Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Some Things Just Don't Add Up

It's raining here today and driving back from my meeting I noticed a site builder's crew working in the rain on a new home. I stopped and watched as the water poured off the lumber and the framers were walking through the first floor deck depositing big piles of mud where they stepped. None of the lumber was covered. There was also a 40 cubic yard dumpster on the site.

Then I wondered why new home buyers would prefer their homes being built in inclement weather. I asked myself what cruise ship passengers would think if the ship they would be sailing on were built at the same pier where they boarded. That would probably not very good. That is why they are usually built 'off-site'.

Then I wondered if airplane passengers would like to see their airplanes built at the airport in the rain and snow. Again that wouldn't be good. Boeing wants their planes safe and dry while they are building them.

So why do new home buyers think that a home built on their lot stick by stick by a subcontractor that probably is paying low wages and hiring anyone that can fog a mirror is superior to a modular home?

The answer to that continues to be a mystery.


Anonymous said...


I think a basic part of the problem is the buyer of a home knows less and puts less effort into knowing about their home purchase than they do investigating their smartphone purchase.

Also, few people see a modular being erected. They will "see" a site built home being built for months. Modular can't count on drive-by sitings to expand awareness.

I believe what you are doing is a start. One wins big battles in little steps.


Unknown said...

Coach, when I am speaking with my friends, I always use the "building the car in the driveway" example. I work in the modular industry for the past 16 years, and to my shame, my sister is stick building a home. She was sold on modular homes, and even toured one of our manufacturing facilities, developed a custom plan and chose all the materials and fixtures she wanted- but in the end, the builder she wanted to work with would not build a modular home. Sadly, the home my sister is getting is inferior in many ways to the home we had designed for her. I have visited the site weekly and have made note of things such as 1. Compromise on the type of home she wanted because the builder only offered certain plans. He sold her by saying he had a "similar" design, which in the end includes none of her must-haves. 2. Lack of progress because the builder is working on so many other homes at the same time. 3. Inferior building techniques and materials. 4. Exposure of the home to the weather prior to the roof being completed.

I feel so sorry for her, as every day she becomes more and more aware that she settled, and is not getting the home of her dreams.