The following info presents the paths that Prefab pioneers have already blazed for you:
Governing Agencies and Permitting:
Navigating the permit process in your locale can be as simple as filling out an application and paying a small fee or, it can require applications, design review committees, neighborhood input, compliance with state energy mandates, etc. - all of which can sometimes take over a year for approvals. The realities of bringing a building to fruition are typically analyzed with heavy emphasis on cost, schedule and aesthetics - feasibility studies should clarify the project/property entitlements as well the local governing agency approval process.
Banks and Construction Loan Lenders:
Prior to selecting a prefab company and/or your property, it's important to establish a project program and budget. If a construction loan will fund the cost of construction, soft costs, planning, hard costs of construction and the overall project cost will need to be established. Your lender will guide you through their respective process and will require that you define your project scope/program. It's critical to remember that you are not proposing a "portable" or "mobile" home/building. Portable buildings are often classified as H.U.D. (Housing & Urban Development) type projects (trailer & mobile homes) and require little, if any, permanent foundation. This is a "red flag" for your lender! H.U.D. projects require a different type of funding process - one that is to be avoided if you are building a permanent type prefab structure. Nearly all prefab buildings are anchored to a permanent foundation - H.U.D. homes are typically on a chassis and thus easy to drive away. Financing of a prefab project is similar to conventionally built projects however a prefab solution often require larger payments, earlier in the process - typically 20 percent or more to begin fabrication. Milestone completion dates and phases will be outlined by the Prefab company along with a payment schedule to facilitate the consistent flow of fabrication. At completion of the project, most banks will transfer the construction to a permanent mortgage. Details for lending will vary from one lender to the next but every lender will ask you to commit to a budget, timing, property location and prefab solution as process. your construction loan application. Your Prefab company should assist with specific lender requested info related to your project.
Incentive for Investors:
A shorter the construction period translates into less construction period carrying costs. Real estate taxes, insurance, interest and other construction related costs accumulate during construction, and the sooner the building can be completed and/or start generating revenue, the quicker the return on investment. This is of keen interest for the multi-family investor. Prefab schedules enable projects to be completed during a more predictable time frame that is less impacted by changing economies. Complimented by tax incentives, parking reductions, increased density, affordable housing units, etc.- Prefab solutions can be even more profitable and/or less expensively constructed.
Local Community Outreach:
Prefab companies typically provide a liaison who will work with the property owner to plan for a smooth delivery and install however, community outreach is undertaken long before the modules are delivered. A seasoned Architect, well versed in Prefab, should champion the project with the community and provide guidance and a strategy towards successful approval of the project. Property owner's should seek a Prefab company that has an in-house Architect who is versed in the macro and micro of Prefab systems. Initial design studies, renderings, neighborhood analysis of pedestrian traffic, vehicular traffic, open space, height, setbacks, etc. all contribute to a successful project. You have the ability to make positive change in a community - treat your project with as much care regarding the fabric and culture of your neighborhood as you do when working out the on-site specifics for your project.
Creating excellent design solutions of better quality, within faster time-frames and/or at more affordable price-points, Prefab has moved well beyond the esoteric or theoretical stages of early development. The benefits derived from completed multi-family and mid-rise projects has unveiled a new and limitless range of prefab possibilities. Prefab applications have expanded far beyond the single family residential threshold to a world of larger construction projects. Collaboration of Prefab companies with successful industry partners will create additional opportunity in the business, enviro-conscious and humanitarian sectors. The motivation to employ Prefab is expanding rapidly. Companies/organizations like Google, Marriott, Starbucks, Addidas, Target, RedBull and a growing number of others are all employing Prefab innovative solutions. System that are easily and affordably adapted and re-adapted to evolving needs and business strategies.
Prefabrication has come of age with the merging of Architecture, Product Design and Construction. A collective understanding of the past, present and future of this hybrid methodology fused with ever expanding digital tools is providing forward-thinking clients with a clear business advantage. Narrowing down your support Team and prefab company options should be heavily weighted on the outlined topics above.