MasterBuild Africa

Prefabricated Housing- The way forward in Kenya

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Prefabricated houses are developed in the factory and are assembled on site. They consist of wall panels made of concrete and polystyrene, steel or wood panels. The wall panels are jointed with screws to enhance their strength. The housing issue is a major debacle in Kenya. The fast growing urban population has led to acute shortage of housing facilities especially for the middle to low income bracket of the populations.

Mortgage Rates: The dream of home ownership is one that is difficult to achieve for those with full-time middle income employment. Mortgage rates are substantially high compared to rental homes thus forcing people to opt for the latter. The situation is not any better in the rural areas. Despite the availability of land and locally sourced construction materials such as sand and natural stone, most people still reside in traditional huts and poorly built structures because they cannot afford to build. The prefabricated housing unit could just be the solution to the housing crisis in the country.

Cost Limitations: Despite the fact that prefabricated housing units are supposed to significantly reduce the average cost of construction, this was not the case in Kenya as the materials, especially the wood and steel panels for walls had to be imported from China. Shipping and customs costs as well as the cost of transportation to site made it uneconomical to construct using these materials. However, the National Housing Corporation came to the rescue with the inception of the prefabricated houses as a solution to the housing deficit in the country.

Flexibility: There is no difference between the prefabricated houses and masonry units in terms of structural strength and thus clients need not worry about the durability of the houses. Eco Homes Kenya in corporation with Mabati Rolling Mills have ventured into the prefabricated housing development market. They are focused on providing high quality and affordable family homes.

Solution Providers: Many companies are now producing prefabricated units and obtaining these products is no longer a headache to the consumer.

culled from buildingke

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