Modular Homes VA Blog

Buying A Home Is Big Investment -- Here Are Some Budget Planning Tips

The development of a household budget is a "must-do" activity both before you build a home as well as during your ownership of that home. Long before TC Modular Homes goes to work for you, you have some important preparatory work to do.  By preparing a budget you can better focus on mortgage payment goals and how the new house will affect your total expenses. Maintaining a budget during the time you own the home can help to prevent potential financial disasters as well as point you in a money saving direction so you have more funds available for those things that you need or want.

You will need a little time to develop your budget but it should not take longer than a few hours if you gather the necessary information first. Get everyone who will be involved in spending involved in developing the budget.

Some of the items and information you will need to develop your budget are:

•   All current monthly loan payments.
•   All other monthly expenses (such as child care, dues, etc.).
•   Records of variable expenses (for example, utilities, food and car repair) from the last 12 months. This will give you an estimate of your monthly expenditures.
•   Records of annual or semi-annual expenses (such as insurance and taxes).
•   An estimate of what your new mortgage payment will be.
•   Records of other non-fixed expenses (for example, medical expenditures) for the last year. This will give you an estimate of average expenses of this type.
•   Records or an estimate of personal expenses (entertainment, travel, etc.)
•   Having a current copy of your credit report can be very helpful. Not only will it reveal any inaccuracies in your credit history, it will also give you a clear picture your monthly obligations. You can get a free copy of your Credit Report.

Be realistic in your budget assessment. Make provisions for possible increases in some items (for example, school tuitions, insurance and taxes). Then, look for ways to get (and maintain) control over your budget.

Most People Spend 10% More Than They Make! You probably know how much money you made last month, but do you know how much money you spent? Or do you know how much money you have left to spend this month? If you don't you're not alone, most people have no idea. The fact is most of us spend 10% more per month than we make. If at all possible, involve your financial advisor (or other independent financial expert) in the budgetary planning process.  

Some Active Duty Military Still Has Access to the $8000 Tax Credit

Very few are aware that $8,000 tax credit for first-time home buyers (and the $6,500 tax credit for repeat home buyers), although expired for most, is still available to some active duty military personnel.  Military service members who were on official extended duty outside of the United States for at least 90 days between Jan.1, 2009 and May 1, 2010, may qualify for a one-year extension.

Congress has acknowledged the unique circumstances affecting members of the military, the foreign service and the intelligence community by making the following exceptions that apply to both the $8,000 tax credit for first-time home buyers and the $6,500 tax credit for repeat home buyers.“Qualified service member” means a member of the uniformed services of the U.S military, a member of the Foreign Service of the U.S., or an employee of the intelligence community. “Official extended duty” means any period of extended duty outside of the United States for at least 90 days during the period beginning after December 31, 2008 and ending before May 1, 2010.

So the bottom line, qualified service members have until April 20, 2011 to take advantage of the tax credit.  Our deep respect for our military family compels us to publicize this little known fact and to ask all of you to pass the word to your military family and friends wherever they may be....whether shopping for modular homes in Tidewater Virginia or in Timbuktu Alaska (if such a place exists).    Call us for more details.  If this message results in a single military family getting educated and ultimately saving money on their new home purchase, then we will be most grateful and humbly celebrate. 

Tidewater Modular Homes Are Only of Superior Quality

The Custom Modular Home construction process is a proven superior manufacturing process as compared to traditional stick-built construction. There are many reasons. This blog post will focus on two specific reasons: 1) Quality Control process and 2) Craftsman specialization.

Regarding our quality control process, it begins before we step foot on the lot. There are endless quality control gates that govern the prefabrication process back at the factory. The quality control checks span every possible angle from quality of cut of wood, every supporting piece of hardware, to the quality interior and exterior paint. Every single element of building material must meet strictly defined quality codes.

One very important (but often overlooked) benefit of modular construction is the fact that modular home materials are built in a climate controlled factory and protected from weather. This means that the framing members remain dry before and most often throughout the entire construction process. Keeping lumber dry in the construction process is a major means of insuring against future defects in walls and ceilings.

Regarding Craftsman specialization within the modular home industry, modular home builders develop truly focused specialists in every process. The skilled workers assembling the home each perform limited, specific tasks. Because a certain worker will only perform one (or few) specific functions, he/she is essentially a focused specialist in their profession. The multitasking nature of the stick builder undoubtedly means they conduct tasks with less than complete subject matter expertise.

Excellence is no accident. The exacting nature of Tidewater Custom Modular Home's product provides a superior alternative to stick built homes.

Tidewater Modular Homes Are The Safest Constructed Homes

Modular homes are the way of the future; they are state-of-the-art homes at a low price but high quality. But because these homes are built at such a faster rate that modern stick-built homes, people are concerned if they are safe or not. Well here at Tidewater Custom Modular Homes, we ensure that our homes are built to the highest standards of the HUD code, with the strongest of materials. Our construction resists natural forces better because of precision cuts, which are fit and fastened in the factory. The construction technology calls for glue-nailed sheathing and decking plus additional framing members which makes modular homes most likely to endure nature's onslaughts. The motion and forces that the structure is put under during these processes exceeds that of healthy earthquakes. The structure also has to withstand being hoisted by crane and hauled on carriers over roads.

Custom Modular homes

are built with high safety standards in accordance with federal laws requiring smoke detectors, escape windows and incombustible materials around furnaces and kitchen ranges. Our modular homes assure the buyer that all electrical, plumbing, mechanical and structures are built to a HUD national code, which exceeds any local standards. Also, according to recent studies stick- built homes are often constructed in areas where local building codes may be lax or not enforced, and the safety of the homeowner and family may be compromised. Customer satisfaction is our mission and quality custom homes are our specialty. Contact Tidewater Customer Modular Homes today for more information on our custom made homes.

Tidewater Custom Modular Homes Explains How Modular Homes Are Built

How are modular homes constructed? Most people know how standard stick-built homes are built; slowly and costly. And people know about modular homes, but how are they built? What are the tools needed?  Well modular components are typically constructed within a large indoor facility on assembly lines much like Henry Ford originally began with his automobile company. Facilities such as these use an assembly line track to move the module components from one workstation to the next. This is a quick and cost effective way to get many module components together. However it’s not just modules by themselves, there are independent building inspectors on site to supervise the construction and ensure that all building codes are taken care of during assembly. The modules that will combine to form the house are assembled on site with your supervision.

The construction of these modules can take one to three months to be completed but only take as little as 10 days actually to construct when they are first started. Afterward, the modules are transported to the building site where a crane is brought in to assemble the modules together. The placement of the modules generally takes several hours or days to do so. A great thing about modular homes, once assembled, are that they are essentially indistinguishable from typical stick-built homes. While mobile manufactured buildings often decrease in value over time, our modular built homes have the same longevity as its stick-built counterpart, increasing in value over time.

Want to see more about how our Virginia Modular Homes?  Check out this video from our manufacturer, HandCrafted Homes:

Green Seal Certified -- Good For The Environment and the Wallet

Some of you are wondering what the "Green Seal Certified" logo on our home page means.  Great question.

The Green Seal™ is awarded to products that have less impact on the environment and work well. To earn the Green Seal™ a product must meet the Green Seal™ environmental standard for the category as demonstrated by rigorous evaluation and testing. Green Seal™ standards are set so that they identify the most environmentally preferable products currently available; thus, they are leadership standards.  All of our products are "Green Seal Certified".

We consider environmental care as a top priority.  The modular home construction process produces a fraction of the waste as compared to the stick-built construction process.  As you might image, less waste equals less cost...another major advantage of modular home construction. 

But beyond the cost of construction benefit to you, "Green Seal Certified" means our homes are better insulated which directly translates to money back in your pocket each and every month by way of lower utility costs. 

Consider the Word "Custom" In our Business Name

Custom means you are NOT locked into any architectural design.  It appears that it is going to be a long time before the general public discards the misconception that modular homes are restricted in design.  Nothing could be farther from the truth. 

We enjoy the professional satisfaction of building dream homes.  Dream homes by design are products of very specific personal preferences.  Rarely can a building plan be pulled off the shelf and converted into a dream home.  Dream homes only START with a basic plan and then is CUSTOMIZED to turn the plan into a dream.  This is what we do and why the word "Custom" is such an important pat of our business name and business model. 

Whether you've been planning your dream home for a day or a decade, bring your thoughts to us and we'll be glad to demonstrate how we can surround that dream with the strength and quality of modular design. 

Financing and Insuring Modular Homes--No Different Than Stick Built

Input from banks and insurance agencies is universally consistent…..There is no difference between stick-built and custom modular homes in terms of both availability, approval ratings, and cost.

Financiers and insurers are well aware that modular home construction strength and building standards exceed that of traditional “stick built” homes.  In fact, some insurers predict that the cost of insuring modular construction will become more affordable in time as actuaries continue to compile statistical evidence of the modular home’s structural superiority.  This is yet another reason the new home construction pendulum continues to swing in favor of modular home construction.

We Know the Steps to Take Steps Out of Your Life

It's high school and college graduation season.  Once the tears related to "empty nest" have dried, tears turn to cheers at the thought of getting rid of those darn steps and the possibility of a complete first-floor lifestyle.  As expected, calls regarding our Ranch-style floor plans are starting to "shoot through the roof".  

Ranch Style homes offer extreme home living comfort and are cost effective models to build.   Huge decks, ground-level laundries, and complete handicap customization are all features perfectly adapted to Ranch-style construction.  Take a look at our wide selection of Ranch plans and remember each of them are customizable to your specific needs and desires.  

The single best "step" you can take is to call and discuss how we can build your dream Ranch-style retirement home...... and take steps out of your life forever.   

Modular Home Industry Is Growing At 10 percent Annually

A previous blog post addressed the potential cost savings associated with modular home construction and the rapid pace at which Americans are now choosing modular homes.  That blog generated a new "frequently asked question":  "Exactly how much are Americans turning to modular homes vs traditional stick-built homes"?

The modular home construction market has grown at a 10% rate over the last five years.  Industry growth forecast models has that number rising to 12% annually for the foreseeable future.  Because high demand is being driven by the self-evident superiority of the modular home product, industry architects are working frantically to deliver upon an explosion of new style requests, most notably for commercial applications for modular home construction.  

We update our "Selection of Homes" page to ensure you are exposed to the latest in modular home design offerings.  

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