While modular construction is slowly catching on in the commercial building sector, the situation in housing is a bit different but promising in its own way. Due to the relations between construction industries and companies, trends going on in a different sector of building can affect other sectors. Emerging trends in the housing industry could affect commercial construction trends and vice versa, due to new technologies and methodologies devised in a sector being adopted in another sector, which is why we are interested in what is going on in the housing industry at this moment.
Modular construction is slowly catching on in the housing industry as well as the commercial industry, for similar reasons in commercial construction, and different reasons as well.
Similar to commercial construction, housing construction is seeing a new wave of frugal, post-recessionary buyers looking to cut down on costs and improve efficiency. As we talked about before, downsizing is a big deal right now across construction industries. People are looking to save not only on rent but on energy and maintenance costs. You will hear the term “McMansion” again and again when talking about building trends that have fallen out of favor. No longer do buyers want grand, spacious houses and credit card debt. Buyers want small, manageable, sustainable properties in which they can live within their means. One architect comments astutely on this very trend.
This also brings up the subject of the booming green movement. Green building is growing tremendously with all of the other green technologies as more and more consumers are demanding green-friendly product. Modular technology is inherently green, as we’ve discussed at length before. It is this frugality and concern for the environment that are attracting buyers to alternate construction methods such as modular building. An interesting article in the New York Times describes this trend as well.
Another reason for the increasing popularity of modular building in the housing industry is a bit different than commercial reasons. This reason has to do with aesthetics. Granted, aesthetics are important to the commercial realm as well, but functionality usually gains primacy in that realm. Of course, functionality has become very important in the housing realm also, but buyers also want their houses to look good.
Before technological advances and architect interests, modular houses were seen to be lacking in character and quality. Modular houses (or earlier known as prefabricated houses) would be cheaply stamped out of factories in uniform style. Now as some architects are looking into modular homes and their potential, we are beginning to see more personable homes of varying styles.
So for these reasons, modular construction is becoming highly desirable in the housing industry. The more people use modular construction in the various industries, the more the word gets out and the more the practice becomes the standard. That works for us.