Site Preparation for Our New Modular Cabin

Site Preparation for Our New Modular Cabin

The Cabin Planning Guide from Westwood Cabins lists three phases and we are nearly at the end of the last phase, site work to get our property ready for the home.

Westwood Cabins suggested a local contractor, Taylor Fowler. He had helped with a cabin in Brevard. The name sounded vaguely familiar, so I looked him up on Facebook. He knows a lot of people we know. And he had done some work for my mom a couple of years ago.

Taylor Fowler could put in the driveway, grading and the foundation and we could pull all the permits and hire the rest of the trades. Or he can be our contractor, pull the permits and supervise the work. Tempting as it is to micromanage, Cliff (my husband) has a job and contractor is not his job. Taylor will be our contractor.

Contact a contractor for :
(including but not limited to)
• Obtaining required permits
• Utility access and hook-ups
• Driveway
• Foundation (including anchoring to cabin)
• Installation of transition trim to cover connection of house to foundation
• Porches, steps, landscaping, etc.

Westwood Cabins Cabin Planning Guide

We could have been preparing the foundation for the cabin while it was being built, but things just happened way faster than we expected. The cabin is done and we need to finish getting the site prepared.

Earlier we went out with pink flags and string, measuring the lot lines, the set backs and deciding where to place the cabin. I was surprised to realize that 52 feet is longer than you think. The cabin is the same length as our house is now. And once it has a porch on one side and a carport on the other side, it is 40 or so feet wide. That is really a bigger footprint than I was imagining.

Clearing the rest of the field to prepare for the contractor

Cliff has been working on clearing the field the cabin will go in. Now we need to finish it up.

Clearing Brush where our cabin will go

I sure am glad he bought the old pickup truck. It is sure a lot easier than hauling all of that brush by hand. And I am glad a lot of  the plants have died back. There is a lot less brush in the winter than there was when we started.

Footers for Westwood Modular Cabin

There is still a lot left to do. We need the footers, a foundation, utilities, a driveway…

Lay Foundation
• This step will be handled by your contractor but we will work closely with them to ensure proper fitting.*

This is a photo from Westwood Cabins Facebook page. I think this cabin is smaller than the one we are putting in.

Foundation for Westwood Modular Cabin

Our foundation will be 40″ high, higher than this one.

We also need a water service line, sewer service line and electrical service.

Prepare Utilities
• Water/sewer lines stubbed inside of the foundation walls, ready for final hookup once home is set.
• After home is set and the building department gives approval, final power can be installed.

Clearing where the driveway will go

We also need a driveway. And we need to be sure that the truck delivering the cabin can reach the foundation.

Confirm Clear Entry for Delivery/Set Date
• Double check with Westwood Cabins for proper delivery prep & requirements.

The cabin is 16-feet wide at edges of the roof, so we need to make sure the truck has 16-feet clearance to get in. That is not a problem.

Placing the Westwood Cabin on the Foundation

How much space do we need?

If there is enough space, the cabin can be slid into place from the truck. The truck and trailer are 60-feet long.

Cabin slid into place by truck

We want to be sure the truck has enough room to put the cabin into place. There has to be at least 60-feet available on one side of the foundation to be able to back it up and slide it off.

Cabin set in place with a crane

If there is not enough room, we will need a crane. And I do not want to have to pay for a crane.

If there is not 60-feet on one end of the foundation, we will need a crane to place the cabin on the foundation.

Westwood Modular Cabin
Placed on foundation

Then the water, power and sewer are connected.

Utility hook-ups
• As soon as the home is set, the septic and water supply can be connected.
• Once approval from the building department has been obtained, power company can be called for final power hookup

The plumbing is all finished inside the cabin, but needs to be connected to city water and sewer after it is delivered.

Your prefabricated cabin home or office space will be prepared on the inside for electric and plumbing (depending on the model). As a customer, however, you will need the assistance of a licensed professional to complete the utility hookup to the building.

We also need a porch or at least a landing for each door to get a certificate of occupancy. You can’t get the power turned on until has passed this final inspection.

Porch and step add-ons (optional)
• This would be handled completely by you and your contractor.

So, there are a lot of additional costs that are not included in the price of any modular home.

In addition to the cost of your cabin, you may incur costs for site prep, foundation, utility hook-ups, porches, and steps.

We had gotten some prices earlier from other modular companies, so we were not surprised.

Modular Home Setup Costs (different company)

The new cabin is smaller, but that doesn’t really make a difference for a lot of this. And this doesn’t even include a driveway.

3-Bedroom, 2-Bath 1,546 Square Foot Off-frame Modular Construction and Setup Costs >

*All quotes are from Westwood Cabins Cabin Planning Guide.

The cabin is from Westwood Cabins. You can see more photos and floor plans at and