Happy Cheap house by Tommy Carlsson
is a prototype for low-cost prefab homes

| 29 comments
 

Swedish architect Tommy Carlsson has completed an affordable prefabricated home near Stockholm that is clad in corrugated iron and resembles a cube with some of its corners cut off (+ slideshow).

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

Tommy Carlsson developed the Happy Cheap home as a prototype for a low-cost and space-efficient update of the prefabricated homes that are common throughout Sweden's suburbs.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

"The concept is both a vision of a better world in the small format, how we live in the future, what we need around us in the housing world and how large a house we really need," the architect explained.



Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

The design of the 110-square-metre property aims to optimise internal space, with a series of angled surfaces defining the interconnected ground-floor living areas and dividing the upper storey into two bedrooms and a lounge.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

The house was built on the 65-square-metre site using a prefabricated modular frame of laminated plywood that can be assembled quickly on site, reducing the total cost of the project to just 170,000 euros.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

This modular construction method allows the shape of the building and the facade to be adapted to meet the client's requirements. In this case, the entire structure is clad in galvanised corrugated iron.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

"The facade and the cut outer geometry of the cube is treated with the same material everywhere to emphasise the volume as a whole," said Carlsson.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

The house is located on a sloping site with a series of shallow concrete steps leading to an entrance sheltered beneath a corner spliced from the metal shell that creates a connection between the interior of the building and the site.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

An irregular roofline gives the building a sculptural appearance that changes when viewed from different angles and reflects the unusual arrangement of the interior.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

Bent sheet metal gutters jut outwards from two eaves to funnel rainwater towards drainage channels below.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

Stained plywood was used to clad the internal surfaces of the porch area and to create a link with the interior, which is entirely constructed from plywood panels.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

A stairwell adjacent to the entrance projects through the centre of the property, connecting the two levels and lending a sense of height to this space.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

The passage next to the stairs continues toward the kitchen and dining area, where a door leads out to the garden at the rear.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

The stairs ascend to an open lounge area with a sloping ceiling and low picture windows incorporated into two walls that look out towards the surrounding forest.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

A large door in the plywood wall next to the staircase can be shut to separate the lounge space from two irregularly shaped bedrooms.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson

Photography is by Michael Perlmutter.

Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson
Site plan – click for larger image
Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson
Ground floor plan – click for larger image
Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson
First floor plan – click for larger image
Happy Cheap House by Tommy Carlsson
Section – click for larger image
  • wat

    On what planet is 180,000 Euros cheap?

    • mol_e

      Planet London.

      • wat

        Land would make it way more there though.

    • Sepp

      This is cheap! In Switzerland this house would surely cost about 400`000.000CHF or more.

    • Arjay Cee

      You know, rampant plywood angles can just drive the price of these things to the moon!

    • Ralph Kent

      On the planet where central bankers pursue wilful inflationism via QE, which they categorically deny is the same as printing money and which they refuse to accept has any consequences for asset and commodity prices.

      That planet.

    • hailexiao

      Any first world country, if built by legal workers, paid a market price wage with full benefits (provided either publicly or privately).

  • james

    Nice! I’d like to see a wall section through those windows.

  • John

    Interesting! It’s like a modernised Aluminaire House.

  • KarlAfrika

    Rich Swedish people spending 170.000,00 Euro on making fun of people that actually have nothing else other than a corrugated iron sheet for a roof. Turning poverty into aesthetics for bored rich Europeans is simply disgusting!

    • http://igotmesometaste.tumblr.com/ LOLpackagingLOL

      I don’t think it’s “turning poverty into aesthetics” as it is an exercise in readily made or widely available materials. It’s nice to see projects with the modern aesthetic without completely custom fixtures.

    • hailexiao

      What’s wrong with a corrugated metal roof? If I had a choice between corrugated aluminum and composite shingles, I’d choose the former in a heartbeat. Despite what snobs may think sometimes the poor have the right idea.

  • mb4design

    How nice for you if €180,000 is cheap. Enjoy being doused by the roof gutter aimed at the walkway.

  • Jimmy

    Wow. So little and badly organised living space for so much money.

  • Arjay Cee

    Leaving aside the ridiculous cost, which is very far from happy or cheap, I must comment on the monotonous plywood. If that is meant to be “a vision of a better world,” then utopia can go to hell.

    • Teddy

      In the US, the median home price sells at $100/sf. This one comes out to about $200/sf. While the spaces are more interesting, I agree that the corrugated and plywood palette leave a little something to be desired. And good catch mb4design on the gutter aimed at the walkway. Oops.

  • Z-dog

    €180,000 is a pretty cheap build for a building with such architectural merit. Looking past the plywood, the building has a huge range of unusual spaces.

    This building is much nicer than 95% of the houses being built today. It is architecture.

    • Ivy S

      “Much nicer than 95% of the houses being built today…?” Already, the corrugated iron made me depressed.

      • hailexiao

        Asphalt shingles make me far sadder than any piece of corrugated metal.

    • Jimmy

      You mean a huge range of useless spaces…

  • Ralph Kent

    @Dezeen. I think you mean 700 square feet. This is certainly not 700m2.

  • Kazabazua

    Really nice, except for all the plywood. I could see €180,000 being a bargain if the interior used nicer materials.

  • http://www.dezeen.com/ Dezeen Magazine

    Hi Ralph,

    Thank you for pointing this out. We have corrected the article.

    Kind regards,

    Ross/Dezeen

    • Neo Nite

      It still says 700m2. ‘The house was built on the 700-square-metre site using a prefabricated modular frame of laminated plywood that can be assembled quickly on site, reducing the total cost of the project to just 170,000 euros.’

  • Michael Swanson

    On what planet is “way more there though”?

  • strout

    Plywood is mostly made using glue and formaldehyde; the later being carcinogenic. Aside from it being ugly, why would anyone want to live in a building clad in carcinogens?

  • EFS

    It feels like a coffin inside, a very expensive coffin. Enough said.

  • Rich

    As far as I know, water still flows downhill, so the comments about gutters aimed at the entry are moot. I agree that there is nothing “cheap” about this house unless one can find and re-purpose the finish materials.

    Love the spaces although the use of futons or other collapsible furniture would be required. Pleased to see something other than a medieval box, but good luck selling it to the masses. Non-toxic plywood is available (My Chemical-Free House).

  • http://www.dezeen.com/ Dezeen Magazine

    Hi Neo,

    Thanks for commenting. It has been corrected.

    Best,
    Anna/Dezeen