The Move to Permanent Residential Modular Housing in Australia
There are several OECD countries who have already embraced modular construction systems for new home applications including Japan (12-15%), Germany (9%), Netherlands (approx. 20%) and Sweden (over 50%) with the United States (4%) and the United Kingdom (2%) infrequently using this method of building. In Australia it is estimated modular housing is less than 5% of the new housing sector.
Modular homes in Australia are designed and manufactured in controlled, weather proof factory conditions – then assembled onsite. The units are designed to meet personal, regulatory and environmental needs.
Modular homes include detached single-unit houses, townhouses and multi-residential housing blocks. Excluded are temporary units for mining camps, education, events, etc.
According to a report by Steinhardt, Manley and Miller the factors that stimulate the uptake of modular housing in Australia include industry-wide investment in research and development, size of the market, skilled workforces, and less speculative property procurement and house building. Additionally they cite a lack of clarity remains regarding the effect of various regulatory issues, as they were not written with modular innovation in mind.
Modular homes are designed very differentlyfrom other modular applications and in situ.
The mining boom delivered a huge opportunity for the industry sector, which had produced site offices and classrooms that were fast, affordable and flexible solutions.