Home News A new house in metro Denver for under $350K? A homebuilder says it’s possible.

A new house in metro Denver for under $350K? A homebuilder says it’s possible.

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Find a single-family home online. Few lists under $ 350,000 remain in Metro Denver. Most are decades old or require major repairs.

But at Green Valley Ranch, Oakwood Homes has launched a new line of standalone starter homes called On2, starting at a low price of $ 300,000. The goal is to ultimately push the starting price to less than $ 300,000, or less than half of the new starter homes over $ 600,000 currently commanding in Metro Denver.

Indeed, the two-story house is not spacious, about 1,100 to 1,200 square feet, with crawling space and no basement. Customization is minimal. They do most of the many things they are in and their neighbors are nearby — really close. The garage will be charged extra and will be separated in the current design, but will eventually include a three-story model with a garage on the ground floor.

However, the two- and three-bedroom homes are solid, energy efficient and well-finished. The kitchen has a granite countertop and fine vinyl flooring. All appliances and window treatments, as well as connections for charging electric vehicles, are included in the purchase price.

AAron Ontiveroz, The Denver Post

The model house by Oakwood Homes for Green Valley Ranch is painted on Tuesday, July 18, 2022.

Above all, they promise to provide more renters a way to own a home without using a time machine. Even at current interest rates, a $ 325,000 home mortgage payment will cost about $ 1,800 a month. According to Zillow, this is less than the $ 3,000 / month mortgage payment for a typical home purchased in a metropolitan area, and less than the $ 2,000 / month average rent paid in the region.

Kristen Nelson, president of On2 Homes, said Oakwood Homes initially made 96 homes available for sale. She said, as expected, homes are drawing a lot of attention from first-time buyers trying to enter the market.

The ultimate goal is to provide more than 1,000 low-priced homes annually on demand. This will give Oakwood Homes an overwhelming share of the 1,700 homes it currently sells annually. On a tour of the new On2 Home prototype.

On2 Homes will initially enter the Master Plan community, but the reduced time required on-site will allow homes to drop into existing neighborhoods and smaller lots of landfill areas with much less disruption. ..

For years, builders have complained that building a single-family home within the reach of a typical first-time buyer is too difficult and expensive. Due to limited land and labor supplies and rising tap water and other government fees, many have opted to focus on rising markets or the luxury end instead.

“This price range has been permanently locked out of the market. My personal mission is affordable,” Hamill said, adding that On2Homes represents the company’s future.

For 15 years, Oakwood has removed costs and inefficiencies from the housing construction process, reduced the number of workers needed on-site, and afforded teachers, firefighters and other important workers to live in the areas where they work. I’ve been working on it. The company also created several prototypes based on feedback on features that consumers wanted in their starter homes.

According to Hamil, visit a home construction site today. It hasn’t changed much since the 1950s, except that hammers have been replaced by airguns to drive nails. Productivity has skyrocketed in many industries, but not in home construction. Therefore, the cost is higher than necessary.

Modular Reed, Edwin Perez, Left, Works ...

Andy Cross, Denver Post

Modular Reed Edwin Perez (left), in collaboration with electrician Daniel Pinõn, routed the wires to the floor joists on the second floor of the Precision Building Systems prefab on July 20, 2022.

Oakwood Homes addressed productivity issues through a department called Precision Building Systems, which has a 200,000-square-foot facility near Interstates 25 and 70. Initially, PBS focused on pre-building components such as roof trusses, floors, and entire walls. Level house. However, with On2, these components are assembled across the floor and shipped in flatbed carriers. The crane puts the first floor on the foundation, and the second floor with the roof plate is put on it.

Includes all electricity, plumbing and HVAC systems as well as windows, insulation and drywall. Similar to siding, stairs will be added on the premises. Drywall taping, painting and other finishing tasks are completed in place. Depending on the inspection, about four workers can assemble and complete the house in a matter of weeks. This is much faster than the maximum year of waiting that some new homebuyers are currently experiencing.

“On average, builders take about twice as long as a home’s normal delivery time. What used to take five months now takes an average of ten months,” Zonda said. John Covert, who tracks the Colorado housing market, said. “Constructors have really slowed, especially when demand has intensified due to supply chain disruptions, cost controls and trade shortages, especially due to pandemics.”

Hamil believes that the day will come when On2 homes will be built, assembled and finished before the mortgage is accepted. The bottleneck is the lender, not the builder.

Currently, PBS can build about 2-3 On2 homes a week at its current facility, said Barry Dunkel, director of the company’s design and modular architecture, which is now part of the Clayton portfolio as well as Oakwood. Says. But there is a impetus to speed it up.

Wall builder Esteban Fleischer cut the framing material at Precision Building Systems on July 20, 2022.

Andy Cross, Denver Post

Wall builder Esteban Fleischer cut the framing material at Precision Building Systems on July 20, 2022.

Clayton Homes, a national builder of modular housing, provides expertise to help PBS assemble components across the floor more efficiently. The new factory planned in Brighton will focus on building the home, without modification, and will allow for more automation integration.

The goal is to expand the manufacturing process to 4-5 units a day, but Kunkel acknowledges that more innovation is needed.

Kunkel points out an example of a change that saves time and material. Replacing a wired light switch with a wireless light switch. Rheia, a supplier of HVAC systems for On2, has created its own floor register, eliminating the need to cut into the ceiling.

With more component providers likely to follow, PBS is trying to build as many items as possible in-house. About half of items such as cabinets are currently manufactured in the factory or by related Clayton companies. It helped supply chain problems and reduced costs.

The factory provides a much safer and worker-friendly environment. Houses can be built deep in winter day and night. Building horizontally greatly reduces the need to climb the ladder. And for many tasks, you don’t need a skilled merchant. Finding plumbers and electricians becomes increasingly difficult, and the manufacturing process allows them to use their time more efficiently. For example, wire boxes for embedded ceiling lights are assembled on the workbench by assembly workers according to their design, rather than being assembled by a qualified electrician.

According to Hamil, building an On2 home in a factory can save about $ 100,000 compared to building the same home using traditional methods.

Homes are technically considered modular or manufactured and come with a set of baggage for consumer perception. The company documents the manufacturing process so that buyers can rest assured about how they are building their homes. According to Kunkel, the new plant will include an elevated catwalk, so people can see the process happen, unlike the way they visit construction sites on weekends.

Lonsloop, an associate professor of Burns School of Real Estate and Construction Management at the University of Denver’s Daniels Business College, said: Basically, the materials are the same and the process is similar, but the house is built inside in a more controlled way, horizontally rather than vertically.

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