Some of the benefits of modular buildings are widely known today, but by no means all. Below are our Top 10 benefits compared to traditional construction:
Modular buildings enable concurrent working - groundworks and foundations can be completed on-site while modules or components are manufactured off-site - meaning projects can be delivered significantly faster than traditional construction methods.
Modular buildings, especially volumetric modular, can be easily expanded, reduced, reconfigured or relocated to meet changing needs. Additional modules or whole floors can be added at a later date to accommodate growing needs or whole buildings moved as part of re-structuring plans.
Fewer trades and vehicle movements means less disruption and increased safety on-site. Modules are craned into position quickly and safely, controlled from ground level and usually completed in a matter of days. Nearly half (49%) of construction industry fatalities in 2019 were due to falls from height on-site, because traditional wall and roof construction is more resource intensive at height.
Modular buildings are made weather-tight when they are connected and don’t require wet trades in their construction. This means they are not subject to the same weather-related delays or skill shortages as site-based construction. Once the modules are in place the building can be ready to go.
Factory production, with its associated process engineering and quality control procedures, is more efficient in its use of materials than on-site construction. It reduces site-related issues too – such weather damage, storage and theft. The repetitive nature of modular construction means it can flex materials stock between projects, something traditional building struggles to do, resulting in more waste going to landfill.
With modular construction approximately 80% of project activity is completed away from the site location, so customers can keep their businesses, schools or hospitals running smoothly for longer. Noise, pollution and mess are also reduced, for the benefit of neighbours and the local community.
Offsite construction manufacturers can operate as Main Contractors, which means they control all aspects of a project – from planning and design to production and installation. This simplifies the traditional supply-chain, where different consultants and contractors are responsible for planning, design, electrical, mechanical, plumbing, fenestration, roofing and other stages. One point of contact and responsibility for everything makes the customer’s life easier.
Faster building occupation than traditional construction has financial benefits, such as faster return on investment. Buildings can be designed and materials specified to suit all budgets, from the functional to the fantastic. And the procurement options available greatly enhance affordability, especially hiring and leasing, which remove the need to raise large amounts of capital.
Many of the benefits detailed above are sustainability benefits – and there’s more. Modular buildings are lightweight structures. When combined with highly efficient insulation materials, this means they use less energy in-use than traditional buildings, produce lower CO2 emissions and consume less heating fuel, which is better for the environment. Many manufacturers now actively specify recyclable components, so when a building eventually reaches its end-of-life, it can be recycled with minimal impact on landfill.