The $4000 House

November 6, 2019

Implications for energy, efficiency, and adaptation in climate impacted areas.

3 Responses to “The $4000 House”

  1. terry123a Says:

    The building permit is California is more than $4000 dollars and it is about the same in almost every state so this number is only suitable for third world countries and the ones I have been in the poor cannot afford $4000 for a house.

  2. jimbills Says:

    The concept of 3D printed homes has been around for a while. Good to see it in actual practice here, although I was surprised to hear this is the very first one in America, and it hasn’t been field tested yet. This will surely become more prevalent in the future, though.

    The $4K price must just be for the cost of the concrete framing only. There’s no way that includes roofing, wiring, labor, etc.

    Most local ordinances in the U.S. have a set minimum square footage when building new homes in towns and cities. My area has a 1,500 square foot minimum – it’s actually against code to build anything smaller. The tiny home movement tries to get around those ordinances by building homes on trailers. As they’re not a permanent structure, they can bypass the coding.

    The ordinances largely exist as a way to ensure profits for the construction industry. There are also some assumptions by city planners that Americans need ever larger and larger homes:
    https://www.newser.com/story/225645/average-size-of-us-homes-decade-by-decade.html

    The decade after WWII is interesting in that the U.S. built a bunch of under 1,000 square foot homes. The emphasis was on getting the majority housed rather than seeing a minority get massive homes. The monstrosities being built today are far more than anyone really needs, and it’s no wonder why housing costs are so extreme.

    A smarter route would be to have ordinances on maximum square footage rather than minimum. Of course, that would go against the growth desires of the vast majority.

  3. jimbills Says:

    Related article in NYT today:


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