One reason mobile homes are cheap is because the price of those homes sometimes does not include the cost of land; owners often lease the land, says The Atlantic. Another reason the homes are cheaper is because they are made in large groups in warehouses and transported to sites.
Because the homes are prefabricated, their manufacturers know exact specifications. They are thus able to save on labor costs and avoid much waste, says The Atlantic.
True mobile homes were constructed before 1976 and did not have to meet any government safety standards, according to HowStuffWorks. After 1976, mobile homes began to be called manufactured homes and remained affordable due to economies of scale resulting from bulk production and assembly lines.
Manufactured homes are also cheaper overall because many communities take care of expenses such as lawn care, trash pickup, snow removal and repairs, says HowStuffWorks. Factories that make manufactured homes do not deal with weather issues, site vandalism and theft like on-site construction companies do. Some owners of manufactured homes also do not have to pay property tax because some states tax them the same way they tax cars if the home is not affixed to the property and is on leased land.