Prefab homes have always been a part of the Dwell DNA. Here you will find prefab homes published in dwell magazine as well as great prefab home ideas. Prefabricated means either panelized, modular, or kit homes. Prefab architecture works for both remote sites and dense urban spaces. Modular homes are popular but can be the most expensive to customize. It is best to change as little as possible when buying prefab. Possible advantages of pre fab include lower cost, higher degree of precision, and less construction waste.

Photo by Patrick Barta
This 3,200-square-foot structure was assembled with a prefabricated foundation, concrete panel siding, and efficient built-ins, minimizing construction debris and toxins—such as concrete foundation tar—on the site.
When Abbie and Bill Burton hired Marmol Radziner to design their prefab weekend home, their two requests were “simple-simple, replaceable materials,” says Abbie—such as concrete floors (poured offsite in Marmol Radziner's factory) and metal panel siding—and “the ability to be indoors or outdoors with ease.” Deep overhangs provide shade and protection from rain, so the Burtons can leave their doors open year-round and hang out on their 70-foot-long deck even in inclement weather. They visit the house once a month, usually for a week at a time, with Vinnie and Stella, their rescue Bernese Mountain dogs. Their two adult children occasionally join them. The couple hopes to one day retire here.
Studio owner Joey Williams uses his space to work from home as an Austin-based media director.
Meili and Anais lounge on a Transform sofa by Moroso.
The other unit is a conference room with bamboo floors.
According to Remijnse, since the only direction they could build on the small site was up, they decided to add height with a gabled roof.
Subtle features incorporated into the design, including an elevated terrace and jetty, help the home float above the island.
Sett Studio also does complete interior work. This unit features monotread, which are panels made from milled recycled wood, on the floor, walls and desk. Lately, the company has been using more bamboo.
Even in a small space—this unit is one of the company’s smallest—there’s plenty of room for a sitting area. In addition to montoread and charred wood, this space has American Clay walls, a soft plaster-like coat that when punctured or cracked, a spritz of water will allow minor flaws to be smoothed clean.
An airtight building envelop helps naturally insulate the structure. The appliances in the house are energy-efficient, and use greywater recycling.
Christopher: Olalla, Washington, is a small rural community on the Kitsap Peninsula accessible to Seattle via ferry, or a long drive through Tacoma. We're about one mile from Puget Sound, one mile from a freshwater lake and a few miles from a popular sailing harbor. We're Olympic Peninsula adjacent, and, most importantly, we are less than 45 minutes from Amy's favorite oyster farm in the Hood Canal, Hama Hama. In addition to a family of deer, dozens of birds, and hundreds of frogs, our property is also home to occasional wandering coyotes and a very strange-looking creature that Amy has convinced herself is a chupacabra. There are cougars and black bears in the area as well, but thank God we haven't eyeballed them yet.

Amy: For us, the primary driver for us to move from Los Angeles and abandon our urban existence was our love of the property.
All of Scott Palamar’s selections and customizations brought the total to $150,000 for the 640-square-foot home and surrounding land. “I feel like I struck on such a novel solution because I was able to afford a home tailored to my lifestyle,” he says.
Built with a steel frame, the Frost House features panels of styrofoam between aluminum sheets for the exterior walls and styrofoam between plywood for the roof and floors. Bold, primary colors accentuate its geometric form.  
Shortly after Karen Valentine and Bob Coscarelli purchased the home in 2016, they began to unearth nuggets of information about its pedigree. Their realtor had provided a brochure that identified the prefab as designed by architect Emil Tessin for the now-defunct Alside Homes Corporation based out of Akron, Ohio, which had held a patent for the structure’s aluminum paneling. Their new neighbors provided a stack of Alside Homes sales materials, floor plans of various models, and even a script that had been written for salespeople during home tours. They determined that the Frost House had been a sales model for the company, and that Tessin had been the son of Emil Albert Tessin, the legal guardian of Florence Knoll.
The master bath contains all functions in the white fiberglass panel that runs the length of the wall. Lazor designed the vanity; the tub is by Duravit.
The house weathered a recent tornado that caused significant damage to much of the property. Ellzey sees the house as an outgrowth of Frank Lloyd Wright’s experiments with modular housing. "For me, it was in that spirit of, what can it mean for homebuilding?"
Renowned designer and architect Jens Risom sourced parts from a catalog for his customized A-frame and had them delivered in pieces to his remote island site off Rhode Island, helped to raise the aesthetic profile of modular construction.
There are two zones in the house. One side, which the architects refer to as the "buffer zone," faces north, capturing the sunlight in the winter and pulling it into the house. In the summer, it traps the harsh sun so less gets into the living space. Edible planters adorn the wall.
In addition to charred wood siding—shown here in the cherry stain—Sett Studio can also add decking and landscaping.
For the realty group interior space, eight people comfortably work in the 12-foot-by-14-foot room. There’s a mini slit A/C and heating system, painted sheetrock walls and bamboo floors and desk.