Flat pack homes are becoming more popular in the UK and it’s easy to see why; they can be customised, it’s unlikely anyone else in your street will have a similar house, they are (sometimes) cheaper than a traditional “bricks and mortar” build and they can be constructed in weeks, not months.
But how much do they cost to purchase and put together a flat pack home?
In early 2019 and again in April 2021, we contacted several flat pack home manufacturers and asked them questions about prices.
Surprisingly, some of them refused to provide us with any prices as they wanted to arrange a meeting with us first.
A few did respond to our enquiries and gave us guide prices.
What is a Flat Pack Home?
A flat pack home is the latest name for a prefabricated home. These are manufactured in a warehouse and shipped to the client in sections that can be pieced together on site.
By researching this topic, we’ve discovered that there are typically three options to choose from:
- A “bare-bones” unit – this contains all the core parts you’ll need to build your home, the floor, walls, roof, doors and windows etc and is delivered to the site. You are responsible for putting all the pieces together.
- A “basic build” – this is where the company will provide all the materials and construct the home so it’s secure and watertight. You are responsible for purchasing and fitting the kitchens, bathrooms, flooring and completing the decorating etc.
- A “turnkey” project – this is where you hand over almost all aspects of the build. Your chosen company will construct the home in a warehouse, deliver to the site and erect it. They will then fit it out with kitchens, bathrooms, flooring, tiling and decorating etc.
Regardless of the option you choose, you will have to:
- Purchase the land yourself.
- Pay stamp duties and other legal or building control fees.
- Pay for the ground to be excavated and foundations created for your new home.
- Getting planning permission.
- Pay to connect your home to the gas, water, waste and electric services.
- Pay for a telecommunications hookup – telephone and broadband etc.
Flat Pack Home Cost Guide
Below you’ll find our cost guide for flat pack prefabricated homes in the UK.
Do keep in mind that the prices we were given were ballpark figures, not fixed quotations.
Huf Haus Cost
The Huf Haus was featured in an early episode of Grand Designs and has since become one of the most popular flat pack homes in the UK.
This German manufacturer does however, come in at the top of the price range.
Expect to pay in the region of £2400 per square metre for one of their houses, pre-fabricated, delivered and built with basic fittings.
For a 160 sq metre Huf Haus, which is the smallest they offer, you’ll be looking at a supply and build price of around £385,000. This price excludes the cost of the land, the foundations, landscaping, legal fees and the costs to hook up to the utilities.
Huf Haus offer various upgrades and options which can bump up the price to £3500 per square metre.
Baurfritz can supply and build the walls, floors and roof structure for your project at a starting price of £1500 per square metre.
You will have to pay for local tradespeople to install the plumbing, electrics, water, bathrooms and kitchens etc and fit out the building.
We think a basic build in 2021 will cost you around £2200 per square metre for a small 160 square metre home.
This is on top of the price you’ll need to pay for the land, connecting to utilities, stamp duty and other professional fees.
This company is one of the few that publishes guide prices on their website.
For a typical 3-bed house, pre-fabricated, delivered to site and erected with yourself as the project manager, they claim you’ll be looking at around £1750 per sq metre as a starting price.
If you choose to get an experienced project manager to oversee the work, the price rises to around £2100 per square metre.
Scandia Hus state that:
This price includes the building set, shell erection and construction costs, as well as architectural and administrative services. However, they would not include the cost of your building plot, external works, services or garage construction.
Potton is part of Kingspan and they manufacture timber-framed houses and bungalows for the self-build market.
They have some handy price guides on their website and as a rough guide, you’ll be looking at around £1600 per square metre.
This price includes the foundations, manufacture, delivery and assembly of the house and includes kitchens, bathrooms and decorating etc.
The quoted price assumes you will be project managing the build yourself, which means arranging for tradespeople to come in and complete each step of the project.
If you want a project manager to oversee the entire build, you’ll need to add around 10-15% to that figure.
Potton’s prices are very close to traditional brick and mortar building prices and this is typical of most timber frame builds.
As with all the other price guides on this page, the cost doesn’t include connection to the utilities, land, stamp duty, landscaping or professional fees.
What Are The Pros of a Flat Pack Pre Fabricated Home?
- Quick to build – often in a fraction of the time it takes to construct a typical brick and mortar home.
- The home can be customised at the design stage so it’s truly unique.
- Flat pack homes are usually much more energy-efficient compared to bricks and mortar buildings.
- The design of many flat pack homes allows for much more window space, resulting in a bright airy home.
What Issues Do Some Experience With Flat Pack Homes in the UK?
- Financing a flat pack build can be difficult if you have limited funds and will be relying on loans and mortgages.
- The cost of land is very high in the UK.
- The cost to hook up the utilities can be high but it depends on where you live and how far away you are from the existing network.
- Once the house is built, it would be very difficult to extend or alter it and any customisation needs to be done at the design stage.
Looking to the Future
Flat pack homes are very popular in Europe and the United States and are have recently become more popular here in the UK but a lack of financing options means they are only a realistic option for those with a sizeable deposit.
There are several companies developing modular homes that are more affordable but most of these are still at the early design stages and aren’t in full production.
If you have land and enough money for a sizeable deposit, a flat pack home is viable and you can create a truly custom home. For those with limited funds, your choices are limited as it doesn’t work out cheaper than buying a traditional home and most lenders won’t want to take the risk of mortgaging a property that hasn’t been built yet.
You may wish to explore the following articles:
Can prefab homes solve the UK’s housing crisis? – Guardian Newspaper
Flat pack pod homes – Homes and Property
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