Over the years, I’ve built a few architect designed modular homes. In each case, the finished product was among the best-designed homes we’ve built.
One of Our Architect Designed Modular Homes
The suggestion to build a contemporary cape cod as a modular home came from the architect, Robert Coolidge, AIA, of Branford, Connecticut. Rob had first thought about renovating my customer’s existing home, but quickly realized that building new would make more sense. When my customers calculated what the local custom stick-builders would charge and how long they would take, they decided to take a closer look at modular construction.
Rob, my customers, and I spent a lot of time going back and forth with design ideas, discussions about how modular homes are constructed, and general cost information. We had several meetings in which Rob showed me some preliminary drawings, and I told him what we could and could not do and what it would likely cost. He then used the information to refine his design.
Since Rob had little prior experience with modular homes, I had to help educate him about the size of the modules and the structural requirements. Rob and my customer benefited from a trip to the modular manufacturer. The visit enabled them to see how the homes were built and to speak directly with the engineering department. The brainstorming with the engineering staff was particularly helpful. The education was not a one way street, since Rob educated me about the custom possibilities for modular homes. I still think I learned the most.
When we began working together, we had hoped to build the two stories out of four modules. But in the end we decided to build the second story, including the entire roof, on site. This required a lot of on-site work, but the finished product was exactly what we all envisioned it to be. Here are some photos: front; rear. Anyone who is unfamiliar with the possibilities of architect designed modular homes would swear the home was built by a custom stick-builder. But attractive design and quality construction were the only things it had in common with good custom stick construction, since it was built faster and for less money.