Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby Rudi2008 » Wed Jun 24, 2009 3:21 pm

Can I ask what people's opinions are on pre-fabricated kit houses. These houses are very much the rage in continental Europe, but have yet to really catch on here. The German company Hanse house (http://www.hanse-haus.ie) is operating here, but to what degree of success I'm not sure.

Are they a good investment in terms of durability and ability to stand the test of time? basically, what is the expected life-span of such timber-frame houses?
How do they rate in terms of energy efficiency?
Are they cheaper to build than normal concrete block houses?

Just wondering what view the architectural/building profession has of these structures.
Any comments/experiences would be welcome.
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby henno » Wed Jun 24, 2009 4:24 pm

Rudi2008 wrote:Can I ask what people's opinions are on pre-fabricated kit houses. These houses are very much the rage in continental Europe, but have yet to really catch on here. The German company Hanse house (http://www.hanse-haus.ie) is operating here, but to what degree of success I'm not sure.

Are they a good investment in terms of durability and ability to stand the test of time? basically, what is the expected life-span of such timber-frame houses?
How do they rate in terms of energy efficiency?
Are they cheaper to build than normal concrete block houses?

Just wondering what view the architectural/building profession has of these structures.
Any comments/experiences would be welcome.


without certification to show these kits can withstand the irish climate, there are very few financial institutions out there who will release monies for the purchase of these kits....

... And there are very few private independent certifiers who will put their name to a statement that these kits comply with irish building regs....
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby missarchi » Wed Jun 24, 2009 11:25 pm

why don't you contact them they must have some arrangement?

I prefer pre-built houses! they come on a truck and you have a house in half an hour:D
maybe and a brick wall?
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby Rudi2008 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 7:30 am

Have any studies been done on them in Ireland? I would find it difficult to believe that their weatherproof qualities are so bad - they are one of the more popular forms of building in Norway, Sweden, Germany and Austria - all of which have relatively inclement climates during the winter (a metre of snow lying against the bottom of the exterior walls for a few weeks at a time can't be good for them so they must be designed to withstand such weather issues). Given that they are also certified to build in Germany (which has relatively high building standards), the houses must be relatively weatherproof (norther Germany has a winter climate not far removed from that of Ireland).

The insulation techniques also make them quite attractive from the perspective of energy efficiency in comparison to much of what passed for housing during the last two decades.

Anyway, if anyone knows of any studies/publications/reports done of such houses in either Ireland or the UK, I would be grateful for the references.
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby tommyt » Thu Jun 25, 2009 12:32 pm

I had heard they are deliberately kept out of the market here by the CIF/Homebond on the pretext they would melt in the rain or some such nonsense. A friend payed cash and had one erected in the dampest swamps of Kildare but haven't seen him since to ascertain how it is survivng our horrendously ardous climatic conditions...
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby KerryBog2 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 3:19 pm

Coillte sold out their stake in a JV with an Austrian company Griffner. They were prefabricating them in Mullingar (?) . Have a look at http://www.griffner.com/en/ and you might find something.
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby dc3 » Fri Jun 26, 2009 1:21 pm

The German prefabricated Huf Haus seems to have got extremely complementary reviews in the UK market place. I saw the C4 Grand Designs programme where one was assembled. There is also a UK user group for them where you can find out more
http://www.huf-haus-owners-group.co.uk.

Of course, local operators usually try to maintain their low standards and high prices on the Irish market and many lenders or insurers may also be "risk" or change adverse.
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby Frank Taylor » Fri Jun 26, 2009 3:25 pm

Griffner coillte had problems with damp and also general quality problems:
http://www.askaboutmoney.com/showthread.php?t=26555

Post and beam houses from Huf and Davinci and kd-haus use an exposed laminated spruce frame with extensive glazing and stainless steel fittings. They seem to be a tried and tested design but work best in the countryside for the views. The local planner will likely approve as everyone seems to have seen the grand designs program. There are at least 50 such houses in Ireland.

These houses were price at about 200/sq ft and only seemed affordable during the boom. In Germany they are for the rich.

One big risk with kit houses is that the builder will make a balls of erecting it, so if at all possible you want someone from the kit company on site.

It's a big pity that during our construction boom, we didn't manage to create a kit house product to export to other countries.
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby missarchi » Tue Jun 30, 2009 12:31 am

Yeah its a shame about the kits... you could almost have 2000 homes year.

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2009/0630/1224249782313.html

Rent supplements must be reduced, the experts recommend. Nearly 5 per cent of the welfare budget – €490 million – goes to landlords, nearly double the percentage spent on accommodation by the State a decade ago.

experts recommend the claw...

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/features/2009/0630/1224249776600.html
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby DHB » Wed Jul 08, 2009 4:36 pm

Hanse Haus does not like the term kit house used for their houses. They build pre-fabricated timber frame houses to custom specifications. The houses arrive on lorries and their own crews erect the houses on site. This way Hanse Haus can stand over the very long warranty they give. They are building houses to customer specification and to planning permission. The newest edition is that they build passive houses in a pre-fabricated manor, as well as low-energy houses. Hanse Haus operates quiet successfully since 2004 on the Irish market. They are even more successful on the UK market. Hanse Haus can provide you with certifications that the houses last for at least 100 years. As the company is 80years in business this year . They certainly most have done something right. Why do you not contact one of the sales people on the website? They would give you a wealth of information and also you could get in touch with some of their clients and talk to people that have build a Hanse Haus in Ireland?
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby Angela » Tue Jul 28, 2009 7:46 am

Interesting reading on kit houses, a very good friend of mien has build a post & beam house in Ireland, and paid €300/sq ft or more, yes she could have had one for €250 per sq ft but “at a much lower quality” the German company told her, It is fascinating how these house go up and are worked on, there is no doubt in my mind turn key is the way to go with these kit houses, having researched the market for quite some time now and taking into consideration that 2011 will be passive house standard, I want to take the root of passiv haus, but who?? I have looked at quite a few options i.e. Hanser, Griffner, Scandinavian, but who stands out as having the best offer with quality, specification, and costs. I spoke already to such guys and they seem to be very nice - http://www.passive.ie has someone experience with them or know other companies…. interested to hear from you!

Thanks

Angela
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby parka » Tue Jul 28, 2009 3:29 pm

Angela wrote:Interesting reading on kit houses, a very good friend of mien has build a post & beam house in Ireland, and paid €300/sq ft or more, yes she could have had one for €250 per sq ft but “at a much lower quality” the German company told her, It is fascinating how these house go up and are worked on, there is no doubt in my mind turn key is the way to go with these kit houses, having researched the market for quite some time now and taking into consideration that 2011 will be passive house standard, I want to take the root of passiv haus, but who?? I have looked at quite a few options i.e. Hanser, Griffner, Scandinavian, but who stands out as having the best offer with quality, specification, and costs. I spoke already to such guys and they seem to be very nice - http://www.passive.ie has someone experience with them or know other companies…. interested to hear from you!

Thanks

Angela


Just reads like the sales brochure I got in todays post ;)
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby Pat W » Wed Aug 05, 2009 10:58 am

parka wrote:Just reads like the sales brochure I got in todays post ;)


I was keen to get my hands on that brochure after i read this thread, I have to admit it a very impressive specification check it out http://www.germanpassivehouses.ie/germanpassivehouseshouses.html
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby KerryBog2 » Wed Aug 05, 2009 9:53 pm

Do you take us for fools? Go away, you nasty troglydites and peddle your Airfix elsewhere!
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby Fordefitz » Wed Nov 11, 2009 8:38 pm

missarchi wrote:why don't you contact them they must have some arrangement?


my friend built with Hanse Haus. they use their own guys throughout. they build it in the factory, construct it on site and finish it to turn key including installing heating, electric and plumbing installations. he's very happy with the result a year on from completion. they use SIP (structural insulated panel) construction resulting in quick build time, airtight house and energy efficient house. I would advise against using a company prefabricating any part of the walls who don't construct the house on site themselves, I think this is asking for trouble as you've no way of knowing what problems you could come accross as it's going to together.

As above I would contact the company and get more information also I would suggest asking to speak to previous clients and view houses if at all possible.
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Re: Pre-fabricated 'Kit' Houses

Postby fclauson » Mon Feb 01, 2010 9:50 pm

Pusing the back up the list - we are also on the path of investigation - definatly seems the way to go

Any thoughts or feedback

Francis
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