Fast Company

Clayton Homes' i-house Combines Energy Efficiency and Modular Affordability

Clayton Homes i-house

Clayton Homes, the largest manufacturer of modular homes in the U.S., officially introduced its i-house this past weekend at Berkshire Hathaway's annual shareholder meeting. Popular Mechanics says the i-house "looks like a house you'd order from IKEA, sounds like something designed by Apple and consists of amenities--solar panels, tankless water heaters and rainwater collectors--that one would expect to come from an offbeat green company out of California selling to a high-end market." But the much-anticipated house, which Clayton claims is at least 30% more energy-efficient than traditional homes, is perhaps the most affordable option for a low-carbon lifestyle, with monthly energy costs of under $70.

The house comes in two packages: the $74,900, 723-square-foot  i-house I, and the $93,300, 1,023-square-foot i-house II. Both homes can be configured in at least seven different ways and come with a number of standard features, including galvanized metal roofing, corrugated steel siding, a butterfly roof with rainwater collection, and non-VOC paints. Customers can also tack on solar panels, tankless water heaters, and low-flow faucets for a price.

Clayton's i-house will likely be attractive to first-time home buyers due to its low price, but the modular home could also appeal to anyone searching for a cheap, energy-efficient vacation home. The company, which has sold 1.5 million homes since its start in 1934, expects to sell 2,000 i-houses per year within 18 months of its launch.

Clayton Homes i-house living room

Clayton Homes i-house bathroom

[Clayton i-house via Jetson Green]

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8 Comments

  • Bruce N

    I had a modular home built about 2 years ago and as are most modular homes, it is quite energy efficient. Our energy bills about slightly lower than our neighbors even though our house is nearly twice the size.

    For more information concerning modular homes, I detailed my experience and things I learned along the way at www.modularhomechoice.com

  • c. stadelmaier

    As I mentioned recently in a blogpost at motifmarketing.com, modulars will become interesting when they become affordable. Clayton Homes has gone beyond their comfort zone of mobile homes to have done just that with their i-home.

    Their interior is every bit as attractive as some of the expensive homes, but the outside still reminds me of the temporary restrooms in an urban highway rest stop.(While the good looking one is under construction) We are in the 21st century, why the continued reliance on the cold and foreboding 50's modern idioms?

    After affordability, I would include emotional livability as a requirement for the success of this concept. We may use rest stop restrooms and loved the original MickieD's as iconic, but we don't want to live in either one. (even Walter Gropius's house is a museum not a home.)

  • Mark Lovett

    Amazing look and feel, with all the technology built in for clean/green living. It's on the small side, but as a vacation home (beach/mountains) it's perfect.

  • Sam Small

    Hey, how about another revolutionary new home construction method that's greener than anything yet? A house built almost entirely out of construction-grade structural bamboo! Bamboo is the fastest growing plant on the planet. Bamboo has been used for home construction since man moved out of caves only now is it available as graded and rated Code Certified construction material. Hunter Lovins talks about it in this interview on you tube:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...

    And you can see many of the over 150 code-certified, prefabricated homes they've built at the Bamboo Living web site: http://www.bambooliving.com

  • Sam Small

    Hey, how about another revolutionary new home construction method that's greener than anything yet? A house built almost entirely out of construction-grade structural bamboo! Bamboo is the fastest growing plant on the planet. Bamboo has been used for home construction since man moved out of caves only now is it available as graded and rated Code Certified construction material. Hunter Lovins talks about it in this interview on you tube:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...

    And you can see many of the over 150 code-certified, prefabricated homes they've built at the Bamboo Living web site: http://www.bambooliving.com

  • Sebastian Formoso

    I just love how they call it an i-House--as if sticking an 'i' in front of the names makes it revolutionary. In fact, these houses have been built since the 1940's in Hialeah, Florida. Driving through Hialeah, you can see the same exact structures still standing. They are HORRIBLE houses with absolutely no energy efficiency due to their lack of attic space. The sun's rays heat up the roof and transfer all the heat right into the living space. In Hialeah, these houses require more AC hours than an average home. Theres nothing i or e about these inefficient shacks. God save us from the GREENS!

  • Shaikh Izaj Ahmed

    I like the photos in this blog I will try to apply all the things in india like us ihouse. - Siaar of Siaar Group