Click the Links Below to Learn More About Each Topic
- Housing Standards Division
- PA Manufactured Housing Installation Program
- Important Aspects of Manufactured Home Installation
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Retailer and Installer Responsibilities
- PA Manufactured Housing Improvement Act 158
For Modular Housing, Click Here
The Housing Standards Division within the Department of Community and Economic Development has been designated by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) as the State Administrative Agency (SAA). This division is responsible for enforcing the Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards and the Manufactured Home Procedural and Enforcement Regulations in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Visit HUD to review these standards and regulations.
The Housing Standards Division is responsible for:
- Handling all consumer complaints and providing home manufacturers with information related to the performance of manufactured homes they produce.
- Monitoring manufacturers for compliance with all applicable regulations.
- Monitoring retailers/dealers for homes that are transit damaged, label tampering and general retailer performance.
- Monitoring onsite completion of new homes to ensure the methods used are consistent with the overseeing manufacturer’s designs for conformance to the Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards.
- Monitoring the Primary Inspection Agencies’ Responsibilities that operate on behalf of HUD and the SAA in manufacturing facilities located throughout Pennsylvania.
- Certification of installers for all new manufactured homes completed in the Commonwealth.
- The Pennsylvania Manufactured Housing Improvement Act, Act 158.
Both federal and state laws and regulations provide that a home bearing the manufacturer's label of certification shall be exempt from all local laws and requirements with regard to any issue for which a federal standard has been established. Local laws and regulations relative to assembly, support and stabilization of a new home must assure conformance with the Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards and the Manufactured Home Procedural and Enforcement Regulations. The Pennsylvania SAA will continue to work in cooperation with local governments to ensure homes are completed consistent with these federal standards.
For more specific information about factory built structures in Pennsylvania, please e-mail us at email@example.com
The Pennsylvania Installation Program for new manufactured houses provides that an installer trained by a DCED-approved training provider certify that every new manufactured home sited in the commonwealth is installed and assembled in accordance with the manufacturers approved designs.
After finishing the installation, the installer must provide a completed Certificate of Compliance to the building code official, the purchaser and to the Department at:
Housing Standards Division
400 North St, 4th Floor
Harrisburg, PA 17112
Manufactured home installation is perhaps the single most important consideration to assure durability and long term satisfaction from your new home – so important that the manufacturer’s warranty may be void if your home is not installed consistent with the written instructions that are provided with each home. Listed below are some of the key elements of installation that can have an impact on the performance of your home.
Site Preparation – Proper grading of the site around your home to provide ground water runoff is critical. Make sure the ground under your home has no depressions or areas where water can collect.
Support – Your installer must ensure that the ground where your home is sited has the proper soil conditions and bearing capacity to properly support your home. The supports must be protected from the effects of frost heave. Improper support of your home may lead to bowed floors and walls, cracked walls or ceilings, doors and windows that do not operate properly and other structural defects that can lead to permanent damage to your home.
Assembly– Most manufactured homes, especially multi-section designs, require assembly to be completed onsite. Until a home is assembled properly, it can not perform as designed. The ability of the home to resist wind, rain and snow and the functioning of the plumbing, electrical, heating/cooling systems, among other issues, are only assured by proper assembly onsite.
Stabilization– To ensure that your home can withstand the forces of windstorms, which can cause sliding and overturning of the home, it is imperative that your home is properly anchored with suitable anchoring devices that are properly installed.
Installation shortcuts to save money– There are none. There may be several methods approved by the manufacturer for properly installing your home. One method is explained with the instructions that come with each home. Alternative methods of installation require the manufacturer’s approval before they are used. Proper installation is a wise investment – insist on it!
- Does successful completion of an approved training course make me a certified installer?
- If I only complete part of the installation, such as block and level, should I submit a Certificate of Compliance form for just the work I performed?
- Will my Pennsylvania Installer Certification be recognized in other states?
- Will Pennsylvania accept my installer license or certification from another state?
- Are there different rules or requirements for installing a new manufactured home in a community or other rented lots?
- What are the requirements for the installation of used manufactured homes?
- Can a home be installed in a manner not specifically addressed by the manufacturer?
- What about floating slabs?
- Can an addition or deck be attached to a home?
- Q. Does successful completion of an approved training course make me a certified installer?
- A. NO. Successful completion of an approved training course only qualifies a person to apply for certification as an installer. Trained installers must complete the Manufactured Home Installer Application, with the required fee for yearly certification.
- Q. If I only complete part of the installation, such as block and level, should I submit a Certificate of Compliance form for just the work I performed?
- A. NO. A Certificate of Compliance form attests to the support, stabilization and assembly of the manufactured home. Attempts to limit the certification will not be recognized. Whoever signs the form is certifying all three elements of installation, regardless of notations on the form.
- Q. Will my Pennsylvania Installer Certification be recognized in other states?
- A. Maybe. The only way to be sure is to contact the individual states, or HUD. You can call HUD toll free at: 1-800-927-2891
- Q. Will Pennsylvania accept my installer license or certification from another state?
- A. NO. The variation of state programs makes this impractical.
- Q. Are there different rules or requirements for installing a new manufactured home in a community or other rented lots?
- A. NO. New manufactured homes are required to be installed consistent with the manufacturer's approved installation instructions, without exception.
- Q. What are the requirements for the installation of used manufactured homes?
- A. Used manufactured home installation is not specifically addressed in state law. Installing a used home consistent with the manufacturer's approved installation instructions is generally acceptable to the local code official. If those instructions are not available, a generic suggestive installation standard is available upon request at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Q. Can a home be installed in a manner not specifically addressed by the manufacturer?
- A. NO. The manufacturer must provide instructions for the installation. Designs prepared by professional engineers or registered architects may not be utilized in place of the manufacturer's instructions.
- Q. What about floating slabs?
- A. All foundations must be protected from frost heave, therefore a floating slab foundation is unacceptable.
- Q. Can an addition or deck be attached to a home?
- A. Not without approval from the home manufacturer. Typically, all additions, decks, etc. must be free-standing from the home and constructed in accordance with local building codes.
- Information must be forwarded to the manufacturer. This includes every consumer complaint and any other information that may indicate the existence of an imminent safety hazard or failure to conform in a manufactured home.
- Record of Purchaser Cards are required to be completed by the retailer at the time of purchase and forwarded to the manufacturer for every home sold. If no card is available, the retailer must send the required information to the manufacturer in an appropriate format.
- Service Records of all corrections and alterations of homes that have been performed by the retailer must be readily accessible to the SAA.
- Consumer (Homeowner) Manual is required to be provided to the purchaser of the home.
- Formaldehyde Notices must be displayed in every home offered for sale.
- Prohibition of Sale precludes a distributor/retailer from selling a new home that does not conform to the Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards. This prohibition applies until the completion of the entire sales transaction, when all goods and services that the dealer agreed to provide at the time the contract was entered into have been provided.
Certified Installer Responsibilities:
- Installation of a new manufactured home with regard to support, stabilization and assembly must be accomplished consistent with the manufacturer's approved design. The installation must assure that the home remains in conformance and performs as described in the standards for its useful lifetime.
- Complete Verification of Compliance Form and forward copies of the completed form to the Housing Standards Division, Local Building Official and the purchaser.
- Maintain certification as required under PA Act 158.
- To print the Installers Application click here.
- Maintain training as required. For a course schedule and registration form, click here.
Act 158 enacted on November 29, 2004 provides:
- New manufactured homes shall be installed in conformity with the manufacturer’s approved designs applicable with that particular home.
- Construction elements not addressed in the HUD Code must comply with the IRC. Some of these elements are frost protection for the foundation, stair geometry, soil bearing values, etc.
- Building Code Officials cannot reject a manufacturer’s approved design for HUD Code construction elements.
- Building Code Officials may not issue a Certificate of Occupancy for a new manufactured home until provided with a completed Certificate of Compliance form.
- Certificate of Compliance forms must be completed within five days of the installation and provided to the building code official, the purchaser, and this Department.
- Only persons trained and certified by the Department may complete the Certificate of Compliance form.