modular homes

The UK property market has been in crisis for some time due to a low stock of properties and high prices for those that are available. Could modular homes help address this?

Despite many government initiatives attempting to address the issue, the building of new homes needs to more than double in order to fulfil the nation’s needs. Modular housing is a potential solution for satisfying this demand.

What are modular homes?

Modular homes are constructed in factories and consist of different “modules” which are then transported to the site. The modules are then positioned on foundations and clipped together to create the property. The connections are then made to services and the exterior and roof structures are finalised.

Given the speed and efficiency of building modular homes in comparison to traditional construction methods, with practical completion being taken on sites in just over a fortnight, it is no wonder that some believe this is the answer to the country’s housing needs.

What are the benefits to modular homes?

Simplified building process

As the modules can be assembled with ease, it reduces the requirement for skilled workers on site to deal with the specifics of a traditional house build – a blessing for developers struggling with the shortage of skilled workers across the UK.

Cost efficiency

As with most mass production, there is also the benefit of the cost efficiency of the modules when committing to bulk orders of standardised designs. The method minimises costly delays in the build process, such as when the typical British weather hits, as the majority of the build process takes place in a factory.

Smaller carbon footprint

They can leave a much smaller carbon footprint depending on the distance between the factory and the development, satisfying eco-conscious purchasers.

What are the disadvantages to modular homes?

On the face of the matter, modular homes seem to be the answer to the prayers of housing developers across the country. However, as with all methods of construction, it is not completely flawless.

Potential initial expense

Many developers and registered providers have their own requirements for their properties which may not be compatible with the modules currently available. Therefore the developer may need to invest in an off-site production facility which is a huge initial expense and would only be profitable when dealing with multiple developments.

Building regulations and warranty

Building regulations have not yet caught up with the new advances in building. Modular homes require Building Control sign off but inspectors have to take extra precautions when signing off as the regulations have not completely harmonised with the build process as yet.

This can be problematic not only for the developer but their mortgagees or the mortgagees of any party purchasing a plot on a modular development, due to the uncertainty of the process. It has also led to difficulty in obtaining new home warranty cover, with only a limited few providers offering cover to date.

Trust in quality

The method meets undue criticism due to the diversion from the traditional build process as it is felt this may affect the quality and durability of the final product, although this remains speculative opinion. Given that many home owners now face issues with Mundic, despite it having been an acceptable building material in the 1900s, buyers and lenders alike may not trust the unfamiliar method of building until they see how it holds up over time.


Despite conflicting opinions on this process of building homes, modular developments are on the rise with local authorities, housing associations and private developers all now running pilots. It is too early to tell if modular construction will be the saviour of the housing crisis and hold up for years to come, but it seems there are many willing to give it a try.

If you are considering acquiring land for modular development or the sale of the modular-built plots, please do not hesitate to get in touch.