Enable just about anyone, regardless of prior experience, to build a code-compliant home or small-building.
At it’s most basic, knowledge sharing. Also, a kit – every component needed to build a high-quality home or modify an existing one, including easy instructions and information, all engineered so you can build without any prior experience.
Why are you doing this?
There are three reasons. Firstly, we believe that an enormous amount of pride, sense of ownership, and understanding of the built environment can come from average people having a much more empowered involvement in the construction and/or modification of their and their neighbors’ homes. Second, many projects (including some modest-cost, full-sized houses) are too small for skilled trades-people to take on. Finally, for many families, buying an existing home is simply not economically possible - self-build or volunteer-build can bridge the economic gap by dramatically reducing costs.
We founded the company on four principals: People can and want to do things for themselves and their neighbors; they simply need the means to do so. Doing things for ourselves and our neighbors makes us at once proud and humble, independent and neighborly. Making something of quality that will outlive you by generations is a way that we can all have a positive impact on people we’ll never get the chance to meet. And finally, helping others is more important than helping ourselves.
What can be built?
Anything ranging from adding an interior door into an existing wall all the way to constructing a full-sized, single-family home. At present, the latter is limited to single-story homes.
What is included?
As much or as little as you want. Select from any or all of the following for inclusion in your HOMEBUILT kit: structure, insulation, electrical, plumbing, HVAC, and/or (most) finishes.
Who can built it?
Anyone who can lift 23lbs and work a cordless drill. (It’s easier if there are two of these people!) This can be the owner of the future house; their friends and family; volunteers; hired helpers; or professional contractors looking to reduce costs, take on a larger number of projects spanning a larger range of budgets, or focus their talents on only some of the parts of the building.
What makes it so easy to build?
First, the instructions: very clear, language-neutral illustrations for each and every step. Second, the components: using the principal of “self-guided assembly,” the parts (framing, sheathing, finishes, etc. – all of which will weigh under 23lbs) actually interlock with each other, removing the need for multiple people or bracing to hold things plumb and square, as well as dramatically reducing the possibility of incorrect assembly. Third, the completeness: everything is there, clearly labeled, pilot-drilled, and packaged such that the first part is on top, the last part is on the bottom. Finally, the tools: all that is needed is a cordless drill and a rubber mallet (and, in some cases, a step ladder); everything is screwed together into pre-existing pilot holes, everything is cut to exact sizes (no tape measures and no dangerous saws!), and everything interlocks (no levels – the interlocking makes it plumb and square!). (Note: Modification and addition projects to existing buildings may require other tools, but we’ll help you keep those to a minimum.)
How is this possible?
Using state-of-the-art computer modeling and robotic cutting equipment, each and every part exists first digitally, then is robotically cut to within 0.001in precision.
What can’t be self-built?
HOMEBUILT does not provide instructions or material for site grading, foundations, or bringing utilities to the house. The nature of that work requires expensive equipment and substantial prior experience. We also recommend that the electrical, plumbing, and HVAC materials (which we can provide) be installed with, at minimum, the oversight of a licensed electrician and plumber. In many areas, this is also required by law.
Who benefits from HOMEBUILT’s system?
We expect three groups to benefit from HOMEBUILT product lines. Homeowners benefit by dramatically reduced costs – by self-build or the reduction of external labor costs simply due to the speed and simplicity of the kits – as well as by the pride and satisfaction of knowing they picked the design, were involved (completely or partially) in the construction, and that they understand and have documentation for every single detail of their home. Non-profit and volunteer organizations benefit similarly from the same reduced costs, as well as the ability to take much greater advantage of volunteers, who themselves will appreciate the richer, more complete experience of learning to and actually building nearly all parts of a construction project. Finally, professional contractors, also benefiting from the reduced cost, are able to focus their tradesmen’s time on those aspects of the building project they prefer to concentrate on, staffing the assembly of the kitted portions with junior staff. In this way, HOMEBUILT kits enable the professional homebuilder to quickly and painlessly take on more projects, with a greater variety of scales and budgets, while simultaneously taking the guess work out of material and labor estimates.
What about service?
Whether you’re building your HOMEBUILT project or have been enjoying the fruits of your HOMEBUILT labor for years, we are here to help. While we’ve spared no effort to make the instructions and the kits as clear as possible, sometimes you just get stuck. Perhaps you’ve misplaced a part (happens to the best of us!), or maybe the wind blew away your instructions. Whatever the case, give us a call. If you need a new part, we’ll ship it to you immediately. If you need us to walk you through a step, we’re happy to get on the phone. If you’re really stuck, and you need one of us to swing by and give you a hand, we can do that for a reasonable fee. Whatever the case, we want to make sure that the building experience is seamless and enjoyable. However, the construction is only the first step of homeownership, and so our support of your HOMEBUILT project also continues well past your first night in your new home. The digital version of your entire project is kept and maintained in a secure server at HOMEBUILT. If you ever have a question (“What circuit is that light on again?”) or want to make a change (“Wouldn’t it be nice to add a door directly into the home office?”), we’ll be here to look up your design in our system or send you a renovation kit specific to your house. Homes are living, changing things, and we want to help all along the way.
PO Box 715
Groton, MA 01450