Why the future is prefab

If the word ‘prefab’ conjures up images of asbestos cladding and boxy school classrooms, then we’re sorry to say you’re well and truly behind the times.

Also referred to as panel, modular or transportable homes, builds that are largely (if not completely) built offsite are becoming increasingly sophisticated… and popular.

Here at Ezyline we have seen an upsurge in sales, with more than double the amount of builds on our books this year than we had four years ago.

This has prompted us to open a second yard and showhome in Palmerston North and we already have people lining up.

It’s becoming increasingly clear that the future of housing is prefab. Here’s why… 

It’s a growing global trend

In Sweden 84% of detached homes are prefabricated. The components are manufactured during winter, and the homes erected in summer. Which begs the question, why not here?

Perceptions and capabilities are changing at pace. For instance, take this lavish German-made prefabricated Huf Haus in England with a price tag of over $2 million. There’s nothing remotely boxy about it.

Technology is advancing every day

Overseas we are seeing large-scale factories producing 100,000 prefabricated homes a year – and this is only set to grow. 

Increasingly sophisticated automation technologies are resulting in greater efficiencies and cost-savings. In short, in the future expect to see higher quality homes, at cheaper prices. 

Consent processes are set to change

Prefab NZ is working hard behind the scenes to achieve a more streamlined consent process for the industry. This would create time and cost-saving efficiencies for both developers and individual homeowners. Removing some of the consent roadblocks will likely increase demand for prebuilt homes.

The banks are getting on board

Previously, transportable homes were considered high risk by banks. But Westpac now offers a Prebuilt home loan, and other banks are likely to follow suit. 

There are a couple of extra requirements, including additional insurance cover during the initial stages of construction and transportation to site, but this makes prebuilt homes that much more accessible, opening up the market to more people. 

The Government is getting on board

Housing New Zealand now has a section dedicated to off-site manufacturing, signalling a move towards prebuilt homes to meet future housing needs.

And there are also moves afoot to introduce 10-year building plans for developers and building companies, which will allow those in the prefab industry to commit to upscaling their operations.

Community housing is reaping the benefits

Prebuilt housing is a cost effective solution for community housing providers, and can be put in place with minimal disruption.

We are committed to providing 50 homes for Accessible Properties over a five-year period and expect to see our work in this sector grow.

Kiwis are staying put

The pandemic has meant more Kiwis both returning home, and staying home. With overseas holidays off the cards for the foreseeable future, disposable incomes are being redirected into projects at home. 

As a result we are seeing an increase in prebuilt homes being purchased as second dwellings, from granny flats for elderly parents, to acommodating adult children returning from overseas.

And with most of our building materials, including all our structures, cladding, GIB and roofing, produced here in New Zealand, we are proud to be supporting local.

And finally… mindsets are changing

People are learning that prebuilt doesn’t have to mean small. Where once our most popular plan was a 2 bedroom, 60sqm home, we are now seeing greater demand for our larger homes, with one of our most popular plans now being the 3 bedroom, 100sqm home with an ensuite.

You might be surprised at how much prebuilt homes have changed over the past 30 years! You can view our full range of plans here or, if you wanted something a little bit different, get in touch to see what’s possible.