Better wealth distribution through agile housing

Oct 2 · 4 min read

Property ownership seems to be the way to amass and accumulate wealth. Location, size, floor and orientation tends to be key factors in determining the price of a property.

A lot of wealth is locked into property which is literally fixed asset. The wealth is not utilized to generate new value and ends up encouraging rent seeking behaviour where people scramble to be the first to buy all the property and rent it out similar to general behaviour of monopoly.

Property is extremely capital intensive. Those with capital or higher capital earning capability will have an advantage. It becomes a binary have and have not situation where individuals enter the rat race hoping to enslave the next batch of rats into this crazy Ponzi scheme.

Crazy idea

What if houses could be purchased in modules?

What if houses could be assembled and disassembled like Lego pieces?

What if we could take our houses with us without ever needing movers?

Mobile housing in the form of house on wheels and boat houses are not new. There is a resurgence of tiny homes as housing prices become out of reach for individuals. Technology has also allowed for houses to grow taller and faster with the advent of new materials. Container homes are also becoming a common occurrence.

Economy of scale to build standard sized housing whilst providing customization of layout is possible instead of just a boring box. The costs of entry level ownership could be drastically reduced with a just in time square feet as you need approach. With increased family members, new rooms can be added without having to relocate to a bigger house.

But let’s take a look at possibilities. I draw inspiration from modular computers such as Razer’s Christine:

To my knowledge this never materialized, but the base concept can definitely be plagiarized. Core pillar that can support basic utilities such as electricity, water and waste management. There might be economies of scale when handling energy management (This will require further studies)

Each individual pillar could be self sufficient for electricity needs through renewable sources such as solar. Water could be drawn through the humidity of air or through the water table underground.

To push the idea to a crazier extreme, multiple pillars could be used to support this standard sized modular houses. Additional modules that are needed could be added to the forrest of pillars like branches and leaves. Certain modules could replace municipal functions such as waste management, composting, food generation and allow the forrest to function as a self sufficient ecosystem.

The houses could move, laterally and vertically to ensure different views and different heights and allow different houses to enjoy and experience different views. One of the drawbacks of fixed housing is the view is fixed and some views cost more than others. Sharing that could be a nice first step towards distributing wealth.

One more possibility is to have small enough home offices that can be detached and transported and remove the need for hotels (extreme scenario but one that I would love to see). Most individuals prefer a space they are familiar and comfortable with. And let’s not get started on personal pillows and mattresses. It would be as awesome as having a shuttle from Serenity while returning to the mother ship after business is over

One added plus point is the reduction of waste without the need to buy new furniture as the houses are just shifted as a whole. Radical ideas to ensure Long term sustainability.

There are definitely a lot of question marks in terms of feasibility of the project: structural integrity, adoption and economic sense.

This is a purely an idea that made sense to me while going leafing through junk mail from realtors and my passion for technology, self sufficiency and more wealth equality. If this can come to fruition, I think it could be a big piece of shifting wealth and capital back to the majority.

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