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ClearSpace ModularPosted by Mark Meyer at August 10. 2009
I just wanted to introduce a new company that designSTUDIO has been working with for some time now to develop a line of affordable modern modular homes. These designs take direct cues from MCM houses we all know an love. While they are definitely smaller footprints than the "norm," they are efficiently designed and would work well on infill lots or on larger expanses of property out in the rural areas. Take a look and let us know what you think! ClearSpace has very recently gone live and we are actively pursuing the first built example. Maybe you could be the lucky one to call a ClearSpace modular home.
Re: ClearSpace ModularPosted by Stuart Hood at August 11. 2009
These seem too costly. Especially considering you can get a Greico home for $20 less per sq. foot.
Re: ClearSpace ModularPosted by Tom Greico at August 11. 2009
I whole heartly agree.
Re: ClearSpace ModularPosted by Mark Meyer at August 11. 2009
Too costly huh?
I take this directly from Tom's site where all the prices I saw were from $600K on up except for this:
to be built to an
These homes can
be built from the
and include a long list
of high quality standard
features as well as a
seemingly endless list of
available luxury and green
land costs not included.
ClearSpace homes are targeted at the $200K range, land costs not included. How is that "too expensive"? Cost per s.f. doesn't mean much if the total loan cost is a budget breaker, or am I missing something here? It is incredibly easy to bring the cost/s.f. numbers down by increasing overall size. You'll notice that the ClearSpace designs eschew this bloat for true affordable efficiency. The designs are green from the planning stages, as a smaller footprint means a smaller environmental impact, and the homes get greener from their through the standard and upgrade materials and systems.
Re: ClearSpace ModularPosted by Stuart Hood at August 17. 2009
Also on Mr. Greico's site you can see this:
This home is designed to be as affordable as
it is stylish. The base design, which includes a
handsome list of features and amenities can be built
for under $250,000. We also offer a plethora of available
executive features and green/energy efficient items.
If you can think of it we can do it, maybe.
Living Area 2495 sq. ft.
3 Sleeping Suites 3 Full Bathroom Great Room Island Kitchen
2 Dining Areas Study/Office 2 Car Garage Landscaped Courtyard
This is for the Urban Retreat. If you do the math, that is about $100 per sq. foot for a brand new architecturally designed house. In my opinion this blows a prefab out of the water. My wife and I are very interested in his product......if only land costs weren't so high in dallas .
Like you said, "your opinion". That house is still $75K more expensive than a ClearSpace 3/2. That and the fact that Mr. Greico's plan is twice as big only proves my point.
Re: ClearSpace ModularPosted by Jeffrey Rous at September 02. 2009
Ok, this thread looks to be a complete mess (technically) from where I sit, so this may come in out of order, but here goes.
In the interest of full disclosure, both Mark Meyer and Tom Greico helped in the design and construction of our house.
That being said, these are two distinctly different products. Over at Urban Reserve (in Dallas), the developer will gladly build you a wonderful, artistic, minimalist modern house for $250-$600 per SF. Why so much? Details matter.
I am pretty sure Mr. Greico's houses will use standard building techniques and materials in a modern way. For $100/SF, there will not be any Axor faucets, Duravit toilets, or Bulthaup cabinets. Also, there will probably be baseboards and maybe even some texture on the walls. This is a version of modernism that we need to see much more of. I have an architect friend who was designing a modern house for a couple. At first, their budget was about $110/SF. Then they decided they needed museum quality walls, and no trim (baseboards or around doors), and high end lever style knobs, and about a dozen other "modern" details that I cannot remember. Once they hit $200 / SF, they quit the project. Turns out that if they could not get all the details that to them signified modern, they would rather not have a new house.
As for the ClearSpace designs, if you were to hire a builder to build one of these on site, the builder would have to be more careful and there is more that is either custom (eg steel awnings) or built-in (eg desks in bedrooms). These houses are much more like the type of thing that could be done at Urban Reserve for $250/SF. And I know of situations where plans like the clearspace designs come back from the bid process at $130-$180/SF. And even among other prefab modern houses, $250-$500/SF is the norm. In that sense, ClearSpace is providing a lot of bang for the buck.
At the end of the day, I think they are both great products, and you just have to decide what works best for you.
I think The way Jeff put it is about right. Sure you can get a much bigger "custom" site-built house (2500 s.f vs. 1300 s.f.) for less $/s.f., but what happens when that bigger house exceeds your overall budget? What do you do then if you have your heart set on something modern? Do you throw in the towel and say building your own house isn't for you, or do you look at other options? ClearSpace is just another option, that happens to hit an overall price point that seems sorely lacking in the marketplace.
Cost/s.f. isn't the only metric for "value". Nor is overall size (big or small) a good metric for any sort of plan efficiency. I think this NPR article is more along the lines of the ClearSpace design ethos.
Re: ClearSpace ModularPosted by Stuart Hood at September 03. 2009
I am sorry if I hurt your feelings Mr. Meyer. I probably should have explained better why I think a Greico home is a better value (certainly not only because it is bigger). While a Greico home is less expensive per sq. foot over a prefab, it is also more visually appealing to more people. A Greico home can be put in just about any neighborhood in Dallas, while the sheet metal look of the prefab only fits in with a very limited number of neighborhoods. I have spoken with Mr. Greico, and he seems very creative in finding the means to incorporate as many modern design elements as a customer wants while keeping the price down.
I really didnt see the relevance your article had in this conversation either. I am sorry if I came across as someone who puts more value in much larger homes, but my point was simply that you get a little more room in a Greico home for a very similar price. 2000 sq. ft appeals to a much larger population than 1300, thus making it a better value, in my opinion.
On Douglas Newby's website of architectuarlly significant homes, you will never find a prefab. http://www.dougnewby.com/featured_listings/default.asp#home
Re: ClearSpace ModularPosted by Mark Meyer at September 03. 2009
Stuart, do you work for Greico or what? If you don't, he should be giving you a marketing budget really soon...
Mr. Meyer is my father and you didn't "hurt my feelings." Also there isn't any "sheet-metal" involved in the "look" of the prefab, though that is an upcoming option for the exterior finish, along with wood, cement-board, etc. but whatevs, you obviously aren't interested in the product. You may also want to figure out which of your "points" are opinions and which are facts. In your "OPINION" a Greico home is more visually appealing to more people, but hey that is just taste anyway, and I'm not going to argue with you about taste. The fact is a Modular house could be put into just about any Neighborhood in Dallas as well. I get the distinct feeling you are one of those people that STILL thinks of prefabs as equal in construction quality to a double-wide, but that is far from the truth.
The main point to take away from this is that prefab is an option, and it is an option that can provide modern design to those that have $75K less than what the base-price for the Greico Home you pointed out. There is a large market segment that is underserved in the <$200K range and ClearSpace is trying to address some of that need. Will it suit the needs of everyone? No. But neither will Mr. Greico's offerings fulfill everyone's needs? No, again.
No one (especially me, a design/builder that works on all sorts of project types, not just prefab) ever said prefab was the only way or the best way to get a modern house. All I was doing was introducing ClearSpace to the folks on the LiveModern board that I've been interacting with since its inception.
Re: ClearSpace ModularPosted by Jeffrey Rous at September 03. 2009
Has Doug Newby actually said that he will never sell a prefab house? I know Diane Cheatham has expressed an interest (to me) in bringing a prefab house into Urban Reserve, and if she did, I'd be surprised if Doug Newby would not be willing to sell it. Of course, it might look out of place against houses such as the Max Levy house currently being offered for $700/SF.
On any case, Tom is serving a part of the market that has been completely ignored thus far. I really hope he is successful and builds a bunch of houses in this segment of the market (I wish he had built out house). And as someone who shot for $100/SF but ended up at $130, let me tell you I am sure Tom (or any builder) could find ways to get the price of this house over $150/SF (and I bet he would really like having that budget as well).
At the same time, I think the ClearSpace houses are the most appealing of all the prefabs I have seen and I hope they sell a bunch of them too. Making apples to apples comparisons in this type of situation is absolutely impossible.
Now, are we done here?