Modular bathrooms, like any other form of construction, are better suited for certain types of projects than others. There is no “one-size-fits-all” solution since every project has its own unique characteristics. To help you determine whether modular bathrooms are the right choice for your project, here are a few key questions…
1. Is the project large enough?
Modular and prefab solutions produced in a plant need enough volume to justify set up production and engineering. Commercial buildings such as multifamily, assisted living, hotels, and student housing with more than 100 bathrooms are prime candidates for prefab construction. Healthcare requires only 50+ bathroom count with the unique needs they require. With the minimum project quantities met, it saves on material costs, and a consistent labor force drive cost down.
2. Is the design repeatable?
Each bathroom layout requires additional setup and engineering time, so projects with fewer room configurations are most efficient in running in a factory. Further, efficiency equates to lower costs and, therefore, lower prices. But, it’s generally best to have no more than a handful of layouts per project.
3. What is the square footage of the bathrooms?
By keeping the bathroom below 100sqft, many bathrooms we produce can be shipped in standard dry vans, which are very cost-effective. Larger or taller bathrooms require flatbeds. We have found some projects save a lot on shipping by shaving off an inch here and there to fit an additional pod on a truck. Ultimately, don’t ship air.
4. Is your project in its early stages?
Schematic Design preferable but Design Development at a minimum. The ability to incorporate modular successfully and achieve full added value diminishes as the project progresses. It requires more re-drawing, possibly altering MEP systems, and certainly by the time subcontractors are brought on board, this decision should already be made.
5. Where is your project?
High-cost markets or skilled local labor is unavailable or too expensive is the prime candidate for prefab bathroom pods. A typical bathroom requires 10 or more construction trades, from electrical and plumbing all the way to finish workers. Taking construction off-site greatly simplifies these construction demands. Also, that means there are no weather delays, onsite rework, or order changes pushing back deadlines. The pods arrive as expected, on-time, and on budget.