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Modern prefab housing.

Discussion in 'Fine Living, Home, Design & Auto' started by Bergdorf Goodwill, Jan 31, 2007.

  1. GQgeek

    GQgeek Well-Known Member

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    Did I mention, I work at this firm? [​IMG] (yeah, I guess I did...)

    So we can count on a discount for forum members? [​IMG]
     
  2. Bergdorf Goodwill

    Bergdorf Goodwill Well-Known Member

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    Your ex-girlfriend searched the internets for an hour or two looking at all the various prefabricated homes for sale around the world, and then selected the ones that she found aesthetically pleasing or uniquely designed?

    She sounds hot.

    [​IMG]


    Very much so. Little Puerto Rican thing -- muy picante!

    Or something.
     
  3. faustian bargain

    faustian bargain Well-Known Member

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    So we can count on a discount for forum members? [​IMG]

    right...i don't even think I would get a discount. [​IMG]
     
  4. GQgeek

    GQgeek Well-Known Member

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    You know I'm joking. Not like I posted my paypal account or anything.... [​IMG]

    Seriously though, I'm glad this thread was started. I'll be buying a place in a couple of years time and I hadn't even considered pre-fab. I always thought it was cheapo trailer park kinda stuff, but some of the designs I've seen are incredible. They're much better designed than the typical 3-4000 sq. ft houses you see going up in most places.

    I'm curious, can you tell me how much more expensive it would be, on average, to have one of your 2500sq.ft houses designed & built from scratch by an architect? Is it 25% or 50% more for a similar design and quality of materials & construction?
     
  5. faustian bargain

    faustian bargain Well-Known Member

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    It sortof depends on your site conditions, how close you are to the factory (site prep and shipping are expensive), and local construction costs. But generally, I think a designed-from-scratch house would be a little more expensive, although probably under 25%. Where you start to save money is in construction time. A good quality 'stick-built' house will take maybe a year or a year and a half, from groundbreaking to move-in, where a pre-fab will take maybe 6 months. That's 6 months to a year less of construction loan interest piling up, as well as the overlap with your existing home mortgage or rent payments. Costs for the factory-built portion of the house are very predictable, whereas custom homes tend to bust budget and/or schedule.

    ...not to mention you're talking about iteratively improved design for the pre-fab standard house, versus a lot more reinventing-the-wheel type inefficiency for the custom-from-scratch house. you can get more bang for your buck with pre-fab, in my opinion.

    plus our houses (and some of the others) are very 'green' without sacrificing comfort.

    /Andrew - has the bitter aftertaste of sales pitch in his mouth


    ....
    I'm curious, can you tell me how much more expensive it would be, on average, to have one of your 2500sq.ft houses designed & built from scratch by an architect? Is it 25% or 50% more for a similar design and quality of materials & construction?
     
  6. Luc-Emmanuel

    Luc-Emmanuel Well-Known Member

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    There have been several 'prototype' prefab and/or modular efforts, especially in the modernist milieu from early 1900's on, but it hasn't been until recently that well-designed, prefab modular was made a reality. I think it has something to do with economies of scale being less of a factor to the bottom line (which is what made trailer homes so crappy, i think), as well as the recent viability of mass customization. The market is still in its infancy but is (we're hoping) set for pretty big expansion.
    Indeed. One could also mention the work of Jean ProuvÃ[​IMG] in the early 50s with his prefabricated metal houses (e.g. Tropical House project).

    !luc
     
  7. Bergdorf Goodwill

    Bergdorf Goodwill Well-Known Member

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    Indeed. One could also mention the work of Jean ProuvÃ[​IMG] in the early 50s with his prefabricated metal houses (e.g. Tropical House project).

    !luc


    Lustron homes! Columbus!
     
  8. itsstillmatt

    itsstillmatt Well-Known Member

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    Indeed. One could also mention the work of Jean ProuvÃ[​IMG] in the early 50s with his prefabricated metal houses (e.g. Tropical House project).

    !luc

    One of the strangest experiences that I have had regarding architecture and design was seeing Prouve tables at the Paris Furniture Biennale selling for 300k Euros. It is such the opposite theory that he worked by that I had to laugh at all of the people swooning over them and remarking how great they would look in "the house in Capri".
     
  9. LabelKing

    LabelKing Well-Known Member

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    I'd buy one of those pre-fab houses to plop down in the jungles of India, next to some palace ruin, a BMW 507 running dust trails around the region.
     
  10. alflauren

    alflauren Well-Known Member

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    Did I mention, I work at this firm? [​IMG] (yeah, I guess I did...)

    I really like those designs. They were in Wired magazine about a year ago, no?
     
  11. faustian bargain

    faustian bargain Well-Known Member

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    I really like those designs. They were in Wired magazine about a year ago, no?

    I believe so. I've only been there a few months, don't know all the publications. They've (we've) been in Dwell, Sunset, even recently had a couple pages in Smithsonian. (There is a portion of an MKD house on display at the Smithsonian currently.)
     
  12. brescd01

    brescd01 Well-Known Member

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    The problem with pre-fab is that it does not improve upon what the run-of-the-mill building industry supplies, which is well-constructed houses with finishing problems. The details are in the finish and no one has standardized this or simplified it. Furthermore, I have never seen pre-fab townhouses, and I am a city mouse.

    Dwell, so far as I know, is the main magazine to follow developments in pre-fab, they even offer their own branded pre-fab. I just bought a 23 year-old house (my first, and hopefully, my last) and the number of superficial renovations it required and their staggering cost (~$67/sq ft, the uncertainty is in the area not the cost) was just amazing. Down the street, the McMansion specialist Toll Brothers has a development of new houses that they are building as they sell them, and already I hear terrible things about finish problems (ie floors, doors, etc NOT concrete, foundation, beams, etc).
     
  13. johnapril

    johnapril Well-Known Member

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    I'd buy one of those pre-fab houses to plop down in the jungles of India, next to some palace ruin, a BMW 507 running dust trails around the region.

    You'd catch malaria so fast your toe blood would jump out of your toes.
     
  14. LabelKing

    LabelKing Well-Known Member

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    You'd catch malaria so fast your toe blood would jump out of your toes.
    I'm planning to indulge my inner Howard Hughes.
     
  15. Bergdorf Goodwill

    Bergdorf Goodwill Well-Known Member

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    The problem with pre-fab is that it does not improve upon what the run-of-the-mill building industry supplies, which is well-constructed houses with finishing problems. The details are in the finish and no one has standardized this or simplified it. Furthermore, I have never seen pre-fab townhouses, and I am a city mouse.

    Dwell, so far as I know, is the main magazine to follow developments in pre-fab, they even offer their own branded pre-fab. I just bought a 23 year-old house (my first, and hopefully, my last) and the number of superficial renovations it required and their staggering cost (~$67/sq ft, the uncertainty is in the area not the cost) was just amazing. Down the street, the McMansion specialist Toll Brothers has a development of new houses that they are building as they sell them, and already I hear terrible things about finish problems (ie floors, doors, etc NOT concrete, foundation, beams, etc).


    It's typically cheaper and has fewer ugliness issues. Plus you end up with names like "The Loftcube," which I find a lot easier to deal with than buying "The Madison" or whatever from some schlock building company.
     
  16. phooi

    phooi Well-Known Member

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    Has anyone seen these? LivingHomes These are Ray Kappe designed, environmentally friendly, and the first was built in Santa Monica. Definitely something I would consider when I do get a house.
     
  17. fg0d

    fg0d Well-Known Member

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    I've seen these houses on top of the roofs of buildings in major cities. Can anyone put shed some light on getting the roof rights to a building? [​IMG] edit: I'm looking into getting into architecture in the future. I just have a passion for it.
     
  18. faustian bargain

    faustian bargain Well-Known Member

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    I've seen these houses on top of the roofs of buildings in major cities. Can anyone put shed some light on getting the roof rights to a building? [​IMG]

    edit: I'm looking into getting into architecture in the future. I just have a passion for it.


    if you own the building, you own the roof. however there are two major hurdles to adding anything on the top of your building.
    1. structural - you have to make sure the existing building will support something new on the roof - if not, you have to beef up the structure somehow.
    2. planning and zoning department - most jurisdictions will have something to say about what you can and cannot add to your building.

     
  19. Stazy

    Stazy Well-Known Member

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    Introducing the Glassic Soho. One Trailor, hold the trash... [​IMG]
     
  20. LabelKing

    LabelKing Well-Known Member

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    I don't know why people are seeing this as an huge innovation since Eero Saarinen designed a prefabricated house back in the '50s, which was of aluminum, I believe.

    Truly, history repeats especially in issues of design.
     

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