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Posts Tagged ‘U.K.’

Super Modular? Super Tower Takes Shape

April 24th, 2017 Comments off
SuperModularSuperTowerTakesShapecreditConstructionNewsUK-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

The Apex Tower. Credit: Construction News UK.

In the U.K., modular housing continues to gain steam as a practical solution to the nation’s growing housing crisis.

But in Wembley, just north of London it’s being taken to a whole new level.

According to Construction News UK, Tide Construction and Vision Modular Systems have put the final piece in place for the 29-story Apex House Tower, which has 560 student rooms, utilizing 679 modular units. or modules.

We are delighted that both the housing minister Gavin Barwell and London mayor Sadiq Khan have made off-site construction a priority in the capital to help ease the strain on London’s housing supply,” said Tide Construction CEO Christy Hayes.

Modular construction provides a much faster alternative to traditional construction without compromising on the quality of the building, or the versatility of the design. Modular produces 80 per cent less waste, requires fewer onsite workers and provides certainty of cost and time.”

The modular units were produced at Vision Modular Systems’ factory, and were delivered with full kitchens and bathrooms. Both companies expect the build out of Apex House Tower to be completed by the time the new school year begins in September.

The project represents the fourth endeavor for Vision Modular Systems and Tide Construction in London.

As Daily Business News recently covered here, Vision Modular Systems has also been very active on the U.K. affordable housing scene, including a partnership with construction firm Donban Contracting, has completed two finished blocks of modular housing, and turned them over to Pocket Living, an affordable housing provider that only sells to first-time buyers.

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A prefab home in progress on site. Credit: Reuters.

Partnering with Pocket Living on multiple projects has allowed us to deliver vital new housing for first-time buyers and key workers who underpin the very fabric of our cities,” said Kieran White, managing director at Vision Modular Systems.

Traditional site built developments of this scale in the U.K. can take up to two years to complete, putting additional pressure on housing inventory. Modular provides a practical solution to the problem.

Getting high-quality homes built quickly is key to solving the housing crisis. Modular techniques will play an increasingly important role in meeting this challenge and, through our partnership with Donban and Vision Modular, over a quarter of Pocket’s future pipeline will be built through modular construction,” said Marc Vlessing, chief executive of Pocket Living.

For more on modular housing in the U.K., including major builders making moves into the modular space, click here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Could Modular Determine the Outcome of an Election?

April 14th, 2017 Comments off

A modular unit in London. Credit: The Guardian.

For incumbent London Mayor Sadiq Khan, the answer could very well be yes.

According to Property Week, the importance of addressing London – and the U.K.’s – affordable housing crisis was front and center in a discussion on the mayor’s performance among developers and professionals gathered in Cannes.

The message was clear: Khan needs to pick up the pace if he plans on being re-elected.

But one move could make a striking difference to perceptions of the mayor’s progress – removing barriers and accelerating the use of modular housing for London’s new homes,” said David Sheridan, CEO of Keepmoat.

CouldModularDeterminetheOutcomeofanElectioncreditPropertyWeek1-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

David Sheridan. Credit: Property Week.

Sheridan believes that modular housing “is a feature of the normal rather than something that is unusual – but this view will take time to embed.”

Perhaps it is memories of system-built or prefabricated post-war homes that is holding the capital back – but if London throws off these shackles the rate of house building could increase dramatically and potentially play a big role in Mayor Khan’s re-election,” said Sheridan.

Sheridan says that the group realized that there was much to learn from other sectors, including those that build schools, when it comes to modular construction. The group also came up with a plan for the Greater London Authority to stimulate and invest in modular construction, including working with boroughs to standardize design, secure grant funding, and developing a framework of partners to speed development.

Output from traditional house building methods is constrained and close to its limit – with the availability of labor only set to tighten further as Britain prepares to leave the European Union,” said Sheridan.

The answer is in the existence of a number of progressive players delivering modular products that can be applied to different site challenges. These products will add to the supply from traditional house building, not replace it. Modular systems have the potential to accelerate estate regeneration; they can be used to provide new homes on top of existing buildings and on small infill sites. They also offer high-quality homes that can blend into the suburbs.”

Sheridan also believes that modular construction can reduce the upheaval on residents, by offering high-quality housing requiring much shorter construction periods.

We are talking about installation of up to eight homes a day,” said Sheridan.

CouldModularDeterminetheOutcomeofanElectioncreditPropertyWeek2-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Mayor Sadiq Khan. Credit: Property Week.

He also had a suggestion for the Mayor with regard to re-election.

With the clock ticking on his mayoralty, there is nothing Mayor Khan could do more effectively to speed up housing supply than making London an exemplar for modular construction over the next three years,” said Sheridan.

For more on modular and prefab housing in the U.K., including China National Building Material Company (CNBM), Barcelona Housing Systems and U.K. housing association Your Housing Group (YHG) joining forces to build six prefab factories that will deliver 25,000 energy efficient homes per year by 2022, click here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above.)

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Factory Goes Modular – Plans Thousands of Homes

April 12th, 2017 Comments off
FactoryGoesModularPlansThousandsofHomescreditTheTelegraph-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: The Telegraph.

In the U.K., a prefab bonanza is taking place, and another company has decided to get in on the action.

According to the Telegraph, a Docklands factory will be the first of its kind in London, and will eventually provide 3,000 new modular homes.

As the Daily Business News covered here, the U.K. Government has been focused on prefab housing as a practical way to solve the nations housing crisis. Modular homes can be built in sections and then assembled quickly on site. Currently, around 15,000 new homes are produced this way each year.

Developer First Base has announced that it has brought on the global engineering consultancy firm Aecom to help with plans for modular homes, and the factory would deliver homes up to nine months faster than traditional site built homes in the country.

The company says that their factory is expected to become operational later in the year, producing two-bedroom homes.

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Credits: Companies, England Net.

The Daily Business News has covered modular and prefab housing in the U.K. extensively, including China National Building Material Company (CNBM), Barcelona Housing Systems and U.K. housing association Your Housing Group (YHG) joining forces to build six prefab factories that will deliver 25,000 energy efficient homes per year by 2022. That story is linked here.

Also active is insurance giant Legal & General, which owns a modular housing factory capable of building 3,000 homes per year in Leeds, U.K., and has been active in the manufactured, modular and prefab industries, including increasing its stake in builder Cavco Industries.

Speaking on the Farmer Report by Cast CEO Mark Farmer in November, which called out modular housing as a solution to the U.K. housing crisis, Paul Stanworth, managing partner at Legal & General, commented on the company’s plans.

This review sets out a clear way for the construction sector to reinvent itself in order to meet the ever-growing demand for homes and infrastructure,” said Stanworth.

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Paul Sanworth. Credit: UK Infrastructure Investment.

Legal & General is helping to address this problem by investing in a modern factory to produce homes using manufacturing processes seen in the production of cars and other consumer goods.

This construction method is safe, clean, and fast, providing a high level of consistency and durability. We sincerely hope that Farmer’s review galvanizes the entire sector to invest in innovation and secure its future.

For more on Legal & General’s plans, click here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above.)

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews

Modular Housing Serves as Affordable Housing Solution

March 29th, 2017 Comments off
credit24Housing-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: 24 Housing.

The trend of municipalities turning to manufactured and modular homes as a solution to housing shortages continues to grow.

In the U.K., recently completed modular housing developments have been slated to serve first time homebuyers and workers in South London.

According to 24 Housing, Vision Modular Systems, in partnership with construction firm Donban Contracting, has completed two finished blocks of modular housing, and turned them over to Pocket Living, an affordable housing provider that only sells to first-time buyers.

Partnering with Pocket Living on multiple projects has allowed us to deliver vital new housing for first-time buyers and key workers who underpin the very fabric of our cities,said Kieran White, managing director at Vision Modular Systems.

Built using 162 modules, the homes were constructed inside a factory in Bedford using production-line techniques, which, as Daily Business News readers are already aware, allows for better quality control, faster delivery, reduction of waste and contributes to  higher levels of energy efficiency.

UKBuildersEyePrefabinAnticipationofBrexitcreditReuters1-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

A prefab home in progress on site. Credit: Reuters.

All of the buildings that Pocket Living operates are community focused, with shared spaces, including roof terraces. Tim Western, a director at U.K. property giant JLL, who believes modular is the way forward, has proposed a similar plan.

Off-site construction in the UK is growing 25 percent per year. This technique results in a 30 percent reduction in build time, a 75 percent reduction in workforce and 40 percent less vehicle movements, meaning that modular housing is likely to drive a huge change in how homes get built over the next five years, said Western.

Homes manufactured like cars, in other words off-site in a factory, with the opportunity to pick and choose what goes into a basic structure, will bring ‘car quality’ to the market.

Traditional site built developments of this scale in the U.K. can take up to two years to complete, putting additional pressure on housing inventory. Modular provides a practical solution to the problem.

Getting high-quality homes built quickly is key to solving the housing crisis. Modular techniques will play an increasingly important role in meeting this challenge and, through our partnership with Donban and Vision Modular, over a quarter of Pocket’s future pipeline will be built through modular construction,” said Marc Vlessing, chief executive of Pocket Living.

For modular to really take off as a viable construction method, the government and lenders should look at making it easier for SMEs to access the working capital needed to take advantage of its benefits.

For more on modular housing in the U.K., including major builders making moves into the modular space, click here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above.)

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Mayor “Gung Ho” About 12,000 Home Modular Project

March 28th, 2017 Comments off
12000ModularHomesCouldBeComingtoThisCitycreditChicagoSunTimes-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

The Lakeshore site that will host a factory and 12k modular homes. Credit: Chicago Sun Times.

In a follow up to a story that Daily Business News originally covered here, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is “gung ho” about developers planning to build 12,000 modular homes, along with a factory to manufacture them, on the 430-acre site of the old U.S. Steel South Works plant in the city.

According to the Chicago Sun Times, top mayoral aides met with developers last week to get the latest updates on the project.

The mayor told me personally that he is committed to helping this project get off the ground,” said Ald. Susan Sadlowski Garza, whose ward also includes the U.S. Steel site.

The development of 430 acres in his city and the jobs that come with it. Bright and shiny new buildings and new technology. They’re looking at us to be the prototype so people can see this project and . . . [they can] bring this development to other Midwestern cities. The mayor always talks about giving back to the neighborhoods. This is huge. It’s bigger than downtown . . . . We might need another mayor.

The development is a result of a combination of a deal between steel giant U.S. Steel and prominent developer Dan McCafferty going bad, and a new joint venture between Barcelona Housing Systems and WELink.

12000ModularHomesCouldBeComingtoThisCitycreditBarcelonaHousingSystemsWeLink-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credits: Barcelona Housing Systems, WELink.

As Daily Business News readers are aware, the Barcelona Housing System/WELink joint venture recently partnered with Chinese firm CNBM and announced plans for modular home factories in the U.K.

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Ald. Susan Sadlowski Garza. Credit: NLG Chicago.

Last Wednesday, principals from the two firms outlined their ambitious plan for Deputy Mayor Steve Koch, Planning and Development Commissioner David Reifman and Buildings Commissioner Judy Frydland.

The developers talked about being six weeks away from signing a contract with U.S. Steel and about awaiting results of an environmental study of the 430-acre site,” said Garza.

They have the financing…. They wouldn’t have gotten to this point if they didn’t.

An aide to Mayor Emanuel said that his enthusiasm for the project is genuine.

We’re all very excited about it. It seems like a very strong proposal. We are encouraged and supportive of what’s happening,” said the aide.

In addition to building the plant that produces modular materials and modular homes in four phases of 3,000 homes each, the new plan calls for retail and recreational space. For Garza, this is also very important.

When the mills left, so did the jobs and the restaurants. We were kind of left with a shell of a community,” said Garza.

We had nine steel mills. At the peak, District 31 had 134,000 steelworkers. Now, if we have 100, I’m being generous. This is very exciting for us. The 10th Ward is on the upswing.” ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

U.K. Builders Eye Prefab in Anticipation of Brexit

March 14th, 2017 Comments off
UKBuildersEyePrefabinAnticipationofBrexitcreditReuters1-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

A prefab home in progress on site. Credit: Reuters.

While the U.K. continues to struggle with an affordable housing crisis, a new concern for some of the larger homebuilders in the country has cropped up.

Those leading homebuilders, including Berkeley, Taylor Wimpey, and Persimmon have said they are either planning new developments of prefabricated homes or are considering doing so.

Their challenge is two fold – to solve the affordable housing crisis, and the potential for an even larger loss of skilled construction workers that could be brought on by Brexit.

According to Global Construction Review, a report by Dutch engineer Arcadis in February estimated that the homebuilding industry as a whole could see a reduction of as many as 214,000 workers by 2020 should the U.K exit the European Union.

The situation would be felt most in and around London, where 95,000 of London’s construction workers – more than a quarter of the total, have EU nationality.

Berkeley has said that they will produce their first factory built homes this year, beginning with 16 homes in London, but they have 50 more homes in the pipeline.

Taylor Wimpey is also exploring ways to ‘future proof’ our business and is considering offsite construction options,” said divisional managing director John Gainham.

Persimmon has maintained a factory in central England for a long time, which is part of a business called Space4, that makes prefabricated timber frames for about 40 percent of all its houses.

Space4 is now looking at proposals to either increase volumes at our existing factory or building another factory elsewhere in Britain,” said regional executive Richard Oldroyd.

We have a desire to reduce the company’s dependence on traditional labor like bricklayers.

UKBuildersEyePrefabinAnticipationofBrexitcreditReuters2-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

The Persimmon factory. Credit: Reuters.

As regular Daily Business News readers are already aware, insurance giant Legal & General has said that they have the secret for modular and prefab lending, and they are setting up a 550,000-square-foot factory near Leeds, intended to be “the largest modular homes construction factory in the world.

LegalandGeneralRevealsWhatsNeededforModularPrefabLendingcreditLegal&General-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Legal & General factory. Credit: Legal & General.

All of the various initiatives clearly have the large incumbents thinking about what’s next.

Fundamentally, the construction industry has been doing some things the same way for hundreds of years,” said Berkeley Chairman Tony Pidgley.

Historically, we had the labor … But the challenge is different now.

For more on modular and prefab housing in the U.K., including China National Building Material Company (CNBM), Barcelona Housing Systems and U.K. housing association Your Housing Group (YHG) joining forces to build six prefab factories that will deliver 25,000 energy efficient homes per year by 2022, click here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above.)

 

rcwilliams-writer75x75manufacturedhousingindustrymhpronews

RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Prefab Homes Built by Unique Source

March 8th, 2017 Comments off
PrefabHomesBuiltbyUniqueSourcecreditConstructionManager-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Prefab home. Credit: Construction Manager.

In the U.K., the ongoing housing crisis has the nation looking for resources.

Prefab has emerged as a potentially efficient solution, and one producer is adding a unique twist that helps not only house, but to rehabilitate.

According to Construction Manager, six months ago, Manchester-based procurement consortium Procure Plus launched Osco Homes, aiming to deliver affordable houses constructed offsite at a factory based in Hindley, a prison located in Greater Manchester.

The goal for Osco Homes is to build two homes a week, and within three years reach output of 1,000 homes a year.

Select prisoners at Hindley in the final year of their sentence are being trained to build prefab homes, and they have been given construction training in plastering and kitchen bathroom fitting provided by Manchester College.

Osco pays each prisoner a salary for their work over and above what they would usually receive from the prison, which is held in trust until after their release.

Then, once released, they are employed full-time by Osco and are paid £19,000 ($23,117 USD) per year.

The operation at Hindley has been a really big success and we’re now looking at doubling the space of the factory and also setting up factories at other prisons which we’ve had confirmed by the Ministry of Justice,” said Mike Brogan, CEO of Procure Plus.

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Mike Brogan. Credit: Manchester Evening News.

The MoJ has given us a shortlist of their prisons to choose from, they will most likely be in the north west or maybe the north east. We’re not looking to rapidly expand, but in the next six months we’d like to have another prison operating the scheme and its own factory and then probably another to follow that, ideally three prisons in total.

Brogan estimates that the cost savings for every inmate who does not return to prison is around $20,000 per year.

It’s not just about building homes, but providing training and opportunities to guys who may have taken a wrong turn in life but are keen to change,” said Brogan. “With the factory we’re providing this two-fold service.

For more on solutions to the U.K. housing crisis, click here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above.)

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Housing Association Opens Modular Factory

February 8th, 2017 Comments off
HousingAssociationOpenModularFactorycredit24HousingUK-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Swan modulars being moved. Credit: 24 Housing UK.

The U.K. based Swan Housing Association is set to open its new 75,000 square foot factory in the borough of Basildon, about 32 miles east of London.

According to Inside Housing UK, the new facility is part of a larger plan by Swan to invest £100M ($124M USD) into regenerating the 1960s Craylands Estate in Basildon in partnership with Basildon Borough Council and the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA).

At Swan we understand the desperate need for quality new homes. We believe that offsite construction methods will enable us to deliver these much-needed homes quickly, designed to a high specification and with reduced impact on both local residents and the environment,” said John Synnuck, CEO of Swan.

We are excited to be early adopters in the UK of this new way of working and to be continuing our long-term investment in Basildon.

The 11,000-home association expects construction of the first modular homes to launch in early summer with the first homes delivered to Beechwood in the fall.

HousingAssociationOpenModularFactorycreditGoogle-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Google.

The facility will be capable of producing around 300 homes a year using cross-laminated timber when at full capacity. Swan has a development pipeline of 3,500 homes, and anticipates that it will generate up to 40 local jobs to support the economy within Basildon, which is part of Swan Group’s core geographical base.

HousingAssociationOpenModularFactorycreditSwansUK-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Executives tour the new factory. Credit: Swan.

Swan’s decision to choose Basildon as the location for this facility is testament to the borough’s growing status as a prime location for growing businesses. Basildon Council is committed to facilitating economic growth in the area and this show of commitment from Swan is a sure sign that we are heading in the right direction,” said Bala Mahendran, Chief Executive of the Basildon Council.

The council has built a successful and longstanding relationship of working with Swan as development partners, which I am sure will continue to thrive in the long term.

For more on the move to utilize modular housing to tackle the U.K. housing crisis, click here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above.)

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Prefab and Modular Front and Center in Solving Housing Crisis

January 30th, 2017 Comments off
PrefabFrontandCenterinSolvingHousingCrisiscredit-PlymouthHerald-Inside-A-Modular-In-Nottingham-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Plymouth Herald.

As populations around the world continue to grow, a recurring theme is the need for housing.

More directly, many nations have declared a “housing crisis” and are looking for solutions.

One of the nations where the need is most pronounced is the U.K., where a report by Cast CEO Mark Farmer entitled; “The Farmer Review of the U.K. Construction Model” cited that labor shortages mean that new homes cannot be built fast enough, and studies commissioned by the U.K. Government have determined that the country will need an additional one million homes by 2020.

Tim Western of property giant JLL believes that modular and prefab is the solution.

There is likely to be a seismic shift in how and where we live and work by 2030,” said Western.

Homes manufactured like cars, in other words off-site in a factory, with the opportunity to pick and choose what goes into a basic structure, will bring ‘car quality’ to the market.

The entire story is on MHLivingNews, linked here. ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

 

Modular Becomes Solution for Supply Chain Slowdown

January 19th, 2017 Comments off
ModularBecomesSolutionforSupplyChainSlowdowncreditIndependentIE-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

A Skyclad modular home. Credit: Independent IE.

As the U.K. battles an ever-increasing housing crisis, more and more people are looking to manufactured and modular housing as a solution.

Ashley Ilsen, Chief Marketing Officer and Head of Lending at development finance lender Regentsmead, tells MHProNews that supply chains, in the wake of the recent Brexit vote, have presented a unique opportunity.

Supply chains seem to have slowed since the Brexit vote and this is severely hampering the rate that we are able to build houses,” said Ilsen.

Cost of building materials is predicted to rise dramatically over the next few years, following our rather painful exit from the EU. Worryingly, this seems to be widely ignored by the government, which I can’t understand given that housing is such a prominent topic these days.”

ModularBecomesSolutionforSupplyChainSlowdowncreditRegentMead2-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Ashley Ilsen. Credit: RegentsMead.

Ilsen believes he knows the solution.

Modular housing could well be the answer here. We have come a long way from some of the pre-fabricated solutions that we saw during the 1990s. With a huff and a puff it would be touch and go whether these would stay standing, and after a few winters you were lucky if the size of your house wasn’t very different to when you first moved in,” said Ilsen.

Today we are of course in a very different age where we now have a plethora of various modular housing products. Each one I see seems to be even more superior to the last. The house is constructed in a third of the time as a brick and block structure. Usually, the house arrives on site in sections and is pieced together almost like a giant puzzle, something that has caused headaches for lenders that haven’t necessarily comprehended how to fund such buildings.

Ilsen feels strongly that as modular housing solutions become more mainstream in the U.K., it’s critical that lenders better understand them.

There may well be a different type of warranty required for a modular house; funds will need to be released in a different structure and when problems occur on site a lender should have the expertise to deal with it,” said Ilsen.

Modular builds will also carry a different site value as they are constructed, which means no more hiding behind the ‘bricks and mortar’ phraseology that we hear so often. There are also numerous risks involved in modular construction that a good development lender will have a deep understanding of.

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Credit: The Daily Mail.

The Daily Business News has covered the U.K. housing crisis, and potential solutions closely, including supermarket giant Tesco adding modular units on top of their store locations and an “urban bungalow” home created by Willerby Innovations. That story is linked here. ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.