What to budget for when buying a mobile home

How much does it cost to live in a mobile home? If you’re thinking about living in a mobile home, don’t just factor in the cost of the mobile, you need to factor in the cost of groundworks, fittings, and utility hookups (e.g. electric, plumbing, and internet) too.

How much does a mobile home cost?

Mobile homes cost anywhere from €1,500 to €100,000 depending on age, quality, size and finishes. You’ll be lucky to find a double glazed mobile home for less than €10k, and I highly recommend getting double glazing if you’re planning on living in Ireland.

How much did we spend on additional works?

With regards to the groundworks, building works and interior decorating, we spent a lot, and I stopped counting after €5000. But at the end of the day I got a beautiful place to live, finished to an extremely high standard, that is MINE. And, I can move it or sell it.

You don’t have to do all the things we did (e.g. paint, tile, floorboards, new sofa, new bed etc.) but even if you don’t touch the interior, you will still have to pay quite a bit of money to do the groundwork (pipes, fittings, gravel etc.).

It’s worth noting that, because they are self-employed, my husband and his father gave three months of pretty much full time labour and expertise to this project.

We couldn’t have done this without our family

The only way we were able to do any of this is because family members helped us in so many ways, from loans to land, and time to expertise.

Things we were lucky enough to have access to include, but are not limited to:

  • land
  • a carpenter/builder for removing old furniture, laying wooden floors, customising and fitting kitchen worktops, tiling, interior wall cladding, building pelmet boards, laying carpet…honestly the list is too long to itemise
  • a mini digger and someone to drive it
  • help with painting
  • help with spreading soil, stone, and lawn seed
  • gifts in the form of: decking; thermal lined curtains; and a lightweight TV that could be mounted to the mobile’s thin, hardboard wall
  • help with digging trenches and laying pipes
  • access to a van to collect pipes, decking boards, etc.
  • specialised power tools and equipment (e.g. chop saws, nail guns) – note that cheap tools give up quickly on a project like this and it can be expensive to rent professional ones. If you’re going to invest in power tools – a good place to start with a high quality cordless drill like a DeWalt (you wouldn’t believe the amount of screws we had to remove for this project!)

We are extremely lucky to have our family to help us with all of these things, and we’d be lost without them.

How we spent the first €5000

Here’s an idea of the type of costs involved. This doesn’t include everything – there’s lots I didn’t get round to adding to this list, like tiles, grout, new fridge, kettle, toaster, decking, microwave, interior cladding for the bedroom, new tap, Ikea herb pot rail, etc.)

Ground prep & pluming €695.08

  • Concrete blocks €20.03
  • Diesel for digger €30
  • Gas cylinder and regulator €234
  • Pipe insulation €16.27
  • Pipe junction €9
  • Sewage fittings €12.5
  • Sewage pipe €87.83
  • Stone gravel mix €200
  • Waste water pipe and fittings €36
  • Water pipe €32
  • Cable ties €2.23
  • Concrete blocks €11.22
  • Sand and cement €4

Painting supplies €320.25

  • Primer €201.5
  • Sandpaper €3
  • Brushes €13
  • Fabric dust sheet €11.25
  • Masking tape €7
  • Paint brush set €7.5
  • Paint sleeves €52
  • Paint trays €14.5
  • Plastic dust sheets €10.5
  • Our paint was sponsored by Dulux

Interior finishes and fittings €3690.12

  • IKEA Mirror tiles €84
  • Kitchen shelf splitters €16
  • Kitchen worktop €270
  • LED bulb €2.49
  • Feature bulb (and a spare) for dining booth €24
  • Light feature cord €2.5
  • Knife magnet €11
  • Pine box crates for coffee table and under TV €80
  • Coffee table top €9
  • Sink €35
  • Sink fittings €13
  • Sofa €1000
  • Stove + fittings + installation €1620
  • TV bracket €20
  • Angle red deal pine for booth €5.93
  • Beading €67.2
  • Wooden floors €430

Household €411.76

  • 3 way adapter €2.49
  • 6 metre extension cord €9.99
  • Bathroom bin €10
  • Bathroom mirror €25
  • Bathroom toilet brush holder €10
  • Bins and lids x 2 €27
  • Storage boxes for under dining booth x 6 €9
  • Briquette holder €20
  • Cup hooks €1.98
  • Cutlery holder €1
  • Dishwashing brush €0.30
  • Dust pan and brush €2
  • Mini ironing board €5
  • Ottomon bed €258
  • Fire poker and brush set €30


That was the first €5k, and as I said, we didn’t stop there.

Mobile home living FAQ

Is the mobile home cold?  Where do I do my laundry? Read my mobile home living FAQ



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