Quicksmart Blog

Modular technology in social housing

Hotels & Apartments

Can modular technology help with social housing shortages?

Low cost housing and housing for homeless people has been in the news recently with the local CEO's here in Sydney sleeping out last week to raise awareness of a serious problem effecting all communities. Nearly AUD$2million was raised to support Vinnies and other charities.

Quicksmart Homes are often asked to look at low cost housing and we are often asked to comment on how modular products could help in providing homeless people with accommodation.

The general misconception is that low cost housing is cheap to build. It needs to be cheap to rent for the tenants from flexible family housing through to secure overnight accommodation for people under threat.

Why is it not cheap? Good low cost housing needs to be very durable. That means very high quality.

Properties must be designed and built to stand the test of time and deal with the range of behaviour that non-selective social housing brings. They need to be secure by design and provide a safe environment for the occupants.

Additionally, a major problem with low cost housing is payback on investment dollars. That's why it's left to the charities and social services to provide. Imposing quotas on new development helps but only in certain sectors of the social housing spectrum.

So why not provide medium term relocatable accommodation on fallow sites waiting for other uses or parts of a larger project where the site won't be used for a number of years. The developer provides the site and infrastructure for the building and when the site is ready - after a prescribed time period or trigger point - the building gets moved.

That's where high quality modular buildings could come into play.

Being able to stack multi-storey, relocate or re-task the modules is all easy to achieve. Quicksmart modules can also be leased as capital equipment leaving charities more cash for services.

Food for thought.

If you would like to help Vinnies break the AUD$2,000,000 barrier visit: