PATHways: Technology Making a Difference Where Americans Live
Builder's Manual Profiles Affordable, Entry-level Homes

To increase the number of site-built, entry-level homes, HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research recently released a manual that illustrates how developers can construct high-quality, energy-efficient, durable, and affordable housing. A Builder's Guide to Marketable, Affordable, and Durable Entry-level Homes (MADE) To Last, developed as a part of PATH, provides builders with:

  • Tools to market affordable housing to entry-level buyers.

  • Successful techniques for building affordable, durable housing.

  • Methods to define homebuyer expectations and fulfill their needs both before and after the sale.

  • Preliminary plans illustrating how many of these techniques fit into a MADE-to-last demonstration home.

To develop the MADE prototype, researchers consulted housing experts and surveyed first-time homebuyers and some of the nation's top affordable homebuilders. They also reviewed statistics on home sales, housing characteristics, and durability issues. Although they are price conscious, first-time buyers want attractive homes, the ability to expand them for growing families, and flexible floor plans. The manual provides tips on how to achieve these characteristics while controlling construction costs. Case studies also provide insight into how builders are successfully using these techniques.

Another section focuses on reducing home maintenance costs. The guide looks at ways to increase durability and prevent problems that increase maintenance costs, such as poor drainage, foundation wall cracks and water leakage, soil swelling or settlement, termites, and buckled siding. The manual includes preliminary plans for a MADE-to-last home.

Copies of A Builder's Guide to Marketable, Affordable, and Durable Entry-level Homes (MADE) To Last are available from HUD USER for $5. For more information or to order online, visit the HUD USER website or call HUD USER at (800) 245-2691.

PATH Goals
By 2010 PATH goals are to use new technology:

  • To reduce the monthly cost of new housing by 20 percent or more.

  • To cut the environmental impact and energy use of new housing by 50 percent or more and by 30 percent in 15 million existing homes.

  • To improve housing durability and reduce maintenance costs by 50 percent.

  • To reduce the risk of loss of life, injury, and property destruction from natural hazards by at least 10 percent.

  • To decrease residential construction work illnesses and injuries by at least 20 percent.

Previous Article PATHways Contents Next Article

PATHways Vol. 1, Issue 1