Building a kit home: Kit Homes: Everything You Should Know

Kit Homes: Everything You Should Know

Akit home is a kind of building that is assembled on-site (like a traditional wooden frame building) but where all the parts of the structure have been pre-cut at a factory and they’ve been delivered in packages (usually flat-packs, to save on transport cost).

In most cases, kit homes can be customized as per customer’s wish (i.e. the sie of the rooms can be altered, windows can be moved, …). 
Building with kit homes allows for flexibility while maintaining the cost of building affordable and the entire process not to complex. 

What you can expect from a kit home

A kit home can bring several benefits to your project. The most important are:

  1. Less time used on site.
    A house kit contains all the parts necessary to build the structure of the house. All parts are pre-cut at the factory and the kit comes with detailed assembly instructions.
    Compared to a traditional built (where parts are measured and cut on-site), using a kit shortens (by weeks) the time spent on the construction site for putting together the structure.
  2. Less waste.
    When building with traditional methods, carpenters cut wood beams on-site and they cut what they need when they need it. Consequently, there is no optimization of materials and a lot of wood goes to waste in the form of pieces that are too short to be used in the build.
    Home kits are cut in the factory using an automated saw. The machine knows in advance all the pieces it has to cut and optimizes the work so that there is the minimum possible amount of waste left.
  3. Less skilled workforce.
    Since the thinking is done at the factory, construction workers on-site do not need to be skilled carpenters.
    Putting together the structure is quite easy as the kit comes with IKEA-like detailed instructions.
  4. Sourcing materials and services locally.
    The kit contains most of the parts necessary for getting the building Weathertight. However, to save on transport costs, some materials are not included in the kit and they must be sourced locally (insulation for example).
    This allows buying those components at a better price, thus saving a considerable amount of money.
    Sourcing materials and services locally also allow getting competitive prices on interior finishing works and technical installations.

On the other hand, in order to get all these benefits, you need to invest in planning before you order the kit.

Getting a very clear idea of what you want to build is critical to the success of your project.
This is why we always recommend creating your vision first.

What a kit home is NOT

When it comes to prefabricated wooden buildings, the internet does not paint a very clear picture. 
In fact, there is a lot of confusion online about terminology.

Manufacturers use terms like “modular”, “prefab”,  “pre-cut” interchangeably and this is plain wrong and misleading.

A kit home is a building that has to be built entirely on-site and it comes in packages of pre-cut material.

Now, the building might have a modular architecture (based on some geometric pattern that repeats itself, like Avrame triangular structure) but this doesn’t make it a modular building.

In the prefab industry, a “modular” house is a building that comes on-site in ready-made boxes. The boxes are fully finished (even inside) and they just need to be installed on the ground and connected together.

Needless to say, this form of construction is faster but way more expensive (it saves time and it burns money).

Kit homes are nothing like that. The idea behind building with a kit is to save money.
A kit home will require investing some of your time (either in the building works or in the planning) and it will repay in a more affordable construction process.

Of all the prefabricated techniques, kit homes are the most basic one and the one where you can save the most since you can use your own time in various stages of the building and you can customize a lot of details to your own wish (even finish some parts later if you like).

What to pay attention to

Even if building with a kit it is relatively easy and “forgiving”, good thoughtful planning is always necessary.

There are a number of things that go wrong during construction that will cost you time and money and cause painful headaches.

Timing is very important. There are certain things that have to be done in a specific order and following a precise time schedule… otherwise your project might get stuck.

If you are serious about building, you should invest some time in learning what could go wrong and which are the points that need more attention.

To help with that, we developed two guides:

  • the 100 Questions Guide.
    Are you sure you are asking the smart questions?
    Chances are there are things you are not even considering, things which can halt or delay your project (or break your budget) once you realize you did not take them into account.
    In the 100 Questions Guide, we collected over 100 questions you should get an answer to BEFORE you start your project.
    Each question comes with and guidance on who can help you to answer that.
    The guide is a 44 pages PDF and it is a paid product. You can find it here.
  • the Budgeting Guide.
    When you get closer to building, you need to get your numbers straight.
    The Budgeting Guide is a tool that will help you to figure out the total cost of your project.
    It is composed of a professional spreadsheet and a 30 pages PDF guide. The guide expands on the concepts discussed in the 100 Questions Guide and explains how to use the spreadsheet.
    The Budgeting Guide is a paid product and you can find it here.

How can you pull it off

You need to get a very clear idea of how the entire process works.
Once you have a bird’s eye view on the process and all its components, you can start making decisions.

The supplier of your kit should be able to help you creating this high-level picture in your head (this is exactly why here at Avrame we have the guides described above).

The process is more or less the same whether you build an A-frame or another kit home. Therefore, the time and money you invest in your education prior to launching the construction project are never wasted.

We stress so much about following a process because we know that things can go out of control really fast if one does not do the homework. We can tell several stories of clients who did not follow the process and ended up aborting the construction.

Typical reasons are:

  • the municipality did not approve the construction while the client already placed the order (bad planning)
  • the bank did not finance the construction while the client already placed the order (bad planning)
  • the client did not allocate enough money to complete the entire house (bad budgeting)
  • the client found out there were costs he did not consider (bad budgeting)
  • the client built foundations that were not suitable for the house (bad execution)  

Here at Avrame, we invested heavily to get a solid process and strive to help our customers to make their journey one step after the other, in the right order.

Kit homes alternatives

There are several alternatives to kit homes. At the end of the story, the decision comes to how much of your time you are willing to invest in the build and how much money you can afford to spend.

Here is a list of options (more expensive on top):

  • traditional on-site building, bricks & mortar
  • traditional on-site building, wooden
  • modular construction
  • prefabricated elements construction
  • prefabricated frames construction
  • pre-cut construction (like Avrame)

NOTEevaluating all the options above can take a long time. One should get the feeling of what he doesn’t want to do and rule out that option from the list at the beginning of the evaluation process.

One alternative no one ever mentions is to buy a house which is already on the market.

As a matter of fact, this is by far the biggest competitor of kit homes.
The reasons are simple:

  • a ready-made house (or apartment) needs no work and no planning
  • you can move in immediately
  • you have fewer risks
  • you don’t need permission to build (no architect, no paperwork)
  • the Bank has an easier time to finance an object that already exists
  • you don’t need to learn any process or any new skill

On the other hand, you will not get your dream home and you cannot say you built a house for your family.


Kit homes are a great way to build your dream home on a budget.
Building a kit home requires being and remaining in control of the construction process.

You do get to build what you want exactly and you do so at a reasonable price but:

  • you need to do some homework and understand how the entire process works.
  • you might need to learn a few new skills (project management or carpentry for example).

Keep in mind you will need to make several decisions and to account for many details.

The best way to cope with that is to invest time in learning BEFORE you commit to the construction project.

A Guide To Kit Homes – Forbes Advisor

Dori Zinn

Dori ZinnContributor

Dori Zinn has been a personal finance journalist for more than a decade. Aside from her work for Forbes, her bylines have appeared on CNET, Yahoo! Finance, New York Times, Quartz, Inc. and more. She loves helping people learn about money and specializes in topics like fintech, investing, real estate, borrowing money and financial literacy.


Published: Jan 20, 2023, 4:00am

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Forbes Advisor. Commissions do not affect our editors’ opinions or evaluations.


Buying all the parts and pieces for furniture and assembling it at home is part of normal shopping at places like IKEA. But what if you’re buying all the parts and pieces to build an actual home?

A kit home is like the IKEA version of building a home. Here’s why getting one might work—or not work—for you.

What Is a Kit Home?

A kit home is a type of prefabricated home. All the parts are built, pre-cut, packaged and sent to you to build. Sometimes they’re called mail-order or catalog homes. They’re essentially DIY (do-it-yourself) homes.

With most home-buying experiences, you think about scouring websites and neighborhoods for the perfect home, then taking tours of the home or visiting open houses. Kit homes don’t offer the same type of experience. You can still browse which one you like, but instead of taking a tour of the inside, you find one you’d like to have, buy it and build it yourself (or with the help of some friends).

How Much Is a House Kit?

Like traditional homes, kit homes vary widely in cost based on size, materials used, and what’s included in the packages. Prefabricated homes in general cost less than traditional homes built on-site. The biggest cost of a house kit comes down to how big the home will eventually be and how many stories it will have because more materials mean more expenses.

The average cost of a base-model home kit ranges from $40 to $80 per square foot, according to HomeAdvisor, but you might find cheaper costs with different materials or makers. In some cases, you might find fewer items included in the kit home package, which means you’ll need to buy additional materials elsewhere.

Buying a kit home and assembling it is not part of the same package. The kit amounts to a fraction of the total cost. Remember, you’re only getting parts. You still need to account for the cost of the land to build it on and the crew to assemble it (if you’re not putting it together yourself).

For some kits, you might also need to account for the costs of drywall, flooring and maybe a roof. Then you’ll need to get plumbing, electrical, sewer mains and possibly gas lines installed. Because of this, additional costs can double what you originally paid for a kit home.

Pros and Cons of Kit Home Builds

Kit homes are one way to get your dream home, but make sure you weigh the pros and cons first.


  • Cost: Buying a home that’s already built or paying for one to be newly constructed on fresh land is more expensive than doing it yourself. DIY will always cost less, and kit homes are significantly cheaper to buy.
  • New home feel: Even though you’re buying a prefabricated home compared to a traditionally built one, you’re still getting a new home. You don’t have to worry about outdated electrical wiring or replacing an old roof since all of those will be new and up to code when it’s complete.
  • Endless customizations: Many prefab homes have pre-designed homes you can choose from, but a lot of them allow for customizations to your needs and likes. This is one of the best ways to get your dream home—to build it.
  • Quick delivery and assembly: You can expect your home to be delivered in as little as a few weeks and then get built within a few weeks after that. It takes at least seven months to build a new home the traditional way, and some homes can take even longer than that.


  • Location limitations: Some manufacturers might limit their delivery radius, which means if you find a company you like that isn’t near you, there’s a chance you might not get a house there. Or if they do deliver to your area, they might charge an additional fee for the longer drive.
  • Not always cheaper: The cost of a kit home might be cheaper if you live in a metro area, but for those in rural parts of the country, a kit home could be the same as a traditionally built home or another type of prefabricated home. Location can be a big factor in the total price.
  • More time and energy: For kit homes, you either do the work yourself or you hire a team to do it for you. Only take this route if you’ve priced out kit homes for where you want to build it and the team you have in place to put it together. It’s a lot of legwork for the buyer to take on compared to getting a home that’s already built.
  • Fewer standards: Because kit homes are still relatively new, there isn’t that much federal regulation for them. There’s no minimum standard that all kits have to meet to ship out to buyers, which means you can expect wildly different results from two different kit manufacturers.

Are You Thinking About Buying a Kit Home?

Buying and assembling a kit home is one way to get the home of your dreams, but it isn’t the only way. It’s important to check reviews, ratings and thoroughly read product descriptions before purchasing a kit home. Otherwise you might have to maneuver a massive return.

It’s also a good idea to compare the total costs of a kit home to that of another type of prefabricated or modular home. You should also compare it to traditionally built homes and those already on the market. Depending on your wants, needs, budget and level of energy involved, you might find that a kit home isn’t the best option for you. Comparing all your choices will help you decide if this is the right route to take.

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Dori Zinn has been a personal finance journalist for more than a decade. Aside from her work for Forbes, her bylines have appeared on CNET, Yahoo! Finance, New York Times, Quartz, Inc. and more. She loves helping people learn about money and specializes in topics like fintech, investing, real estate, borrowing money and financial literacy.

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Are you sure you want to rest your choices?

Ready-made house kits | Frame house kits from the manufacturer

Frame house kits for self-assembly

Avantidom offers frame house kits from the manufacturer. This means that we guarantee:

  • Innovative and unique patented technology.
  • Impeccable quality – no loose knots, cheap analogues or defects.
  • Complete package – you will receive everything you need for a successful construction.
  • Consulting support – be sure to ask questions, if something is not clear, we will help at any stage.
  • Individual approach – we modify the house kit so that it meets your personal needs and requirements as much as possible.

Frame cottage kits from the manufacturer: technologies

We offer different models, however, kits made using I-SIP technology are in greatest demand, when I-beams sheathed with sip panels are used as wall studs. The result is a rigid spatial frame that does not interfere with free ventilation, and has a lot of other advantages. Namely:

  • Reliability and durability. The design will stand for decades without requiring repair or replacement.
  • Absolutely dry racks. Even a drop of moisture can become a breeding ground for mold and infection. In the case of I-SIP technology, this situation is completely excluded.
  • Ability to implement non-standard orders. It is not necessary to be satisfied with standard solutions, you can develop a unique project and order a factory frame house kit for it.
  • Energy efficiency. By reducing cold bridges, heating your home will require less energy and money. Frame houses built using this technology are suitable for year-round use.
  • Comfort finish. After the completion of the main construction, the house will already have guides for laying communications, interior and exterior decoration.

Before buying a turnkey house set, decide on the details: number of storeys, materials, type of foundation and roof, etc. So we can offer you the best option.

The price of a summer cottage kit

Many factors affect the cost of a kit, from materials to the layout of the house. However, in any case, the price will be several times lower than when using other technologies. I-beams are lighter than metal and reinforced concrete counterparts, so an inexpensive lightweight foundation can be laid under such cottages, and the construction itself does not require “wet” work and the involvement of special equipment.

I-Beam Features

If you want to buy a house kit in Naberezhnye Chelny, Kazan or another city of Tatarstan, you need to know what makes our technology unique.

The I-beam is an H-shaped design. Two planks of wood or high-strength glued veneer are connected by a flat post. There is almost no load on it, so this part can be made thin, further reducing costs.

I-beams do not change geometry under the influence of weather or temperature changes, they do not crack, shrink or rot. Withstand loads up to 400 kg / m² and allow you to block spans up to 10 meters. This product does not require additional processing, but at the request of the customer, we can impregnate the beams with flame retardants. Installation of a standard country house with an area of ​​about 100 square meters takes 3-4 days and requires the efforts of a team of three people.

Prefabricated I-SIP house kits from I-beams – your step into a happy future in your own home!

We work throughout the Republic of Tatarstan!

Factory kit for building a house from profiled timber

Profiled timber houses
Factory kit for building a house

For self-assembly, or engaging a hired team of builders, we offer a house kit with working drawings and a detailed map for assembling a log house from a profiled beam on a dowel.

The delivery set contains everything you need for the construction of a log house or a bathhouse with the possibility of entering a turnkey facility. When purchasing a kit, we provide drawings of the necessary foundation for your construction region to choose from: screw piles, strip or shallow slab. Finishing finishing materials the customer buys as needed himself.

The project of a house made of profiled timber “Turtle”, with a wall thickness of 150 mm, due to its small size and volume, can be used for year-round living with low heating costs.


Delivery time 20 days.

As per specification (assembly kit)

Material kit

for construction according to the “Turtle” project

Log house 150*150 (factory-made with cut cups) (set of drawings for assembling the log house)

Underlay for joist 200*150 natural humidity
Backing beam 150*150 for framing a log house, eat. humidity
Logs 1st floor (beam 50*150 mm antiseptic)
Casing board (0.05×0.15 lumber) for all windows and doors
Rafter system (bar 0.05×0.15) natural. ow.
Ventilated facade block (0.5×0.05 mm) for ventilated roofing
Vapor-damp-proof membrane
Metal tile (complete roofing kit)
Gutter (system for draining rainwater from the roof of the house)
Imitation beam ceiling (profile 0.02x.144 softwood)
Insulation floor + ceiling (mineral wool 35kg/m3)
Subfloor (cut board 0.02×0.1, bar 0.04×0.04)
Tongue and dssp on the floor (the base for tiles is glued in 2 layers.)
Windows (white metal-plastic + 2-chamber energy saving package)
Door (metal reinforced (not China))
Terrace beam 100*100 (antiseptic with natural humidity)
Dry planed board (not included)
Antiseptic xm-11 25l.