HUD Publishes Proposed Rule Amending the HUD Code, Comments Due by September 19, 2022

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The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Code, the federal building code regulating the manufacture, installation, and overall safety standards of manufactured homes, is about to undergo another major update. On July 19, 2022, HUD published its proposed rule amending the HUD Code. The comment deadline is September 19, 2022.

In total, HUD is proposing over sixty updates. Most of the changes focus on the Construction and Safety Standards. However, HUD is also considering changes to the Model Manufactured Home Installation Standards and the Manufactured Home Installation Program. In addition, HUD is proposing nearly one hundred new and updated standards that are or will be incorporated by reference (e.g., American National Standards Institute (ANSI) testing standards, National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) fire protection standards, etc.).

As background, last summer HUD finalized its most recent updates to the HUD Code with a final rule that took effect on July 12, 2021. Last year’s final rule adopted and implemented the third set of recommendations proposed by the Manufactured Housing Consensus Committee (MHCC). With this month’s proposed rule, HUD is moving forward with implementing the MHCC’s fourth and fifth sets of recommendations simultaneously.

Of note, this proposed rule follows closely behind the Department of Energy (DOE) final rule updating the energy conservation standards for manufactured housing, which was published earlier this year. The DOE’s final rule, published May 31, 2022, establishes updated standards for manufactured housing pursuant to the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. Compliance with the updated energy conservation standards is required on and after May 31, 2023.

Going forward, industry participants should anticipate HUD’s final rule sometime next year. Subsequent to that, state and local jurisdictions likely will amend their respective building code requirements to incorporate (or at least accommodate) changes at the federal level.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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