How to Make a Manufactured Home Look Like a House: Tips and Ideas

Are you tired of your manufactured home looking plain and uninviting? Do you want to turn it into a cozy and welcoming space that feels like a real house? You’re in luck! There are several simple and affordable ways to give your manufactured home that homey, comfortable feeling you’ve been craving. With a few tweaks and adjustments, you can turn your manufactured home into a place that genuinely feels like a house – and I’m here to show you how.

The truth is, manufactured homes have come a long way in recent years. While they may still have a bit of a stigma attached, there are plenty of options available now that allow you to personalize and customize your manufactured home to fit your style and needs. You don’t have to settle for a generic, cookie-cutter design – instead, you can make your manufactured home look and feel just like a site-built home. With a little creativity and some DIY skills, you can transform your manufactured home into a space that feels uniquely you.

Whether you’re a first-time homeowner or you’re looking to update your existing manufactured home, the tips and tricks in this article will help you achieve the house-like look and feel you’ve been dreaming of. From simple cosmetic updates like paint and flooring to more extensive renovations like adding a porch or updating your roof, there are plenty of options available to you. So, whether you’re looking to add curb appeal or create a warm and inviting interior, read on to learn how to make your manufactured home look like a house.

Paint the Exterior

Painting the exterior of your manufactured home is one of the easiest and most effective ways to make it look more like a traditional house. There are a variety of color and finish options available that can enhance the exterior and make it look more polished. Here are some tips to consider when painting the exterior of your manufactured home:

  • Consider the style of your home: The color and finish of your paint should complement the style of your home. Choose a color and finish that will make your manufactured home look like a traditional house. Neutral colors like beige, gray, and white are popular choices.
  • Use high-quality paint: High-quality paint will not only look better but will also last longer. Invest in a good-quality paint to ensure that your home looks great for years to come.
  • Consider the climate and weather conditions: If you live in an area with extreme weather conditions, you’ll want to choose a paint that is durable and can hold up against harsh elements.

Another factor to consider when painting your manufactured home is the type of materials it’s made of. Vinyl siding, for example, is very common in manufactured homes, and it requires a different type of paint than traditional wood siding. Make sure you choose a paint that is compatible with the materials of your home to ensure that it will adhere properly and last for years to come.

Paint TypeBenefitsDrawbacks
Oil-based paintDurable, good for high-traffic areasTakes longer to dry, strong odor
Latex-based paintQuick-drying, easy to clean upNot as durable as oil-based paint
Elastomeric paintExcellent for extreme weather conditions, resists crackingExpensive, difficult to apply

Overall, painting the exterior of your manufactured home is a great way to make it look more like a traditional house. With some careful consideration of color, materials, and finish, you can achieve the look you want and improve the overall appearance of your home.

Add a Front Porch

One of the simplest ways to make a manufactured home look like a house is to add a front porch. Porches can create a welcoming entrance and also provide additional outdoor living space.

  • Consider the design of your home and choose a porch style that complements it.
  • Decide on the size of the porch based on how much space you have available and how you plan to use it.
  • Choose materials that will withstand the climate in your area and match the exterior of your home.

When designing your porch, think about how you want to use the space. Do you want a place to relax and hang out with friends and family? Or do you plan to use the porch mainly as an entrance and a place to greet guests?

Here is a breakdown of different porch styles and their characteristics:

StyleDescription
FarmhouseA spacious porch with a gabled roof that extends across the front of the house
BungalowA porch with tapered columns and a low-pitched roof that covers the front of the house
TudorA covered porch with a gabled roof and large arches or half-timbered details
CraftsmanA porch with square or tapered columns and a low-pitched roof that covers the front of the house

Whatever style you choose, a front porch will add character and curb appeal to your manufactured home.

Install Skirting Around the Base

One of the most essential parts of turning a manufactured home into a permanent-looking house is to install skirting around its base. Skirting is a material that is applied around the bottom of the home, hiding the underneath part of the house and creating a more cohesive aesthetic. Here are some tips on installing skirting:

  • Choose the right material: There are several types of skirting materials available, such as vinyl, metal, wood, and concrete. Consider the durability, maintenance, and appearance of each one before making a decision.
  • Take accurate measurements: Measure the perimeter of the home and add some extra length to accommodate the corners. Check for any obstructions, such as pipes and vents, that may require special cuts.
  • Prepare the site: Clean the area where the skirting will be installed and level the ground if necessary. Check for any damage or pests that may need to be addressed before installation.

Maintain the Skirting

After installing the skirting, it is important to maintain it properly to ensure its longevity and appearance. The skirting should be cleaned regularly to prevent the buildup of dirt and debris. Avoid using harsh chemicals and instead opt for mild detergents and a soft brush. Inspect the skirting periodically for any signs of damage, such as cracks, holes, or discoloration. Address any issues promptly before they escalate and cause more significant problems.

Consider Hiring a Professional

If you are not confident in your DIY skills or find the skirting installation process too daunting, you may want to consider hiring a professional. A skilled contractor can ensure that the skirting is installed correctly and securely while also saving you time and effort. Before hiring a professional, ask for references, compare prices, and check for proper licensing and insurance.

Skirting Materials Comparison Table

MaterialProsCons
VinylLow cost, easy installation, wide range of colors and styles, lightweight, resistant to water and pests.Low durability, may warp or bend in extreme temperatures, may fade or crack over time.
MetalDurable, fire-resistant, low maintenance, resistant to pests and rot, sleek appearance, can mimic other materials like wood or stone.High cost, may dent or scratch easily, may rust if not treated or exposed to salt.
WoodNatural and traditional look, versatile, can be painted or stained, can match the rest of the house, long-lasting if properly maintained.High cost, requires frequent maintenance, may rot or attract pests, may warp or split in humid conditions.
ConcreteDurable, long-lasting, fire-resistant, resistant to pests and rot, strong foundation support, can mimic other materials like stone.High cost, heavy and difficult to install, limited styles and colors, may crack or chip over time.

Increase the Roof Pitch

One way to make a manufactured home look more like a traditional house is to increase the roof pitch. A steeper roof pitch can add curb appeal and make your home seem larger and more substantial. Additionally, a steeper pitch can help with drainage and prevent water damage. Here are some ways to increase your roof pitch:

  • Roof Rafter Extension: This method involves adding extensions to your existing roof rafters to increase the slope of the roof.
  • Truss Modification: Another option is to modify your roof trusses to create a steeper pitch. This method may require the help of a professional.
  • New Roof: If your roof is in need of replacement, take the opportunity to install a new roof with a steeper pitch. This option may be more expensive, but it will give your home a complete transformation.

Before making any changes to your roof, make sure to consult a professional to ensure that it is done properly and safely.

Upgrade to a Residential-Style Front Door

Manufactured homes often have generic, basic front doors that do not give the impression of a traditional house. Upgrading to a residential-style front door can add curb appeal and give the home a more inviting look. Here are some options to consider:

  • Wooden doors: These can be stained or painted in a variety of colors and can have intricate designs or panels that give the door a more customized look. They are also durable and long-lasting.
  • Glass doors: These can add more natural light to the home and come in a variety of styles and designs, from clear glass to frosted or etched designs. They can also give the home a more modern look.
  • Fiberglass doors: These can mimic the look of wood but are more durable and require less maintenance. They can also be painted and come in a variety of styles and designs.

When choosing a door, make sure to consider durability, energy efficiency, and security features, as well as the overall look and feel of the door. It’s also important to ensure that the door fits properly and is installed correctly to prevent drafts and increase energy efficiency.

ProsCons
– Adds curb appeal– Can be expensive
– More energy efficient than older doors– Installation can be complicated
– Can improve home security– May require additional framing or modifications to fit properly

In summary, upgrading to a residential-style front door can make a manufactured home look more like a traditional house and increase its curb appeal. Consider the various options available and choose a high-quality, durable door that fits properly and enhances the overall look and energy efficiency of the home.

Add Landscaping

One of the best ways to make a manufactured home look like a house is by adding landscaping. This not only makes your home look more beautiful, but it also adds value to your property. Here are some tips on how to add landscaping to your manufactured home:

  • Start with the basics. Clean up the area around your home. This means removing any debris, trimming the grass, and raking up any leaves or sticks.
  • Add some color. Plant some flowers or add some potted plants. This will add some much-needed color to the area around your home. Make sure to choose the right plants for your climate.
  • Add some height. Plant some trees or shrubs around your home. This will not only add depth to your landscaping, but it will also provide some privacy.

In addition to these basic tips, here are some additional ideas:

Add a pathway. If you have a walkway leading up to your home, consider adding some stones or bricks to create a clear path. This will not only make your home look more inviting, but it will also add a sense of purpose to the area.

Consider adding borders. Adding borders around your flower beds or walkway can create a clean, professional look. You can use stones, bricks, or even plants to create a border that complements the rest of your landscaping.

Lastly, consider adding some outdoor lighting. This will not only add some curb appeal to your home, but it will also make your home safer. It will also highlight some of the beautiful aspects of your landscaping, such as trees or shrubs.

TipDescription
Choose plants wiselyMake sure to choose plants that thrive in your climate and are low maintenance.
Consider using containersUsing containers for plants allows for flexibility and creativity in the design of your landscaping. Plus, it makes it easy to move plants around if needed.
Create a focal pointAdd a water feature, statue or other decorative item to create a focal point in your landscaping.

With these tips, you can create a beautiful and welcoming landscaping around your manufactured home that will make it look like a house.

Install Shutters on the Windows

One of the easiest ways to give a manufactured home a more traditional look is by installing shutters on the windows. Shutters add a decorative touch while also providing practical benefits, such as shade and privacy control. Here are some tips to consider when adding shutters:

  • Choose the right size: The shutters should be the right size for your windows. They shouldn’t be too big or too small because that may make them look out of place. Measure the dimensions of your windows before purchasing shutters to ensure a proper fit.
  • Select the correct style and material: You want to choose shutters that match the architectural style of your home. Vinyl shutters are popular and an affordable option. Wood shutters add a more authentic look; however, they can be more expensive and require more maintenance.
  • Consider color options: Shutters don’t have to be the same color as the house. Instead, choose a complementary color that adds contrast and enhances the look of your home.

Installing shutters on your windows is an easy project for a handy DIYer. However, if you have doubts or lack skills, it’s better to hire a professional to ensure the job is done correctly. If you do choose to install them yourself, follow the instructions and safety guidelines in the manual.

Here are some additional benefits of installing shutters on your windows:

Benefits of Shutters on Windows
Energy savingsShutters help reduce energy costs by providing insulation from outside temperatures.
PrivacyShutters offer privacy control, so you can easily adjust the amount of light and view you want to let in.
Curb appealShutters add beauty and style, improving the overall look and curb appeal of your home.
Storm protectionShutters can serve as storm protection, preventing debris from hitting and breaking windows during a severe storm.

Overall, adding shutters to your windows is a simple yet significant step in transforming your manufactured home into a traditional house.

Upgrade the Exterior Lighting

One way to make a manufactured home look like a traditional house is to upgrade the exterior lighting. By choosing stylish and high-quality exterior lights, you can create a warm and inviting ambiance that elevates the appearance of your home. Here are some tips that can help you upgrade your exterior lighting:

  • Choose high-quality materials: Invest in exterior lighting fixtures that are made from durable and long-lasting materials, such as copper, brass, or stainless steel. These materials are resistant to rust, corrosion, and other damages caused by weather and time, ensuring that your fixtures will look great for years to come.
  • Consider the style of your home: Look for exterior lighting fixtures that complement the style of your manufactured home. For instance, if your home has a rustic or traditional appearance, consider lantern-style fixtures with a vintage or antique finish. If your home has a modern or contemporary look, choose streamlined and minimalist fixtures with sleek lines and finishes.
  • Focus on functionality: Make sure that your exterior lighting fixtures are not only stylish but also functional. Your lights should provide sufficient illumination to enhance the safety and security of your home, especially at night. Consider installing motion-sensing or dusk-to-dawn lights that can detect movement or light levels and automatically turn on or off as needed.

Once you have chosen the right exterior lighting fixtures for your manufactured home, it’s time to install them. While you can hire a professional electrician to do the job, you can also do it yourself if you have some basic electrical skills and tools. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you install your new exterior lighting:

StepInstructions
Step 1Turn off the power: Before you start the installation, turn off the power to the circuit that you’ll be working on at the breaker box.
Step 2Remove the old fixture: Unscrew and remove the old fixture from the wall or ceiling, taking care not to damage the wires.
Step 3Connect the wires: Connect the wires from the new fixture to the wires from the electrical box using wire nuts, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Typically, you’ll need to connect the black wire to the black wire, the white wire to the white wire, and the green or bare wire to the green or bare wire.
Step 4Mount the fixture: Mount the fixture onto the electrical box using the screws or bolts provided, making sure that it’s level and secure.
Step 5Install the light bulbs: Install the light bulbs into the fixture, following the manufacturer’s recommendations. If you’re using LED bulbs, make sure that they’re compatible with the fixture and that you don’t exceed their wattage rating.
Step 6Turn on the power: Once you’ve finished the installation, turn on the power to the circuit at the breaker box and test the new fixture to make sure that it’s working properly.

With these tips and instructions, you can upgrade the exterior lighting of your manufactured home and transform its appearance into a charming and welcoming house. Remember to choose quality materials and functional fixtures, and to install them safely and correctly to avoid any hazards or damages.

Install a Gable Over the Front Door

One of the most significant ways to make your manufactured home look like a house is to install a gable over the front door. A gable is a triangular structure that sits on the top of the front door and extends out to the sides, giving your home a more traditional look.

Gables can be made of different materials, such as wood, metal, or vinyl, and can be painted to match the color of your home’s siding. A gable can also be adorned with elaborate trim or molding to give it a distinctive style.

Here are some steps you can follow to install a gable over your front door:

  • Measure the width of your front door and add two feet to determine the length of the gable.
  • Determine the height of the gable based on the pitch of your roof. The pitch is the angle at which your roof slopes and can be measured with a level or protractor.
  • Purchase a gable kit or have a carpenter build one for you. Make sure the kit is the right size for your door and that it includes all necessary hardware.
  • Install the gable by fastening it to the wall above the front door with screws. Be sure to use a level to ensure it is straight.
  • Add trim or molding to the gable to give it a custom look.

Overall, a gable over the front door can be a cost-effective way to enhance the appearance of your manufactured home and make it look more like a traditional house. With a little planning and effort, you can enjoy the benefits of a more attractive home that is the envy of the neighborhood.

ProsCons
Enhanced appearanceMay require a professional carpenter or kit
Cost-effective way to make home look more like traditional housePotentially limited material options in pre-made kits
Easy to install with proper tools and instructionsMay not be suitable for all styles of manufactured homes

Ultimately, installing a gable over your front door is a simple and effective way to achieve a more polished and sophisticated look for your manufactured home.

Add a Garage or Carport

One of the easiest ways to make a manufactured home look more like a traditional stick-built home is by adding a garage or carport. Not only does this add functionality to your property, but it also instantly boosts the curb appeal of your home.

  • Garage: A garage not only provides storage space, but it also adds value to your home. When choosing a garage, you’ll want to consider the size, style, and color to make sure it matches your home’s aesthetic. You’ll also want to check with your local zoning laws to make sure you’re allowed to build a garage on your property.
  • Carport: A carport is a more affordable option than a garage, and it still provides shelter for your vehicles. There are many different styles and designs to choose from, so make sure to choose one that complements your home’s exterior.

When adding a garage or carport to your property, you’ll want to make sure it’s installed professionally and meets all local building codes. This will also help ensure that it’s built to last and that it doesn’t damage your home’s foundation or landscaping.

Here are some additional tips when adding a garage or carport to your manufactured home:

TIPDESCRIPTION
Consider a breezewayA breezeway is a covered walkway that connects your home to your garage or carport. This helps create a seamless transition between your home and the new addition.
Choose the right sizeMake sure to choose a garage or carport that’s the right size for your vehicles and any other storage needs you may have. You don’t want to end up with a garage that’s too small to fit your car or too big for your property.
Add windows and doorsIf you’re adding a garage, consider adding windows and doors to let in natural light and improve ventilation. This can also add visual interest to the exterior of your home.

With the right design and installation, a garage or carport can instantly make your manufactured home look more like a traditional stick-built home. Plus, it adds value and functionality to your property.

FAQs: How to Make a Manufactured Home Look Like a House

1. Can I change the exterior look of my manufactured home?

Yes! Updating the exterior is a great place to start when making your manufactured home look more like a traditional house. Paint, shutters, and landscaping can make a big difference.

2. How can I make the interior of my manufactured home feel more like a house?

Adding crown molding, wainscoting, and other architectural details can help your manufactured home feel more like a traditional house. Consider upgrading light fixtures and window treatments as well.

3. What about flooring?

Replacing flooring can go a long way in making your manufactured home feel more like a house. Choose high-quality hardwood or tile that will last for years.

4. Can I add on to my manufactured home?

In some cases, yes! Adding a room or expanding living space can make your manufactured home feel more like a house. Check with your manufacturer and local regulations before making any changes.

5. What about storage?

Manufactured homes can be lacking in storage space. Adding built-in storage solutions like closets or shelving can help make your space feel more organized and “house-like.”

6. What should I do about my driveway?

A dirt or gravel driveway can make your manufactured home feel less like a house. Consider upgrading to a concrete or asphalt driveway for a more polished look.

7. Will these changes be expensive?

The cost of upgrades will depend on the size and scope of your project, but many updates can be made affordably. Do your research and shop around for the best deals.

Closing Title: Thanks for Reading and Keep Designing

We hope these tips help you transform your manufactured home into the house of your dreams! Remember, start with the exterior and work your way in, adding architectural details, high-quality flooring, and built-in storage to your space. While you’re at it, upgrading window treatments, light fixtures, and driveway can go a long way in improving the aesthetic of your home. Don’t forget to do your research and shop around for the best deals to keep costs low. Thanks for reading and keep designing!