It only took eight weeks to build, but a Bulahdelah builder has combined his passion for sustainability with his practical know-how, partnering with an architect’s dream to bring a ‘flat pack’ house to fruition.
Builder Daniel Reitsma and architect Edward Duc have come up with what they call the MAAP House – an innovative approach to building using a hybrid of both kit and modular building systems.
“I explain it to people that it’s like building with Lego. You can have any shape and size of house you want,” Daniel said.
The robust panels are pre-painted and pre-wired at a factory in Newcastle to arrive on location ready for setting up by specially licensed builders, limiting the waste of both materials and time waiting for different tradespeople. Materials used are impact, fire, and water proof.
“The innovation is in how we connect it together and how we design our floor plans.”
Daniel, who commutes daily to Newcastle, jumped at the chance to be involved with the project when approached, welcoming any opportunity to “do something a bit different.”
“The best feature of a MAAP House is its flexibility. The panels come in set sizes. Using these sizes it is easy to set out any floor plan required.”
Embarking on the project in 2013, it was initially difficult find a client to be the guinea pig for the prototype… until he volunteered himself.
“I said, “I’ll buy a block of land and I will be the guinea pig.”
The result is a steel framed house lined on both sides with magnesium oxide board, similar to cement fibro sheeting. It is built around the same concept of a multi-storey building – the initial source of inspiration for the architect, who questioned why it can take up to one year to build a house but the same amount of time for a multi-storey.
The basic one bedroom unit costs around $100,000 not including site costs. Then just add the rest on from there.
“Most homes cost around $2000 per square metre, Our base model is $1500 per square metre,” he said.
“When it’s ready, you just put it on the back of a truck.”