The Story of Manufactured Homes
Manufactured Homes: A Legacy of Quality and Affordable Living
Everything starts with an idea and a passion.
In the USA, the first mobile homes were built in the 1870s. They were movable beach-front properties built in the Outer Banks region of North Carolina. To move a home back then required a team of horses.
Mobile homes as we know them today came about in 1926 with automobile-pulled trailers or “Trailer Coaches.” These were designed as a home away from home during camping trips. The trailers later evolved into “mobile homes” that were brought into demand after World War II ended. Veterans came home needing housing and found dwellings to be in short supply. Mobile homes provided low-cost entry and were quickly built. This allowed veterans and their families to travel to where the jobs were.
A mobile home is a prefabricated structure built in a factory on a permanently attached chassis before being transported to a site (either by being towed or on a trailer). Used as permanent homes or for temporary accommodation, they are usually left permanently or semi-permanently in one place. However, they can be moved.
The Earliest Moveable Homes
The first examples of mobile homes can be traced back to the roaming bands of gypsies who traveled with their horse-drawn mobile homes as far back as the 1500s. In 1943, trailers averaged a width of eight feet and were more than 20 feet in length. They had up to three to four separate sleeping sections, but no bathrooms. But by 1948, lengths had gone up to 30 feet and bathrooms were introduced. Mobile homes continued to grow in length and widths such as doublewide.
In June of 1976, the United States Congress passed the National Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Act (42 U.S.C.), which assured that all homes were built to tough national standards.
From Mobile Home to Manufactured Housing
In 1980, Congress approved changing the term “mobile home” to “manufactured home.” Manufactured homes are built in a factory and must conform to a federal building code.
In 1976 the US Congress passed the National Mobile Home Construction and Safety Act (42 U.S.C.). This was necessary to hold the industry to a high standard and to insure that everything they put in the mobile home was safe. In 1980 Congress, due to pressure from the industry itself, changed the name mobile home to manufactured housing on an actual legislative bill.