Looking Back: Article Portrays a Different World

Manufactured Home in Black and WhiteAn October 30, 1981 article published by Knight-Ridder which came up on a Google search today says boldly that Manufactured Housing may be the only way consumers can afford the American Dream. The reason: sky-high interest rates. The article professes that “if builder’s can lower construction costs by 50 percent, it would be the same effect as dropping mortgage interest rates from 17 to 8.5 percent.” High construction costs brought in part by high interest rates likely brought the closer look at more efficient manufacturing. Currently interest rates are historically low, but land costs appear to be rising in many areas where manufactured housing has been strong. The article sites Commerce Department statistics showing 221,000 manufactured homes were produced in 1980 compared to 531,000 site-built homes. That situation, an adjacent article suggests, was accompanied by an increased availability of loans for manufactured housing.

(Image Credit: Eric Miller)

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