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Mobile Home Mortgage Rates, Terms, and Fees
A complete explanation



Mobile Home Mortgage Rates, Terms and Fees can vary quite a bit.  Depending on what lender you use, what type of Mobile Home you live in, and what type of credit and qualifying you will have.

Terms

The "term" of a loan means the length of time that the loan goes on for.

Normal terms for personal property loans like these are 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30 years.

There are two ways a loan can be set up:

First, there is FIXED rate.

This is where there the rate is fixed for the whole term.

These loans are usually higher in rate and you need to closely compare the over-all cost in interest that you would pay on this loan, vs. an adjustable rate loan.



Second, there is Adjustable rate.

This is where the rate is fixed for a period of time, then adjusting to market rates. 

Let's say 5 years again, but the payment each month pays all of the interest and enough principal to get the balance paid off by the end.

Third, there is an adjustable loan.

This is where the rate is fixed for a short period, then it adjusts. 

Let's take the 5 years again.  In this case you would have 5 years fixed rate.  Then, you would adjust once a year to an index rate plus a small margin.  This looks like this:  Index of Prime Rate (3.25% currently), plus a margin of 1.00% - thus, a fully indexed rate of 4.25%.  

There are different levels to choose from usually - 5 year fixed and 10 year fixed are the most popular.  There are also now 20 year loans that start at a low fixed rate, like 4.50%, for the first 5 years, then go to a higher rate that is preset, like 7.50% for the remaining 15 years.

A person would choose this option when the other rates and terms are not so favorable.

Rates

Mobile Home mortgage rates can vary quite a bit from lender to lender, and from area to area.  The lowest we have seen is 4.50%, and the highest is approaching 10%.  Typical rates are in the 5.50% to 7.50% range, and if you are quoted higher then ask why and keep shopping around.

Why is there such a difference in the high and low rates?  And what are the factors that determine the rate?

First, you must realize that rate is a gauge of risk - the higher the risk of default (non-payment), the higher the rate.

Second, rates charged are also based on the cost of money at any one time in the nation (market rates).

So, Mobile Home mortgage rates will reflect the risk in any one area, with also reflecting the over-all cost of money.  

Mobile home mortgage rates are based on risk of default by these factors:

  • Good vs. bad credit

  • loan amount compared to the value (loan-to-value)

  • income vs. debts monthly

  • Age and size of the unit (we address this factor separately below)

These should be obvious, but lower rates are available to people who have: Better credit, more equity, low debts each month.

Off setting factors are considered when determining a Mobile Home mortgage rate, such as:

Additional reserve assets (lots of money in the bank and/or additional equity in other properties), very stable employment, other income not used to qualify.


Here is an example:

A retired couple have just enough money saved for the down payment and closing costs. Their income is about twice as much as their house payment, space rent, and credit card payments each month.  Their credit is ok, but there are a few late payments on their credit report in the past year.


Versus


A retired couple who are putting down 50% of the purchase price, they have enough money in the bank to pay off the remainging balance if needed, and they have perfect credit.  

There is more risk with the first couple so their Mobile Home mortgage rate will be higher.  Consider your current income vs. debts each month, consider what you equity position will be, and consider how you have paid your debts in the past (especially the last two years - this period matters the most).


Age and Size factors for determining rate:

This too should be obvious, but the newer and larger the unit, the more desirable it is to most people.  A lender will look at the risk as if it were to foreclose on the property in the case of default and need to sell the property on the open market.  They require a property appraisal for this reason.  An older single wide is harder to sell than a new double wide - therefore the risk is higher on the smaller, older units - which means a higher rate.

Typical cut off for a lot of lenders is 1976 for the year of manufacture.  This is due to the HUD building requirements established at that time. However, this is not a hard and fast rule - just the norm.  Our recommended lender in California will finance all years, all the way through 1970.

Fees

For most people with good credit, a down payment of some sort, and good income (also being able to prove their income) should not pay more than 1.75 points origination fee and normal closing costs.  One point is one percent of the loan amount.

Why are points charged?

In Mobile Home financing, there is no "market" for the loans to be bought and sold on between lenders and investors.  So, all the loans that are made must be held by the institutions that made them (in some cases the loans are sold, but this is rare).  What this means for you is that there is no possibility for "no points".  Any lender is in the business to make money, that is it.  They will not give away the loans, they are in the business of selling the money.

Yes, there is a lot of money made in the interest rate, but a lender will divide up the proceeds as up front profit and over-time profit.  They cannot "count" on the over-time part because there is a chance that the loan will pay off early or not pay at all.  So a lender MUST charge up front fees to stay in business (all those people working on your loan need to eat).

Mobile Home mortgage rates, terms, and fees will be worst if you have bad credit or stated income.

Additional closing costs to consider:

In addition to the lender fees, there will be escrow, title, appraisal, and notary fcosts to pay.  For a purchase, you will also have insurance, taxes, inspection, and termite costs. Buying and financing a Mobile Home is very expensive. By Will Cunningham

Additional Manufactured Home Info

Here are some related topics, click on the underlined words for more information.

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