Modular Construction

photo by JB Spector / Museum of Science + Industry

What is Off-site Construction?

A modular home is constructed using three-dimensional boxes or “modules”. The home is built to site-built code, but created in a factory. Interior and exterior sheathing, utility lines, interior partitions and stairs are all completed in the factory. The modules are 90-95% complete when they come off the assembly line in the factory.

After completion in the factory, a modular home is shipped to the site, then attached to a permanent foundation at the building site. Several modules can be connected side-by-side or stacked to create a finished home. When completed, modular homes are composed of several modules fastened together. Once the home is attached, it is considered real estate and appraised against other custom site-built homes.

Check out this VIDEO of a home we designed being set.
Check out this TIMELINE of a home we designed being built.

The Benefits

  • Integrated, pre-packaged green solutions.
  • Modular factories can achieve 50% to 75% less waste than the equivalent site-built home through precision cutting and storage capacity.
  • Exceeds structural requirements, creating a stronger, solid home.
  • More predictability in time and cost.
  • Assembly line construction means higher quality.
  • Worker repetition means worker specialization.
  • Time frame is greatly reduced.
  • A climate-controlled factory environment means no moisture and minimizes mold.
  • Less impact on the building site.
  • Less risk of time lost and theft on site.
  • Homes are 90% – 95% complete upon arrival to the site.
  • Built to all state and local codes, for any climate and any season.

Simply a Better Built Home

Michelle Kaufmann’s designed modular homes are built in state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities with built-in quality control methods. We work with only the highest quality factories with consistent and experienced workforce that ensures a better-built home. Built to the highest standards, every home we design meets or exceeds all federal and state regulation codes, and we aggressively pursue new and innovative ways to preserve the environment at the same time.

What is the difference between a modular home and other factory-built homes?

Not all factory-built homes are on a level playing field. Among the many classifications of prefabricated homes are modular homes, manufactured homes, and mobile homes. Each of these home types is very different. Although they are all built in a factory, they are built to different building codes, with modular construction at the highest construction/quality level.

Many city and county zoning ordinances restrict the locating of manufactured/mobile homes to limited areas, whereas modular homes are more widely accepted.

Our Designs

Michelle Kaufmann Studio can work with you to design a home that is based on modular construction, or site built construction, depending on your site and your needs.

4 Responses to “Modular Construction”

  1. HI,
    We just toured the Pedregosa St, Santa Barbara house you worked on. It was great! I am trying to cost out a house at the top of a narrow steep road.Have you ever been on Holly road up in Mission Canyon by chance? Is this appropriate for a modular home? I fear not :( I wondered if there was a way to construct with out the huge cranes and other enormous vehicles for transport.
    Love to hear your thoughts on this.
    Best regards,
    Lloyd Dallett

  2. MK says:

    I haven’t been on that route. Imagine a 14′ wide x 15′-6″ high module going through. (measuring sticks can be helpful). If it looks doable to you, the next step is we can do a delivery assessment with the shipping guys to get an official confirmation.
    If modules couldn’t get there, we could look at another type of construction such as panels with module “cores”.
    You can email me if you want to discuss further.
    best, Michelle

  3. John Murray says:


    I am a teacher that brought my students to see the Smart Home in Chicago. Do you design modular homes with basements as well? Would you be able to share the cost of building a home similar to the Smart Home? Thank you for your time.



  4. Victoria says:

    I am interested in all your projects, modular construction,etc but I don´t know if you build in Spain and I can´t find the way to contact you to have more details about what you do…I would appreciate so much to hear from you…Best regards, Victoria

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