When looking to accelerate construction of homes with modular solutions, it can be hard to know where to start and it's common to hear questions such as; "How can I procure modular homes?" "How do I choose a modular contractor when there are so many out there?" and "I'll be honest, I don't know why I should look at a modular solution..."
We understand all of the barriers that many of you are facing so we have put together our first Webinar, to help answer your questions of accelerating the construction of homes using a modular solution and to also show first hand what a journey with us would look like for you.
In this webinar we have teamed up with SWPA (South West Procurement Alliance) who are part of the LHC and are the regional team for various procurement routes including the LHC's New Homes 2 Framework (NH2).
We are going to cover:
- An introduction of the SWPA
- Our appointment onto the LHC's NH2 Framework
- A completed project & customer feedback – Retirement Bungalows and Apartments
- Why MMC (Modern Methods of Construction)
- Who we are and what we do
- The importance and benefits of early engagement
- Social Value, Community engagement and benefits
- A project under construction – 3 storey townhouses (on the webinar)
- A recently awarded project – Temporary Housing Apartments (on the webinar)
An introduction to the SWPA
The SWPA (South West Procurement Alliance) are a regional brand of the LHC and launched in 2019 to provide a dedicated service in regional areas.
SWPA look after the South West area and can help you procure many different types of modular homes from apartments to bungalows, with the best in class industry contractors such as M-AR.
Being a government organisation, community is at the heart of everything the LHC do and any surplus revenue goes straight back into the local community. To date, SWPA have helped many local companies including St. Pauls Adventure Playground and Thornecombe Village Shop.
LHC’s framework for the Offsite Construction of New Homes (NH2) is for the delivery of: housing, apartments, multi-occupancy buildings including care homes, sheltered accommodation and student accommodation. For more information you can download your regional guides here
Conversations about off-site systems or MMC (Modern Methods of Construction) is no new topic, but with the challenges of COVID19 and housing shortages we are starting to see even more traction in the adoption of these systems which will help accelerate construction but there are still many questions our customers ask that block their progress, such as;
- There are so many suppliers out there and I don’t have time to go and visit everyone and make my own assessment
- The advice is for early engagement on potential schemes but when should I do this?
- It's supposed to accelerate delivery with improved quality but that is not my experience
- My site is for 20 units but a number of MMC/Offsite providers say that is too small a number for them to be interested in.
- What happens if I have carried out early engagement and have decided on the supplier but then need to carry out procurement in accordance with Public Sector Procurement regulations?
- We tried MMC/Offsite on a scheme and it didn’t work well . The suppliers couldn’t accommodate the changes that the planners wanted and they were late to site with the panels. There were disagreements between the main contractor and the offsite provider over quality
- We want to set up our own offsite factory and then we will be able to have our own designs and produce to our own requirements and have a streamlined operation.
During the webinar we will address many of these questions and we hope you will feel more confident with our approach.
Our appointment to the LHC's NH2 Framework
The NH2 Framework is a big one! The LHC are leaders in OJEU compliant frameworks and the NH2 is a follow on from the successful NH1 so it's no surprise to know that 191 companies in the UK were interested. But, with various workstream and lots for the different types of off-site systems, there was only space for 16 awards and thankfully we took one of them.
One of the workstreams that we are discussing on this webinar is 'Turnkey' and the 'Housing & Apartments' option Lot. Out of 7 awarded companies M-AR came 1st in the majority of areas across the UK for units below 25 and above 25. The below map shows how we ranked for best value.
A completed project & customer feedback – Retirement Bungalows and Apartments
In order for us to demonstrate how modular housing can benefit you with it's unrivaled flexibility we have created a customer showcase video alongside our customer Henry Riley LLP and Housing 21 for their first modular residential scheme of 5 modular bungalows.
As well as the above project we also completed 8 retirement apartments for the same customer in tandem with the bungalows. If you would like to see the show case video for those, it's another great watch and can be found here .
Why MMC (Modern Methods of Construction)
MMC can offer many benefits for many different situations and with our modular system, we can help you leverage these benefits to best suit your specific needs and accelerate construction. This all starts with a conversation!
The government are pushing for the use of more MMC, especially now for post COVID19 recovery. Some of the things that the government are aiming for are;
- Higher quality homes
- A way to build at scale to ease the housing crisis
- Greener, more sustainable homes
- Meet zero carbon targets
- Reduce fuel poverty
- Reduce accidents and provide better working conditions
- Tackle the skills shortage
What our customers say, is important to us
When speaking to our customers and those interested in adopting a modular system, many have the same concerns which can seem like obstacles in the road. Not only that, we are seeing many customers wanting us to integrate with their processes and systems which many contractors won't do. But this is exactly why we work with a partnered approach so that we can all benefit long term from turnkey solutions that suit you.
- Building quality sustainable homes which are safe and secure for generations to come
- Create digital solutions to better manage assets
- Standardisation approach to reduce ongoing maintenance costs
- Better design from the outset to incorporate life-cycle costing
- Local community engagement and benefits
- Minimised construction disruption to local communities and rural locations
Who we are and what we do
We are a people focused contractor with a factory and we are made up of passionate people who love what they do. Building homes... not houses!
If you haven't heard of us before it's probably because we don't believe in the bluff and bluster that comes with awards and exhibitions. We'd much rather remain humble in our successes, let our work speak for it's self and put that money back into our people, not an exhibition that will be forgotten in a day!
Partnership working is what we are truly about and the reason our whole team commit 110% to your projects.
We understand what it takes to deliver and can guide you from concept to completion without you needing to worry. We've got it covered. Land, development, planning and risk. You're in safe hands!
And it's not just homes we build, we are a big face in the education and commercial sectors too.
But beneath the skin, it's pretty standard stuff...
- Our modular system is made from LGSF (Light Gauge Steel Frame) which is BOPAS accredited so you can be safe in the knowledge that our system has undergone rigorous quality reviews and gives you the best possible chance of mortgageability from a wide range of lenders
- We use machines that take digital codes from our design office to cut and bend steel; We precision fix standard insulation's, membranes and board materials
- 95% of external cladding systems & 100% of internal finishes are compatible with our system
- We’re designed to be tailored to every housing association/local authority and registered providers needs
- Each home leaves our factory over 90% complete
- Over 350 individual quality checks per module
The importance and benefits of early engagement
You've probably heard a hundred times before "Early engagement is key". This is because it's the most important bit. If you are thinking of using an off-site system for your next project to help you accelerate construction and hit housing targets, we welcome conversations from anyone considering modular and we'll be able to help you or guide you in the right direction without the need for early commercial commitment.
Our approach in the industry is truly unique as we value relationships more than transactions and filling the factory. We're pretty straight talking and will actively tell you to do your research and find a partner to work with long-term to get the best out of modular construction.
Once you've found a partner we can break the boundaries of 'Cookie Cutter' to ensure you receive the homes you want, how you want, and also reaping some of the many benefits along the way
- Pre-planning engagement to realise best value
- Designing to suit an modular solution from the outset will save you money and time
- Layouts to meet NDSS with flexible designs to meet your needs
- Collaborative approach to the management of risks
- Accelerate construction output
- Quality, Cost and programme certainty
- Work towards meeting Zero Carbon Targets
- Help reduce Fuel poverty
Social Value, Community engagement and benefits
Wherever we deliver, we always serve the communities we work within. "In seeking our legacy we will ask others to simply look around us” - Sir Christopher Wren
Modular offers massive benefits when it comes to the community, things like minimal disruption, fewer traffic movements and road closures and the reduction of anti-social behavior.
Although construction isn't known for being engaging our site team love meeting the residents and getting them involved. They become part of the community if only for a short while and involve them in the project as much as possible.
We hope that you have found this article and webinar download useful.
If you would like a copy of our residential brochures you can find them here