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Do You Need A Building Permit For A Modular Home?

This is one of the most frequently asked questions, as people have no idea about the same due to the paucity of information in this sector. Modular homes are a rather recent introduction in this market and they have just started to gain some traction. The implication herein is that many people are now willing to pursue the idea but the lack of ample information on all the requirements and fundamental prerequisites remains to be a hindrance. This is with regard to the codes and permits that need to be obtained including any other subtle elements pertaining to modular construction that many are still unaware and oblivious of. This article shall therefore purpose to discuss this topic exhaustively and establish with clarity and purpose whether a building permit is indeed needed for the construction of modular homes.

Are Building Permits Necessary?

modular home

There exists a myth and huge misconception that modular homes might not always require building permits and this can be normally attributed to the fact that they are usually made in a factory and do not entail a lot of onsite building work. However, to elucidate on this, the process in both instances has a striking semblance and the fact that the prefab homes are manufactured in the factory and availed to the site does not preclude them from requiring permits. Just like the regular homes, which are built on-site, modular homes also require a building permit and this ought to be stressed further to demystify this dangerous myth.


At the outset, it is vital to stress that modular homes are quite bespoke in nature. They all vary hence the specific permits needed differ from one modular home to another. Therefore, this means that there is no single universally accepted building permit for modular homes as alterations and adjustments can be made to the permits so that they fit the bill after changing and modifying the terms.


Having clearly established that building permits are essential and mandatory for every building project, it is only prudent and imperative to highlight the different types of permits necessary when one decides to undertake this project. Two main permits are usually required and they include a planning permit and a building permit. Both of these permits have different ramifications bearing in mind that one is strictly a legal document with its implications whereas the other is merely a document construed as crucial for the execution of the construction project.


To avoid generalization and confusion on building and planning permits, it is important to stress that even as much as planning permits are important, not all projects related to modular homes require a planning permit. This permit is only vital where land subdivision and specific land utilization are part of the project and it is issued as the council deems fit. These are the subtle details that are often ignored but usually go deep to inform people and equip them with the necessary information in case they opt to pursue the idea of modular homes. This avoids any confusion and blurriness due to misinformation hence eliminating any chances of calamitous consequences after undertaking such an endeavor without all the required and stipulated permits.

Ease of acquisition

Many people are usually hesitant when it comes to modular homes. This is because of their unique nature bearing in mind that they are pre-manufactured in a factory hence this usually makes them seemingly technical and overly complicated. This means that these assumed complexities might make it appear like getting a building permit for such a project could end up being a nightmare in stark contrast to the onsite building projects. However, there is no truth and substance to this since on the contrary; building permits for modular homes are acquired easily because they entail less onsite work. The reduced timelines mean that the impact on the site will be significantly reduced. This renders it quite easy to obtain this permit compared to the long tedious and protracted process involved in an application and issuance of a building permit for onsite building projects. The issue of permits should therefore never be a hindrance in case you desire to own a modular home, as it is rather straightforward.

Normally, the entity in charge and mandated to receive, determination and issuance of permits is the local council but this might change from state to state.  This article has illustrated that building permits are needed when constructing modular homes. You should therefore not shy away from contacting the planning department of your local council to make inquiries about what is needed and to subsequently lodge the necessary applications.

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