Energy Department Delays New Manufactured Housing Standards

DOE energy rules department of energy manufactured housing
The James E Forrestal Building, Washington, D.C. offices for the U.S. Department of Energy.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has said it will delay the date of compliance for new manufactured home energy standards by 60 days after final standards are determined.

Previously, DOE had a May 31 deadline for enforcing the new standards.

The Manufactured Housing Institute moved its members to petition DOE for relief on the pending standards.

The DOE stated it gave substantial weight to comment letters from MHI, and home builders Cavco, and Skyline Champion, as well as numerous state and regional manufactured housing associations including Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Washington (NHA), Western Manufactured Housing Communities Association (CA), and Wisconsin). MHI said more than 500 campaign form letters were sent to the DOE at the institute’s urging.

Most organizations that sent communications to the energy department conveyed that the new standards would be unworkable and that the changes would create a price increase in home construction that runs counter to the industry’s offering as the largest form of unsubsidized affordable housing in the U.S.

MHI said in its statement on news of the 60-day delay that work remains to be done, and that it expects the DOE to complete its process for single-section homes in the fourth quarter of 2023 at the earliest. The compliance date will be extended to July 1, 2025 for all other homes, it said.

“We must ensure that HUD is the sole authority over manufactured housing construction to ensure an issue with conflicting standards from different agencies never happens again,’ MHI stated in its letter to members.

In mid-May, Rep. David Kustoff, a Republican from Tennessee, and Rep. Terri Sewell, a Democrat from Alabama, introduced H.R. 3327, the Manufactured Housing Affordability and Energy Efficiency Act of 2023. The bipartisan legislation clarifies and reaffirms the longstanding role of HUD as the sole regulator of federal manufactured housing construction standards.

Congress must hear from all sectors of the manufactured housing industry about the urgent need to change the statute, MHI stated. The action by the DOE affirms the importance of HUD’s role as the sole regulator for manufactured housing. Participate in MHI’s call to action and check back with MHInsider to keep up on the latest news from Washington.

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