prefab home systems, designers, and builders
Below are some companies currently offering prefab options. Companies involved in prefabricated homes approach it from either 1) the building system or structure, 2) the design, or 3) the home fabrication.
1. prefab building systems
proto homes (modern homes w/ wood framing around a core)
Proto Homes is a prefab home manufacturer with a factory in downtown Los Angeles and 60 homes built to date. They offer a system-built prefab structure that can go up in as little as 48 days, including MEP and exterior (doesn’t include site work or interiors). Their main innovation is putting the home’s infrastructure in their “Proto Core”, and then building simple wood framed walls around that don’t have plumbing.
Proto Homes’ innovation focuses on the structure of the home; the interior finishes are chosen by the clients and installed by traditional skilled labor not provided by Proto Homes.
They say their homes can be built for $170/sf, and constructed in 48 days, but this is just for their structure. When you include the site work and foundations, and interior work, all-costs are around $300/sf, and construction can take up to a year.
For more information on Proto Homes, read our full review here.
mnmmod by minarc (light gauge steel framing)
Minarc is a Los Angeles based design firm that uses its proprietary mnm-MOD modular wall and structure assembly system. mnm-MOD is a customizable, steel framed, foam-sandwich wall and floor panel assembly system offering lower cost and higher efficiency building.
zip kit homes
Zip Kit Homes delivers wall and roof panels and components, built in a factory and made for quick assembly onsite. Home modules are assembled in their Pocatello, ID factory, and site work is completed by local contractors. Once the MEP and drywall subcontractor work is complete, a home finishing kit (including woodwork, doors, flooring, tile, cabinets, countertops, plumbing and electrical fixtures) is delivered to the job site for local contractors to assemble and complete the finishes. This phased, complete-kit of building supplies, allows the home to be built in as little as three months.
SIPs (Structurally Insulated Panels) – wood & insulation
SIPs or Structurally Insulated Panels are a popular building structure for prefab homes. The panels consist of insulating foam core sandwiched between two structural facings, typically oriented strand board (OSB), an engineered wood similar to particle board, formed by adding glue to wood flakes and then compressing. There are many SIP suppliers across the United States.
bone structure (light gauge steel framing)
The BONE Structure is steel construction framing that combines the advantages of post-and-beam structure with an integrated energy efficient solution for the thermal envelope. They are based in Canada and have an office in San Francisco.
2. prefab architects and designers
Marmol Radziner is an Architecture Design firm formed in 2005 in Los Angeles, CA. They have provided many prefabricated homes, and placed considerable importance on this section of their business, even having an off-site factory.
Connect Homes is based in Southern California and was launched by Jared Levy, who helped pioneer the modern prefab movement while at Marmol Radziner Prefab, which he helped launch in 2004. His goal with Connect Homes is to bring modern prefab homes to a broader market at more affordable prices. Base price ranges from $250/sf to $310/sf, and take 6-9 months to build. Their homes are built on a steel frame module, have high solar reflectance roofs (index 107), R-38 roofing insulation, R-21 wall insulation, and low-E windows and doors.
CleverHomes is based in Oakland, CA and designs and manages the construction of residential prefabricated homes. They are really a designer and planner (led by Toby Long), and prefabrication and construction are completed by third parties but coordinated by CleverHomes. They use an open-source construction practice, working with a network of factories across the US. Their projects are supplied directly from some of the most innovative builders in the country. They build with factory made wood frames, SIPS (structurally insulated panels), and steel framing. Their projects generally have comprehensive budgets between $400/sf and $500/sf, with the prefab building being $180/sf to $225/sf.
Office of mobile design
Office of Mobile Design is a Venice Beach, California based design firm focused on modern prefab homes. Founded by Jennifer Siegal, OMD works with bevyhouse for homes’ factory fabricated structures.
pre-fabricated accessible technology home (p.a.t.h.)
P.A.T.H. by Philippe Starck with Riko offers 1,855 sf to 4,530 sf turn-key options starting at $240/sf, and delivered is 6 months. They have customizable facades, roof types, finishes, fixtures, lighting options, PV panels, wind turbines, rainwater collection, and heat pumps.
3. prefab manufacturers and builders
Plant Prefab is based in Los Angeles, CA, and is the evolution of Living Homes, which is now their design arm. Plant Prefab is essentially a custom home builder that builds the homes in their factory, and installs them onsite in as little time as one day. They offer over a dozen standard homes to choose from, but can work with your architect or theirs to customize. They focus on sustainable and eco-friendly homes and materials. Their sustainable housing also reduces the cost of energy and water.
Blu Homes offers modern, modular, factory built homes from their factory in Northern California. Blu Homes packages include structural framing (steel), sheathing, siding, windows, doors, roofing, trim, interior finished walls, flooring, tile, cabinets, countertops, plumbing and plumbing fixtures, electrical wiring and lighting, appliances and mechanical systems. Base prices range from $240/sf to $330/sf, and have many finish options and upgrades available.
Method Homes is based in Seattle, WA, and is a custom manufacturer of prefabricated structures with a focus on sustainability. In addition to Method’s pre-designed home models and series, they offer prefab construction services. Base prices for their home series range from $170/sf to over $300/sf, not including soft costs for design, engineering, permitting, site costs for foundation, excavation, utilities, and completion, transportation and installation. The estimate that all in costs end up in the $350/sf to $500/sf range.
Dvele is based in Loma Linda, CA and designs, manufactures and builds beautiful prefabricated, modular, luxury homes. Founded by brothers Kris and Kurt Goodjohn, who also started Karoleena Homes, Dvele aims to build high-tech, sustainable homes at reasonable prices. They have a wide range of pre-configured modern homes with customizable exterior and interior options. Dvele homes are designed to be extremely energy efficient, up to Passive House and LEED certification standards. Dvele also focuses on the latest home technology, integrating smart home automation in their homes.
Hygge Supply is a designer and supplier of kit homes based in Michigan, with recyclable Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs) and steel frames as the structural elements. Kelly Sean Karcher, the founder, shies away from the term prefab. He wants to reinvent the Sears Home Catalogue business model of order and build, offering pre-selected materials and finishes shipped to the build site for simple construction. Models, which range from 350 sf to more spacious three-bedroom options, range from $200/sf to $250 for the base. Sustainability is a focus, and they use
- Wood floors and exterior cladding made from responsibly sourced wood and treated without the use of chemicals
- Powder coatings made without solvents, therefore emitting zero VOCs
- Durat solid surface countertops made from 30%-50% recycled hard plastics, and is 100% recyclable
- Marvin Windows
- Radiant Floor Heating which is a cost-effective, extremely efficient source of heat.
- Fisher & Paykel appliances which are sustainably manufactured and achieve top Energy Star and WEL rankings
- Pier Foundations, which minimize the impact on the land requiring less excavation. Piers also prevent foundations sinking and settling over time.
Node is a startup based in Seattle, WA. Node designs flat-pak kits that can fit into standard shipping containers or shipped on regular trucks or trains, that come in pieces that are simple to put together. Their goal is that four people can put the whole house together, removing the need for skilled construction trades that are becoming more scarce in larger cities. They use hardware that allows walls to be clicked together, with finishes and mechanical systems in place (plumbers and electricians would still handle specialized work). A node home can be built in less than three months, including the foundation and utilities. But construction is still pricey. Node’s smallest unit, 400 sf, is $150,000, or $375/sf. The houses are sustainably designed, aiming to be “carbon negative,” and can run on solar power. The startup hopes to install its first flat-pack home later this year. Node has partnered with Rent the Backyard, a startup that provides ADUs for free to landowners in exchange for a percentage of the future rent.
prefab adu specific companies
Cover is based in Los Angeles, CA based company founded in 2014. They design, permit, manufacture, and install backyard homes with a fixed price contract that includes the foundation, utility hookups, plumbing, electrical, Wolf Sub-Zero appliances, and all fixtures and finishes. For $250 they come to your property, conduct aerial mapping, and have architects and software to design three different options to choose from. They have a patent-pending panelized building system that uses parts that snap together. They use a steel structure, hardwoods, bamboo, and other materials. The parts come from their factory with insulation, structure, waterproofing, electrical, and connectors already installed, and are rapidly assembled. They offer a lifetime structural warranty, 50-year manufacturer warranties, and a 3-year “everything else” warranty. They have just begun to install their homes.
Nomad mirco homes
NOMAD is a startup company in Vancouver Canada that sells micro homes on Amazon. They offer some of the more affordable prefab homes available in North America, but they also are much smaller. The NOMAD Cube is $38,800, and ships flat-packed worldwide. The kitchen, bathroom, living area, and sleeping area a in a 13.5′ x 13.5′ space, or 182 sf ($213/sf). It’s manufactured using 3D-printed steel frames and CNC manufacturing technologies. NOMAD also offers the Micro for $25,500, and is 10′ x 10′ and sits on pre-cast pier blocks, saving the expense of a poured-concrete foundation..
Dweller is a Portland, Oregon based startup company that offers prefab ADUs to homeowners throughout Oregon. They handle the permitting, ADU installation, and leasing, maintenance, and management. Dweller partners with lenders offering financing for their ADUs and not based on the equity in the property. Their ADUs are built by Champion Home Builders, one of the largest modular homebuilders in North America.
United Dwelling is a startup based in Los Angeles, CA. The company focuses on remodeling homeowner’s garages into ADUs. Homeowners sign an agreement to lease their garage or backyard to United Dwelling and receive a portion of the rent. United Dwelling manages permitting, renovation, and pays for all associated costs to convert the garage or backyard into a rental home. They also offer leasing, maintenance, and management.
Finding the best prefab home is tough, but Gast Home can help. We want to help you find thousands of contemporary prefab homes to browse and compare their designs and specifications, and connect with companies and designers working to transform home construction. Building a new home can be complicated, but we believe with prefab this process can be easier. Still, it requires navigation thru many important steps. Gast Home is here to help. Just contact us at 310-266-0796 to begin the process.