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Manufactured Home Foundation Assessments and Certifications

Buying, selling, or refinancing a manufactured home? Johnson Broderick Engineering (JBE) can help. Mortgage brokers and Real Estate agents who frequently deal with loan transactions on manufactured homes know the process can be problematic.

One requirement for lending on a manufactured home which currently applies to all FHA and VA insured loans, and conventional lending, is that a licensed engineer certify that the manufactured home’s existing foundation meets the current code requirements which are set forth by Housing and Urban Development (HUD). FHA and VA loan underwriting requires that the manufactured home (MFH) has been placed on a permanent foundation according to the current HUD standards. Our staff at Johnson Broderick Engineering are experienced professional licensed engineers and provide the foundation certifications you need in order to complete the sale, purchase, or refinance of your home. We have become a trusted source for Foundation Certification reports by regional mortgage brokers and realtors and have completed hundreds of certifications.

Our Foundation Certification includes an on-site inspection and assessment of the foundation system as well as a visual assessment of any attached structures, a general review of site conditions, and documentation of the HUD certification labels. A certification report is provided to the requesting client soon after.

In the event the manufactured home does not meet the required criteria, Johnson Broderick will provide the recommended upgrades to bring the home within compliance of the applicable codes. Once the upgrades have been completed, JBE can return to the site for a follow up inspection to certify the foundation.

Placing an order for a Foundation Certification is easy. Our request form can be found on our Forms page.

Please see the following frequently asked questions for clarification about JBE’s Manufactured Home Foundation Assessment Program:


Q: How can I gain compliance with the lending requirements for the manufactured home’s foundation to close on my loan?

A: To meet the requirements for FHA and conventional lending you must comply with the HUD Permanent Foundations Guide for Manufactured Housing. A professional engineer must certify that the foundation is permanent and in compliance based on an on-site inspection of the MFH and its foundation.


Q: Generally, what constitutes a permanent foundation which satisfies the HUD requirements?

A: In its most elementary definition, a permanent foundation will generally consist of skirting to keep out animals and prevent moisture intrusion while still providing ventilation, a footing system and piers to support the home, and anchorage to resist lateral loads such as high winds or an earthquake. Additionally, site drainage, frost depth protection and attached structures must be observed to assess their structural impact on the existing foundation system.  You can refer to the HUD Permanent Foundation Guide for more details.


Q: What is an Engineer’s MFH Foundation Certification?

A: It is a document from a professional engineer, licensed in the state where the home resides, which certifies that the manufactured home rests on a permanent foundation. It must be a permanent foundation complying with the HUD Permanent Foundation Guide for Manufactured Homes.


Q: Why is a professional licensed engineer required for a MFH foundation certification?

A: Foundation systems vary greatly in size and design. In order to safeguard, life, health and property, to promote the public welfare, and to establish and maintain a high standard of competency and practice, a professional licensed engineer is required.


Q: My home had a manufactured dwelling placement permit when it was originally installed; doesn’t that qualify as a MFH foundations certification?

A: Although the manufactured home may have received a placement permit for the original installation of the home onto the existing foundation, receiving a permit does not guaranty that it complies with the required HUD guidelines.


Q: The MFH has the dealer installed HUD certification label and the data plate, does that mean the home’s foundation meets the requirements of the HUD Permanent Foundation Guide for Manufactured Homes?

A: The HUD certification label attached to the ends of each manufactured section of the home pertains to the construction methods and materials used during the factory production of the dwelling prior to placement on site. The engineering certification pertains to the placement of the MFH on a permanent foundations per HUD Permanent Foundation Guide for Manufactured Homes.


Q: What are tie-downs, and what is their function on a MFH foundation?

A: Tie-down straps are the most common anchorage and lateral force resisting system installed on MFHs in Oregon. The tie-down strapping is secured to the main support chassis beams of the home and anchored securely to a cast-in-place concrete foundation. To meet the HUD prescribed requirements for anchorage and lateral force resistance, tie-down straps must be of approved materials, installed into approved materials, at the correct angle, in the correct locations throughout the foundation, and inspected by a licensed design professional.


Q: The MFH has tie-down straps installed just at the ends of the home, is this adequate anchorage and to meet the requirements for FHA or conventional lending?

A: No, according to the HUD Permanent Foundation Guide for Manufactured Homes tie-down straps located only at the ends of the MFH typically do not qualify as adequate anchorage and lateral support. The licensed professional engineers at JBE are familiar with the applicable MFH foundation codes and standards and can provide you with a design making your home’s foundation code compliant.


Q: The manufactured home has tie-downs installed previously prescribed by another design professional, does that mean it is a permanent foundation?

A: Not necessarily, tie-down straps installed as anchorage for manufactured homes must be located in specific design patterns prescribed in the HUD Permanent Foundation Guide for Manufactured Homes. JBE has commonly inspected homes which are currently non-compliant with regard to the required codes, but have been previously certified by other design professionals. The licensed professional engineers at JBE are familiar with the applicable MFH foundation codes and standards which can save you a lot of money and hassle by recommending solutions to existing non-compliant foundation systems.


Q: Do tie-down straps attached to soil anchors qualify as an approved method for anchorage and lateral support?

A: No, soil anchors are not allowed for anchorage to the foundation in the HUD Permanent Foundation Guide for Manufactured Homes.


Q: Where is JBE able to certify MFH foundations?

A: JBE is able to travel and certify MFH anywhere in Oregon (pricing varies by location).


Q: How much will the foundation certification cost?

A: The cost of the certification varies from location to location. The cost of the certification is based on driving time, the time for the visual inspection, and report writing. Please call or email our office for a quote.

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