Is a 55-Plus Community a Good Idea?

I’m always asked “is it a good idea to purchase a home in a 55-plus community? I hear that they are difficult to sell and don’t retain their value.”

In some ways, buying a home in a retirement community is like any other home purchase. But in other ways, it’s not. Here are a few tips.

As with any home, it’s going to depend on supply and demand, the specific community and the individual house.

Fortunately, checking historic prices is relatively easy to do. If you’re looking at a house, search the county records online, see what it’s sold for in the past, and get an idea of whether the trend is up or down.

One of the main things that drives price appreciation in any kind of housing is an expanding demand with a limited supply. Is the population of the area increasing? See a lot of building going on? These are good signs.

And, before you buy, be sure to check any selling restrictions. Some communities force you to use their real estate agents. Others may prohibit putting signs in the yard. Many will require your buyer to be screened for age, finances and health before you can sell to them. In short, before you buy, see what the deal is if you should decide to sell.

Other tips:

  • Check the taxes. Some states, like Washington, don’t have state income taxes. But they do have high property tax rates.
  • See what’s going on. When you retire, you’ve got more time on your hands. What will your community provide to occupy you?
  • Research the rules. You know your community has age restrictions, but that could be the tip of the iceberg. Does it allow pets? Smoking a cigar outdoors? On-street parking? Talking on your balcony after 10 p.m.? You may be amazed by the restrictions you encounter.

Bottom line? While buying a home in a 55-plus community can be like buying a home anywhere, there are differences. As I’m fond of saying, always do checks before writing them.

Michelle Dux, DeTray’s Custom Housing Consultant

Have You Considered Planned Communities?

We have many customers coming in the door that are ready to buy a beautifully customized manufactured home from DeTray’s Custom Housing, but unfortunately they do not have a piece of land to place that home on.

Imagine having a lot that is surrounded by beautiful trees, the quiet and peacefulness of not having busy or noisy streets or the typical neighbors that are within 6 feet of your home. These are some the biggest wants and needs shared by our customers.

DeTray’s Custom Housing (THE custom housing experts) has partnered with developers to create “planned communities”. Why planned communities you ask?  Consider if you will, variety, residential standards, consistency, life style and security, all of which fosters a synergy that many homeowners desire.

We are focused on assisting our customers in achieving their goals and we will continue to search for opportunities to that end.

We welcome your questions and we look forward to seeing you soon! Stop by and view our many beautiful display homes at 10209 149th St. E. Puyallup, WA.


Michelle Dux

Housing Consultant

Land-Home Packages vs. Home Only in Planned Community

MarleneGreetings to all!

Today I will talk about our Land/Home packages vs Home Only in a planned community.

The home choices you make today can depend on where you are in life!
During my many years in the industry I have personally owned 4 manufactured homes. I am currently in a planned senior community. I like the fact that I can have a home built to my needs and wants.
The “Silver Tsunami” is here according to “AARP”. Our baby boomers are arriving in “bus loads”, a whole new group of folks that are now looking to make life changing decisions such as ; relocating to get closer to kids and grandchildren, downsizing from large homes with stairs and moving out of the city to a less congested area avoiding ever-rising property taxes.

Our unique custom-ordered homes can be placed where you want to live.
We service the state of Washington and are able to assist you wherever you chose to reside.

1.  The cost of the HOME is ordered to suite your budget, needs and wants.
2.  The cost of the LAND is making the choice of location, size of property and neighborhood.
3.  The DEVELOPMENT costs; involves permits, water, sewer or septic and electric installation. Many buyers are also wanting carports or garages.
You will get a full itemized written bid required by your lender.

This is a New Construction Manufactured Home Loan which consists of the 3 components wrapped up into one loan package. This can be financed as a 30-year fixed rate mortgage. Once you have chosen a parcel of land you are able to return to your local dealer and start the process. This project becomes real estate.

1.  The cost of the HOME custom-ordered to your budget, needs and wants.
2.  The cost of the park-package requirement; such as type of skirting, decks, carports or garages.
3.  Leased land; when you come upon a newer development you have choice lots.

This purchase is considered Personal Property. There are many advantages to going into a planned community. Many communities offer amenities such as; Clubhouse, swimming pools, golf, social events and much more! Your responsibility is only the home maintenance. Everything in the ground is the owner’s responsibility. Not only is your tax structure different because it is personal property, calculated at a different rate, you may also qualify for tax exemptions.

Wishing the best housing choices for you!
Marlene LeMoine

Inspirational Ideas and Goals for the Coming Year

2016 is here! Whether 2015 was a good or challenging, now it’s time to look forward to see what this year will bring. The turn of the calendar year is a chance to start fresh – to shed bad habits and adopt new, better ones. DeTray’s Custom Housing is here to provide some inspiration for 2016.

Reconnect with Friends and Family Members

Sometimes during the busyness of our daily lives we forget to stay in touch with the people we care about most. Make it a top New Year’s Resolutions to reconnect with your family and friends in 2016.

  • Call your friends, parents, children, or siblings at least once a week (or month) to say hello and let them know you are thinking about them.
  • If cell phones have taken over your household, start a “no cell phone” at the table policy during mealtimes.
  • Host a friends and family game night at least once a month or bi-monthly. Do this each others homes or find a place to go out and play pool, dart’s or go bowling.
  • Do activities outside, such as walking the dog instead of letting the dog walk out by itself, go to a park, or visit a mall to window shop.
  • Visit the library and check out a book or read a magazine. Many libraries sell used magazines for ten cents or a quarter.

Get Healthy

Improving our health is almost always top on our list of New Year’s Resolutions, but “getting healthy” is such a vague resolution that most people find it difficult to keep. Most people find it easier to establish smaller, more attainable goals that will contribute to a healthier lifestyle overall. Here are suggestions.

  • Limit trips to fast food restaurants or chose healthy meals.
  • Substitute vegetables for chips or sweets a few times per week. (Steamed vegetables are great)!
  • Instead of drinking soda buy diet or flavored seltzer water.
  • If you have chocolate cravings, split a candy bar with someone, rather than eating it all.
  • Try cooking something new each week, rather than dining out.


The holidays are the time most of us gain a few extra pounds, this is a great opportunity get a renewed sense of determination for shedding those extra pounds. Unfortunately, most of us find it difficult to maintain this drive as the year goes on. The following are a few simple exercises that will be easy to keep throughout the year.

  • Do warn up stretches before you begin
  • Jumping jacks are great to start the morning
  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
  • Do ten push-ups in the morning or night. (do them on your knees if needed)
  • Don’t look for parking space close to stores or businesses, so you’ll have a longer walk.
  • Start doing fifteen minutes of physical activity every day, such as walking, stretching, jogging, biking, or swimming. It will make you feel great and give you extra vigor if the grey skies are making you feel sad or gloomy.

We at DeTray’s wish you the best of luck with your 2016 New Year’s Resolutions! If you’re considering a new custom manufactured home at any point during the new year, please keep us in mind. We look forward to helping you find your new home at DeTray’s.

                                         “May this be your Best Year Yet”

Dana DeTray Wins 2015-2016 MHRV Person of The Year & Outstanding Service of the Year

Congratulations to the Dana DeTray for winning the annual 2015-2016 MHRV Person of the Year Award and for winning the Outstanding Service of the Year Award. DeTray’s Custom Housing Puyallup staff was honored to be present to watch Dana receive these awards. As everyone enjoyed the delicious food, the MHRV had guest speakers talk about the past year and the many exciting things that are about to happen this upcoming year. It was fun to spend time with other fellow business owners as we all prepare for 2016. We look forward to serving past, present and future customers throughout the NW.

Please enjoy some of the pictures from the event.

Man of The Year!

Man of The Year!

2015-2016 Man of Teh Year and Outstanding Service

2015-2016 Man of Teh Year and Outstanding Service

Dana DeTray's Award

Dana DeTray’s Award

Jonathon's Big Smile

Jonathon’s Big Smile

Linnette, Diane, MArlene

Linnette, Diane, MArlene

Linnette, Marlene

Linnette, Marlene

Buck Kit Homes

Buck Kit Homes

Mike Sapp Paramount Builders

Mike Sapp Paramount Builders

Dana DeTray Accepting Award

Dana DeTray Accepting Award



Happy Thanksgiving!

Whether you’re a customer, partner, friend or just a reader of our blog – thank you!
We are very fortunate and blessed to have served the Pacific Northwest for over 53  years and wish nothing but the best on this Thanksgiving holiday. Please be safe and enjoy this time with family, friends and loved ones.

2015 detrays happy thanksgiving


DeTray’s Honors our Veterans…Thank You!

Thank You Veterans

Thank You Veterans

DeTrays’s would like to congratulate our veterans along with our nation for all the sacrifices made by the men and women who served and fought for our freedom. We thank them.

Please take the time to read the following famous quotes honoring our veterans.

“In the beginning of a change, the patriot is a scarce man, and brave, and hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot.”
— Mark Twain

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.”
— John F. Kennedy
“Neither a wise man nor a brave man lies down on the tracks of history to wait for the train of the future to run over him.”
— Dwight D. Eisenhower
“Peace is not only better than war, but infinitely more arduous.”
— George Bernard Shaw
“This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave.”
— Elmer Davis
“How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate our heroes and she-roes!”
— Maya Angelou
“Regard your soldiers as your children, and they will follow you into the deepest valleys. Look on them as your own beloved sons, and they will stand by you even unto death!”
— Sun Tzu
“Valor is stability, not of legs and arms, but of courage and the soul.”
— Michel de Montaigne
“History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or the timid.”
— Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower
“There never was a good war or a bad peace.”
— Benjamin Franklin
“I believe it is the nature of people to be heroes, given the chance.”
— James A. Autry
“The willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional to how they perceive veterans of early wars were treated and appreciated by our nation.”
— George Washington

Our veterans are our nation’s heroes. They stepped up to fight our nation’s wars without question or doubt.

Thank a Veteran!

Looking to Sell and Buy a Home? Expert Tips to Sell Your Home FAST for 2015 & 2016.

Many people try to sell their home prior to purchasing a new one. Here are some helpful hints that should expedite the sale:
Fix It Up: Everyone has those small little repairs they keep putting off for a rainy day. Do them now. The small amount of money you invest today will pay off in the end, and can help you sell your home fast.
Clean It Up: You never know when a perspective buyer will come knocking on your door, so your home needs to be spotless at all times. Beds need to be made, dishes washed and put away, floors mopped or vacuumed, tile grout cleaned, faucets polished, sinks cleaned, windows washed, another words spotless. You also need to have clean air. If a client smells cigarette smoke or cat pee, they most likely will not buy your home.
Shelve The Personal Items: We all love to display our family pictures and treasures we have collected over the years. They are all meaningful to you, but not to a potential buyer. Remove all these items and put them in storage for your next home.
Stage Your Home: First impressions are extremely important when you are trying to sell your home fast. When you walk through the front door there should be a natural flow to the floor plan. Rearrange your furniture so you have a clear view of the selling points such as fireplaces. Make sure that none of the rooms in your home are overcrowded with furniture, this will make your home look smaller than what it is.
Home Inspection: Almost every sales contract requires a home inspection to be done. If you don’t want to have any surprises, it is a good idea to have a home inspection done prior to listing your home. This will give you the opportunity to fix any unforeseen problems. If you wait until after you have a contract on your home and there are problems, the buyer may want to renegotiate the contract price, or worst case decide not to buy your home.
Curb Appeal: With the Internet being one of the first places customers go to view homes for sale, you need to be sure that the photo of your house encourages them to come visit your home. Spend some time shaping up your yard or you may want to hire a professional landscaper to get your front yard in tip top shape.
Price It Right: We all want to get as much as we can for our homes, but if you over price you house you will be over looked. Research the selling prices of the homes in your neighborhood and come up with a fair asking price for your home to help you sell your home quickly.

Remember Halloween is around the corner…be safe and have a “Spook”tacular Time!

DeTray’s staff

50 Year Anniversary Comes to a Golden End

2012 marked our Golden Anniversary for our family business. It is true; we started selling “trailers” in 1962. In the 1970’s the term “mobile homes” was popular, and in the 1980’s “manufactured homes” was our industries new label. Today “modular homes”, “pre-fab” homes, or “custom manufactured homes” are used to describe the homes that we provide to our customers. Whatever is comfortable for our clients, we feel we have the highest value in housing in the Northwest, and a lot of people must feel the same way. They prefer our homes over our competition, and that is proven by our steady growth of our business during the most challenging economy since the depression era. I set a modest goal to be the highest volume dealer and at the same time exceed our previous Customer Satisfaction Index levels, which were accomplished in 2012. In order to accomplish that goal, we absolutely needed the help of our “business partners”. From the builders of our homes, Skyline Homes, Kit Homebuilders, and Karsten Homes, the transportation company Westspan Haulers, the set up construction company Horsley Mobile Home Service, our site General Contractors, Paramount Builders and Sound Exteriors, the interior detail contractor Puget Sound Home Services, the flooring contractor Hannah’s Floor Covering, and of course our own sales representatives and office staff. It truly “takes a village” to pull off this endeavor, all with the best of intentions, a customer first philosophy, and great synergy by our “team”.


This time of year is for families to come together, and we hope the homes we have provided to all those folks over the years serve this purpose tenfold.  It is with great pride that I can take the time to give the gratitude to all our customers, and team mates, wishing you all the Happiest of Holidays, and a Merry Christmas. We hope to see you soon, please visit our display center or web site at


Respectfully submitted;

Dana DeTray GM


Aude Lang Syne; times long past and our 50th Anniversary

As the Holiday Season shifts into high gear, DeTrays Custom Housing is pushing forward to finish the year strong. We had our “Holiday Open House” last weekend, and I want to extend a hearty “thank you” to all of you that came in and also contributed to the DeTrays Food Drive. We have filled two large boxes of goods that will help needy families in our area. Our Open House was December 1st and 2nd, and if you did not know those very same days were also National Pie Day and National Fritters Day. December 3rd was National “Roof over your Head Day”. I would have preferred to have our Open House on that day, but I can’t control the calendar.


Now that we have completed our Open House, we can start our next project, updating our web site. When we last completed the main structure overhaul last January, we have added new content as necessary in 2012. The biggest challenge has been keeping it relevant and interesting. Our customers advocate that we expand our offering, which necessitates constant editing, adding pictures, dialog, and revisions. Our entire inventory is now totally decorated with new pictures, plants and furniture. Our customers will have all new interiors to look forward to viewing at their leisure. In addition to that, we are adding a furniture catalog so if you see furniture or décor that you wish to purchase that is shown; we can price it for you immediately. This will hopefully allow all our customers to envision how their new custom home can look, just request a quote, we are happy to help you.


Finally, the staff at DeTrays Custom Housing is looking toward 2013 with great optimism. We will be attending our annual Shows in the Spring and Fall, but this year we are adding a show in February. We want to take our “product to the people”, so to speak. I really enjoy going to the shows, as we get to speak to folks we otherwise may not get to see. It is always fun and interesting to hear comments about our homes like “wow, I had no idea these homes were this beautiful”; or “what is this? A manufactured home? I think my grandma had one once”; right, these homes aren’t your grandmas mobile home anymore. We build the most energy efficient, cost effective, innovative custom homes in the North West. Please check us out at and I look forward to seeing you soon. For more information on the shows, check us out at until then, Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukah, Happy Kwanza, Happy Boxer Day, and if I forgot someone, Happy Day to you too.


Respectfully submitted; Dana DeTray GM