More than 17 million Americans live in manufactured homes, scattered in parks and on private lots all around the country. It's easy to see why. Such homes are affordable, easy to maintain and can even be taken to a different site if you decide to move.

Advantages to buying a manufactured home

1. They're affordable. Manufactured homes are generally quite a bit more affordable than traditional homes. According to the U.S. Census report, the average price of a manufactured home in the United States is $64,000, compared with an average price of $324,500 for a traditional home. In addition, the cost to build a manufactured home is approximately 10 to 35 percent less than a comparable site-built home.

2. They're mobile. Many kinds of manufactured homes can be partially disassembled and transported to a new lot in a new city if you move, usually for a lot less money than you'd spend on real estate agents, home inspections, closing costs and other expenses associated with selling a home in one city and buying a new one in another city.

3. They are easy to maintain. Manufactured homes offer streamlined living. That means less cleaning, less home maintenance and less clutter. In addition, if you locate your home in a manufactured home park, the park management takes care of things like mowing the lawn, plowing the driveways, having the trash hauled away and other common amenities.

4. You'll have lower property taxes. Since your property taxes are based on the value of your home, the lower price/value of a manufactured home means that you'll generally pay less in property taxes. You'll have access to the same school system, same library and same parks as the person in the traditional home down the street. You'll just be paying less for the privilege.

5. There are no common walls. When you live in a condo, you usually have to worry about the people living beside you, above you and/or below your unit. When you opt for a manufactured home, you can still have many of the advantages of condo living, such as universal maintenance and amenities like swimming pools and community centers, without having to be concerned about disturbing (or being disturbed by) the people who live around you.

While a manufactured home isn't the right choice for every homeowner, such homes are affordable, easy to maintain, mobile and offer a chance at home ownership for those who wouldn't necessarily be able to buy a traditional home. For more information, contact a company like M & W Manufactured Home Sales.