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Considering the Threat of Modular Construction

  • April 3, 2020

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Considering the Threat of Modular Construction

The real estate market has been kind to developers like Aubrey Ferrao. Investing in real estate is a move that can often outride the dips and jumps of the stock market, and when you know how to navigate the landscape, you can secure financial success. For real estate development advice, many turn to the professional Aubrey Ferrao, who has managed to boost the company’s landholding and profit ranking over crucial commercial property investments. However, there is a new player on the scene in real estate development, one that may prove to be a threat to custom property designers and investors.

Not Just a Double-Wide

When you hear the word double-wide, you probably think of a cheap housing solution for poverty-level or lower-priced geographic areas. However, the last several years have brought modular construction to the forefront of efficiency and affordability for both residential and commercial construction needs.  Large proptech and construction tech spaces have turned to prefab and modular builds to get their spaces completed.

Related: How To Cut The Costs When Finding A New House

In fact, so many commercial real estate projects rely on modular construction that is the market is projected to reach upwards of around $157 billion by the year 2023. New York is a current leader in the movement, hosting some of the most ambitious modular hotels found around the world. The AC Marriott in Manhattan is just one exhibition of the modern approach to construction, but locations around the world are turning to modular builds. The U.S. is still somewhat behind its European counterparts, but the efforts of high-profile tech start-ups like Katerra are helping to create awareness of the benefits of modular construction.

The Nature of Modular Construction

When you think of a normal stick-frame or steel building, materials are trucked into the job site and fastened or pieced together by contracted crews. The project is out in the elements and consistency and efficiency can’t always be guaranteed with the changing circumstance on the job site. This can create costly delays and excess costs with materials. Modular construction is a quick building process that relies on the use of modules.

One of the most significant impacts that technology in the construction industry is the reduced timelines for a project to be completed.  The reduced timelines is making a big impact not only in the construction, but it's also making a big impact in the pre-construction speed of projects.  This results in contractors figuring out how to grow their construction business more efficiently.

The nature of the module varies according to the project, but these pieces are constructed within a factory setting and later assembled at the job site. A project may use one or many types of module unites, though a project for commercial purposes (like a hotel) relies on connected links of volumetric or 3D modules. Panel-style or 2D modules are more commonly being incorporated into industrial spaces and office build projects, as these environments support a more open floor plan.

The Benefits of a Modular Build

When you choose modular construction, there are some key benefits. First of all, a module build happens much more quickly than a typical construction project. Weather days don’t hamper the factory process, nor do labor challenges become an issue. Factories are always able to hire more labor to account for an increase in demand. It is estimated that a factory build can lower construction times by up to 50%. Assembling the final pieces at the job site is more efficient as well.

Secondly, there is less construction waste, which turns into cost savings for the buyer. It also easier to recycle materials from within a factory setting than at the job-site. Modular construction also fills a need for affordable residential housing, as well as commercial development opportunities. Since these projects are often erected so quickly and much less costly than a traditional home or apartment complex, the savings are passed to renters and buyers.

There should no longer be a stigma concerning modular construction, but there will probably always be a critic somewhere. Modular construction offers tremendous benefits for those looking to develop space as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible.