Affordable Modular Homes: Prefabs at Your Price Point

As prefabricated home companies proliferate, so do your choices for customizable, sustainable homes in an array of prices and sizes.

| November/December 2010

  • FabCab's structural insulated panel (SIP) walls ensure energy efficiency.
    Photo By Dale Long/Courtesy FabCab
  • FabCab prefabs feature an open floor plan to make the homes' small footprint seem larger.
    Photo By Dale Long/Courtesy FabCab
  • Ideabox's prefabs come with Marmoleum cork or Forest Stewardship Council-certified flooring, recycled glass countertops and tankless water heaters.
    Photo Courtesy Ideabox

If “factory-made home” makes you think “cookie-cutter,” you might want to take a second look. Today’s prefabs can be configured to meet any needs, whether it’s small square footage or an affordable price. You can order a prefab as small as 300 square feet for $50,000 or less, or you can customize a more luxurious home.

From design to construction, prefabs often offer an inexpensive, easy way to build green. Most prefabs are designed and assembled using low- or zero-waste methods, and many employ green building materials. Some companies, such as Studio 101 Designs, offer homes eligible for LEED or other green certification.


Alchemy Architects 



6/23/2018 9:34:43 AM

I knew a family that built the cellar, intending to build a home on top, and were so cozy in the cellar that they simply topped it with a crow's nest. They enjoyed eating and relaxing with their view, while the cellar made for low heating and cooling costs.

6/18/2018 6:30:33 PM

It is sad to to say that housing is just plain priced way over the top~ even rental prices are ridiculous. It is getting to the point where people just can't afford decent housing on their budgets. For the average American that budget is low. However, if you know Amish or Mennonite folks that could help lower expenditures. Four Season yurts are another possibility. Consider barns of which I have seen some that are beautiful once finished. I knew one family who built a huge cellar, lived in it while a house was being constructed over time which didn't mean a huge cash layout or even a bank loan, hence, no debt. The cellar had windows and was quite homey too. I also know someone who just bought a trailer for a dollar and fixed it top to bottom and end to end for a few thousand dollars and created a very solid, safe home that will last many, many years. Think out of the box. Watch out where you buy land ~~~ type of water, are there colleges/unni's near by {super high taxes}, do your homework before buying land. One way to get out of most taxes is to create a "movable home. Even if it pivots just a foot you can be tax free since it isn't considered a solid standing fixture. Also, you can purchase "shell". These are the entire house frame but you will need to put it together, add windows, pipes, insulation, etc which, again, can be done according to your budget. You may have to rough it for a year or two but the end result is not braking the bank nor owing one. These come in various sizes as well. Perhaps you have a group of people who are willing to help you cut down and peel logs, let them cure, and then have a log cabin raising~ you supply the materials, food, and drink and even throw a party after it's all said and done. I know someone who did this too. Everyone involved were proud as peacocks just in the fact they helped.

4/30/2018 10:01:17 AM

DanielleJ, You are right on,more pretentious 1 percent assumptions made!!! We want affordable homes for the vast majority of Americans. Two seniors on a 35,000 a year BUDGET here!



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