What Will Future Homes Look Like?


Companies that use 3D printing technology can revolutionize how homes are built in America, according to the COO of ICON.

Graeme Waitzkin spoke about using 3D printing in construction during the National Association of Real Estate Editors conference in Austin, Texas. Participants had the chance to visit ICON’s House Zero on June 18.

“Here at ICON, we have developed a novel 3D printing construction technology that we really believe can help deliver better homes, faster and cheaper. These are homes that are incredibly high performing, from a climate resiliency, energy performance perspective, and we really see 3D printing being able to make up the gap in home production around the country,” Waitzkin told The Mortgage Note during an evening tour.

Waitzkin said during a presentation earlier in the day that traditional building construction has room for improvement, noting that the way homes are put together has remained relatively unchanged over the past century.

“The future we need is actually different, and the housing that we need is different from the housing that we’ve known, and that is here, that technology. This is not a futuristic vision. That potential is here today,” Waitzkin said.

Waitzkin said ICON uses robotics, automation, software, and advanced materials to create foundation, wall, and roof systems that meet hurricane and tornado standards for wind resistance. The company has a series of designs that are ready to print featured on their website.

“We have homes that can be built for $100,000, all the way up to homes that would be built for $2 million. We have homes that are 500 square feet, one-bedroom, and studio homes. We have homes that are five-bedroom and 5,000 square feet,” Waitzkin said.

Waitzkin said they are actively working with developers throughout the country and company leaders feel they have the capacity to hit the national market in the next few years.

When it comes to how this technology will affect future generations of homebuilders, Waitzkin said he advises students who want to get into the trades to think about how they can leverage technology to advance their industry.

During NAREE’s conference, there was also an “Emerging Trends in Home Building” panel.

Panelists said trends they are seeing include elevators in homes and master bedrooms on the first floor. Zoom rooms are popular for people with remote and hybrid work schedules.

Spa-like bathrooms and spaces for yoga or meditation are being requested. Amenities for pets are also high on the list of wants from buyers.

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