Energy Report on “Not Your Grandfather’s Trailer House”

While many buyers of manufactured homes (MH) are more concerned with affordability and, say, the kitchen cabinetry than energy efficiency, the MH industry is offering more energy efficient features that can save the homeowner anywhere from $30 to $70 month. Ronnie Richards, vice president of marketing for American Homestar Corporation, builder of Oak Creek and Platinum brand manufactured homes, says it’s not easy for consumers to imagine saving energy expenses. “Lifestyle and local electricity rates will vary as well, so it’s hard for buyers to calculate the exact amount of utility savings they would receive,” he notes. Harold D. Hunt, PhD with the Texas A&M Real Estate Center, tells the EnergyStar label, a joint effort of the U. S. Dept. of Energy (DOE) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), is well recognized as a symbol of energy efficiency, and realizes approximately 30 percent energy savings from the HVAC in a manufactured home. While most manufactured home producers offer EnergyStar as an option, Charley Boyer of Oak Creek Homes says his company is considering building only those homes. Cavco Industries offers their own energy efficient package, EnerGmiser, available on some Palm Harbor homes, and Power Saver option on their Masterpiece line. Charlie Hill, of Palm Harbor Homes says, “The EnerGmiser package is actually standard on the majority of our home models. On an approximate 1,400-square-foot home it would add about $400 to the cost.” The Oregon Office of Energy says Energy Star features add on average $8 to the mortgage but save $30 on monthly heating and cooling bills. As DJ Pendleton, Executive Director of the Texas Manufactured Housing Association points out, Texas accounts for 20 percent of all the HUD Code homes produced in the nation, but only a few states offer incentives of one type or another for EnergyStar certified manufactured homes: North and South Carolina, New Mexico and California. MHProNews understands in Tennessee, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) offers a $1,450 incentive to home manufacturers for EnergyStar HUD Code models. Clayton Homes provides and distributes EnergyStar homes in the six-state TVA region. For the complete article, click here.

(Photo credit: WBIR-TV/TVA)

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