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> http://hexayurt.com gives some notion of how radical that shift could be when it arises.

That's interesting stuff, but all we really need to get the ball rolling is to remove the financial and regulatory speed bumps that prevent people from buying prefab homes. It's not like it is some kind of mystery how to reduce the cost of building a home...

EDIT: I was thinking more in terms of the way lending and building ordinances very strongly favor building a house on site vs. trucking it in, as opposed to the really... insightful... stuff you guys have mentioned.

It's not like it is some kind of mystery how to reduce the cost of building a home...

Agreed! Just remove all those pesky restrictions about fire safety, earthquake safety, tornado safety, electrical safety, and you can put that house up for real cheap :)

Don't forget leaky buildings made with bad materials, poor design and with no one liable. New Zealand followed Canada off that cliff.

Why do you seem bitter? They were cheap! :)

I'm not particularly bitter - I didn't like them when they were new, disliked them once the birds nibbled the rendered polystyrene off the exterior, and avoided them like the plague once we came to buying houses. What I am bitter at is the way the manufacturers of the systems that have failed have seemly got off completely freely from the disaster they have created.

Hold them accountable for what? They just gave their customers what they asked for, inexpensive housing. :)

You might as well name names: what manufacturers are you talking about?

Sorry, wasn't intending to hide anything. James Hardie was behind one of the crap systems of cladding I believe. Poorly treated timber from Carter Holt has been fingered, and a multitude of building development companies that created new legal entities for each new development, then folded them at the end of each job and vanished into the night. This was a standard practice. And of course, the government (starting with Nationals Bolger, and subsequent governments too) through weakening regulation, and local government who failed to ensure that even the weakened laws were followed. Like all good mistakes - everyone had a hand in it, and no one group was entirely responsible.

Edit: On further thought, I see I've been slightly misleading/unclear. When I started taking about the manufacturers of the problems, I wasn't meaning just the building materials that have failed, I also meant the regulatory systems and practices that were poor.

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