Building a home for the first time has one thing in common with having your first child. You’re never really prepared. It doesn’t matter how many times family, friends, and know-it-all strangers share their experience and advice. Just as you have to live through parenting to understand the difficulties of meeting your baby’s needs, you have to experience the challenges of building a home to understand its demands and stresses.
I made this point in the Introduction to my book, The Modular Home. My goal for the book was to draw on my 26 years of experience in the industry (as President of The Home Store) to educate anyone building a modular home for the first time. As it’s turned out, this has included modular industry folk new to the business in addition to those building their own modular home. To make this more interesting and personal, I included several short stories about my customers. I called these, “Speaking from Experience”.
This blog will begin with these stories, but will add many, many more – at least one or two a week. Most of the stories will be about the challenges, mistakes, and surprises experienced by my customers, their general contractors, our modular factories, and (yes) my company in general and me personally. Almost every tale was endured by more customers than the ones I mention. In fact, some of the stories are composites of several customers’ experiences. Needless to say, I disguise my customers’ identities.
I will also mix in many straightforward advice posts. They will tell you what to do and why you should do it. Some will focus on what you shouldn’t do.
I’d like to mention a point acknowledged by conventional builders who’ve read my book. The number of challenges, mistakes, and surprises experienced by builders of stick, panelized, and log homes is even greater than those facing builders of modular homes. The reason is that there is much more work to be done on site with these types of homes. That’s of course why more and more people, including conventional builders, are considering modular homes over other forms of construction.
As I said in my book, if you’re wondering why I’m being so candid, it’s because I want your experience to be as free of surprises as possible. If my blog does its job and prepares you for what lies ahead, you will be very glad when you’ve built your own modular home.
So please join me each week for my Tales from a Modular Home Builder.