You’re no stranger to metal buildings. Perhaps you’re sitting in one right now. But would you ever make your home in one?
For ever more homebuyers, the answer is a resounding “yes.”
No longer are metal homes niche products relegated to the far fringes of the real estate market. Gone are the days of driving 50 miles outside your hometown just to catch a glimpse of the closest metal-shacked compound.
Today, metal homes are everywhere. And they’re quickly growing in popularity. Here’s a look at why they resonate so much with prospective buyers.
They’re More Resilient
No two ways about it: Metal buildings are tough.
That plays perfectly into a cresting housing trend: the move toward longer-lived, more resilient homes. REALTOR mag identified more resilient, sustainable homes as its most important residential real estate development for 2016.
Metal buildings, including homes with metal roofing systems, are remarkably resilient. Soundly constructed units can withstand hurricane-force winds, catastrophic earthquakes capable of devastating wood-frame houses, and prolonged exposure to flame.
No matter where you live, you’re at risk for some kind of natural disaster: flooding, landslide, high wind, wildfire, earthquake, tornado. Choose a home with a better shot at emerging on the other side in good shape.
They Can Be Recycled
No one’s saying you should scrap your metal home. But, if and when your circumstances change, it’s nice to have the option.
Plus, recyclable housing is good for the planet on timescales longer than those governed by the almighty 30-year mortgage. Who knows what the world will look like after you’re gone? Your beloved metal home might have a useful second, third, or fourth life as something very different.
They Cost Less
Metal homes are much cheaper to build and outfit than traditional wood-frame, brick, or stucco houses. Too many factors are involved to calculate the potential savings with precision, but you can bet that your metal home will be more budget-friendly than any code-compliant alternative. If you think homes are too expensive in your home market, maybe you’re not looking at the right type of house.
Metal buildings are far less pest-prone than wood-frame housing, which attracts termites, ants, and rodents like nothing else. Metal isn’t sterile, but it’s also not food for cellulose-consuming pests.
A decade or two on, metal’s impermeability makes a big difference for homeowners in pest-prone regions. Just ask anyone who’s had to spend tens of thousands of dollars on termite-induced structural repairs recently.
They’re Conducive to Open Floor Plans
Resilience and sustainability might be the top real estate trends right now, but open floor plans aren’t far behind.
“Open floor plans afford more useable space — the kitchen that opens to the den and possibly dining areas,” explains Laura Kostelny in D Magazine. “Homeowners are better understanding that 100 percent of their spaces should be completely usable.”
Metal is the perfect material for homeowners who crave open, flexible space. It’s far cheaper to lay out and customize an open floor plan in a metal home than a traditional wood-frame house.
They Require Less Maintenance
Metal is a low-maintenance material. Properly treated steel resists corrosion, warping, and other signs of age. All it asks in return is the occasional powerwash.
So whether you represent home buyers or are looking for a new home yourself, don’t discount metal buildings when considering your options.
You mentioned they can be cheaper. When I was looking at constructing my small (500sf) in-law apartment steel was more costly than lumber for studs. What factors are you thinking make it cheaper? Especially against Advanced Framing?