Best Mobile Home Loans

Manufactured Nationwide has flexible down payment requirements and low rates

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Mobile home loans are a type of loan that borrowers can use to finance the purchase of a mobile home. Because mobile homes can be moved, unlike a traditional home, most mobile home owners don’t own the land where they park their home. Because of this, mobile homes are considered personal property rather than real estate property. Financing is usually procured with either a chattel loan or a personal loan.

The best mobile home loans offer competitive rates and flexibility to suit your specific situation. They feature low down payment requirements and flexible credit score requirements. These lenders may offer a variety of different types of loan depending on whether you own land or lease land, and whether you plan on purchasing a newly constructed or used mobile home.

Best Mobile Home Loans of 2021

Best Overall : Manufactured Nationwide


ManufacturedNationwide

 ManufacturedNationwide

  • Starting interest rate: Varies
  • Minimum credit score: 620
  • Loan terms: 15, 20, or 30 years
Why We Chose It

Available in all 50 states, Manufactured Nationwide offers mobile home loans with low credit score and down payment requirements and flexible loan terms.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Good for borrowers with fair credit

  • Available in all 50 states

  • Competitive fixed rates

Cons
  • Not available for homes on rented land or in mobile home parks

  • Construction and renovation not allowed on manufactured homes

  • 30 to 60 day loan closing process

Overview

A division of Magnolia Bank, the Manufactured Nationwide team has more than 100 years of combined manufactured home lending experience. The company is our best overall mobile home lender because it lends in all 50 states and is an expert in low-down-payment, government-backed loan programs.

Manufactured Nationwide offers single-, double-, and triple-wide manufactured, mobile, and modular home loans for new and used homes. Its government-backed loan programs, such as the VA, FHA, and USDA provide competitive fixed-rate mortgages to this segment of the housing market.

It has a program that lend up to $1.5 million on purchases. Credit scores for the VA loan must be at least 620, while the FHA program allows credit scores even lower. Manufactured Nationwide's down payment requirements range from zero down for their VA and USDA programs to little money down for the FHA program.

Manufactured Nationwide's loan programs allow borrowers to have a debt-to-income ratio of up to 43% and a typical interest rate of 4.0%. The loan duration is 15, 20, or 30 years.

Depending on how many issues come up, a loan can stay in the underwriting stage anywhere from two to six weeks, and the entire loan process takes 30 to 60 days from application to closing.

Best for Good Credit : ManufacturedHome.Loan


ManufacturedHome.Loan

 ManufacturedHome.Loan

  • Starting interest rate: Varies
  • Minimum credit score: 600s
  • Loan terms: Varies
Why We Chose It

For borrowers with good credit scores, ManufacturedHome.Loan features competitive rates and programs for first-time home buyers.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Strong mortgage offers for applicants that meet credit/income standards

  • First-time homebuyer programs

  • Can finance homes in a mobile home park

  • Can finance mobile homes as vacation homes

Cons
  • Rates aren’t published

  • Most efficient way to get pre-qualified is through an online form

Overview

Founded in Irvine, California, ManufacturedHome.Loan is a licensed nationwide mortgage broker. Therefore, as a broker with hundreds of financial institutions and private equity lenders to choose from, the company can shop for the lowest rates and best terms for you. As a result, MHL is our best for borrowers with good credit because it can save you time and shop on your behalf for the most competitive rates and terms in the nation.

MHL can finance new or used mobile homes for purchase or refinance. While most mobile home lenders will only lend to you for your primary residence, and even then, only if you also own the land, and with good credit above 700, MHL can expand your options. You could finance a vacation home or buy a mobile home in a park where you lease the land.

While MHL is best for borrowers with good credit scores above 700 because they can provide more options and flexibility, it also uses government-backed programs that support credit scores in the 600s, such as VA and FHA.

Loan values can be as low as $75,000 and as high as $2 million for a jumbo loan program, and the down payment varies depending on the type of loan as well as income and credit score requirements. If you qualify for MHL's VA or FHA loans, your down payment could be as low as zero to 3.5%, respectively.

Pre-qualification can take as little as 24 hours. Once you have selected a home, underwriting can range from two weeks for a conventional loan to six weeks for one of the government programs.

Best for Bad Credit : 21st Mortgage Corporation


21st Mortgage Corporation

 21st Mortgage Corporation

  • Starting interest rate: Varies
  • Minimum credit score: None
  • Loan terms: Varies
Why We Chose It

If your credit score isn’t where you’d like it to be, 21st Mortgage Corporation offers mobile home loans with no minimum credit score requirements and no prepayment penalties.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Good for borrowers with poor credit

  • Available in 46 states

  • Will finance used mobile homes

Cons
  • Not available in AK, MA, HI, or RI

  • Borrowers aren’t able to prequalify

  • High interest rates

Overview

21st Mortgage Corporation was founded in 1995 in Knoxville, Tennessee, and now has over 800 employees. The company became a subsidiary of Clayton Homes after an acquisition in 2003. It lends in 46 states plus Washington, D.C. It’s the best for borrowers with bad credit because it does not have a credit score minimum and can finance homes placed in mobile home parks.

21st Mortgage Corporation offers innovative fixed-rate loan products for manufactured homes. It can also finance manufactured homes in a park or community on leased land, for both permanent and non-permanent home foundations.

Financing options are available for both new and pre-owned mobile homes with a minimum loan amount of $22,000 for person-to-person lending and $14,000 for property that is purchased through a retailer.

The company requires the borrower’s debt-to-income ratio to be under 43% to qualify for a loan without having a co-signer or additional documentation.

21st Mortgage’s interest rates are relatively high—between 6% and 12%—because its average borrower has lower income levels and credit scores.

Interestingly, there are no minimum credit scores with 21st Mortgage. Down payment requirements range from zero to 35% on all property purchases. If your score is under 570, that will require a 35% down payment, but it can be a combination of cash, trade-in, or land equity.

Mortgage loans can be applied for and completed online and the whole process can be completed in about four to six weeks for home-only loans and six to eight weeks for loans involving land.

Best for Low Down Payment : eLend


eLEND

eLEND

  • Starting interest rate: Varies
  • Minimum credit score: 620
  • Loan terms: Varies
Why We Chose It

For borrowers who don’t have a lot of cash on hand, eLend offers mobile home loans with up to 100% financing available.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Low down payment requirement, up to 100% financing available

  • Low mortgage rates

  • Mortgage insurance included

  • Online portal is convenient

Cons
  • Geographic restrictions may apply to some programs.

  • Mixed customer service reviews

Overview

eLEND is our best mobile home lender for low down payments because of its use of the government-backed loan programs that often carry zero to 3.5% down payments and its DPA program that further supplements the down payment burden for its borrowers.

eLEND is a division of American Financial Resources, Inc. Company with a lot of experience in the industry. It works to provide affordable home financing options to first-time buyers and existing homeowners. The company utilizes the latest technology and delivers educational resources to customers in an effort to simplify the mortgage process.

The company offers USDA, FHA, VA, conventional fixed, and adjustable-rate loans. If you qualify for its DPA program, you can lower your down payment expense even more. The DPA allows you to use gifted funds toward your down payment. Furthermore, if you are a community service professional, such as a police officer, firefighter, EMT, or teacher, or you work in the medical field or the military, and you are a first-time homebuyer, you can qualify for the DPA.

The applicant does not need a high credit score, but many lenders in eLEND’s platform want to see 620 or higher. The interest rate for a zero-down, 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage using the USDA or VA programs is 3.50% (as of April 2021).

If you plan to buy a mobile home in a mobile home park where you’ll be leasing the land, the company's lenders will ensure that the lease contains provisions for continued use of the land for low- and moderate-income housing.

The underwriting process typically takes 35 to 40 days to close.

Best for Manufacturer’s Financing : Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance


Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance, Inc.

Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance, Inc.

  • Starting interest rate: Varies
  • Minimum credit score: 580
  • Loan terms: Varies
Why We Chose It

Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance partners with Clayton homes to offer affordable mobile home loans with an easy application process.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Conventional and bi-weekly options.

  • 40 years of experience

  • Simple online application process

Cons
  • Limited information available online

Overview

Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance, Inc., is a Berkshire Hathaway Company and one of the partner financing companies of Clayton Homes. This lender’s partnership integration with Clayton Homes earned it our top choice for borrowers who want manufacturer’s financing.

Vanderbilt is a national housing lender that provides a number of home loan programs. It primarily focuses on the manufactured housing sector, offering loans for new and used modular homes. It has serviced over 175,000 loans in its more than 40 years of service. It also provides traditional home loans.

The company offers fixed and adjustable rate mortgages in a very wide range amounts. In most states, as big as the government will allow.

The company offers purchase, fixed, adjustable, and FHA mortgages, with loans starting as low as $75,000 and as high as the government programs allow, typically over $600,000 in most states. The preferred maximum debt-to-income ratio is in the low 40% range.

To qualify for an FHA loan, you need to have at least a 580 credit score and a 3.5% down payment. The USDA and VA loan programs can accept 580 to 600 credit score minimums as well, but you’ll need at least a 620 credit score to qualify for a conventional mortgage. Interest rates currently range from 5% to 10%. 

The typical underwriting process takes four to six weeks for home and land financing. If you are financing just the home, It generally takes only two weeks.

Final Verdict

There are a few different options to choose from when it comes to a mobile home loan. Because mobile home loans can be moved, the process to apply for and secure a mobile home loan is different than that of a traditional property. While mobile home loans often come with higher rates than traditional home loans, they may also have more flexible requirements. Overall, our top pick for a mobile home loan is Manufactured Nationwide.

Manufactured Nationwide offers mobile home loans in all 50 states. Even borrowers with less than perfect credit or high debt to income ratios may qualify. Manufactured Nationwide is open seven days a week, and borrowers can get in touch with their customer support team at any time to get help with any questions or concerns. Manufactured Nationwide also supports government-backed loan programs like VA, FHA, and USDA loans.

Compare The Best Mobile Home Loans

Company Starting Interest Rate  Minimum Credit Score  Loan Terms (range)  Maximum Loan Amount 
Manufactured Nationwide
Best Overall
Varies 620 15, 20, or 30 years Varies
ManufacturedHome.Loan
Best for Good Credit 
Varies  600s Varies $2,000,000
21st Mortgage Corporation
Best for Bad Credit 
Varies  None  Varies  Varies 
eLend
Best for Low Down Payment 
Varies  620 Varies  Varies 
Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance
Best for Manufacturer’s Financing 
Varies  580  Varies  Over $600,000 

Guide to Choosing a Mobile Home Loan

Understand the Cost of a Mobile Home

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the average price of a new mobile home (officially called “manufactured homes”) was $84,400 in October 2020. The average price for a single-wide was $57,200 and the average price for a double-wide was $110,000.

When applying for a mobile home loan, there are several different costs that you should keep in mind. These include any required down payment, as well as the cost to rent or purchase land. Down payments typically range from 10% to 20% of the total cost of the home, although some programs offer loans to borrowers with even lower down payment requirements. Other costs to consider including closing costs and fees associated with the loan.

Compare Mobile Home Loan Lenders

Since mobile home loans are different than traditional mortgages, it’s important to find a lender that supports them. Here are some factors to consider when deciding on a mobile home lender:

  • Rates: The lower the rates on the loan, the less you’ll end up paying in interest over time. While mobile home loan rates are typically slightly higher than traditional mortgage rates, you should look with a lender with reasonable rates and fees.
  • Loan options: If you need a specific type of mobile home loan, or if you plan to take advantage of a government-backed loan program, you should make sure the lender offers that particular type of loan.
  • Down payment requirements: Many mobile home loans have flexible down payment requirements. If you don’t have a sizable down payment already saved up, you should look for a lender that doesn’t require too much money down.
  • Credit requirements: It can be more difficult to get approved for a loan if you have poor credit. That said, many lenders are willing to work with borrowers with poor to fair credit, so you should look for a lender with flexible credit requirements if your credit score isn’t where you want it to be.
  • Geographic availability: Not all lenders operate in all 50 states, so you should be sure to go with a lender that is available in your area.
  • Customer service: Look for lenders with a history of strong customer service and few customer complaints.

Apply for a Mobile Home Loan 

Before you apply for a mobile home loan, there are a few steps you’ll need to take. You should first obtain an estimate for the loan amount you need, which will depend on the total cost of the mobile home you’re interested in purchasing or building. You’ll also need to decide on what type of mobile home loan you want to pursue. Some government-backed loan programs like VA or FHA loans, may have lower down payment requirements.

Before you apply for a loan, you should make sure that you have enough saved up for a down payment and that you meet certain minimum credit score and debt to income ratio requirements. If possible, you should see if there are any loans that you can pre-qualify for without affecting your credit. Be sure to secure quotes from multiple different lenders so that you can compare rates and get the best deal possible.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is a Mobile Home Loan?

A mobile home loan is a loan for factory-built homes that can be placed on a piece of land. Styles may vary from modest trailers to dwellings that look like houses attached permanently to the land upon which they sit.

Mobile home loans differ from a traditional property loan because most lenders and counties do not consider them real property, but rather personal property. In fact, in many counties, a mobile home is taxed by the department of motor vehicles rather than the property tax assessor. In most cases, if you want to buy a mobile home and place it on land that you lease, your loan will more closely resemble a personal loan, with higher interest rates and shorter terms than a traditional home mortgage.

There are exceptions, however, and we’ve included them in this list. Some home lenders do have loans for mobile homes if they are attached to the homeowner’s land. Others, and there are fewer of them, will lend on a mobile home even if it sits on land you lease.

What Is Required to Get Approved for a Mobile Home Loan?

The lenders we’ve reviewed have loan amount ranges from $75,000 to $2 million for jumbo loan programs. The debt-to-income (DTI) ratio ceiling for most lenders is in the low 40s. The lender will use your DTI and income to determine how much you can borrow.

If you qualify for one of the government-backed loan programs, such as the FHA, VA, or USDA, you can buy a mobile home with a 3.5% down payment, and in some cases less.

If you own the land or plan to buy the land together with the mobile home, you’ll have more lender options than if you want to buy a mobile home that sits in a rented lot in a mobile home park.

Do You Have to Own Your Land When Buying a Mobile Home?

When you purchase a mobile home, it is not necessary to own the land, but it will open up more loan options for you.

Mobile homes are sometimes located in a mobile home park where the park owner holds title to the land and you lease it. In these cases, the homeowner leases a plot of land but owns the mobile home itself. Many lenders will require you to sign a three-year lease minimum for the land before they will lend on the mobile home.

Alternatively, owners of mobile homes can place mobile homes on land they own or land they are buying in conjunction with the mobile home. When you own the land and the home, your loan rates and terms will be better, and you’ll have more lending options.

What Credit Score Do I Need to Buy a Mobile Home?

The lenders we’ve reviewed and selected as the best can work with low credit scores in the 500 and 600 range. A credit score lower than 500 may not qualify at all.

Of course, higher credit scores will always get you better rates and terms. Credit scores in the 700s and 800s will get the lowest interest rates.

If you have a credit score on the lower end, look for a lender that is strong in the USDA, FHA, and VA programs. Conventional loans will not be so forgiving of scores below 700. You may get your loan approved, but it will carry higher rates and a term of 20 years or less.

Methodology

We reviewed 12 mobile home lenders to select the best five. We analyzed company history and reputation, whether they financed both newly constructed and used mobile homes, and their minimum and maximum loan value limits.

Borrower credentials mattered, too. We compared firms to see who allowed borrowers to have lower credit scores, higher debt-to-income ratios, and whether they had low-down-payment programs.

Finally, we analyzed lender requirements for whether you leased or owned the land upon which your mobile home would sit. If you own the land, you’ll have more loan options, but it’s not a deal-breaker.

In most cases, interest rates start a few points higher than conventional loans because mobile homes tend to depreciate, so we looked at interest rate ranges for the lenders to make sure these were lower than the higher rates you’ll pay for an unsecured personal loan, which is also an option for buying a mobile home.

Financing just the mobile home, with good credit and stable income, can be underwritten in as little as two weeks. To buy the home and the land, and using a low-down-payment government program, can extend the underwriting period to as long as 60 days.