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Re: MFR home foundations

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Our firm does a significant number of these.  We have a simple inspection form letter that we use that has all the inspection points listed on it, along with what will be required to bring the foundation into HUD compliance if those points fail.  We inspect for 4 different items: skirting, what the support piers are, are there footings or a slab under the piers, and lateral anchorage to the foundation.  We delete the sections from the form letter that passed or do not apply and the only calculations we would do are for the number of required tie downs (since we are not designing the foundation, only the straps).  Some mortgage companies will ask you to certify that any additions to the manufactured home meet HUD standards.  Be wary of these additions to these homes as we have been told by the State HUD people that all additions must be free standing (car ports or other additions may not bear on the existing manufactured home, which is not the case the majority of the time).  Since most of these additions are extremely light, like car ports, we usually ignore this fact as these additions are not going to bring the manufactured home down (unless there are heavy snow loads which are not a problem in southern Utah).  The additions of rooms or garages to these homes tend to be problematic unless the home was originally engineered for the addition which happens often in the case of a garage addition, but it is usually not verifiable.  We do not have a problem with getting paid as we always use the same mortgage companies and they make sure we get paid.  As far as the loan not closing if the foundation does not pass, we have not had this problem very often.  Most times a contractor is hired to make the improvements, and after they are complete we come back out to reinspect (for an additional fee) and then issue a new letter that states that the home is in compliance.  The HUD manual is not as complicated as it looks.  If you get to the section on types of foundations, there are actually cross sections of the allowable types of permanent foundations.  The manual also does say that the cross sections are only representative of the most common types of foundations and that additional foundation types would be acceptable, but with no guidelines as to what those additional types are.


Jeff Hedman , E.I.T.

L.R. Pope Engineers & Surveyors, Inc.

1240 East 100 South Suite # 15B

St. George, Utah  84790

Office: 435-628-1676

Fax: 435-628-1788


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