Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Anyone for a prefab? are they mortgageable?

Pretek 'house factory' to create 400 jobs

Wigan-based Pretek Precision Homes makes energy-efficient, sustainable houses and is looking to win contracts with housing associations and private developers. It is already in negotiations to supply homes for at least two developments in Greater Manchester. Pretek's factory in Blackburn will have the capacity to build more than 3,000 new homes a year. The basic structure of the homes, predominantly made of wood, are put together in the factory before being delivered to construction sites where they are assembled and clad with bricks. It hopes to capitalise on new European building regulations aimed at making all new homes sustainable and zero carbon by 2016.

Posted by mark @ 11:16 AM (2592 views)
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13 thoughts on “Anyone for a prefab? are they mortgageable?

  • This looks and sounds similar in principle to the IKEA offering in the North East of England see http://www.boklok.com/UK/

    What I found difficult to understand was that whilst it was deemed affordable housing in reality buyers needed to stump up over £125k for a flat pack property in one of the least desirable parts of the Newcastle-Gateshead area.

    Plenty of previous debate on this topic on HPC including http://www.housepricecrash.co.uk/newsblog/2010/06/blog-more-news-from-planet-zog-29189.php

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  • This type of building os very common in the USA, they will actually build the factory as a “temp” next to the housing estate and build inside then move each house to the plot, I have seen this in Colorado, it is very useful when there is bad weather.

    however british banks do not like to lend for anything other than standard construction, yet looking around the world bricks is not so common, why british banks have to be difficult like this is beyond me, wood houses can outlast anyones lifespan if built correctly

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  • British banks have no problem with houses like this or any other kind of timber framed house.

    The banks take their guidance from three bodies (BRE, CML, NHBC). The BRE introduced a new standard for pre-fab houses in 2004 and the CML approved the new standard. As long as they are built to the standards detailed in their handbooks, the NHBC has no problems with them whatsoever.

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  • Let’s hope they can sustain their business on the amount of building plots that are available.

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  • mark wadsworth says:

    I think it is a splendid idea. That way when you buy a house it is absolutely crystal clear that the house itself isn’t worth much, you’re actually paying for land/location.

    Further, what’s the point in having houses that last for ever? We’d be a lot better of if we built wooden houses that lasted a few decades and then everything gets ripped down and something else built, maybe higher density, maybe lower density, maybe industrial, whatever. England is not a museum!

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  • mw: I understand where you are coming from but the pre-fab houses in this article will, if maintained properly, last for hundreds of years. It is cheaper and more efficient to pre fabricate certain elements of a house, in an off site factory. They are in fact, often higher quality than standard houses because the ‘fit’ and error rates are better. The UK is trying to catch up with other countries by officially specifying MMC (modern methods of construction). The idea behind MMC is to improve on antiquated construction methods rather than built cheap or temporary houses

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  • On the back of Flashes comments there are pre-fab houses in the NE of England which were built just after WW2 to provide temporary accomodation that are still standing/occupied today and look as if they will easily reach their 100 year anniversary.

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  • mark wadsworth says:

    Flash, I was exaggerating a bit, all houses are to some extent pre-fab’s as the bricks and pipes and so on are manufactured elsewhere and assembled on site. i didn’t mean to denigrate them or anything.

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  • A lot can be learned from the Swedes: http://www.hhogman.se/loghouses.htm
    Wooden houses all over the place here in Sweden (where I am at the moment).
    A coating of Falu red can last 20-30 years and is very good at protecting from the weather.

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  • miken

    do you feel wooden houses are quieter too

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  • I woodn’t say wood houses are quieter.

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  • even structures which are meant to be temporary end up semi permenant, e.g. nissan huts/WW2 airfield structures, even the effiel tower. The houses with the best location in our village are post war pre fabs, which have now been extended/built around. They are cheaper, even though they’re in the best location. go figure.

    my house is a musuem by the way, wattle and daub etc Dug the clay up from the back field, and tramped in the straw. Lovely. Lasts hundreds of years. Not everyones cup of tea though.

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  • tenyearstogetmymoneyback says:

    Another possible advantage is the way in the USA you can buy a second hand house to go on a plot.
    They transport it there in a couple of sections. I saw a program once about how a Quarry bought about 100
    houses 80 years ago from the Sears (?) catalogue. The catalogue firm arranged construction. Apart from
    a couple that burnt down all the rest were still lived in and highly rated by the people who lived in them.

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