Adding value to your home isn’t merely a matter of throwing money at every conceivable upgrade or modification. After all, not all of them provide a return on your investment of time and money. Some may even hurt your chances of a swift sale for the highest possible price.
Make your money count with these nine time-tested ways to add value to your mobile home.
1. Upgrade Your Mobile Home Windows
If your mobile home still sports its original windows and they’re looking their age, replacing them creates a win-win situation for you. You reap energy cost savings for the remaining time you’re in the home, and they add enormous appeal to prospective home buyers.
Even better: you don’t have to trick out your place to the fanciest windows on the market. Stick with standard vinyl windows, and you’ll still likely recoup 72% of their cost.
Don’t let renovation fever take hold, though. A major upscale kitchen remodel just barely allows the property owners to recoup half (54%) of its cost.
2. Install Smart Home Features in Your Mobile Home
“Smart” is in. Home buyers today appreciate smart home features that help them save money, improve security, and more. According to a national survey, here are some of the smart home devices respondents found most interesting:
- Smart thermostats: 32.8%
- Security: 32.2%
- Smart lighting: 28.9%
- Voice activation (such as home assistants): 26.3%
- Motion sensors: 20.2%
- Smart plugs: 19.7%
Additional “smart” items in which home buyers express interest include fire detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, and cameras.
3. Make Your Mobile Home More Energy Efficient
One way to consider energy efficiency is by considering it an “invisible fuel” that helps keep your mobile home’s appliances humming along without ratcheting up high energy costs.
If you need to replace an appliance or two anyway, taking the time to ensure it is Energy Star compliant is a great investment. You can find a list of such appliances here.
Having energy-efficient appliances lets home buyers know they’re looking at a mobile home that operates well and with minimum wasted effort. That translates into the more easy-going and less expensive lifestyle that attracts many people to mobile homes in the first place.
You can take energy matters a step farther, too, by engaging in energy conservation — “any behavior that results in the use of less energy.” For example, you can combat high heating or cooling costs with double-paned windows and thorough insulation throughout the home.
4. Replace Your Mobile Home’s Skirting
Mobile home skirting addresses multiple issues. It improves the home’s aesthetics by hiding piers, tie-downs, and a concrete slab. Plus, it keeps pests away, reduces moisture, and provides a measure of insulation.
Given its visual prominence and functional importance, cleaning and repairing what you have, or adding entirely new skirting, will translate to extra dollars for a mobile home seller.
If you decide to replace your existing skirting, available materials include:
- Faux Rock, such as Rapid Wall, Exteria, and K-ROK
The rock-like options cost more but can lend a level of distinction to a home that makes it stand out from the crowd. Manufactured stone veneers can also recoup roughly 96% of their cost when it comes time to sell.
5. Get a Fresh Coat of Paint in Your Mobile Home
Chips, scrapes, scratches, and more: the walls of your mobile home endure a lot. You can take care of them and simultaneously increase the value of your home by applying a fresh coat of paint.
If you have vinyl-over-gypsum (VOG) wall panels in your manufactured home, make sure that coat of paint adheres well to such a surface. One recommendation from an expert: an oil primer with two coats of alkyd or latex semi-gloss enamel paint. Clean the walls thoroughly beforehand, too.
As for selecting a color: pick a nice neutral color for the walls. Paint the ceiling white to help it appear taller and the room more open. (Just make sure you don’t use purple in the bedroom.)
MORE: Here are additional decoration steps you can take to make the interior of your mobile home more attractive.
6. Clean Your Mobile Home’s Carport
For buyers transitioning to a manufactured home, a carport may be a non-negotiable feature.
If your mobile home already has a carport, conduct a thorough cleaning. This will include decluttering it and organizing whatever items you keep there. Brush or blow off the carport roof any leaves, dirt, or debris collected there. Make any necessary repairs, as well.
If you don’t currently have a carport, consider adding one. This represents one of the more expensive options on this list but can help a great deal when it comes time to sell.
MORE: Looking for mobile home parts? Check out These Mobile Home Parts Will Have Your Home Looking New Again.
7. Landscape to Add Beauty to Your Mobile Home
With proper landscaping, a little bit goes a long way. Begin by clearing any leaves, weeds, and similar debris. Mow the lawn if it’s needed and edge the grass line by any walkways.
From there, consider modest touches. If there isn’t already a landscape bed around the mobile home’s foundation, adding one can soften the sharp lines of the house and lend visual appeal. Avoid tall plantings that obscure windows and entryways, however. Those are security no-nos.
From there, adding a touch of path or accent lighting is as easy as picking up solar-powered outdoor lights.
One landscaping caveat: don’t go overboard. The best landscaping compliments the house rather than competes with it. If you go too far, prospective home buyers may decide they don’t have the time it will take to keep such a landscape well maintained.
8. Make the Floor of Your Mobile Home Shine
Wall-to-wall carpeting is as sought after today as bell-bottom blue jeans, which is to say: not at all. Prospective mobile home buyers are going to want to see either hardwood floors or, at most, a combination of hardwood and carpet (with the carpeting often relegated to the bedrooms).
Replacing carpet flooring with genuine hardwood can be prohibitively expensive, but laminate or engineered wood floor options offer the same look and functionality at a reduced cost. Today, popular mobile home flooring options include laminate, hardwood, bamboo, cork, and tile.
9. Keep all Mobile Home Maintenance Paperwork Handy
In poker, “table stakes” refers to the amount of money a player needs to earn a seat in the game. If you can’t meet the table stakes, you can’t play the game.
Features such as a working HVAC unit or working, leak-free plumbing represent table stakes in real estate. You can’t realistically put a home on the market without them and expect a competitive bid on your home.
That doesn’t mean that these “invisible improvements” can’t help you add appeal to your mobile home. Retain and organize in a portfolio the paperwork from every home maintenance effort you undertake. Make it available to serious home-buying prospects to underscore the care you’ve taken of your home.
Suggestion: Keep this material in the same portfolio in which you keep your mobile home title, mobile home VIN number, and other relevant documents.
Getting a Value on Your Mobile Home
Once you’ve made a few small but impactful improvements, it’s time to determine its value.
If you’re looking for a quick and easy valuation, you may want to get a free mobile home book value. If you want a precise valuation, request a market-based mobile home appraisal from Datacomp. This will provide the most accurate information available, including market research and an onsite inspection.
List Your Home on MHVillage
One final way to add value to your mobile home? Make sure home buyers can find it. List it on MHVillage.com, one of the internet’s most comprehensive resources for selling mobile homes. Every day, people looking for new homes visit the massive marketplace there to see what’s available. Make sure your upgraded place is among them!