Construction Waste: The Hidden Cost of Building a Home

avoid construction waste Next Modular Goshen IN

If you have ever considered building a modular home, you have probably budgeted for materials, appliances, labor, warranties, etc. However, most homebuilders fail to consider the greatest threat to their housing budget: construction waste. Exactly how does construction waste occur, and why is it such a hidden cost? More importantly, how can you avoid it? Let’s take a closer look.

Construction Waste By Traditional Homes

Homebuilders often throw away cut-offs or materials damaged by the weather. Hundreds of millions of tons of construction waste end up in the landfill every year. Despite recycling efforts, the EPA states that 40% of the solid waste in the U.S. comes from traditional, stick-built homebuilding sites.

Why is this the case? The answer is simple: building a single home at the job site is inefficient. One study by the National Association of Home Builders estimates that 8,000 pounds of waste material get sent to the landfill when building a single 2,000 square foot stick-built home. Materials go unused, extras get ordered, parts don’t end up fitting, etc. Because there is no other project nearby that can use the materials, they simply get tossed.

Some builders attempt to recycle. However, it can be difficult to justify the cost of two separate containers at a job site, the time it takes to sort the waste, and the cost to haul each container away. Plus, it is often easier to cut a new board stacked right next to you rather than to walk to the other side of the construction site to repurpose an already cut board.

Benefits of Building a Modular Home

Why pay for products that you don’t use? Fortunately, there is no need to fall victim to hidden construction waste. Building a modular home provides numerous benefits, including the following.

1. Minimal Construction Waste

Construction waste is minimal in modular home factories. In a factory environment, manufacturers find it more convenient to practicing responsible waste management than they would at a traditional construction site. Modular home manufacturers do their best to eliminate, minimize, or recycle construction waste because it saves them money. They do this by taking the following steps.

  • Purchasing lumber cut to length to avoid excess or unused wood.
  • Buying pre-cut flooring according to room size, so it doesn’t require trimming.
  • Reducing packaging waste by making bulk product purchases.
  • Repurposing unused materials from one home (such as an unused board) to use on the next home.

2. High-Quality Materials

Water and the sun don’t damage materials because the modular home construction occurs inside. If any of the materials don’t meet quality standards, then the manufacturer can return them to the supplier. 

On a location build, sub-standard materials often find their way into the dumpster. Traditional builders pass that cost along to you, the homeowner. Modular home builders find uses for scraps rather than tossing them in the trash. A lot of time, materials, that weren’t used on one build can be transferred to another.

3. Lower Prices

Back to the hidden cost of construction waste. When that hidden cost is removed, your budget stretches much farther.

On average, you can expect a modular home to cost about 15% less than the same floorplan built in a traditional manner. The reason for this is that building in a controlled factory environment means less construction waste. Modular home builders find uses for scraps rather than tossing them in the trash. If they can use the leftover material on another build, they will. All of this allows them to pass savings to the homeowner, as opposed to extra costs.

Like stick-built homes, a modular home increases its value over time. For all intents and purposes, a modular home does not differ from a stick-built home except for where the building takes place, so lower building costs translate into more equity from the beginning.

Interested in Learning More?

At Next Modular, we know that choosing a home is likely one of the most important financial decisions you will make. As an experienced modular home builder, we are committed to being your guiding light throughout this process. If you need a modular home built near Goshen, Indiana, or if you have any further questions regarding resale value, call us today.

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