Modular Construction Market Outlook, Pros, Cons And Recent Developments

Published On: December 2022

What is modular construction?
Traditional building practices required that all unprocessed materials, such as 2x4s and flooring, be transported to the construction site, where skilled laborers would then cut and assemble the components of the structure. This practice persisted for centuries. Large portions of the project are fabricated off-site, referring to off-site construction in general or modular construction in particular. Both of these techniques are used in construction. Modular construction is a process in which buildings are manufactured away from the actual construction site in factories, subject to stringent quality controls, while still adhering to the same building codes and standards as conventional construction methods. These structures are fabricated in modules or smaller parts, which are then moved to the location where they are to be assembled and put together. The primary reasons behind the explosion in the popularity of modular construction are its speedy completion, low cost, and high level of productivity.
According to the modular construction market outlook, the modular construction market is expected to be worth USD 143 billion by 2030, expanding at a CAGR of 6.55% between 2022 and 2030.
The Positives of Modular Construction

According to the modular construction market analysis, there are many advantages of modular construction over traditional construction, and here are a few. 

  • Saves Time

Modular construction enables a portion of the work to be completed in a factory while site work and foundations are simultaneously performed on the construction site. This time-saving advantage maintains the project's timeline and reduces construction time while maintaining efficiency. A modular approach can save 30 to 60 percent of the overall schedule.

  • No Chance of Weather Delay

Moreover, because the modules are manufactured in a climate-controlled environment, concerns about weather delaying the construction of modular units are virtually eliminated. It also provides safer and more comfortable conditions for workers, allowing them to be more productive and produce a product of higher quality. In addition, the modules typically arrive on-site with flooring, cabinets, countertops, plumbing and electrical fixtures, and appliances, requiring minimal effort and time to be ready for occupancy. 3. No Need for Material Storage Storage of materials is an additional advantage of modular construction. When there is limited space on a site, such as in a dense urban area like Philadelphia, staging and moving materials is difficult. This causes clutter, slows down work, and raises concerns about theft. By constructing the modules in a factory, construction sites can be kept cleaner and safer, and more space can be available for work and movement.

  • Reduced Labor Expenses

An important and potentially controversial benefit involves labor economics. In most locations, construction labor is scarce and can be prohibitively expensive due to various factors. Without getting into politics, this creates significant obstacles when attempting to construct a building within a specified budget and timeframe. Modularity permits these highly sought-after skilled workers to remain in fixed locations with controlled and safer conditions. The location of modular plants can be chosen to attract these competitive workers and take advantage of crucial access to raw materials and logistic connections, such as highways and railroads, typical of other industries, such as automotive and technology products. There is the potential for up to a 25 percent reduction in construction costs if labor costs can be reduced.

  • Lower Waste Volume

As concern for the environment grows in the construction industry, modular strategies to reduce waste on each project are gaining popularity. There are even initiatives to maximize recycling within the factories that assemble building components.
Drawbacks of Modular Construction
Modular construction sounds innovative and beneficial. As with other construction methods, modular projects can succeed or fail due to real challenges.

  • Mass Production/Limited Variety

First, modular (mass production) scale is better for uniform and repetitive spaces and products. If units can be standardized and stacked, apartment buildings and hotels are likely candidates. At this stage of technology, creating distinct or non-repetitive modules reduces or eliminates buyer and supplier time and cost advantages.Transportation Costs & Risk
Transportation risk. Modules must be transported directly to the job site or staged nearby and installed since they are prefabricated miles away. Transporters and riggers must handle each module carefully because a single mishap could require extensive repairs or replacement. This could delay an installation sequence.

  • Hard Financing

Investors and lenders are used to lowering early bills, but modular construction requires faster buying and making.
The modular construction market analysis suggests that modular construction has drawbacks and needs to be suitable for every project. However, modular and off-site construction will increase in the future.