Tuesday, November 29, 2016

This Modular Home Design Needs a Reality Check

Don’t get me wrong, I love new designs and innovations in modular construction and some of what the following article in the Los Angeles Times could possibly become at least optional in our future but I have my doubts. I just want to poke little fun at the thought of these homes actually being taken seriously.

KB Home, the visionary behind this beautiful and yet strange modular home has lost sight of their market the same way the media and pollsters did in the recent Presidential election.

As you read the LA Times article, a couple of fundamental flaws appear. These homes will be designed for use mainly by Millennials, the poorest age bracket yet.

Here are a couple of questions that need answered after reading the article:
  • KB Home will build these in communities and with land getting scarcer the thought of not having a car but rather using Uber seems very unappealing.
  • Chutes built into the house where Amazon’s drones can deliver packages. Don’t forget the Domino and Pizza Hut drones. I don’t think your pizza will survive the chute experience.
  • Movable walls inside your home to adapt to your changing needs. HELLO! Load bearing.
  • Can we really grow food on the walls like the article suggests? Not me. I can only eat so much kale and herbs.

The only statement in the article that has an overwhelming ring of truth is
“But American homeowners tend to be cautious about adopting new innovations and are even less inclined toward expensive ones.”

Here is the LA Times article:

Home builder sees a future with movable walls and garage-less houses

Builder sees a future with movable walls and garage-less houses

By Tiffany Hsu

In the future, most homes won’t have garages because their owners won’t own cars. Rooms can be reconfigured by pushing the walls. Postal service or bike couriers might not be necessary -- drones will handle many package and take-out deliveries.

KB HOME 1.jpg

At least, that’s KB Home’s vision. As part of the Greenbuild International Conference and Expo last month, the home builder imagined residential living circa 2050 by constructing an 1,800-square-foot model home in the Los Angeles Convention Center.

The sleek concept includes cutting-edge Jetsons technology. But much of the innovation is also based on major changes in demographics and social attitudes.

KB HOME 3.jpg

The three-car garage — once a conspicuous signal of homeowner prosperity — will become a rarity, as driving yourself is replaced by on-demand travel via Uber, Lyft and other ride-sharing options, KB Home predicts. Car owners will have charging stations for their Teslas and other electric vehicles.

To account for future drone delivery services, such as the kind Amazon.com is testing, KB Home dreamed up a secure drop box paired with a landing pad. Drones would ping the home’s smart network to open a chute, then drop packages in.

KB HOME 2.jpg

Internally, the concept home incorporates a modular design. Walls can be moved along tracks to convert spaces. Certain components — counters, bars, even full bathrooms — will eventually be prefabricated and dropped into homes as easily as ink cartridges into a printer, designers said.

Modularity gives residents options in limited spaces.

CLICK HERE to read the entire LA Times article


Steve L said...

In my humble opinion, LA urban home prices are so high due to land acquisition that these suggested cuts by site builders are necessary. Affordable urban Tiny Houses with electric cars appear to be the better marketing ploy for millennials in the near future. CA. residential utility rates will be changing to "Time of Usage" (TOU) charges in 2019 so the cost to operate a home will be much higher in a few years. A smaller, solar home and an electric car is the ideal to offset the up and coming operating costs future projections.

Anonymous said...

I like the concept ..Check Laprise Masions and Goscobec homes as well two manufactures that Bay Point Homes works with...Laprise is a panelized structure w/ R 28.5 wall I sulation and in the 40es attic....both from Canada ...very exciting to get away from the traditional.
The tech home by Kent homes as well....iPhone or pad your controlling the functions of your home....fun stuff...