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Hurricane Harvey, Billions in Damage Expected, Tragic Opportunities for Factory Home Builders?

August 25th, 2017 Comments off
HurricaneWarningTexasCreditWeatherChannelDailyBusinessNews

Featured image credit, The Weather Channel.

Texas is meeting Hurricane Harvey.  Currently a Category 2, per the NOAA, it is set to do billions of dollars in property damage.

Hurricane Harvey is threatening Texan’s and nearby coastal states with torrential rainfall and flash flooding.

The heavy rains from the storm are expected to continue, perhaps until next Thursday or even Friday.  It may drop as much as 34 inches of rainfall.

That’s as much or more as parts of the state usually sees in a year, all in the course of one week.

The local weather service is being blunt about the situation, saying “some structures becoming uninhabitable or washed away” and “numerous road and bridge closures with some weakened or washed out” are likely.

According to the Houston Chronicle and a report released by Irvine, CA based CoreLogic, at least 118,000 homes in the Houston area alone are at risk for damage should the hurricane make landfall, especially if it hits as a Category 3 storm.

The cost to rebuild these homes – including labor and materials – is being estimated at $20.8 billion.

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Along the Texas coast there are around 232,721 homes that are also at risk of damage from Category 3 hurricane conditions.  If so, the estimated cost to rebuild statewide is $39.6 billion.

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Rainfall outlook for Texas during Hurricane Harvey. Credit, The Weather Channel.

These numbers are estimates of course – and until the storm is over there is no way to get a clearer idea of what the total damages will be.

The National Weather Service (NWS) warns that “structural damage to sturdy buildings” and “complete destruction of mobile homes” is likely around the eyewall of the hurricane.  It is unclear, based upon the quotes, if the NWS meant pre-HUD Code mobile home or post-code manufactured homes, or both.

While no one claims manufactured homes are tornado or hurricane proof, the facts reflect a far more durable structure than media and weather services report.

Per a report done in Florida, linked here, the post-storm facts make it clear that manufactured homes – notably those post 1994 – are in several cases performing as well or better than conventional housing.

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You can see for yourself in the MHLivingNews video where people talk about the surprise of coming back after evacuating to their home standing strong and proud as always.

As that previous Daily Business News article points out, some 80% of damages to manufactured homes during hurricanes were due to the improper attachment or tie-down of add-ons, such as porches and carports.  Flying debris is another problem, for all kinds of housing.

Tragic Opportunities for Manufactured and Modular Homes?

While it is too soon to tell, it would not be a surprise if FEMA was called in, post storm.

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Graphic from a prior story, to see that report, click here. Credit: Russ Desantis, The Record.

While HUD Code manufactured homes are sturdier and safer than older mobile homes, or some conventional housing, residents should follow hurricane evacuation warnings when they are given. ## (News, analysis.)

Friday Evening Update: This storm has progressed into Category 3, and is now a Category 4 hurricane.

(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)

JuliaGranowiczManufacturedHomeLivingNewsMHProNews-comSubmitted by Julia Granowicz to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.