Freddie Mac is piloting a new conventional loan program for manufactured housing.
The company’s new CHOICEHome program aims to help increase the availability of the quality affordable homes that borrowers want while providing lenders with the innovative financing options they need.
Today’s manufactured homes can deliver outstanding quality at prices that are up to 50% less per square foot than conventional site-built homes, the company says in a release. These savings can enable more Americans to own their own home, even in the face of an ever-widening housing affordability gap.
“Finding a home is more difficult than ever because of the ongoing housing supply shortage in many parts of the country, especially when looking for a home at a lower price point,” says Mike Dawson, vice president of single-family affordable lending strategy and policy at Freddie Mac. “Currently there are more than 22 million families living in factory-built housing, and with that number expected to grow, there’s an opportunity for factory-built homes to address the housing supply shortage and quality housing overall.
“This new generation of manufactured housing might just be the best option for first-time homebuyers, millennials, and empty-nesters looking to downsize,” he adds.
Many of today’s manufactured homes come with energy-saving features like Energy Star Qualified Low-E windows, programmable thermostats and minimum insulation values.
Only manufactured homes which meet certain criteria will be eligible for these loans.
Appraisers will be able to use site-built housing as a comparable for valuation.
Manufacturers and lenders must follow HUD-code guidelines for the home construction and siting of the home in order to meet CHOICEHome eligibility, and lenders must follow local and state guidelines for manufactured housing titled as real property.