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Are Modular Homes as Good as Stick-Built Homes?

Updated: Nov 15, 2023

Modular homes and stick-built homes are two popular types of construction. Modular homes are built in sections in a factory and then transported to the building site, while stick-built homes are constructed from scratch on the building site. Let's distinguish the description from a mobile or manufactured home. They are not in the same modular or stick-built home class.

So, which type of home is better?

Modular home versus stick-built
Modular Home

There are pros and cons to both modular homes and stick-built homes. The building codes for stick-built and modular homes are the same. The same regulations exist whether the home is stick-built or modular. Therefore, no corners are cut to save; they both require the same quality of construction. Here is a comparison of the two types of construction:

Modular Homes


  • Faster construction time: Modular homes can be built in a fraction of the time it takes to build a stick-built home. This is because the sections are built in a factory under controlled conditions, which helps to reduce delays caused by weather and other factors.

  • More consistent quality: Modular homes are built to the exact specifications, regardless of who is building them. This means there is less quality variation from one modular home to the next.

  • Less waste: Modular homes are built with less waste than stick-built homes. Materials are more closely monitored, and planned usage reduces wasted lumber and materials.

  • More energy efficient: Modular homes are often more energy efficient than stick-built homes, as they are built with tighter seals and better insulation. It is said they are entirely sealed and very efficient regarding heating and cooling.


  • Less customization: There is less customization available with modular homes, as they are built in already designed sections. However, floorplans can be changed and adjusted as the customer desires, although some changes are limited.

  • Higher transportation costs: Modular homes need to be transported from the factory to the building site, which can add to the cost of the home.

  • May not be allowed in some areas: Some homeowners associations and municipalities do not allow modular homes because of access and the ability to crane in the modular sections.

Stick-Built Homes


  • More customization: Stick-built homes can be highly customized to meet the homeowner's needs.

  • No transportation costs: Stick-built homes are built on the building site, so there are no transportation costs besides delivery of materials and people.

  • May be more appealing to buyers: Some buyers may prefer the look of a stick-built home over a modular home. However, today, modular homes are difficult to tell apart by looking at a stick-built and modular side by side.


  • Longer construction time: Stick-built homes take longer to build than modular homes. Often, builds are hampered by weather and conditions. Plus, staffing of the builder.

  • More variation in quality: Stick-built homes are built by different crews, which can lead to more variation in quality from one home to the next.

  • More waste: Stick-built homes are built with more waste than modular homes, as more cutting and framing are required.

  • Often less energy efficient: Stick-built homes may not be as energy efficient as modular homes, as they may not have as tight seals and insulation.

stick-built as good as modular home

So, are modular homes as good as stick-built? It's hard to say, isn't it. There are plus and minus to both sides. When the home is done, you often won'tConstruction be able to tell them aprt.

Which type of home is right for you?

The best type of home for you will depend on your individual needs and preferences. If you are looking for a home that can be built quickly and is energy efficient, then a modular home may be a good option. A stick-built home may be a better choice if you are looking for a home that can be highly customized to your specific needs and financing requirements.

Here is a table summarizing the pros and cons of modular homes and stick-built homes:


Modular Home





Construction Time






Energy Efficiency






Transportation Costs



Aesthetic Appeal

Hard to Tell Apart

Subject To Customization

Ultimately, the best way to decide which type of home is right for you is to talk to a builder and get quotes for both modular and stick-built homes.

Additional Considerations

In addition to the factors listed above, there are a few other things to consider when choosing between a modular home and a stick-built home:

  • Modular homes have much higher quality today than they have in the past.

  • Your budget: Modular homes are usually less expensive than stick-built homes, but the cost can vary depending on the home's size and features.

  • The location of your building site: If your building site is located in a remote area, it may be more challenging to find a builder who is willing to build a stick-built home.

  • Your timeline: A modular home may be a better option if you need to move into your home quickly.


Modular homes and stick-built homes are excellent options for people looking for a new home. Modular homes have come a long way in recent years. The energy efficiency is a tremendous factor in making your choice. The best type of home for you will depend on your individual needs and preferences.

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