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Avalon Building Systems Blog

Modular Homes are Energy Efficient and Chic

8 November 2012

Early snow was no problem for the Josifovski family, or for their new modular home. With their three children, the couple relish the extra slope time. Instead of waiting for their house to be finished, they can spend that time skiing and having fun.

After the house was delivered, it took 15 days for it to be completely done. It is an incredibly fast process.

The new four- bedroom modular house came with all the energy efficiency and chic "green" design the family desired – in a fraction of the time. Helping to keep the family warm in winter are double-thick insulated walls, or SIP panels.

"We custom-built our last home, " Josifovski said. "It was three years of hell with constant overruns and overtime. I became so convinced that modular homes are the right way to build."

Amid the slumping housing industry, the popularity of modular homes is growing. Among their selling points: Energy (and money) savings come built in.

At Avalon Building Systems, our modular homes are LEED Platinum-certified with Energy Star-rated appliances and SIP panels.

All of those options were installed at the factory. Situated on a lot, the house is then delivered in pieces and assembled in hours.

Think of the modules like big Legos, but they have to comply with all local building codes.

Because the homes are built in a factory, there's less construction waste and there's also more quality control.

Green technology tends to cost more. But by factory-installing those options, the final price tag comes down. And as more people become interested, these sustainable options become more affordable.

The largest market for modular homes may be baby boomers that are looking for a modern easy-care but sustainable home for retirement.

The speed of installation grabs many customers. Modular Homes can be completed in the factory in a few months. Meanwhile, the home site is prepared and construction permits finalized. Then, installation seems almost instantaneous.

People love the speed. You get a custom built home with all energy-efficient extras, but cut way down on the build time. The people who buy our homes want a nice house, they want it green and to work in a real economy – and they want it fast.

For more information, contact Avalon Building Systems.

Sacramento Bee

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Modular Homes are More Efficient and Cost Effective

2 November 2012

Modular homes are built using an engineered approach to produce buildings in a more efficient and cost effect method of home construction. Modular homes can deliver lower home prices per square foot depending on the design additions.

Instead of the old-fashioned construction method, most of the work is done at an off-site climate controlled factory. As each module is finished it is transported to the building site and assembled. The finishing touches are then completed and your new modular homes looks just like a stick built home, but better.

Modular construction projects have grown in popularity over the last 10 years. Why? Because modular construction offers both time and cost savings. The modules for the modular homes are built as if in an assembly line, which delivers much higher efficiency and quality. Because they are built inside a factory, there are no weather delays which and labor costs are reduced.

For more information on Modular homes and the modular construction process, contact Avalon Building Systems.

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Modular Home Construction Gains Appreciation

26 October 2012

Modular home construction builds a home almost entirely in a factory. The pieces are brought on trucks to their final destination, and the finishing touches can be done on-site. This could mean big cost savings in areas in the Northeast, where experts say construction costs are skyrocketing.
"Housing is becoming out of reach for too many," says New York Building Congress President Richard Anderson.

Building modular buildings, for residential and commercial use has been around for a number of years

The average savings can be 5% to 20% with modular construction, along with a whole lot of time, and the modular home business has been picking up a lot in the last several years.
Some of the increased business is because we're coming out of the recession and we're seeing more activity, but a lot of is it because modular homes are really catching on.

Modular construction might go a long way toward helping to keep the building industry competitive.

"Innovation in the construction industry is always important because we're the highest cost construction market in the country, and we are encouraging people to look for ways to economize, to look to do things differently, and in a better way," says Anderson.

For more information on modular home construction, contact Avalon Building Systems.

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So Many Options for Modular Homes

11 October 2012

These days, there are many modular construction options available that are green, beautiful, well-made, and often lower-cost. Modular homes can be modest year round homes, estates or vacation homes or modular additions.

Modular homes come in a wide range of sizes, from one bedroom spaces and small units to larger sized homes. They are also available in a wide variety of styles from traditional designs to  modern to completely custom designed. Most of the modular floor plans can be modified or customized.

Prefab homes have many benefits. They can be built more efficiently (e.g., less material waste), more quickly, with more precision and durability (i.e., higher quality), and they typically have more predictable costs (and often cost less) than site-built homes.

The levels of greenness vary among the following options, but all of them tout some green features.

For information on building a greener home, contact Avalon Building Systems.

Mother Earth News

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Modular Construction is Green Construction

5 October 2012

There are many benefits of modular homes which is causing them to gain in popularity. What are those benefits? They are cost efficient, time efficient, energy efficient and arguably more durable than traditional construction.

Modular homes are built off site. Modules are constructed and assembled in factories and are transported to the site to be assembled on the foundation. Kitchens, bedrooms and bathrooms are fully assembled, complete with arrangements for electrical wiring and plumbing then transported.

Modular homes are considered much more green than traditionally built homes. Modular homes are constructed with as much as 90% lesser waste than traditional onsite construction. This is because of the efficiency of factory construction. There is no compromise in the quality of construction or in the design of homes. Those who build a modular home can choose from 100’s of interior designs or they can custom design a floor plan.

Another feature that makes modular homes environmentally friendly are their recyclable and reusable nature. Modules that together form a house can be dismantled to be transported elsewhere, which is something a traditionally constructed home can never offer. You can literally relocate your house if you move.

Modular homes are highly energy efficient and cost-effective.  Modular houses are also much stronger than stick built homes. The parts that together constitute a house are constructed such that they survive the rigors of shipping and transportation.

Contact Avalon Building Systems for more information.

Greener Ideal

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Modular Homes are Becoming More and More Popular

28 September 2012

In the last few years, modular homes have been becoming more and more popular in Bismarck, ND, for good reason. Since their catastrophic flood, local contractors are so busy, and then there`s the time and cost of traditionally building a home. So some people are looking to buying modular homes instead.

This is a national trend. Many companies selling modular homes are growing to meet the demand of people who just don’t want to wait on contractors, or wait all that time while their house is being built. In today’s “immediate gratification” society, who want to wait that long for a newly built, custom designed home?  Many people are discovering that they are getting a better deal with modular construction.

Another advantage to modular homes is the ability to customize your home and not just the floor plans but with some of the details like the cabinetry, appliances, and even the type of flooring.

Modular home builders are doing all kinds of customization for people, by being so accommodating and adaptable, the modular construction market is quickly growing.
In Bismarck, flooded home owners are finding that modular homes area good alternative to rebuilding or renting.

Manufacturers of modular homes save money by purchasing supplies and appliances in bulk rather than for individual houses. That cost savings is often passed onto the new home buyer.

For more information on building a modular home in New England, contact Avalon Building Systems.


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Quality Homes in a Short Time Frame - Modular Construction

21 September 2012

New home construction is a costly and time-consuming undertaking. But one way to dodge the variables and get a quality home on a short timeline is with modular construction.

As opposed to the regular stick-build construction, where a building is erected on site, the modular approach to construction has each home built as an individual module in a climate-controlled factory, protected from the elements.

This is the major difference between modular homes and stick-built, modular homes have that protection. The largest percent of the construction of modular homes happens in a factory, where units are custom designed with a full kitchen, appliances, full cupboards and flooring.

So the majority of the work is done off site, and the modules are delivered to the site and assembled. On site, the homes are assembled, the drywall is finished, the painting is done, and all the finishing touches.

The indoor assembly allows construction teams to work year-round, increasing production speed significantly. The modules are then assembled together on site with a crane.

The key to modular construction in today’s market is the very, very tight labor market. It’s very tough to find good trades that are consistent and meet your standards. So when something can come to you almost half done, that allows a finished product a lot faster, that is key.

For more information on modular construction, contact Avalon Building Systems.

Leader Post

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Energy Efficient Homes Sell for More

13 September 2012

A new study involving an unusually large sample of 1.6 million homes found that, holding all other variables constant, a green certification label on a house adds an average of 9% to its selling value. Researchers also found something they call the “Prius effect”: Buyers in areas where consumer sentiment in support of conservation is relatively high—with a certain percentage of hybrid-auto registrations—are more willing to pay premiums for green-certified houses.

It has been a controversial question in the home real estate market for years: Is there extra green when you buy green? Do houses with lots of energy-saving and sustainability features sell for more than houses without them? If so, by how much?

The study found that green-certified houses sell for at least a modest premium over similar but less-efficient homes.

The study found no significant correlations between local utility rates and consumers’ willingness to pay premium prices for green-labeled homes. But it did find that in areas with more extreme temperatures, buyers are willing to pay more for the cost savings on energy that come with a green-rated property.

From their study’s 1.6 million home transactions, Kahn and Kok identified 4,321 dwellings that sold with Energy Star, LEED or GreenPoint Rated labels. They then ran analyses to determine how much green labeling contributed to the selling price, eliminating all other factors contained in the real estate records: locational effects, school districts, crime rates, time period of sale, views and amenities such as swimming pools.

The National Association of Home Builders has enthusiastically embraced labeling as a selling advantage for new houses. Buyers of such homes today are far more likely than purchasers of resale homes to find them rated as energy-efficient and environmentally friendly.

For more information on energy efficient, green construction of modular homes, contact Avalon Building Systems.

The Washington Post

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Modular Homes are Becoming More Popular in MA

6 September 2012

A couple months ago we shared with you a story about a modular home that was built in Wellesley. Today, we would like to share with you a story of a family who built a modular home in Natick.

With three children, this family needed a larger home. But they did not want to leave the neighborhood where their 3 young kids have grown up. They also didn’t want to spend a year living in an apartment while a new home was built on their property.

So the family opted for a modular home, which they estimated would limit their stay in a three-bedroom apartment.

"It’s definitely the wave of the future," said the dad, as he watched a crane lift sections of the roof and set them into place.

And this family is not alone. Builders said modular home production dropped along with the housing market several years ago, but has shown signs of growth in recent years as people look for cost-effective ways to build a new home.

In Massachusetts, the state approved plans for almost 400 one- and two-family homes last year. As of last week, it had approved 297 in 2012, on pace for a 3 to 5% growth from 2011, said Rob Anderson, of Public Safety’s building division.

"I think there’s a lot of reasons they’re growing in popularity," Anderson said. "Manufacturers will essentially design (a home) to suit your needs. It used to be years back kind of one size fits all."

Anderson said his department receives fewer complaints about modular homes than conventional stick-built houses.

"They’re built in a controlled environment," he said. "You’re not dealing with subzero temperatures. In theory, you should get a good product and in most instances you do."

Speed of construction and price are other deciding factors.

Manufacturers of modular homes can reduce costs because the structures are mostly built in an assembly line process and the manufacturer can buy products in bulk.

The Natick family said they hope to save $30 to $50 per square foot on the project, which is about 75% complete now that its six modules have been installed.

A modular home typically offers 12% savings over a conventional home.

Each section of a modular home is built to withstand sometimes hundreds of miles of travel, so the finished product is strong.

"It’s amazing because once someone puts it together, you wouldn’t know if it was stick-built or modular," Bellingham Building Inspector Stuart LeClaire said.

Local inspectors look at work performed at the site, but much of the electrical, plumbing and other systems are reviewed at the manufacturer by third-party inspectors approved by the state.

Meanwhile the old home in Natick was demolished in early August. The new home is made primarily of six rectangular boxes and shipped to Natick on 52-foot long trailers.

"It’s amazing," said the dad on Wednesday as he watched crews installed the final pieces of the roof. "Yesterday was a foundation. Today we have a home."

For more information on building a modular home in Massachusetts, contact Avalon Building Systems.

MetroWest Daily News

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Environmentally Friendly Modular Homes

30 August 2012

Modular homes are modern, environmentally friendly homes for people seeking more efficient homes that are high quality, custom designed and more quickly built.

As people become more environmentally conscious and want clean, simple design there has been a rise in the use of modular construction to produce modern homes with high environmental efficiency.

Modular homes are well designed houses with a low carbon footprint.  Prefabricated homes are better, quicker and cheaper than site built homes.

At Avalon Building Systems, our modular homes are LEED certified. The LEED certification provides verification and certification of how the modular homes are built. This makes them more energy efficient. This allows you to save money (and time) in the construction process, and save money after you move in on home energy bills.

The use of Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs) for use in building walls, ceilings, floors, and roofs provides superior and uniform insulation compared to traditionally built homes offering energy savings of 12%–14%.

For more information on energy efficient, LEED certified modular homes, contact Avalon Building Systems.

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