The Modular Process
Modular homes and buildings are constructed out of many assembled cubicles, called modular sections or modular boxes. These modular sections are constructed off-site, transported to the building parcel, and built into a finished home. The everyday house or commercial building can be constructed by simply stacking and manipulating modular sections. Instead of building these sections on land, the sections are built in a state-of-the-art factory and transported to the property.
Modular vs. Site-Built Properties
The framing, roofing, plumbing, cabinetry, interior finish, heating, air conditioning, and electric wiring are exactly what you would expect in a conventional site-built property. The significant difference is the location of construction. As its name suggests, site-built properties are built right on-site, exposing the material to inclement weather, vandalism, and other adverse conditions. In contrast, modular properties are constructed in climate-controlled facilities, which protects the materials from degradation. The homes are then transported from the facility to the site, which requires modular companies to implement several different reinforcement measures (such as gluing and screwing of building material) to ensure sturdiness during travel. Moreover, modular companies must comply with interstate building codes thereby resulting in stronger, higher quality properties.
The costs for modular construction are also lower than site-built construction for two main reasons: 1) building material is purchased in bulk and 2) construction is handled in an efficient, assembly-like manner. This translates into an average 20% savings for modular built properties.
Modular homes and buildings can also be constructed in as little as 12 weeks. This is because modular homes are built indoors using full-time indoor crews. Therefore, modular companies do not suffer the downsides of subcontractor no shows, bad weather, and other common time concerns.
The Future of Building
Modular construction is truly the future of building. Currently, all construction sites whether residential or commercial use pre-fabricated components. These components include: pre-hung doors, roof trusses, interior moldings, drywall, kitchen and bath cabinets, windows, heat sources, roof shingles, siding, fireplaces, flooring, and even room-by-room units. The only issue is how much actual work will be done at the site.
Pre-constructed homes have actually been fabricated in the United States since the 1880s. Several progressive builders began to improve upon this process around the mid-to-late twentieth century and continued to enhance the craft until there was no recognizable difference between site-built and modular properties.
Despite the overt benefits described above, many conventional companies are reluctant to learn and invest in alternative building methods because the savings would predominantly benefit the customer. If such companies do not know how to build modular homes, they will not inform customers about the inherent benefits. This has left an opportunity for seasoned builders to learn and hone the craft and show customers why modular construction is superior in design, build, and efficiency. Modular construction is now 25% of the building industry and continuously growing as consumers become more familiar with its benefits.