Oh my goodness! You are moving in a mobile home! Newbie guide to not panicking


#1

Sure many on here have moved a home but there was a time before you moved in a home. Hers a handful of things to consider for those who are going to bring in a new home into their ( There are some variations to this whole song and dance with a used home) park. So you have a new home? Congratulations, now the fun begins. There is most likely going to be variation on what is required based on your specific state, county, city , weather climate etc.

First step, get a permit. The city will typically require you to get a permit to move in a home. Walk through the process and everything that they need. Be clear and understand if there is an order of what must be done first. Example, do i need to have my home fully setup ( blocked and tied down ) before they will release an electric meter if one is needed. Does my plumber need a permit ? Can my plumber pull a permit or do i have to have a mobile home permit approved first before they can do their work? If the homes has gas, can i offer them gas? Checking to make sure your specific home is allowed in your specific area is a good practice prior to finalizing the deal of buying the home or working to get someones home in the park. Does the city need to be an additional insured on the movers insurance ? Do they need a copy of the insurance, is the insurance current or expired? Will the city require them to be registered/ bonded? There can be many variations on this it can be simple or more complex. Find out what the city needs and then furnish it to them. Do they need a picture of a title? Do they want to see the taxes paid ? Talk with them and put the pieces all into motion.
Do you have a survey? Be aware of any easements that you may encounter. Are you sticking the home a little on your neighbor mr jones lot? He might not care but the next guy will when he buys it. Yes i have accidentally place a home a few feet to far this way and then you start weighing if you need to buy an easement or move a house…. Typically on new homes, reputable dealers seem to have reputable movers if they are doing volume. This isn’t a guarantee but its gong to give you a better shot than billy bobs movers. ( this could also be a good source for referrals on used home movers ) .
When you find out the size of the home, you typically are going to want to confirm the house will fit. Aside from it fitting, will it meet setback requirements ( ie can it be 20 feet distance between the house next door? ) Once this is confirmed you will want to get some type of pad for the house. The state , city, MH regulatory body may have specs for what to do . Might be concrete, might be runners , find out. In this example its the wild west . This lot started out as a home someone forgot to bring with them when they moved……… I didn’t have a chance to get demo pics that day . But quick tip. When you demo a house, have the utility lines disconnected , located and protected in some manner . If you have it torn down by a machine, playing hide and go seek with a sewer or water line can turn into a $1k plus game quickly. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of something here……

You may need to call the gas company and have the meter pulled as well. Use a reputable demo person but thats another topic in itself. Once you have the home removed, now you have typically just a mess. We have been leveling out pads with crushed concrete. I think concrete runners might make sense at some point but i havent done those yet. Full concrete pad is even better. But find out the regulation and go the drawing boards for estimates on what is required. We worked to build up the pad on this one. Then we brought in a machine for further compacting. As it started to build up , the sewer line started to disappear and was marked with a cone ( see previous comment about expensive hide and seek….) We try to get it to be slightly shorter than the home size so the material will be tucked in once its done being skirted. Then we try to mark the corners for where the home is supposed to go. Why do we do this , because im not that smart and cant trust my eyes, so the vendor that squares up the pad is instructed to so i can do as best a job approving the location with the corner posts .
Then you move the home in…… Sounds simple right? Wrong. You ever seen a 76 foot thing go on a sharp right angle? These guys are crazy. Thats why you have to used real , legit , insured vendors who know what they are doing. Mobile insurance I think offers some good supplementall forms on their web page so check it out . You want someone there from your operation . Cars get in the way, you want to keep tabs on this, take pics, take videos, make sure there are no issues. Mailboxes might have to get pulled, stop signs etc. You may need a house cat, more maneuverable than a house toter ( truck ) . Also if you have ditches etc, you might need the sheets of aluminum that they can use to build a makeshif bridge as needed depending on your specific obstacles. Until we can get helicopters or crane to start dropping in houses, just manage this process carefully. Get that home on the proposed location, match up your stakes on the corners and life the thumbs up. Walk around the house in its entirety. to make sure that everything looks as it should . ( Theres also a whole song and dance to inspecting a home for any move in issues ) but im already dragging this out and we still dont have power!?

There are some other things worth mentioning , try and get the line of sight on the front of the homes to be symmetrical if possible . This will be different if you are adding entirely new homes but changes are you are staggered like tetris so thing long term and if you have a house thats 66 foot long, maybe keep the fronts symmetrical so its aesthetically appealing. There will be variation on lot sizes, placement and such so take into account your parks specifics. Now, the installation. The home will be jacked up, axles removed, hitch removed, put on blocks, vapor barrier laid and now anchors to the ground and frame strapped to the home . There is a specific process and approved materials that can be used so make sure you use vendors that go by the book . One of the biggest risks here is drilling utility lines . Puncture is something that can happen. While its good practice to call 1800 before you dig, 811, JULIE, whatever program in your states administer line marks do it. They may need 48 hours notice so do this well in advance of your move. So you are covered now ? Wrong…. they cover utilities they know about . If mom and pop did sewer themselves and its not the citys job to know where your lines are. you run a risk. How do you know ? The anchor goes in , water starts coming out, you get a call that there is a problem. So any time you have the actual install occurring make sure someone is available for this situation. If you havent punctured a line , you havent moved enough homes ( or are smart which is so much better) . But!! dont be discouraged. Sometimes there was logic to the running of utility lines. If you walk the park and the meter boxes are all about the same at each home, maybe the line runs that way and you can estimate where not to drill down. Additionally, sewer clean outs can be a give away of how the line might run.

Now, the home is installed , nothing blew up, no one got drenched. Get your plumbing connected , electric, gas, mechanical ( ac ) system , stairs , skrirtig, and final inspection. I recommend , if possible, get the AC done after you have actually turned on power in the home . Because then you can test to make sure everything is operational. Find out if you have to just connect to existing electric service or you have to upgrade to perhaps 200 AMP if before it was 60 amp or 100. Is there a specific stair size? Make sure you get all these things figured out from the city . Any additional weird thing you have to do ? ( ie elevation certificate) . Get it all signed off on. Thats a basic overview on how to do one of these. There ill be variation on the process even from town to town so getting clear on the process and protocol will be critical for your respective jurisdiction.


#2

@Marvel_Eqity , wonderful post!

Thank you for taking your time to educate others!

We have had 25 Mobile Homes move into our Park since May 2017.

The process for Moving Mobile Homes is actually very complex.

Mobile Home Movers vary in their degree of sophistication. Your photo shows a “House Cat” / “House Tug”. IF you can find a Mobile Home Mover with a “House Cat”, it is well worth the extra money as the “House Cat” can quickly “park” the Mobile Home in the correct location.

One of our longest moves in terms of time literally came from next door…from the physically adjoining property next door to the Mobile Home Park. The Mover’s Truck had issues getting up a tiny little incline. The Mover tried for 3 plus hours just to get the Home in place. Finally, the Mover just gave up for the day and came back the next day.

Again, moving a Mobile Home is actually a very complex process. @Marvel_Equity wrote a wonderful post that will be very helpful to Owners with new moves. Thank you @Marvel_Equity!

We wish you the very best!


#3

Thank you for the post Marvel!

I have a high density park that I haven’t brought a home into yet. There are two major concerns:
-The driveway entering the park is a very sharp turn off a small, narrow city side street
-Some of the empty lots are cramped interior lots on a relatively narrow road

There’s one 76’ footer in the park (and only one) so it looks like it’s technically feasible to bring a long home in. I’m still worried about the home mover getting stuck at some point.

Any recommendations on homework or preparation to do before hauling a home over? Maybe I’ll try (and possibly pay) a mover to scope out the park ahead of time and look things over and give a thumbs up before we try and bring a 76’ in?


#4

@Noel_S I have wondered this myself on some of the high density where it seems like the helicopter did bring it in . My logic was that if it made its way in here, it can make its way in here again. I havent seen the situation where it was not possible but that doesnt mean it doesnt happen.

I would do exactly as you suggested preferably the one you would plan to use to bring the home in so they aren’t just guessing knowing they would be held accountable for their work and actually getting it into place.

I had a situation where we added a lot and the way the trees were setup i wasnt sure if the angle on a 76 footer would quite cut it and needed to know if the tree should be cut down. When i had them out there doing another home , I brought them over and then told them what might go there and if modification was needed ie on a fence/ tree to bring the home in and they would be the ones to bring up the home so you bet the guy had his thinking hat on.

I dont know how honestly these guys do what they do…

I didn’t really get into it but movers are an elusive breed if you havent experienced it. They never answer calls, dont have voicemails , wont call you back. ( i partially kid but this has been my experience…) get into a market where everyone is busy, good luck. Then its such a lottery. Once you get a bad mover , you truly understand the value of a good mover.

I think that would be great about getting them a gift card or something as well or pay if they want it. I really think it would be great if its someone you have used before , they aren’t looking to charge you and then you get them something for their time ( ie 50/100 gift card prepaid or something ) . That gives a good dynamic to the relationship as it shows that you are respective of the value of their time.