Why Modular Building Systems are Superior

Modular building systems offer several advantages over traditional construction. Modular building systems combine engineering know-how and factory-production techniques to design and build more efficiently and with greater quality control. When done well, this efficiency translates into a better product at a lower cost.

Modular building systems are not new. Precut homes have been built in the US since before the 1900s. Americans began buying houses out of mail-order catalogs as soon as it was possible to ship the materials across the country by railroad. The use of production line techniques also increased after World War II and was responsible in large part to alleviating the housing shortage that developed after the war.

Even stick-built houses today use a growing number of mass-produced, factory-built components so modular building systems are playing a more prevalent role in home building with each passing year. The main reason for this shift is that the factory environment helps to organize the construction process. By using automatic assembly-line techniques, factories assemble component parts more efficiently and with greater consistency in product quality. And that’s true with modular building systems whether you’re building components such as windows or an entire houses.

When you think about it virtually all the top products in the world are manufactured in factories whether its computers, appliances, automobiles, or planes. In fact, consumers and industry professional in Japan and the Scandinavian countries of Europe consider modular building systems superior to site-built construction and it may not be long until the rest of the world agrees.

Modular building systems have been slow to catch on in the US but in the 1980s sales of modular homes did show a significant increase. American consumers steadfastly hold on to the notion that stick-built homes made on site are superior to homes constructed using modular building systems. The strange thing is that they think exactly the opposite when it comes to appliances, automobiles and many other things. They would object strongly to a car or a washing machine built in the backyard with materials exposed to weather and no one watching over the assembly process. Its strange but true.

Apparently Americans are finally starting to see the errors of their thinking judging by recent home sales data. Since 2000, sales of modular homes has grown by nearly 35 percent while sales of traditionally constructed homes barely increased 15 percent. In fact, many traditional builders have converted to modular homes due to a lack of qualified construction workers. As the population ages, older construction workers are retiring and the younger generation has chosen less physically demanding careers.

This should be another consideration for people deciding what type of home to build. A recent study by the National Association of Home Builders whose members are primarily stick builders found that two out of three builders is now forced to hire construction workers with skill levels below what is expected in order to have a crew to build the home. Do you really want to settle for second best when building a new home? Consider taking advantage of modular building systems for lower cost and higher quality.