Several years ago, I lived in a sustainable off-grid community, or ecovillage. The community was largely involved in pioneering new, affordable methods of sustainable construction. Our housing involved passive-solar heating, earth-sheltered construction, green roofs and permaculture. Green as they were, these homes lacked three important factors: portability, affordability, and ease of construction. At one point, a friend and founding member of the community suggested that “one day,” prefabricated green homes would become the wave of the future.
I’m glad to see that today, in 2011, green prefabricated homes are indeed becoming a common solution to the problems associated with modern construction. If you’re interested in owning a green prefabricated home, here are a few of the best websites and resources to check out.
Method Homes are an incredibly versatile line of prefabricated green buildings, which can range in size and structure from tiny cabins to mid-sized business offices to large family homes. These modular homes are constructed in the Northwest using a process that minimizes waste to 10%. The homes are built to fit the stringent standards set by Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, or LEED. Check out their Cabin, Balance or Elemental series of buildings to see the spectrum of design offered by this cutting-edge corporation.
These energy-efficient modular homes are made primarily from renewable, sustainable resources. PieceHomes offers four pre-designed modular homes: standard, premium, extraPieces, and multi-family. Each design is intended to reflect the needs of an individual, small group, or large family-unit. You can also order pre-designed PieceHomes with specific adjustments, or request a custom-designed house.
The name says it all: EcoStructures are sustainable, comfortable, chic homes designed by a Harvard graduate. At roughly $70,000 per building, EcoStructures are substantially larger than average modular homes and can readily accommodate the needs of even a large family. These structures are all LEED-certified and can be adapted to meet the needs of either a business or residence.
This company, founded in 2007, offers the most undoubtably beautiful modular homes available on the green market. Useful in both residential and commercial capacities, these LEED-certified homes use only 30% of the energy needed to power standard houses of equal size. Using sustainably forested wood, recycled steel, and other ecologically gentle materials, BluHomes are made in a zero-waste facility in Massachusetts. The company also prides itself as a sustainably small, worker-friendly business, with a total of just 100 employees.