Pictured: Larkfleet Homes CEO Karl Hick.
Factory built housing can solve the housing crisis, in time. Speaking in a recent interview on BBC Radio Lincolnshire’s Breakfast Show, Karl Hick, CEO of Bourne Lincolnshire-based housebuilder Larkfleet Homes, told listeners that modular housing is the answer to the housing crisis, but factory-built housing needs to be more economic, and cost effective, before it becomes more widespread.
Karl Hick said: “Yes, modular housing can be factory built without some of the traditional skilled trades on site and can be built quicker. But it is around 10-15 per cent more expensive than traditionally built homes. Yes, modular housing can solve the housing problem, but the average consumer can’t afford it, and developers can’t either and won’t be able to recover all their costs.
“It will take the industry and consumers a while to get used to something that is not traditionally built with bricks and blocks.”
Modular homes will be timber framed buildings incorporating some composite products. It is thought that they could reduce construction time by up to one month. This time saving should help move the government closer to meeting its annual housebuilding target of 300,000 new homes.
Karl Hick concluded that currently there are not enough skilled trades people and Brexit has had a serious impact on labour for traditional construction methods to be sustainable. Modular, factory-built homes will solve the housing crisis, but only once the process becomes more economical and cost effective.