U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Connecticut
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 01-06-2013, 05:48 PM
 
152 posts, read 260,005 times
Reputation: 126

Advertisements

Thanks to you all, we're moving forward on looking into building a home on land in Fairfield: Barden Homes seems like the best local modular home company in the area, but we've been told we'd be wise to select a GC we trust first, and hopefully they will work with a company they trust. How do we go about finding a trustworthy, reliable contractor?

Thanks again, so much.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 01-06-2013, 06:55 PM
 
4,787 posts, read 8,757,843 times
Reputation: 12592
You don't want just a general contractor, you need a general contractor who knows how set set a modular home and marry those two or more house sections together. It's a special skill.

Modular homes present unique difficulties from site built homes. You need GC who knows how to prepare the site for delivery. Huge trucks are going to come down the street with your house in sections and those sections have to be gotten on the site in the correct order for placing. The modules as they are placed on the foundation, need careful maneuvering by a great big crane prior to being set. Plumbing, electrical, heat/air have special considerations on modulars as they come in sections.

Most modular home companies have a list of GC contractors that have worked with them before. Ideally you want a GC who has put up that type of house before and more in particular that certain brand of house.

See if you can get some info from the modular company on who they have worked with in your area and then interview those people.

Good luck
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-06-2013, 07:17 PM
 
8,780 posts, read 16,246,129 times
Reputation: 5219
I'm not 100% positive, but i think this was a Barden modular. I drove past it for 5 years while it stood vacant..........
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-06-2013, 10:14 PM
 
1,656 posts, read 1,831,196 times
Reputation: 3716
Quote:
Originally Posted by willow wind View Post
You don't want just a general contractor, you need a general contractor who knows how set set a modular home and marry those two or more house sections together. It's a special skill.

Modular homes present unique difficulties from site built homes.
Good luck
Let's not hate on modular homes. Being factory built, they have better QC; tighter specs; the insulation is actually installed; the R-values are generally better (CT builderz got lazy - because it was cheaper for them, they convinced hordes of the unsuspecting that a house couldn't be built other than out of 2x4s, and if you were dumb enough to insist, they charged triple. Because they deserved it); the corners are square; and the doors fit. Dollar for dollar - if quality is your yardstick - they are a better value than stick-built.

The root of the general cynicism surrounding modular houses on the part of the real estate sales folk in CT (many of whom have huzzies who are failed builders... )

CT builderz got used to 40% margins on hastily thrown up stick-builts that they designed themselves with only one yardstick: get as much square footage under the cheapest roof, with as few walls as possible on the inside. That way, that sucka can be thrown up FAST. They "designed" them with these criteria in mind and had the nerve to call them "custom-built". I would not trust these guys to put together a Cracker Jack toy. They've got an axe to grind, and that is to prove that you should have paid their 40% margins rather than to go with a modular company where your downside risk is contained. The biggest con of all time was perpetrated here in the NE: "price" = "value". On behalf of the tens of thousands of buyers who are now hanging on with their fingernails while paying through the nose for houses which magically declined 30% in "value" the minute the ink was dry on the check, and now who are stuck in leaky, drafty, overtaxed houses which are melting and buckling before their eyes - 'tain't necessarily so. The real estate salespeople and their huzzies are eyeing your bank account hungrily.

That being said, I'd really, really investigate the bona fides of the GC you pick (pick somebody without an axe to grind, whose specialty is modular construction). And make sure you KNOW the building codes, and ARE PRESENT FOR EVERY INSPECTION. Too many sweetheart deals where the houses weren't inspected at the appropriate intervals. Ever see inspectors sign off on plumbing after it's already all sheetrocked in? I have.

Do you really want to put yourself into hock on the basis of a con job from somebody who is looking to recoup the memories of years living large?

Come to think of it, maybe you might want to consider buying a house that has already withstood the test of the five year home warranty.

Better yet, consider renting. Lots of bubble-era houses for rent, and you are money ahead. While you're renting, get educated before you throw yourselves naked to the hungry wolves. Get all the Holmes on Homes dvds and watch them till they are part of you. They are a cheap education.

Best of luck to you. I hope you have dough to burn. You are going to need it.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-06-2013, 10:25 PM
 
8,780 posts, read 16,246,129 times
Reputation: 5219
Quote:
Originally Posted by jane_sm1th73 View Post
The root of the general cynicism surrounding modular houses on the part of the real estate sales folk in CT (many of whom have huzzies who are failed builders... )

The real estate salespeople and their huzzies are eyeing your bank account hungrily.

The above would be especially true in towns that have "closed real-estate markets". New Canaan would be the most ubiquitous that i can think of. Not all new construction, but the majority of it, is being hawked by the spouse of a shoddy builder.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-06-2013, 10:41 PM
 
4,787 posts, read 8,757,843 times
Reputation: 12592
Where do you get the idea that I'm hating on modular homes ??? Unbelievable ! Where did you get that out of my post ?.

Modular homes are great- what other kind of home is strong enough to to put on a flat bed truck and haul hundreds of miles. Go out to eastern Ct - the majority of new construction- including many of the McMansion neighborhoods are modulars. And I'm also not a real estate agent.

I was simply trying to impress upon the OP that he needs to find someone to erect the house who knows what they are doing. You not want the run of the mill general contractor putting one of these up.

I'll give you examples why. Cranes cost a small fortune to rent. The crane operator won't set foot in the thing unless he likes the pad that has been created to set the crane on. If its not safe, he's not working. If the GC does not co-ordinate with the crane operator first, well, there is a couple of days delay with the tab steadily running up until everything is set to raise safely.

When the modules are delivered, the trucks drop them ad leave. If they are not dropped in the right places, the crane can't lift them because the wrong one is in the way. Then you have to hire the trucks back again, life all the modules onto the trucks, pull them out into the street and then bring everything back onto site where it belongs. Any idea what that costs and how much delay that is ?

A good modular GC is worth every penny of his pay because he is not going to let let any of that happen.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-07-2013, 04:57 AM
 
1,656 posts, read 1,831,196 times
Reputation: 3716
Quote:
Originally Posted by willow wind View Post
Where do you get the idea that I'm hating on modular homes ??? Unbelievable ! Where did you get that out of my post ?.

I was simply trying to impress upon the OP that he needs to find someone to erect the house who knows what they are doing. You not want the run of the mill general contractor putting one of these up.

A good modular GC is worth every penny of his pay because he is not going to let let any of that happen.
Please accept my apologies. Having witnessed the carnage wrought by the used house industry in CT, I don't think I'll ever be able to conduct a civil conversation about it again.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-07-2013, 12:00 PM
 
Location: Connecticut
24,586 posts, read 40,140,661 times
Reputation: 6947
Quote:
Originally Posted by jane_sm1th73 View Post
Let's not hate on modular homes. Being factory built, they have better QC; tighter specs; the insulation is actually installed; the R-values are generally better (CT builderz got lazy - because it was cheaper for them, they convinced hordes of the unsuspecting that a house couldn't be built other than out of 2x4s, and if you were dumb enough to insist, they charged triple. Because they deserved it); the corners are square; and the doors fit. Dollar for dollar - if quality is your yardstick - they are a better value than stick-built.

The root of the general cynicism surrounding modular houses on the part of the real estate sales folk in CT (many of whom have huzzies who are failed builders... )

CT builderz got used to 40% margins on hastily thrown up stick-builts that they designed themselves with only one yardstick: get as much square footage under the cheapest roof, with as few walls as possible on the inside. That way, that sucka can be thrown up FAST. They "designed" them with these criteria in mind and had the nerve to call them "custom-built". I would not trust these guys to put together a Cracker Jack toy. They've got an axe to grind, and that is to prove that you should have paid their 40% margins rather than to go with a modular company where your downside risk is contained. The biggest con of all time was perpetrated here in the NE: "price" = "value". On behalf of the tens of thousands of buyers who are now hanging on with their fingernails while paying through the nose for houses which magically declined 30% in "value" the minute the ink was dry on the check, and now who are stuck in leaky, drafty, overtaxed houses which are melting and buckling before their eyes - 'tain't necessarily so. The real estate salespeople and their huzzies are eyeing your bank account hungrily.

That being said, I'd really, really investigate the bona fides of the GC you pick (pick somebody without an axe to grind, whose specialty is modular construction). And make sure you KNOW the building codes, and ARE PRESENT FOR EVERY INSPECTION. Too many sweetheart deals where the houses weren't inspected at the appropriate intervals. Ever see inspectors sign off on plumbing after it's already all sheetrocked in? I have.

Do you really want to put yourself into hock on the basis of a con job from somebody who is looking to recoup the memories of years living large?

Come to think of it, maybe you might want to consider buying a house that has already withstood the test of the five year home warranty.

Better yet, consider renting. Lots of bubble-era houses for rent, and you are money ahead. While you're renting, get educated before you throw yourselves naked to the hungry wolves. Get all the Holmes on Homes dvds and watch them till they are part of you. They are a cheap education.

Best of luck to you. I hope you have dough to burn. You are going to need it.
I do not know that I entirely agree with you. Connecticut does not have many large scale builders so most homes here are pretty well constructed. That said, you are right the prices are not cheap either. Still if I were the OP I would talk with the modular home manufacturer and get recommendations from them. As others noted, you should have someone who is familar with the modular home building process. Good luck, Jay
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-07-2013, 02:14 PM
 
Location: Coastal Connecticut
14,721 posts, read 17,944,963 times
Reputation: 3333
Try: Information - Westchester Modular Homes of Fairfield County, Inc.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-08-2013, 07:53 AM
 
110 posts, read 285,663 times
Reputation: 46
Goodluck finding Anyone trustworthy let alone who will show up in a year or so. Ct is a satillite of Mars.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:



Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Connecticut
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top