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Interior ceiling and wall cracks and bulging

(Washington state)

In looking at a used manufactured home for sale in a park, the most recent one I looked at had several cracks, more noticeable in the front end of the home that faces the street in the park. There are ceiling cracks along the seam, cracks in the corners of the main room on that end, which is the living room, and cracks where the wall meets the ceiling. In some areas, moreso the seam where the two halves of the trailer meet, there is some bulging (ceiling and wall), possibly in part due to taping and plastering over, maybe some of it as a fix in recent years. The trailer is advertised as having a block foundation. It is on a slope, and the upper side set in (dirt was dug out to place it). On both sides of the trailer, because it is on a slope, there are large boulders set into the dirt, probably to keep the area stable. There are manufactured homes above and below this one. The outside area at the opposite end of the trailer a few yards away slopes down, but I don't recall seeing any boulders in that area. We did experience an excessive amount of rain in our area this winter and spring, and this trailer has not been lived in since the first of the year, possibly a bit longer. I'm wondering if it's possible that the back end of the trailer, opposite the end where the most of the cracks are, could be experiencing a lot of settling in and maybe some actual sliding, which could be causing a possible twisting of the home that shows up with cracks, etc. at the other end where it may be more stable? Or are cracks and bulges a fairly common thing with manufactured homes that have to be dealt with frequently and cosmetically over the years? The outside of the home looks to be in very good condition. The trailer is a mid-90s Silvercrest model with two large bedrooms and full baths. Is it possible the home needs to be releveled and maybe tie-downs added, or just needs a good paint job inside? The interior and exterior doors seem to open and close fine, no sticking or large gaps visible. Also, the carpeting is a little darker around the edges next to the wall. This wouldn't signify a mold issue, would it? If I were to make an offer, I would definitely have an inspection done, but for now, I'm trying to do some research to know if I even want to pursue this home at all. Any information you can give would be much appreciated. Thank you.

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Jul 29, 2011
relevel and add bracing
by: Anonymous

The owner of this home would want to relevel it now, repair the cracks, and perhaps add additional bracing.

All cracks you described are "normal" for a mobile home as they all will usually need releveling after some time. The cost should be low compared to the value received. Make sure you use a contractor who has done this before - get references! and check them!

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