Engineering experts have suggested that ‘flat-pack’ homes could be the answer to the UK’s housing crisis. Prefabricated properties have certainly advanced substantially during recent years and experts believe that they are greener and more cost-effective than houses built by more conventional methods.
Using ‘flat pack’ homes will help properties become more affordable for first-time buyers, according to the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IME). These types of property, also known as, ‘modular homes’ are manufactured primarily in factories, than transported on to building sites in order to be assembled.
A report from the organisation shows that modular homes will assist in helping to provide the 250,000 new homes required per annum for the next twenty years. At present, the current rate is just 120,000.
Dr Tim Fox, author of the study, has called on the Government to provide support for off-site construction innovations with more exciting incentives. Fox argues that more streamlined and modern construction in factories means that modular homes will use less resources to build and will ultimately be more energy efficient.
‘The UK is in the middle of an acute housing crisis,’ said Dr Fox. ‘The Government needs to demonstrate real ambition, leadership and innovation, not make small piecemeal changes, if it is going to solve the UK’s housing crisis. Overhauling the way the UK constructs homes could be the quickest and most effective way of doing this.’
Mr Fox continued by saying that modular construction has improved drastically since post-war prefabricated homes and controversial system built homes of the 60’s and 70’s.
IME’’s study has gained support from the Home Builders Federation, who also believe that the way Britain builds homes should be changed.
‘It is not just about making prefabs anymore,’ commented a HBF spokesman. ‘It’s manufacturing process that is very high quality and brings great advantages. Anything we can do to solve the housing crisis is needed and this is just one way of speeding up the construction process,’ they added.