Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built - General Discussion - Contractor Talk

Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built

 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 06-27-2008, 08:48 PM   #1
New Guy
 
michaelzenga's Avatar
 
Trade: Home Builder
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 26
Rewards Points: 25

Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


Hi,

I am new to the group and I apoligize in advance for any mistakes I may make.

After 5 years of developing real estate and contracting, my partners and I decided to take my company into building modulars for myself for development purposes and for others. I have found it a relatively easy sell as I have found Modular to be

- Better Quality
- Faster
- less expensive

We are in the Boston area and we are finding that we can give a customer a full turn key solution for between $130-150 a sq. ft. That price would be for roughly a 2,500 sq. ft home with hardwood, granite, central a/c, upgraded molding, crown molding, gas fireplace, tiled baths. We can finish homes in 6 months or so. You can see the homes we build by googling - ZN Custom Building

If anyone has some experience in the area, I would love to hear how you feel like this compares to traditional stick building and whatever advantages, disadvantages I may be missing.

Thanks,

Michael Zenga
ZN Custom Building
michaelzenga is offline  

Warning: The topics covered on this site include activities in which there exists the potential for serious injury or death. ContractorTalk.com DOES NOT guarantee the accuracy or completeness of any information contained on this site. Always use proper safety precaution and reference reliable outside sources before attempting any construction or remodeling task!

   

Advertisement

 

Old 06-28-2008, 09:27 AM   #2
Plumber / Carpenter
 
Bill's Avatar
 
Trade: Virginia Building and plumbing contractor
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Farmville, Va
Posts: 1,652
Rewards Points: 1,014

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


IMO? Dont like mods. Sure, they are built in a "Controlled Atmosphere" but lets face it, out here, there is no controlled atmosphere. I can show you hundreds of them that did not go together right after being brought out to the site. And lets face it, you build this thing indoors where the workers are more comfortable, then you must pick it up and place it on a trailer, then drive it to the job over bumpy, twisty, windy roads, then back the trailer across uneaven ground, then crane it off the trailer to the foundation. Seems like a lot uf twisting, bending and pulling on all them walls and sheetrock to me. No sir, dont like them one bit. Ask anyone who has one about 10 years down the road how they feel about them.

Advertisement

__________________
Is it beer thirty yet
Virginia Department of Licensing
Virginia Plumbing Codes
Bill is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to Bill For This Useful Post:
Deadhead Derek (02-09-2009)
Old 06-28-2008, 10:20 AM   #3
New Guy
 
michaelzenga's Avatar
 
Trade: Home Builder
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 26
Rewards Points: 25

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


I have seen the customer satisfaction ratings from multiple factories and they do seem to be higher than stick built. Yes, problems can happen anywhere, but I'll take some sheetrock cracking vs. all the issues/delays that can happen during conventional construction.

You could bring all of the parts of your car to a mechanic, but it would be a lot easier and less expensive to have it assembled in a factory.
michaelzenga is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 06-28-2008, 10:29 AM   #4
Plumber / Carpenter
 
Bill's Avatar
 
Trade: Virginia Building and plumbing contractor
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Farmville, Va
Posts: 1,652
Rewards Points: 1,014

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


could be because I am a framer and this to me is a threat to my livelyhood. if everyone goes mod, we lose work while some conglomo corp eats steaks.
__________________
Is it beer thirty yet
Virginia Department of Licensing
Virginia Plumbing Codes
Bill is offline  
Old 06-28-2008, 10:11 PM   #5
New Guy
 
michaelzenga's Avatar
 
Trade: Home Builder
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 26
Rewards Points: 25

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


Mods only make up about 5% of new construction in the US. If they increased their share of the total market 10% a year (a stretch), it would take a really long time to put framers out of business. I wouldn't worry about that.
michaelzenga is offline  
Old 06-29-2008, 11:34 AM   #6
 
RPortinga's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 134
Rewards Points: 75

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


We've looked at modular stuff a few times. We were looking at rehabbing some lots in some of the... well, not as well-to-do areas of Minneapolis. The main advantage of going modular in that type of situation was being able to get in and out of the site as quickly as possible, minimizing the risk of loss due to theft and such.

A guy I know builds a lot of stuff for Perkins, and they do a LOT of panelized construction.
RPortinga is offline  
Old 06-29-2008, 10:03 PM   #7
New Guy
 
michaelzenga's Avatar
 
Trade: Home Builder
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 26
Rewards Points: 25

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


The issue with panelized is that you still are doing so much on site. Do you see a big advantage over modular?
michaelzenga is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to michaelzenga For This Useful Post:
Deadhead Derek (02-09-2009)
Old 06-30-2008, 08:56 AM   #8
 
RPortinga's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 134
Rewards Points: 75

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelzenga View Post
The issue with panelized is that you still are doing so much on site. Do you see a big advantage over modular?
Personally, I've never worked with either. We gave up on the one project cause of the turn around in the housing market.
RPortinga is offline  
Old 06-30-2008, 07:57 PM   #9
 
Carport King's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 470
Rewards Points: 250

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


Born and raised in that business in Ohio and loved it. Like any thing else installing it right the first time makes the difference.

We always had the drywall hung only and we had it tape and textured and painted on site. Along with floors,carpet,tile. We built garages also.

The biggest thing is timing, and mods go up fast and you turn your money over quicker. Good luck
Carport King is offline  
Old 07-01-2008, 12:01 AM   #10
New Guy
 
michaelzenga's Avatar
 
Trade: Home Builder
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 26
Rewards Points: 25

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


You are a smart man Carport king...
michaelzenga is offline  
Old 07-02-2008, 10:42 PM   #11
I might not be good,but I
 
valerko's Avatar
 
Trade: Framing and remodeling
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NY state,Dutches county
Posts: 51
Rewards Points: 75

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


- Better Quality
- Faster
- less expensive


Better Quality --- haven't seen one yet
Faster---- not necessary,depends on builder mostly
less expensive--- I don't think so.Not in my neck of the woods.
valerko is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to valerko For This Useful Post:
Deadhead Derek (02-09-2009)
Old 07-02-2008, 11:25 PM   #12
New Guy
 
HVAC_Ryan's Avatar
 
Trade: Heating, Ventilation, Cooling & Sheet Metal
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Alberta
Posts: 29
Rewards Points: 25

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


Quote:
Originally Posted by USP45 View Post
could be because I am a framer and this to me is a threat to my livelyhood. if everyone goes mod, we lose work while some conglomo corp eats steaks.

Can't a few framers choose to co-op and then frame the walls in a yard/warehouse somewhere and ship them to site, go home and eat steak?
What size crane do you think would be necessary to pick the floor joists etc off the deck?


...you'll note I like to over simplify the trades I know little about....
__________________
"They must find it difficult...Those who have taken authority as the truth, rather than truth as the authority." - Gerald Massey
HVAC_Ryan is offline  
Old 07-14-2008, 11:32 PM   #13
New Guy
 
michaelzenga's Avatar
 
Trade: Home Builder
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 26
Rewards Points: 25

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


I can understand theat some of the framers aren't thrilled with modular, but I do believe it will continue to increase its market share. Some framers build beautiful homes, and they will always make a great living, but I think buying modular gives the customer some assurance that building in a quality controlled factory will lower the chance that there is a disaster...
michaelzenga is offline  
Old 07-15-2008, 07:52 AM   #14
Member
 
JPC2's Avatar
 
Trade: Fine Homebuilding, Remodeling
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Dagsboro, DE
Posts: 52
Rewards Points: 75

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


Michael, modular is really big in my area. It's come a long way in the last 5-7 years. I'm a custom builder and I can tell you that I think modular is great. We have one major modular company locally, and several in nearby PA. The product can range widely (like just about everything). The idea of a controlled production keeps quality very high. But, just like site built, if the builder does a crappy job putting it together and finishing it, it's no different than any other crappy job. Most units around here come completely finished, and drywall cracking and the like isn't really a problem. Features like standard crown mouldings help to reduce those issues too. A simple 28'x48' rancher can be set and finished in about 5 days complete - sometimes quicker than that if there isn't a porch or garage. On the other hand, we're more and more seeing several modular boxes (6+) assembled to create a larger more custom looking house.

The real success still lies with a responsible builder who can manage a consistent system and field crews who are professional and efficeint.

I think this type of building will continue to grow at a steady rate...
JPC2 is offline  
Old 07-15-2008, 09:25 AM   #15
Semi retired/ Over worked
 
CertifiedFunds's Avatar
 
Trade: General Contractor
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Middleburg Florida
Posts: 58
Rewards Points: 75

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelzenga View Post
Hi,

I am new to the group and I apoligize in advance for any mistakes I may make.

After 5 years of developing real estate and contracting, my partners and I decided to take my company into building modulars for myself for development purposes and for others. I have found it a relatively easy sell as I have found Modular to be

- Better Quality
- Faster
- less expensive

We are in the Boston area and we are finding that we can give a customer a full turn key solution for between $130-150 a sq. ft. That price would be for roughly a 2,500 sq. ft home with hardwood, granite, central a/c, upgraded molding, crown molding, gas fireplace, tiled baths. We can finish homes in 6 months or so. You can see the homes we build by googling - ZN Custom Building

If anyone has some experience in the area, I would love to hear how you feel like this compares to traditional stick building and whatever advantages, disadvantages I may be missing.

Thanks,

Michael Zenga
ZN Custom Building
I have drawn a few plans for my competitor to put porches and garages on them and there Modular comes nowhere close to the houses I build. My father owns a company that sets up modulars and even he would not own one. I think they are nothing more than a house trailer.
CertifiedFunds is offline  
Old 07-15-2008, 09:51 AM   #16
Pro
 
dlcj's Avatar
 
Trade: home builder carpenter Central Alabama
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: valley grande, al
Posts: 789
Rewards Points: 500

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


We are in the Boston area and we are finding that we can give a customer a full turn key solution for between $130-150 a sq. ft. That price would be for roughly a 2,500 sq. ft home with hardwood, granite, central a/c, upgraded molding, crown molding, gas fireplace, tiled baths. We can finish homes in 6 months or so.

I know things are higher in boston but we can stick build a 2500 sq ft story and half with garage and all the luxuries you stated hear for $75-$80 sq. ft and do it in about 8 mounths. Thats with just 2 of us doing 75% of the work.
dlcj is offline  
Old 07-16-2008, 11:50 AM   #17
 
castlehuntercon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 3
Rewards Points: 10

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


As a former Mortgage Broker and currently working in the construction field, i will say this. Even if you can find buyers willing to purchase these homes, you might get stuck when it comes to financing. Banks and other lenders dont view modular housing the same site built, and may even require you to "comp" these homes with other modular homes that were not placed or sold by your company. This can present a problem if there are no other modular homes sold within a 1 mile radius of where your will be placed within the last 6 to 12 months. In todays mortgage climate lending guidelines are tightening daily, even if you find a good source to finance the modular homes today they make be bankrupt tomorrow. Be careful using brige loans counting on the end buyer to take your bridge loan out with permanant financing. You may end up stuck trying to get perm financing of your own if your buyer loses theirs just so they don't call your bridge loan.
castlehuntercon is offline  
Old 07-16-2008, 12:06 PM   #18
 
Dustball's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 756
Rewards Points: 500

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


Quote:
Originally Posted by castlehuntercon View Post
As a former Mortgage Broker and currently working in the construction field, i will say this. Even if you can find buyers willing to purchase these homes, you might get stuck when it comes to financing. Banks and other lenders dont view modular housing the same site built, and may even require you to "comp" these homes with other modular homes that were not placed or sold by your company. This can present a problem if there are no other modular homes sold within a 1 mile radius of where your will be placed within the last 6 to 12 months. In todays mortgage climate lending guidelines are tightening daily, even if you find a good source to finance the modular homes today they make be bankrupt tomorrow. Be careful using brige loans counting on the end buyer to take your bridge loan out with permanant financing. You may end up stuck trying to get perm financing of your own if your buyer loses theirs just so they don't call your bridge loan.
How do mortgage brokers and lenders determine what houses are modular? As far as I know, modular houses have no special distinction when it comes to deeds like manufactured houses do.
Dustball is offline  
Old 07-16-2008, 12:58 PM   #19
 
castlehuntercon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 3
Rewards Points: 10

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


There is a place on an appraisal where it asks the appraiser to specify if a property was site built, modular manufactured etc. It would get caught on the appraisal. I know because i have been snagged on that beofre, and i had to get a new appraisal using only modular comps. Hope that helps.
castlehuntercon is offline  
Old 07-16-2008, 03:26 PM   #20
 
Dustball's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 756
Rewards Points: 500

Re: Modular Pricing Vs. Stick Built


Quote:
Originally Posted by castlehuntercon View Post
There is a place on an appraisal where it asks the appraiser to specify if a property was site built, modular manufactured etc. It would get caught on the appraisal. I know because i have been snagged on that beofre, and i had to get a new appraisal using only modular comps. Hope that helps.
You're telling me that when it comes to the lender or appraiser,

this modular house (which I've personally been in)-



is going to be compared to this manufactured house?


Advertisement


Last edited by Dustball; 07-22-2008 at 02:21 PM.
Dustball is offline  



Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
modular homes newguy07 General Discussion 35 06-29-2008 09:16 PM
Bird's Mouth/ Heel Cuts in stick built roof framing DEAD_ONConst Framing 34 03-27-2008 04:29 PM
cost of trusses vs stick built ugabulldog Framing 14 04-16-2007 05:57 AM
Pricing for Dallas area??? TexSeal Painting & Finish Work 2 02-22-2007 01:15 PM
Pricing? built up wind&dr headers jgmillzy00 Finish Carpentry 0 04-28-2006 10:50 AM

Join Now... It's Fast and FREE!

I am a professional contractor
I am a DIY Homeowner
Drywall Talk is for
PROFESSIONAL CONTRACTORS ONLY!

At DrywallTalk.com we cater exlusivly to professional contractors who make their living as a contractor. Knowing that many homeowners and DIYers are looking for a community to call home, we've created www.DIYChatroom.com DIY Chatroom is full of helpful advices and perfect for DIY homeowners.

Redirecing in 10 seconds
No Thanks
terms of service

Already Have an Account?