Investing in mobility, mobile homes or caravans as some people would call it can be moved to different location on a trailer. These days mobile homes are highly customized and come with a vast variety of features. However these are extremely expensive, due to which most people look at buying used mobile homes which are a more affordable and realistic alternative.
You can buy used caravans through caravan dealers or from private owners. In either case, there are certain things you must be aware of before you make the final deal:
1. Building Code Check – Before you start looking at more intricate details, you need to check the building code of the mobile home. A problem with used mobile homes is that they might be built using the old building norms which are different from the present ones. This is considered a violation of rule and you can be penalized for the same. Thus it is recommended that you first check the codes before proceeding ahead.
2. Size – Space is the most important aspect while choosing a used mobile home. You should always look for homes which will suit your lifestyle and do not get carried away by the model hype. Higher exterior walls will provide higher ceilings and will allow better doorway spaces. The size of the bathroom, living area and dining should match with that of your family’s needs.
3. Build Quality – Thoroughly check the walls and flooring. If the floor is springy it means that it is warped and rotten so take a good look at the flooring especially near the plumbing fixtures. Always check the floor under the carpet as most cheap mobile homes are made from particle boards. A good mobile home should also have a rock solid underside with good ventilation. Good homes have a protective skirt or a belly wrap with permanent foundations.
4. Check the roof – Stains on the roof indicate damage due to water, also if the roof sags then it is a clear sign of rotting wood. It is very easy for rainwater to enter the walls through metal roofs and cause permanent damage to the walls and ceiling. Shingled roofs with good ventilation provide extra projections which will protect the walls from getting damaged.
5. Check Plumbing / Water Supply – Plumbing is another aspect that should not be ignored when buying a used mobile home. Check the bathroom and kitchen for steady supply of water and get all the piping checked by a professional. Using PVC with underpinning will keep the pipes warm in harsh temperatures.
6. Electrical systems & Air Conditioning– Aluminum wiring is a sign of vintage mobile homes. It is better to rewire such mobile homes completely as aluminum wires are prone to fire hazards. To check this, simply remove any of the electrical outlets and look inside with a flashlight. If the wires appear silvery, they are probably aluminum. Also heating and air conditioning should be efficient so doing a thorough check is very important.
7. Insurance – This usually adds up to your cost so look for clearly defined contracts and Insurance details. Clearly read through all the fine points and stated rules of the dealer and do not rely on oral agreements.
While most problems in used caravans can be resolved easily, it is important to identify them before making your offer. Either ask the seller to get repairs done or negotiate for a lower price. Finding a sturdy and reliable used mobile home can be tricky, thus it is essential to be careful and well-informed. I am speaking from experience.
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