Mobile home rehabs

24 Replies

Has anyone utilized unconventional aspects in their mobile home rehab since the area is so much smaller and uniquely laid out as compared to a normal SFH?

I've noticed that a lot of mobiles for sale here that say "remodel" really just mean new paint and flooring. 

What type of flooring do you normally utilize in your mobiles? Worth the cost for durability of laminate flooring- or do you go with carpet? Also- any one tried carpet squares? I like that I can install them myself- and just replace individual squares when they get damaged. 


@Natalie Kolodij  For most homes, I use new carpet trying to stay very neutral. Regarding the kitchen and bathrooms, I either use sheet vinyl or laminate flooring. 

With used mobile homes, usually the flooring needs to be replaced and some subfloor repair work done (i.e. cut out old floor with soft spots usually particle board and replacing with plywood). 

Hope that helps! 

The ones that we remodel we do from the studs on out. Pretty much everything.

We use vinyl flooring throughout the entire home. It saves us from having to replace carpet. I think it's worth the cost. Although, at this point we wouldn't have had to replace carpet, yet, anyway. These are long term hold investments for us.

The one that we purchased and just did some cosmetic, we put new floor in the kitchen and bathroom because we had to. When we replace the carpet down the road we will put in vinyl flooring rather than carpet.

Updated over 3 years ago

I wanted to clarify, we use vinyl plank flooring that looks like wood floor.

Pinterest. :-D

I always wanted to do submarine-style berthing w/coffin lockers in the 3br where the 3rd br isn't really big enough to be a bedroom. Stack two up high with a desk underneath - with rails of course. And ladders.

But we never got around to it.


@Natalie Kolodij  , are these buy and hold landlord rehabs or fix and flips?  Also, are these old singlewides in a park, or nicer modular homes on land?  For the in park mobiles fix and flip I would do laminate in the living room/dining room.  Landlording may get laminate in the living room, but carpet in the bedrooms.  I've never installed the carpet squares, but have some in apts I purchased.  Virtually indestructible except when it meets burns from cigs or irons.  Either way, sheet vinyl in the kitchen and baths and all that dark paneling gets primed and painted.  Like @Rachel H.  says, that particle board sub-floor in wet areas is like a sponge.  Check around toilets, tubs, water heaters and washing machines when inspecting!  I used to buy for cash and carry paper on these in-park mobiles without fixing anything.  Just a little clean-up.  Maybe I should consider that again...)

@Steve Vaughan  

Thank you! We are mostly looking to hold and rent- we're in the process of finding parks that will let us. I have a list of 150 parks- and I was in sales for years. I've gotta be able to get at least 1 of those park owners to say yes :) And once I do...I will buy, fix up and rent every mobile that comes available in that park haha 

We are shying from full remodels/ fix-flips right now because we don't know a ton on the topic. I'm trying to do more research first. I know that mobile rehab can sometimes be a little spendir due to odd sized appliances and such. Have you guys encountered this?

Ok cool.  From what I've seen, kitchen appliances are normal sized (without dishwashers in the older models).  Kitchen sinks are shallow basin and can't be replaced with a deeper basin unless you change the level where the drain meets the wall.  Not worth it.  The water heaters are different, receiving water at the bottom (+ needing to be strapped) and the dryers have a special power cord because the receptacle is different.  When I change water heaters in mobiles, I add an extension from the supply line at the floor to bring it up so I can use a normal one.  

We have one tiny bathroom right now that we struggled to find a small vanity that wasn't so small it cost more. We should have plumbed it for a pedestal sink, hindsight. You don't get cheaper than a pedestal!

Typically we don't have size issues driving our costs higher, but we've been know to move walls before. Construction/remodel/maintenance is my husbands day job, though, so that is his knowledge base.

The old single wides are more of a problem than doubles and the newer models that are made more like a regular house.

LOL! Yes, always marry someone will helpful skillz! ;-)

Although, he tends to make them much nicer than necessary.

@Rachel Townsend  Curious how the tenants like the vinyl floor throughout the rental.  I was planning on doing that with one of the ones I have but went for carpet.  

@Natalie Kolodij  I agrees about your remodel comments. Lots of times remodel is just simple stuff and stuff done real quick to spruce it up some.  Lots of guys around here do that.  Not really my kind of "remodel" I guess.  I have one in the process that going to be all new inside but I got it for a song and it is a mid 90's model.  You kinda have to work with what you buy as well.  

@Mark Gruetzmacher  

 I'm looking at older homes- I'd like to buy in the 5-8k range. 

For me I think I'm picking level of remodel based on the park. I think doing a nice remodel on a home in a sketchy park...won't bring my money back. I don't want to live in the nicest house in bad area. I assume the same for people buying a mobile. 

However if its a nicer park- I think a nicer remodel will bring in the value. It's not that I want to be cheap or not create nice homes for people....but I've gone through a few parks this week that make me happy to have my carry license haha I'm not putting granite any where near those. 

Hello Natalie.   Being a contractor for many years and doing many many mobile homes over the years,  you really dont need a "specialist" in mobiles, the only difference is, how cheaply mobiles are built.

Another tip, try to avoid carpet in any "wet" areas,  ie..kitchens, baths, entry ways as the carpet holds water and the floors in most of these units are only particle board and the wet carpet rots through them in no time at all. 


@Natalie Kolodij  Yeah I know exactly what you mean.  I have one mobile home in one of the nicest parks by me and that remodel is going to be almost completely the whole place.  I have another that the outside doesn't look too good now but I am redoing the inside leaving alot of the walls and just texturing to cover up some stuff and go for a different look.  The 2nd park is one I would prefer not to buy in but ended up with it from a partner deal so I am dealing with it.    I think alot of the really nice parks are owner occupied only parks as well.  Probably the reason those are so nice because they are owner occupied which doesn't help people like you and me.  

Im glad we don't have areas around me that you might need a carry permit. :)  

@Mark Gruetzmacher   Our homes end up having somewhat contemporary finishes, so it shows really well with the vinyl wood floors. We haven't had any complaints and our homes are rented immediately upon completion. I'll see if I can find a picture of a completed home to post.

I know it can be difficult for some renters, but area rugs can be purchased on the cheap from IKEA and even Home Depot.

@Natalie Kolodij  

I've remodelled lots of SFRs and am in the process of doing my second MH. The remodel process is no different than SFR other than it's smaller, more cheaply made, and you've got to keep to the budget. My first is a rental and I treated that very different than this one which is a flip. As others have said, make sure that you check the flooring. That junky particleboard will tell you where you've got water problems. Stopping water from getting in is my biggest challenge as my tendency is to go all out to solve the problem but, if I put new siding on this, I'll be paying my buyer to take it off my hands:-).

One trick I've been using to keep costs down is to buy gently used.  I'm pulling an almost new full set of kitchen cabinets out of an apartment complex for $350.

Originally posted by @Natalie Kolodij :

@Steve Vaughan  Great insight again- thank you!

@Rachel Townsend  Also great insight- also- MARY A CONTRACTOR....that should be my first step :) haha I live in Seattle everyone here is a computer programmer. That doesn't help me at all!

 Careful, Natalie, you'll have all the BP guys applying for the job! Lol

Looking at possibly landing a MH rehab deal as my very first.  Swallow my pride and dive in to whatever God will throw at me sometimes.  Fingers crossed.  Great info!!! wish me luck! :-)

Originally posted by @John McConnell :

Looking at possibly landing a MH rehab deal as my very first.  Swallow my pride and dive in to whatever God will throw at me sometimes.  Fingers crossed.  Great info!!! wish me luck! :-)

Best of Luck! If you have any questions let me know. I've only done a few but I've learned a ton. 

Thanks @Natalie Kolodij !  I think at this point I need to get the rehab costs figured out.  Price is set and low enough that I will not take a hit on it either way (at least that is what I think).  Going to look at it on monday!  Excited and scared as hell.

Originally posted by @John McConnell :

Thanks @Natalie Kolodij!  I think at this point I need to get the rehab costs figured out.  Price is set and low enough that I will not take a hit on it either way (at least that is what I think).  Going to look at it on monday!  Excited and scared as hell.

 Feel free to take pics if you want some input on costs. 

It's older and filled w/ fake wood panels . Allocate 3x what you'd expect to bonding primer >.< haha 

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