Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Controversial Modular Home Will Remain, Builder Says

A local builder is celebrating after learning he will not have to remove a modular home in Allendale after all.

On Sept. 19, Curtis Moran put up a 1,387-square-foot three-bedroom modular home at 5367 Crestfield Lane in the Springfields III development.

About a week later, Moran was told by the developer, Merwyn Koster, that the home would have to be removed after complaints by neighbors and other builders.

But on Oct. 16, Moran announced that his negotiations with the developer had proved successful.

"It is going to stay," Moran said. "It is set in stone; everything's signed off."

He did not explain why the developer changed his mind, and said he did not pay any settlement money to Koster. Koster could not be reached for comment.

Paul Seaney, who lives next door at 5353 Crestfield Lane, was unhappy about the news.

"Modular homes decrease surrounding property values and that affects all of us in the development," he said. "This house is all about a huge profit margin for (the builder) at the cost of everyone else."
Seaney, who is an electrical engineer, said he is concerned that the construction and electrical standards of the modular might not be adequate.

According to Allendale Township Zoning Administrator Kirk Scharphorn Jr., the township has no ordinance that restricts modular homes, as long as they conform to the same building standards as traditional homes.

Seaney also objected to the L-shaped design, because he said it pushes the structure back on the property and doesn't match the grading of the surrounding lots.

"I am going to have to probably hire an attorney now because they put the house up on a hill and my property will get all the drainage," he said.

Moran said the home should be completed within 30 days, and he plans to hold an open house after that.

"The proof is in the pudding," Moran said. "I think the neighbors were upset because they didn't understand it ... we want everybody to feel good about it."

Moran, who has built many houses in the area, said the modular was a speculative venture on his part. "If it works out, then we get to do a bunch more," he said. "If we can't sell it, my wife and I are going to sell our house and move there."


Anonymous said...

Good luck Mr. Moran. Sounds like the misguided neighbor is focusing on being unreasonable. Hopefully he pauses until completion and allows you to deliver a quality product that will enhance the value of his and the surrounding properties. Stay the course and make our industry proud.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations and good for you, Mr. Moran. It's this "not in my backyard mentality" that thwarts our industry at almost every turn. If the average person knew how much more goes into a modular constructed home, as opposed to a site built, and remember they are both stick built, they might have a better appreciation. And if the neighbor does higher an attorney because of "grading" issues, that's not the fault of the construction method of the home.