WASHINGTON, DC — The systems-built housing market is booming and poised to grow even more, according to experts at Showcase 2002, an annual symposium conducted by the Building Systems Councils (BSC) of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).

Systems-built housing is constructed in whole or in part in climate-controlled factories and complies with the same building codes as site-built housing. Because the construction process occurs in a factory setting, it is not subject to weather and other issues that can affect traditional construction.

"We are excited that systems-built housing is gaining a greater share of the market," said BSC director David Kaufman. According to a study by the Freedonia Group of Cleveland, OH, the factory-built industry is poised to grow 1.2 percent annually through 2005.

Further confirmation of the trend toward increased use of panelized housing came from a recent study by the Structural Insulation Panel Association (SIPA) of Gig Harbor, WA. Between 2000 and 2001, production of structural insulation panel increased from 30 to 35 million lineal feet, according to Bill Wachtler, SIPA executive director. But because 27 structural insulation panel manufacturers belong to SIPA, and there are another 60 to 70 manufacturers nationwide that didn't participate in the survey, "We think the actual increase in sales and production is much higher than our survey indicates," said Wachtler.

At the symposium, leaders in the modular industry also discussed regulatory issues that are delaying the approval and delivery of homes to key states, such as New York. Manufacturers agreed to make a concerted effort to educate lawmakers and regulatory agencies about how these delays are negatively affecting this industry.

For more information, visit the BSC website at www.buildingsystems.org.

Publication date: 12/16/2002