The Pros and Cons of Prefab Housing
Prefabrication isn’t new, however the market for prefabricated homes has grown significantly over the past few years, with 15,000 homes being built each year. Prefab housing provides a simpler, faster and safer way to build a house.
At Roofspace Solutions, we supply a complete prefabricated housing solution that combines quality, speed and safety, also known as i-House. That’s why, as prefab housing experts, we’ve put together this guide to help you learn more about the pros and cons before you take the plunge.
What is a Prefab House?
Prefab, also known as prefabrication, is a type of construction method that has been around for almost a century now. Compared to a conventionally built home, which is constructed entirely onsite, prefabricated homes take less time to build. A prefabricated home is a type of housing that is manufactured off-site in advance. At Roofspace Solutions, our i-House product is manufactured off-site and can be installed to a watertight property shell in as little as just five days (for the standard house type).
There are three main types of prefabricated houses: manufactured, kit and modular.
Manufactured Prefab House
A manufactured home is built in a factory in sections which are then pieced together and brought to the site as a complete unit, or in some cases, multiple pieces – just like our i-House solution. The i-House solution consists of inner leaves of external cavity walls, separating walls, floors, lintels, cavity closures, and insulation for a complete housing solution.The i-House solution can be combined with i-Roof, or fitted with traditional roof trusses.
Kit homes are becoming increasingly popular among self-builders. This type of prefabricated home is pre-designed and prefabricated off-site. A kit home is usually brought to the site flat packed – like the self-build homes that our sister company, Scotframe supplies. With hundreds of style options to choose from and the freedom to completely customise your own home, Scotframe manufactures and supplies high-quality kit packages to match any unique design.
Modular Prefab House
A modular home is very similar to a traditionally constructed home, however it provides a much quicker turnaround. Modular homes are made up of pre-assembled pieces (modules) which are put together onsite.
How Much Does a Prefab House Cost?
According to Checkatrade, a three-bedroom home without labour costs, prefabricated and delivered to the construction site will cost around £1,750 per sq metre. However, the cost of a prefabricated home depends on a variety of factors:
- The size
- The number of bedrooms
- The style
- Labour costs
The Pros and Cons of a Prefabricated House
Prefabricated homes are incredibly energy efficient, they’re also fast to construct, but the different parts of the house can often be costly to transport. Let’s explore the advantages and disadvantages of a prefabricated home in further detail.
Prefabricated homes are incredibly energy efficient, reducing the cost of your client’s monthly energy bills.
Prefab homes are designed with energy efficiency in mind, often adhering to strict design guidelines. Prefabricated homes are extremely airtight, minimising energy loss and reducing the cost of heating and cooling the home.
Most prefab houses are assembled offsite, so the time it takes to construct the home is considerably shorter than that of a traditional house. Prefabricated homes arrive onsite partially constructed so if you have a tight deadline, this is the quickest construction method available to you.
Building a prefab home generally costs a lot less than building a stick-built (traditional) home. Prefabricated homes require less labour, reducing overall costs. The parts of a prefabricated home are much cheaper too, as less materials are needed.
With traditional homes there’s often a lot of waste after construction, which ends up in landfill. Prefabricated homes are built in a factory where any waste is recycled. This makes prefab homes much better for the environment than the traditional home.
At Roofspace Solutions, we continuously aim to preserve the environment, reducing the amount of waste we produce. We work with our suppliers to put sustainability plans in place, so you can rest assured our products are made with eco-friendly methods from start to finish.
Transportation costs can be expensive for prefabricated houses, as the large parts are often difficult to move from place to place. If you’re planning on building in a rural area, the cost of transportation may be more expensive.
It’s important to have a knowledgeable contractor on your team when assembling a prefabricated home. Without an experienced builder, it is possible for the home to be assembled incorrectly which can be expensive to fix. At Roofspace Solutions, we have a team of highly-skilled and fully-trained professionals that will effectively manage your i-House project from start to finish, so you can rest easy knowing everything is taken care of.
While there are now many financing options available for prefab houses, you will still need to pay for the cost of the home in instalments before you sell it or allow someone to move in. It is important to note that paying more upfront will save you money in interest, so it’s often wise to avoid finance schemes where possible.
High-Quality Prefabricated Homes
At Roofspace Solutions, we specialise in manufacturing sustainable prefabricated housing, creating high quality, affordable homes to facilitate your development project.
Our collaboration with H+H has allowed us to offer a complete watertight property shell, also known as i-House, in as little as just one week. Managed from start to finish by our fully-trained install team, i-House combines quality, speed and safety with innovative design. Offering excellent thermal performance, i-House is a leading choice for house builders nationwide.