Prefabricated houses, commonly referred to as prefabs, are houses manufactured in factories, usually in standard sections that can be easily transported and assembled on-site.
According to property experts, these houses will soon revolutionize the Kenyan housing sector as builders move to dodge rising costs of construction.
The revolution, which could potentially replace brick and mortar, is also being buoyed by a growing appetite by mortgage providers to provide mortgage facilities.
The use of prefabricated technology reduces the time taken to build a house while cutting the cost of construction. This shift is good for Kenya, whose annual demand for housing stands at 200,000 units against a supply of 40,000 units.
Although the use of prefabs has been widely accepted in the United States and other developed countries, the major problem faced by modular components suppliers locally is the Kenyan’s lack of appreciation for and understanding of these components. As such, there is a need to inform the market that the future of dwellings is in these type of houses.
First, prospective home owners should be educated on the procedure followed when putting up a modular house. They should be informed that all they need to do is provide the particulars for the house to be constructed after which a list of all prefabricated walling panels is prepared. Once the panels are ready the homeowner prepares the house foundation and a technical team puts up the house according to the specifications.
Second, home owners should also be assured that the modular homes are durable and above all secure. Due to frequent issues of burglary especially in the urban areas, a lot of people would not like to take chances with prefabs. This fear is however unfounded since modular homes are as secure as brick and mortar houses.
With proper information, I am sure many Kenyans will embrace prefab building technology as we address the issue of affordable housing in our country.