I’m endlessly fascinated by the concept of DIY prefab home building not only because of its eco-friendliness and affordability but because it’s something that I, as someone who struggles for hours constructing simple IKEA furniture, could probably never take on no matter how “easy” it is.

The last time I visited the topic it was with a look at Shelter-Kit’s Green Home Kits, a modern, green take on Sears Catalog Homes of yesteryear. Today, here’s a glimpse — complete with videos! — at the Pop-Up House concept from House Port. The Double Cube version of the Pop-Up House costs $160,000 (not including labor, fixtures, and, of course, preparation of the building site) and is shipped directly to the buyer flat-packed (while we’re on the topic of IKEA) and ready-to-assemble.

So what exactly comes in that giant flat-packed delivery? The customizable Pop-Up House consists of one of two modular, cube-shaped living units (each cube is 1,024-square feet) that are sheltered under a House Port, a galvanized metal roof structure that promotes high levels of energy-efficiency by providing superb insulation during the winter and deflecting heat during the summer. Also included in the bundle are step-by-step building instructions in the form of both a DVD and written manual. You can also order a collection of minimalist furnishings made from sustainable materials to complement your newly self-built home.

Want to see an actual Pop-Up House be built? Check out the first four videos in a series of eight in which Petaluma, California’s Hally Thacher constructs her very own off-the-grid prefab retreat in twelve weeks with a total budget of $250,000. She almost makes it look, dare I say, easy. Check out the entire series of videos at House Port's Home Green Home YouTube Channel.  

Photo: House Port

Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

Pop goes the prefab house
Watch Hally Thacher build House Port's ready-to-assemble green home, Pop-Up House, with the modest budget of $250,000.