Since IKEA was the innovator of mass-customized, flat-packed furniture it comes as no surprise to learn that the Swedish furniture behemoth is going to start selling prefab houses in the UK next year. IKEA teamed up with Swedish construction firm Skanska to create the Boklok brand in 1998. Boklok translates as “Live Smart” in Swedish, and reduces the cost of housing manufacture by creating economies of scale in materials and production. Since its launch, over 2000 one and two-bedroom Boklok homes have been sold throughout Scandinavia. Banking on IKEA’s popularity in England (with a stampede of 6,000 customers recently at a north London IKEA store), Boklok is looking to conquer the low-end prefab market in the UK.

Since affordable housing is a major concern in population-dense Britain, this development may be the answer for hundreds of thousands of people who are currently unable to afford to buy a home. Still, whether the Scandinavian country aesthetic will resonate with Brits’ taste remains to be seen. As Treehugger writer Alastair Fuad-Luke says: “A glance to the post-World War II ?Cornish Unit? prefab concrete homes, and others of the same ilk, designed over fifty years ago to meet similar urgent housing needs, still sit awkwardly in the landscape. Whatever happened to ?local is beautiful??”

Boklok houses will be available at 13 IKEA outlets in the UK, starting in 2006.

When Boklok will hit the U.S. market remains to be seen. I can’t find any mention of it at the moment.

Via Treehugger


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  1. Hugh Dolan January 30, 2012 at 3:21 pm

    I have a lot in Springfield, Virginia (Fairfax County) and am looking to a modular that can be placed on it. Your brown house looks good but the movie didn’t move.

  2. taylorlee August 11, 2008 at 5:04 am

    April Fools! The cost of the house is almost irrelevant until you get to the mini-mansion level. Most major housing projects here have major components, like trusses and wall sections, pre-assembled in minimum wage factories and trucked out to worksite. Those familiar with mobile homes or \”manufactured homes\” (post 1997 same as \”Modular Home\” except metal frame foundaton) know that ITS THE LAND YOU PUT THE HOUSE ON that is the major part of the sales price. Also land prep/foundation AND water hookup/well AND sewer/septic system AND electric service AND permits will cost 2K-10K AND 2K-30K AND 2K-15K AND 1K-8K AND 1K-5K. (The State of Washington officially allows $13,000 to move a double-wide mobile home from one mobile home park to another 25 miles away.)

  3. brownie474 August 10, 2008 at 10:43 am

    With the housing prices in our area averaging $350,000 and only have a average income of $30000 per year, the hopes of having an affordable house is unrealistic. This would not only provide an affordable solution, but a green solution. This is wonderful! More information about the construction and when it is expected to debut in the US would be great.

  4. Amy Tarce April 22, 2006 at 9:25 pm

    I understand the european building code is different from the US International Building Code. I wonder if the BoKlok house design can be imported to the US as is or if it needs to be redesigned to comply with US building code. Also there are still communities that do not allow prefab housing, which is very unfortunate.

  5. Annie January 5, 2006 at 1:17 pm

    Where can I get a prefab house in the Washington DC area?
    Either Washington, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia or Delaware?
    Are they solar-friendly?


  6. byas December 16, 2005 at 3:39 am

    Where can I buy prefab home in Washington DC area ?

  7. lyd george December 9, 2005 at 11:35 pm


    I am a living in Virginia USA and would like to buy the Boklok house from Ikea.
    Do you know the phone # or e-mail adres here in the states of anyone aware of sales of these homes ? Any info would be appreciated. I would like to find the phone # the english contact person as well. Maybe this way I could find out.


    L George

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