Did you know that every prefabricated home is built to HUD Code wind zone classifications? These safety standards have not always been around. Mobile homes, also known as prefabricated homes or manufactured homes, that were built before 1976 are not built to any wind zone classifications because federal mobile home safety standards weren't in place yet.
Luckily, all manufactured homes built after 1976 are required to be constructed based on HUD Code so each home is built to federal wind safety standards. Here’s why this is so important and how affects homeowners:
After major storms like Hurricane Andrew, HUD began doing ongoing studies of different building standards and updated requirements for snow, seismic activity and wind safety to ensure that manufactured homes are built with safety, strength and durability in mind. So, for the safety of future home buyers, the HUD Code is consistently being updated as new technology and safety measures are developed.
The HUD Code wind zones are NOT based on where your home is built, but on where your manufactured home will be placed. These wind zones are designated by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development as seen in the picture below.
Photo by Manufactured Housing Institute
The above zones indicate how much wind pressure a home can withstand. The wind zone determines how the home is built and, just as importantly, how the home is anchored to the ground.
Building For Different Wind Zones
For your safety, a home built to Wind Zone I cannot be placed in Zones II or III, but a home built to Wind Zone III can be placed in lower wind zones. Zone III homes are built to withstand the most high-speed winds, which is why this zone is primarily found along the U.S. coastline, an area more prone to hurricane winds.
If you’re worried about high winds, you can ask your home consultant about having your home built and installed to Wind Zone III standards as a precaution.
Since all manufactured homes are now built and permanently affixed to land, according to federal wind regulations, they are a very safe and reliable housing option for families across the country.
In fact, not one manufactured home built after the 1994 HUD Code changes was destroyed by the hurricanes that hit Florida in 2004.
Check out how manufactured homes lasted during Hurricane Irma in fall 2017 by watching this video from the Florida Manufactured Housing Association.