Today’s homebuilder needs to craft structures that are sustainable, resilient, and meets the needs of the homeowner. Today’s homebuilder also needs to build homes quickly, with little workforce. Enter prefab housing, offsite manufacturing, and 3D printing, which are slowly starting to become a more viable option for many homebuilders.
Consider the example of Mighty Buildings, which is a 3D printing company that is opening a factory to print climate-resilient homes for the U.S. market. A new factory in Monterrey, Mexico, can produce its components for an entire home during each day of operation and is focused on scaling the development in the Southern California region, beginning with Desert Hot Springs.
Build Resilient Homes
With the use of new material science, robotics, and automation, Mighty Buildings can create climate-resilient, carbon-neutral housing that is comfortable and can withstand severe weather including hurricanes and earthquakes. Here is how Mighty Buildings does this. The company’s proprietary concrete-free composite stone material is as much as five times stronger than concrete, yet up to 30% lighter in weight, and costs as much as 15% less per square foot.
This is exactly what we need today. As I type these words, my area is under a tornado warning. It is not the first time I have had to retreat to my basement this year. When I was younger, these occurrences in my area were much fewer and far between. This is my area. For others, it is wildfires or intense hurricanes. Builders need to build cities of tomorrow that can withstand this.
Build Homes at Scale
Homebuilders also need to build homes faster than ever before amid a labor shortage—which Mighty Buildings also aims to do, with rapid construction of prefab housing. The company says it is able to print panels for between one and two homes per day.
The company says this offsite manufacturing process cuts on-site building time by as much as 50%, providing for the completion of a home’s envelope in less than one week with near zero waste. From initial groundbreaking to full completion, a Mighty Buildings home can be ready for residents in as little as two to three months, which is a two to three times improvement over the industry average of seven to eight months.
This will help in a number of ways including doing more work with fewer workers; helping solve the housing shortages; and appeal to developers who are looking to increase their IRR (internal rate of return).
Mighty Buildings specifically suggests this illustrates the significant benefits and cost efficiencies of continuous production of prefab components in a factory vs. 3D printing components directly at a construction site. This model enables Mighty Buildings to establish a micro factory that runs 24/7 near a building site in any area without experiencing manufacturing disruptions due to weather and noise concerns.
While this is simply one example, the bottomline is the technology is advancing, offering more opportunities to homebuilders to build resilient homes quicker, and with fewer workers. How will your company proceed in the year ahead?
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