Prefabricated homes: Design ideas, inspiration & pictures

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Definition of prefabricated homes

Prefab homes are the rage nowadays and Canada is no exception in this regard. There are multiple reasons for its growing popularity. Prefabs are easy to order and set up. It does not need lengthy time for planning and then constructing. They are considerably more affordable than the custom designed houses. Many of the materials used for buildings like these are environmentally viable.  

Origin of prefab homes

While history is replete with examples of prefab structures, their modern versions are product of last 70 years or so. The practice of owning manufactured home has started and gained momentum in North America. In Canada, this type of homes is now being set up nearly everywhere. Their low cost and easy availability make them an irresistible option for many.

Construction of prefabs

Construction of modular houses is done in a factory setting. Sometimes the entire structure is designed and manufactured at a faraway location before being transported to the different parts of the country. Many of the modern prefabs are now being built in Europe and Asia.

Most of the times are modules of such buildings are brought from different locations and assembled on site. Sometimes only a part of the entire structured come as prefabricated. Many reputed companies have now started designing prefabricated structures. You can also choose or alter some parts of the design to suit your needs.   

Phases, ease, how-to

While a custom designed single family dwelling costs anywhere between CAD 300,000 and 2 million, prefabricated buildings cost a fraction of that amount. By paying as little as CAD 75,000 you can own a comfortable prefabricated dwelling. Most these houses come with a warranty of 10 years or more.

To order your modular home, talk to one of the reputed builders in your area. You can check out the floor plans, specifications, materials, delivery time etc and then decide to place an order with a builder of your choice. Make sure you have finalised buying the vacant plot on which your prefab dwelling is about to stand.

Protective measures against possible natural disasters

If you live in an area that experiences frequent flash floods, heavy rain, blizzard etc then you will have to choose a structure that should be able to withstand the onslaughts of nature. The modular structures may not always be sturdy enough to meet the requirements of the climate in your area. So make a special mention of the issue you frequently face or may face in future. In case the place is new to you, take advices from friends, neighbours or local experts who have an experience about the matter. In any case, make sure your modular dwelling comes fitted with fire protection. It is capable of weathering storm and has lightning protection installed.  

How to choose a prefab house and how long does it take to build

Choose a structure that is capable of meeting your needs. If you are searching a prefab house for four, make sure the structure has provisions for the same. Study the floor plans in detail and suggest alterations when possible. Give paramount importance to comfort and longevity of the structure.

Buildings like these take up anywhere between 2 weeks and 3 months to set up on site. Many home builders nowadays promise a bespoke prefab structure. Understand, such process may take longer than usual. The delivery may take up to 6 months and the cost would be far higher than the average price of such houses.

Legal issues that may arise when building a prefabricated home

Building prefabs are not permitted everywhere. Check out if your locality falls under such exclusions. You will need a permit to own a prefab abode. Mobile homes constructed earlier than 1977 are not permitted in many places. Your house plan also needs to be approved before construction. The structure will also be inspected before you are permitted to occupy it permanently.

This type of housing is not permitted in some communities. Explain how an interested person can find out about this

Pros & cons

The quick setup time and affordability are the two biggest reasons driving the popularity of prefabricated dwellings. But, as you have seen already, prefab structures also come in trendy styles. So if you are in the mood to flaunt the latest architectural style, you may as well do so. One of the biggest drawbacks of low cost structures is lack of flexibility in planning and design. The materials chosen for the structure may not always be to your liking. To avoid such disappoints, go over the details of the offering scrupulously.  

Maintaining & costs

The cost of maintenance is at par with any other house of same size and design in your locality. You will have to do periodic inspection of the basic structure and carry out maintenance of the frames, exterior and interior paints etc.

Which types of professionals are able to help you

To help decorate the interior of your home, do take suggestions from experienced interior designers. You will find reputed designers here who will gladly help you in your project. To make any permanent changes of the interiors, it would be best to discuss your needs with your modular home builder.