Frequently Asked Questions

OVERVIEW

What is the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program (DRP)?

The HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program is a program of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Manufactured Housing Programs that provides the timely resolution of eligible disputes between manufacturers, retailers and installers of manufactured homes regarding responsibility, and for the issuance of appropriate orders for the correction or repair of defects in manufactured homes, (within one year of the installation of the home).

DISCLOSURE REQUIREMENTS

Is the retailer required to notify the consumer about the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program?

Yes. Per HUD CFR Title 24, Part 3288.5:
At the time of signing a contract for sale or lease for a manufactured home, the retailer must provide the purchaser with a retailer notice. This notice may be in a separate document from the sales contract or may be incorporated clearly in a separate section on consumer dispute resolution information at the top of the sales contract. The notice must include the following language:

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program is available to resolve disputes among manufacturers, retailers, or installers concerning defects in manufactured homes. Many states also have a consumer assistance or dispute resolution program. For additional information about these programs, see sections titled "Dispute Resolution Process" and "Additional Information—HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program" in the Consumer Manual required to be provided to the purchaser. These programs are not warranty programs and do not replace the manufacturer's, or any other person's, warranty program.

For more answers to frequently asked questions, click here to view the Retailer FAQ brochure

Is the manufacturer required to notify the consumer about the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program?

Yes. Per HUD CFR Title 24, Part 3282.207:
The manufacturer must include the following language under a heading of "Dispute Resolution Process" in the consumer manual:

Many states have a consumer assistance or dispute resolution program that homeowners may use to resolve problems with manufacturers, retailers, or installers concerning defects in their manufactured homes that render part of the home unfit for its intended use. Such state programs may include a process to resolve a dispute among a manufacturer, a retailer, and an installer about who will correct the defect. In states where there is not a dispute resolution program that meets the federal requirements, the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program will operate. These are "HUD-administered states." The HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program is not for cosmetic or minor problems in the home. You may contact the HUD Manufactured Housing Program Office at (202) 708-6423 or (800) 927-2891, or visit the HUD website at www.hud.gov to determine whether your state has a state program or whether you should use the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program. Contact information for state programs is also available on the HUD website. If your state has a state program, please contact the state for information about the program, how it operates, and what steps to take to request dispute resolution. When there is no state dispute resolution program, a homeowner may use the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program to resolve disputes among the manufacturer, retailer, and installer about responsibility for the correction or repair of defects in the manufactured home that were reported during the 1-year period starting on the date of installation. Even after the 1-year period, manufacturers have continuing responsibility to review certain problems that affect the intended use of the manufactured home or its parts, but for which correction may no longer be required under federal law.

(2) The manufacturer must include the following language under a heading of "Additional Information HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program" in the consumer manual:

The steps and information outlined below apply only to the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program that operates in HUD-administered states, as described under the heading "Dispute Resolution Information" in this manual. Under the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program, homeowners must report defects to the manufacturer, retailer, installer, a State Administrative Agency, or HUD within 1 year after the date of the first installation. Homeowners are encouraged to report defects in writing, including, but not limited to, email, written letter, certified mail, or fax, but they may also make a report by telephone. To demonstrate that the report was made within 1 year after the date of installation, homeowners should report defects in a manner that will create a dated record of the report: for example, by certified mail, by fax, or by email. When making a report by telephone, homeowners are encouraged to make a note of the phone call, including names of conversants, date, and time. No particular format is required to submit a report of an alleged defect, but any such report should at a minimum include a description of the alleged defect, the name of the homeowner, and the address of the home.

Homeowners are encouraged to send reports of an alleged defect first to the manufacturer, retailer, or installer of the manufactured home, or a State Administrative Agency. Reports of alleged defects may also be sent to HUD at: HUD, Office of Regulatory Affairs and Manufactured Housing, Attn: Dispute Resolution, 451 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC 20410-8000; faxed to (202) 708-4213; e-mailed to mhs@hud.gov, or reported telephonically at (202) 708-6423 or (800) 927-2891.

If, after taking the steps outlined above, the homeowner does not receive a satisfactory response from the manufacturer, retailer, or installer, the homeowner may file a dispute resolution request with the dispute resolution provider in writing, or by making a request by phone. No particular format is required to make a request for dispute resolution, but the request should generally include the following information:

  1. The name, address, and contact information of the homeowner;

  2. The name and contact information of the manufacturer, retailer, and installer of the manufactured home;

  3. The date or dates the report of the alleged defect was made;

  4. Identification of the entities or persons to whom each report of the alleged defect was made and the method that was used to make the report;

  5. The date of installation of the manufactured home affected by the alleged defect; and

  6. A description of the alleged defect.

Information about the dispute resolution provider and how to make a request for dispute resolution is available at http://www.hud.gov or by contacting the Office of Manufactured Housing Programs at (202) 708-6423 or (800) 927-2891.

A screening agent will review the request and, as appropriate, forward the request to the manufacturer, retailer, installer, and mediator. The mediator will mediate the dispute and attempt to facilitate a settlement. The parties to a settlement include, as applicable, the manufacturer, retailer, and installer. If the parties are unable to reach a settlement that results in correction or repair of the alleged defect, any party or the homeowner may request nonbinding arbitration. Should any party refuse to participate, the arbitration shall proceed without that party's input. Once the arbitrator makes a non-binding recommendation, the arbitrator will forward it to the parties and HUD. HUD will have the option of adopting, modifying, or rejecting the recommendation when issuing an order requiring the responsible party or parties to make any corrections or repairs in the home. At any time before HUD issues a final order, the parties may submit an offer of settlement to HUD that may, at HUD's discretion, be incorporated into the order.

In circumstances where the parties agree that one or more of them, and not the homeowner, is responsible for the alleged defect, the parties will have the opportunity to resolve the dispute outside of the HUD Mediation and Arbitration process by using the Alternative Process. Homeowners will maintain the right to be informed in writing of the outcome when the Alternative Process is used, within 5 days of the outcome. At any time after 30 days of the Alternative Process notification, any participant or the homeowner may invoke the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program and proceed to mediation.

The HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program is not a warranty program and does not replace the manufacturer's or any other warranty program.

ELIGIBILITY

Which states are eligible to use the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program?

Currently, manufactured homes installed in 25 states are eligible for dispute resolution administered under the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program. These states include: Alaska, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

What if my state is not eligible to use the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program?

There are 25 states with an established dispute resolution program that HUD has accepted. If your state does not participate in the Dispute Resolution Program, you may contact HUD. To find the contact information for your state’s program, visit: http://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/HUD?src=/program_offices/housing/rmra/mhs/mhdrp.

Which homes are eligible for HUD Manufacture Home Dispute Resolution?

New homes, located in HUD dispute resolution states, are eligible so long as the unresolved issue was reported to the home manufacturer, retailer, installer, State Administrative Agency, or HUD during the one-year period beginning on the date of installation and a complete request for dispute resolution is received by HUD.

If your home has an unresolved issue that was not reported to any party within the first year beginning on the date of installation, you should contact your state’s manufactured housing program or HUD to learn about other ways the issue may be resolved. Programs may vary in each state.  Documentation should be kept for all contact with disputed party(ies).

My home was installed more than one year ago, but I reported the unresolved issue within the first year after installation, am I still eligible for assistance?

Yes. You will be required to demonstrate or otherwise have documentation showing that you initially reported the issue within one year of the date of first installation to be eligible for assistance.

Am I eligible under the program if I am the second owner of the home, but it has not been a whole year since the home was installed?

HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program is only for the first owner of the home. In the case of a second owner, they should contact the State Administrative Agency or HUD.

What types of manufactured home issues are eligible for HUD’s dispute resolution?

The HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program exists to ensure that manufactured homes adhere to HUD construction and safety standards and that installation of homes meets HUD’s Model Installation Standards.

How do I demonstrate that I reported the issue within the first year after installation?

Be sure that your initial report of an alleged defect is date-stamped and in writing or electronic format so that there will be proof of the date of delivery. Also, make a copy to keep with your records so that you have proof in your possession.  Persons who report an alleged defect by telephone should make a contemporaneous note of the telephone call, including date, time, the name of the person who received the report, the name of the business contacted, and the telephone number called.

BEFORE YOU REQUEST DISPUTE RESOLUTION

Who should I contact first about an issue with my home?

If an issue arises with your manufactured home, you should first contact your retailer or the home manufacturer. Most issues can be resolved in a timely manner.  If the retailer or home manufacturer is not able to resolve your issue, the second contact should be the State Administrative Agency or HUD.

How much time should I allow for correction before contacting the Dispute Resolution Program?

After reporting an issue, unless the alleged defect presents an unreasonable risk of injury, death, or significant loss or damage to valuable personal property, the reporting party or homeowner is encouraged to allow a reasonable amount time for a satisfactory resolution of the issue before initiating the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program.

What should I do if the party that built the home, sold me the home, or the installer of the home is no longer in business?

There are in some instances alternative means to resolve a problem.  The defect should be reported to the Dispute Resolution Program.

REQUESTING A DISPUTE RESOLUTION

How do I submit a request for Federal dispute resolution?

Visit the Submit a Dispute page to learn how to submit a request for dispute resolution.

Do I have to pay a fee to submit a request for Federal dispute resolution?

There are no fees associated with submitting a request for Federal dispute resolution.

As a homeowner, what level of involvement will I have during the dispute resolution process?

Homeowners report a defect to the home’s manufacturer, retailer, and/or installer. If an eligible reported defect is not resolved to your satisfaction (refer to FAQ 7 for a description of eligible issues), the homeowner may request dispute resolution.  Under the HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution Program, the homeowner is not a party to dispute resolution, but can initiate a request for HUD Manufactured Home Dispute Resolution and is entitled to be an observer in the process and will receive a report on the outcome of the dispute resolution process.

What happens after I submit a request for HUD dispute resolution?

The complaints will be reviewed by the Federal dispute resolution neutral screener.  If alleged items are found to be a non-conformance to the Manufactured Construction and Safety Standards (CFR 3280) or the Model Installation Standards (CFR 3285), a mediation will be held and all parties noticed of the date and time of the mediation.

In circumstances where the parties agree that one or more of them, and not the homeowner, is responsible for the alleged defect, the parties will first have the opportunity to resolve the dispute using an alternative process.  Homeowners will maintain the right to be informed in writing of the outcome when the alternative process is used, within 5 days of the outcome. At any time after 30 days of the alternative process notification if the issues are not resolved, the mediator will schedule it to be heard for nonbinding arbitration.

Thirty days are allowed from the start of mediation to reach a settlement unless the defect poses an unreasonable threat of injury, or significant loss or damage to valuable personal property, in which case 10 days are allowed. If issues are not resolved through mediation, any party may request non-binding arbitration.

How long will it take to get my issue resolved?

Where mediation results in a settlement, the responsible party must agree to correct the defect within 30 days of the settlement.

What if I don’t like the mediated agreement?

If a party or the homeowner is not satisfied with the mediated agreement, the party or homeowner may request nonbinding arbitration.

What is nonbinding arbitration?

When mediation fails to reach a settlement, any of the parties to the dispute or the homeowner may request nonbinding arbitration.  HUD will assign an arbitrator to investigate and make a recommendation.  Nonbinding arbitration is a type of arbitration in which the arbitrator makes a determination of the rights of the parties to the dispute, but this determination is not binding upon them, and no enforceable arbitration award is issued. Rather, the arbitrator makes an advisory opinion of the respective merits of the respective party’s cases for HUD to review and issue an appropriate order.

Failure to comply with an order issued by HUD is a violation of the National Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Standards Act.

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