prices. In fact, according to the Census Bureau, the average sales price for a new home in the U.S. reached over $500,000 in 2023. Compare that to average cost of a new manufactured home, not including land, which was about $130,000 as of May 2023.

At Clayton, we offer hundreds of stylish, energy-efficient, quality-built options for home buyers with a range of budgets and needs. It’s part of our mission to help make homeownership possible for more people.

And once you’ve decided on Clayton and are ready to start your buying journey, one of the questions you’ll need to ask is which works better for your needs: a new or pre-owned home? We break down the benefits of both options to help you when you’re making your decision.

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Benefits of buying a new manufactured home:

If you’re looking for a new manufactured home, you can go to our Find a Home page and filter models by location, budget, number of bedrooms, features and more. And you can then also set up an appointment with your local retail home center to see their available models and discuss your options with a consultant.

  • Customization: Buying a new home gives you the opportunity to decide on the features and styles you want. Many of our homes come with optional features and details too, like a front porch or fireplace, along with different configurations for the bathrooms and kitchen. And a floor plan may have a flex room that can be turned into an office or another bedroom. You decide on the home that fits your life rather than fitting your life to the home.
  • Energy-efficient features: Buying a new Clayton home also means it has updated energy-efficient features, like Low-E windows, a smart thermostat and appliances that can help you save money on utility bills.
  • Limited home warranty: Buying a new home from Clayton also gives you our one-year limited warranty, which typically covers defects that can cause structural or safety issues that occur within the first year of homeownership and are due to flaws that occurred during the home building process. You may have the option of purchasing an extended warranty, depending on which home building facility built your home and which home center you purchased it from.
  • Less maintenance: When you purchase a new home, there’s no need for renovations before you even move in. Also, you’re less likely to encounter any big repairs right away. With an older home, more frequent upkeep and repairs are common.

Benefits of buying a pre-owned manufactured home:

If you’re interested in finding pre-owned manufactured homes, you can search specifically for manufactured homes on realty sites or on sites that are dedicated to listing manufactured homes. Also, talk to your local home center to see if they know about any homes being sold in your area. And, of course, if you are driving by and see a for sale sign in a yard, you can inquire with the individual seller, just like you would with any site-built home.

  • More budget friendly: Purchasing a pre-owned manufactured home is often a little more affordable than purchasing a new one because you’re not having to account for any extra material or building costs.
  • Faster move-in timeline: If you choose to purchase a home that’s already built, it can save you time because you don’t have to wait for a facility to receive and complete the order to construct it.
  • It may already be on land: Purchasing a pre-owned manufactured home that’s already been placed on land can also save you time and money because many common final home set-up tasks such adding a driveway, connecting all of the utilities and even landscaping may already be taken care of. This is similar to if you chose to purchase a site-built home that had already been constructed.

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What about trade-ins?

If you currently have manufactured home and have decided to purchase a new Clayton home model, you may consider a trade-in. Trade-in programs for your manufactured home can be found across the country at retail home centers. Your manufactured home’s trade-in value is determined by the home center and can typically be applied toward the purchase price of your new Clayton home.

The home center can also usually help assist with the removal of your old home to make room for your new one. Specific trade-in options will vary by home center, and trade credit is not guaranteed in every situation, especially with an older home. So, talk to your local home center consultant about what offers are available and any further questions you might have about the trade-in process.

Now you can weigh the benefits of a new or pre-owned home while you’re also considering your budget and needs. Whichever option you decide, our Clayton team will help you find the right home for you. Check out the home buying category of our Studio blog to learn about the ins and outs of buying a Clayton home, from how to use your MyHome account to a site preparation checklist and more.

Are you ready to find your dream home?
Start shopping now or find a home center in your area to learn more about Clayton Built® home options.

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Buying a Clayton home? Learn about the process, from choosing a home to move-in.