The BDN is exploring Maine’s housing disaster from each doable angle, from the way it impacts dwelling costs, to what it means for Mainers throughout the state. Learn our ongoing protection right here and fill out this kind to inform us what you need to know.
Cell and modular properties have lengthy been a well-liked different to plain one-bedrooms in Maine for these trying to enter the housing market. However even they’re getting dear.
A evaluate of the promoting costs for cell and modular properties, properties which are prefabricated after which transported to a web site, in Maine’s six most populous counties reveals that costs have spiked throughout the state because the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Androscoggin, Aroostook, Cumberland, Kennebec, Penobscot and York counties all noticed vital value will increase from 2019 to 2022, with typical properties in all these counties now costing $100,000 or extra. The value will increase are emblematic of the rising price of housing throughout Maine in recent times however are available in a sector of the market that has lengthy served Mainers who could in any other case be shut out of proudly owning a house.
It is usually occurring in a state that has the best fee of cell properties in New England and all the Northeastern U.S. In 2020, 62,000 of Maine’s 747,000 housing items had been cell properties, or round 8 p.c.
Whereas the value will increase haven’t been considerably completely different from these seen in different sectors of the market, lack of housing provide has pushed up the value of even older, used cell properties in Maine, stated Aaron Bolster, president of Allied Realty, which sells properties, together with modular properties, throughout central and western Maine.
“It’s been the dearth of selections that the patron has,” Bolster stated. “A rising tide lifts all boats – the single- and double-wide cell market isn’t any exception to that.”
Many select to purchase cell properties to allow them to downsize, both spacewise or financially, and it continues to be an ideal choice for Mainers both shopping for their first dwelling or trying to retire due to the decrease price of dwelling upkeep, Bolster stated.
The value will increase have affected some sections of Maine greater than others. In Cumberland County, cell properties had a median gross sales value of $67,000 from January to Might 2019. However throughout that very same interval this yr, the median value was $168,500. With costs rising over 150 p.c, it was by far the highest improve of the six counties.
Rural Aroostook County had a few of Maine’s least costly cell properties pre-pandemic, with a median gross sales value of simply $28,000 from January to Might 2019. This yr, that quantity throughout the identical interval was $108,500.
Penobscot County’s cell dwelling market noticed a smaller improve. The median gross sales value from January to Might in 2019 was $76,000. In the identical time span in 2022, it was $100,000, the smallest improve of the six counties, although that quantity remains to be greater than the speed of inflation throughout that interval. York County noticed a median gross sales value improve of $77,000; Kennebec, $52,000; and Androscoggin, $34,000.
The median worth for a cell dwelling in Maine in 2020 was $61,200, in accordance with American Neighborhood Survey knowledge, which was the ninth-highest within the nation however solely the third-highest in New England. Massachusetts, at $83,000, and Vermont, at $69,600, each had greater medians.