Research Project Information

Research Project Summary Information

Energy-Efficient Manufactured Housing Units(ST6471-1)

Manufactured Housing Research Alliance


The Manufactured Housing Research Alliance (MHRA) is an independent not-for-profit organization that was established in 1995. Its mission is to facilitate collaborative research in the housing industry. The MHRA's previous research efforts have included developing energy-efficient equipment sizing guidelines for heat pumps, evaluating fuel switching opportunities, and establishing best practices for duct design and installation. The MHRA is now focusing on determining if single family attached housing buildings (e.g., a duplex) could be constructed from manufactured housing units. These homes would consist of two units stacked upon each other joined with a "party wall" to two other stacked units. Such a building would require the development of a new foundation system and roof design.

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Project Description

The Contractor will: Conduct a technical, economic, and market assessment for using HUD-code homes for single-family attached construction, develop a business model to determine how builders and manufacturers would need to change their current operations, develop prototype designs made of HUD-code homes for the townhouse concept, assess the compliance of the prototype designs with HUD standards and identify areas where changes are needed, monitor the construction of a demonstration home, based on the prototype design, monitor and evaluate the homes' performance, and, have the demonstration home inspected by appropriate code and zoning officials to determine the compliance of the design.


The building will be better optimized for energy efficiency than a site-built structure because it will be designed by one entity instead of several. The proposed home design will use improved envelope components and air distribution systems to reduce heating and cooling energy requirements. Homes built under factory conditions generate less construction waste than site built homes. If this concept is accepted by the market, products sales could increase for NYS producers of manufactured housing.

Project Results

MHRA published the report "Eliminating Barriers to the Use of HUD-Code Housing in Attached Construction”. This report contained five case studies of the use of manufactured homes for attached housing, including a description of a community planned for Lancaster, NY. This project's findings may aid the development of future residential communities attempting to use similar innovative attached housing designs.


Manufactured Housing Research Alliance
1776 Broadway, Suite 2205
New York, NY 10019

Principle Investigator

Jordan Dentz

Universities Involved


Project Type:

Product Demonstration

Technologies Types:

Building Systems
Building Construction Methods

NYSERDA Contact Information

Robert Carver


R&D - Buildings Research

Contract Details

Start Date: 1/11/2010
Project Status: Active
Contract Number: ST6471-1

Last Updated: 11/27/2013