Jim Ayotte: Factory-built housing will be part of Hurricane Ian’s rebuilding

It’s time to end the stigma of mobile homes and acknowledge the reality of what manufactured homes offer.

Most people use the words mobile and manufactured homes interchangeably, when in fact, there is a significant distinction.

Mobile homes were built before 1976 and did not adhere to any federal Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards. In contrast, today’s manufactured homes are the only single-family homes in the U.S. built to stringent construction and safety standards approved by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

So, unlike old mobile homes, manufactured homes are constructed to withstand the rigors of Florida’s extreme weather.

Like site-built homes, manufactured homes have come a long way since Hurricane Andrew devastated Florida in 1992. In 1994 wind standards were upgraded for manufactured homes, and in 1999 the state of Florida adopted uniform statewide installation requirements. These two provisions have significantly enhanced the quality, durability, and safety of manufactured homes.

However, the real proof is in the performance.

Industry regulators evaluated over 52,000 mobile and manufactured homes after five Florida Hurricanes in 2004-2005 and found that post-1994 manufactured homes did not sustain structural damage.

Now, Hurricane Ian has exacerbated Florida’s affordable housing crisis. Communities devastated by Ian will rebuild, and manufactured housing will play a big part in the rebuilding effort. Florida’s workforce and seniors rely on precision-built manufactured homes for safe, quality, affordable housing.

It’s time to end the stigma of mobile homes and acknowledge the reality of what manufactured homes offer.


Jim Ayotte, CAE, is chief executive officer of the Florida Manufactured Housing Association.

Guest Author


  • PeterH

    November 30, 2022 at 1:13 am

    Fill Florida with double wides and red state grifters on public assistance will retire here.

  • Shara H

    November 30, 2022 at 8:56 am

    Lost your home in a hurricane? Let me suggest a flimsy box to live in.
    ( ok, seriously maybe to stay in while your real home gets repaired so long as you’re out before the next hurricane season). To make this idea a suggestion for long term living is adding insult to injury.
    Build low cost condos or something for long term living. No manufactured homes in hurricane and flood prone areas.

    • Jim Ayotte

      December 5, 2022 at 4:13 pm

      It is disappointing you had the need to comment without having facts. Obviously, you have no knowledge about how today’s manufactured homes are built. I invite you to visit http://www.fmha.org to learn more.

  • Paddy

    November 30, 2022 at 12:25 pm

    Not grouping the words “mobile” and “manufactured homes” together in conversations, will go a long way towards changing people’s perception and associating them as the same.

Comments are closed.


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