Wednesday, January 27, 2016

A Great Topic for the First Modular Builder Round Table

Just like the theme established by the modular factory owners and top management of poor public image and acceptance, the builders participating in this week's first ever Modular Builder Round Table will have this and many other topics to discuss.

Here is a great topic to start out with at Round Table.

What was once just a bunch of property owners in Cape Coral, FL thinking that modular housing was going to bring down their property values is beginning to gather steam in other communities in Florida and beyond. These uninformed home owners are taking their frustrations out on 'modular' housing instead of taking the time to educate themselves about the quality and tougher code enforcement modular has to go through.

Here are a couple of paragraphs from a Fort Myers, FL newspaper article that should concern not only our fellow southern modular home builders but you as well as this type of thinking could spread.

"My fear is modular homes are getting a break on building codes. What amazes me is why you would put those up for $117 a square foot?" one resident said. "You could put up a real house up for that. These things are designed to be put on a truck. We need to tear apart one of these houses. 

"They just don't seem to fit. This committee is not addressing that these are modular homes, but they don't seem to look right," Bashaw said, adding that the e-mails he has gotten express concern this housing option will reduce property values, that they're "low-income housing," and aren't what you would expect in Cape Coral. 

Bashaw educated residents about modular homes, and said there are such homes that are built to exacting standards and look as beautiful as a site-built home.

Misinformation can get out there faster than ever thanks to social media. My God, over 30% of Twitter fans think Judge Judy is on the US Supreme Court. That's how little people actually seek the truth.


Tom Hardiman said...

Hey Coach, its getting a little better in Cape Coral. Another article this morning with a little more "balance."

When this story broke, I joined the Cape Coral Against Modular Homes Facebook page in an effort to try to post more information about modular homes. My post was immediately deleted and I was blocked from the site! We reached out to the local construction association (CCCIA) to express our concerns and were relieved to learn that they too think the locals are misinformed on this issue. I also sent a message to the Mayor trying to explain the difference between modular and manufactured and the similarities between modular and stick built.

I think members of the Council and some of the construction pros in the area do understand the difference and won't pass any knee-jerk restrictions. But you are right, this issue magnifies what this industry must overcome.

Anonymous said...

I'll bet those jerks in Cape Coral would be even more upset if a $117 a square foot stick built home was next door. I would much rather have a $117 modular home than a $117 stick built home anytime.

The homeowners will be the ones with egg on their faces when this is all over and forgotten by the press.

William aka "Little Bill" said...

Good effort Tom

Anonymous said...

Lee County Florida ( Cape Coral) Median home value 2013- $145,900 and median household income $49,780. Kudos to the builder for providing quality affordable housing to the property owner. Perhaps they both could have considered how to enhance the exterior or landscape but the NIMBY attitude would have occurred anyway based on the neighborhood comments.

Unfortunately, land costs, permits, impact fees, and regulations are driving costs higher but so is the calculation from site builders who are pricing at $135-$150/sq ft and higher plus owners are reliving the pre-recession home values.

Anonymous said...

i know this geography. when they get their weather, and they will get their weather, modular construction will prove it's worth