Cheaper Prefab: weeHouse or FlatPak?
There’s a reason that prefab building companies like weeHouse and Flatpak develop in Minnesota. The weather is always perfect inside the warm and dry factory where prefabs can be built, so there is no damp penetration during building.
Houses built inside can be built from the inside out. Everything gets sealed tight before the final sheathing goes on. In equally cold Sweden 90% of the houses are built this way indoors and then delivered to the site.
This extremely frugal weeHouse in the middle of nowhere for a Minneapolis violinist and her son began the weeHouse line by Minneapolis-based Alchemy Architects. But there are differences between Minnesota’s FlatPak, and Minnesota’s weeHouse.
Both companies offer an inexpensive, easy way to build green. Most prefabs are designed and assembled using low-or zero-waste methods, and use green building materials, and good quality detail, like the bathroom in this weeHouse condo development in Southern California.
While FlatPak allows a much more flexible final result by keeping modules identical, even at the risk of winding up with essentially a custom design – at custom design prices, weeHouse remains committed to the economics of prefab building. It does this partly by keeping the square footage down, (their slogan is “the greenest square foot is the one you don’t build”), and partly by offering a set of full units, rather than modules to build them with.
The result is a line of similar, but efficient and economical homes for well under $100,000, that work for sites with climates like Texas – as seen here – to those regions with climates like California, but also Montana and the Midwest.
The result is a casual and egalitarian style that really everyone can live with.