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Prefab homes: essential knowledge before you buy

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The Edge Modern houses by Boutique Modern Ltd Modern
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When a self-build project appeals to you but the huge budgets and long time-scales aren't at the top of your want list, why not think about another option? With a prefab home you can still get exactly what you want but in a fraction of the time and, more often than not, for a much smaller price.

With accurate measurements and dimensions sent to a specialist construction company, your new home could be manufactured offsite, delivered and erected in no time, but don't think that they have to be dull or old fashioned looking! Prefab homes can be architecturally ground-breaking and beautiful but before you decide to take the plunge, acquaint yourself with all the information that we think you'll need to take into account!

How much will it cost?

ÁBATON Arquitectura


ÁBATON Arquitectura

Naturally, the price of a prefab home will vary depending on a number of factors, but in general, they are thought to be cheaper than erecting a home from scratch, on-site. 

Of course, size will be a major consideration, but so will the building materials used, country of manufacture and company that you hire to put your home together. The smaller and simpler the design, the less money it should cost, but never forget that you will have land purchases to account for and requisite planning permission permits as well.

How quickly will it go up?

This house, from Urban, really shows how much potential a prefab home can have and we know you won't think of this as old fashioned or untrendy. In fact, we are willing to bet that you see this house the same way we do; as a stunning piece of architecture that so happens to have also gone up in a short space of time.

Simple prefab designs can be completed in just a few days after all the panels have been delivered to site, but it is the panel construction itself that takes the most time, usually a matter of weeks. From design through to manufacture and construction, a prefab home can take just a few short months to complete and considering traditional builds can take upwards of a year, we think this is amazing!

How much maintenance will it require?

Lucky 4 Ranch Rustic style houses by Uptic Studios Rustic
Uptic Studios

Lucky 4 Ranch

Uptic Studios

As with any house, a prefab home will require a certain amount of maintenance, but as long as it has been initially constructed in accordance to building regulations and acceptable standards, you shouldn't have to invest more time than you would in any other property. The only exception to this could be wooden homes, as they will always need to be treated to prevent damage or rot setting in.

Everything you need to do to keep a regularly constructed home in tip top condition, you'll also need to embrace within a prefab home, but the manufacturers of your particular model would be able to advise you of any specific tasks that your home would need you to take on to ensure its longevity.

What material should I build it from?

When you think about which materials you should be building your prefab home from, the size of the property itself needs to be a deciding factor. If you are keen to have multiple bedrooms and social areas, then naturally, you will be keen to use a cost-effective building material in order to free up more of your budget for finishing work.

Timber and concrete are the two most common materials used, with concrete being the cheaper option. It is easier to work with and offers not only insulating properties, but also strength, which means it is frequently the more popular choice. Wood, however, offers warmth and a more natural/rustic feel, so your aesthetic preferences and budget will need to combine to make this decision!

What styles can I choose from?

You might think that a prefab home means that design choices are limited, but you'd be totally wrong! With a talented architectural team and an open minded prefab panel manufacturing company on side, you could find that new, exciting ideas are absolutely possible.

We love this one-story, boxy design, but funky multiple floor options are attainable too. If you haven't heard of Huf houses, now is the time to look into them, so you can be inspired by all the fantastic shapes and styles they have made easy to order. You'll be blown away!

What interior schemes would work?

Modern houses by HAUS Modern

With a prefab home erected and completed, you might wonder what type of interior will work best and the answer is exceptionally simple; whatever you want! Don't see prefab houses as any different to standard homes!

Yes, they can be cheaper, easier and faster to construct, but that shouldn't impact on the way you choose to decorate the inside. Potentially the only impact the style of house will make, is freeing up some valuable budget to allow you to add some luxury touches!

For more prefab inspiration, take a look at this Ideabook: Kit Houses You'll Love To Assemble. We just know you will be staggered by what is possible!

Would you ever be tempted to build a prefab house? If not, what are you main reservations about them? We'd love to know!
Whitton Drive by GK Architects Ltd Modern

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