Skip to content

Frequently Asked

Frequently Asked Questions














What is a prefabricated home?

Prefab houses are built off-site in controlled conditions, usually in a factory. When the majority of construction and the internal fit-out are complete, the house is transported to its final location on a flatbed truck. 

The site work is completed in a few weeks, including minor touch ups and site connections. You can learn more about our prefab homes here.


Is a prefab home transportable?

A prefab home is a type of transportable home. However, unlike mobile homes and tiny homes, prefabs are permanent once they are fixed to the foundations, just like a conventional house. 

For more information about transportable homes, read our full explainer

Do you offer site visits?

Yes, a local team member can arrange a time to visit your site to check site access, ground conditions, and delivery routes.

If you have a preferred house plan, they will ensure that it can be delivered and installed safely.  

Do you have a show home?

We don’t have a physical show home right now but you can visit our Timaru factory to see the houses we currently have in production.

Book a factory tour to see the range of prefabs in various stages of completion. 

Where does Genius Homes deliver?

We deliver to most of the South Island of New Zealand. If you have concerns about the accessibility of your building site, book an onsite consultation to discover your options.

For more information regarding our transport locations please click here.

What's the difference between a prefab home and a kitset home?

A kitset home is delivered to the building site in separate pieces. You are responsible for arranging the contractors to assemble the house.  

A prefab home is built in a specialised factory and delivered to your location. Once it is delivered, there are only minor finishing touches and site connections to complete.

What's the difference between a prefab home and a modular home?

A prefab home is built in a specialised factory and delivered to your location. Once it is delivered, there are only minor finishing touches and site connections to complete.

Modular homes are a type of prefab. The difference is that they are built in more than one section and need to be assembled on the building site. 

Learn more about the differences, pros and cons, and hidden costs of modular houses and prefab here.



Can I customise a Genius Homes design?

Absolutely! There's a range of customisations available for each of our house plans. For example, common prefab customisations include adding an extra bedroom or upgrading fixtures.

Just ask our team to talk you through your options.

Can I have a high-pitched roof?

In order to be transported, our prefabs must be under 5.2 meters high. If you want your home to have a high roof style, ask our team to provide design recommendations that suit the transportation requirements. 

Can I add more windows to my prefab design?

We can add more windows to your home at an additional cost. Our home consultants will help you plan the window placement and ensure all additional bracing requirements are considered.

Can I change the exterior cladding?

Yes, depending on where the house is located and the rating on your preferred cladding. All of our standard cladding options are rated to the highest standards and meet all requirements.

Can I have a concrete slab foundation?

Unfortunately not. Our houses are built on a steel chassis and installed on steel piles to ensure stability, durability, and efficient installation. 



Do Genius Homes sell kitset houses?

No, our houses are fully constructed in our factory, including the appliances, internal fit-out, electrical, plumbing, and cosmetic finishes. Once delivered, they are ready to be connected to site services.

If you have a building site that is narrow or difficult to reach, we have house plans that are designed with limited access in mind. 

Can I get a custom-designed home?

Absolutely! We can draw up a new design or use one of our existing plans as a starting point. You can also customise the interior of your new home with a range of colours, finishes, and fixtures. 

Can I visit the Genius Homes factory?

Of course! We have two production lines in our Timaru factory, with houses in various stages of the building process. Whether you want to see our construction process up close or check in on the progress of your own home, book a factory tour here.

Is a prefab cheaper to build than a kitset?

The short answer is yes, due to the efficiency of the prefab building process. Since prefabs are constructed under factory conditions, the build timeline is more predictable and controlled.

While the cost for a kitset may appear more affordable upfront, this won't include the labour costs to assemble the kit.

For more information, click here.

What exterior cladding options do you offer?

We offer a range of cladding options, from basic board and batten to premium hardwood. To make the decision easier, we divide the cladding options into three groups; feature, premium, and standard. For more information regarding these options, click here.

Can I do some of the work to save costs?

Since our prefabs are built in our factory, labour is included in our base prices. However, there are other areas where you can save costs, such as with a pre-designed plan or a smaller layout. 

For tailored advice, talk to our sales team about your situation and budget.

How long will it take to build a Genius Homes prefab?

Once a house enters our factory production line, the average build time is 10 weeks. Once it is delivered to your building site, there will be an additional 4 weeks of on-site work before the keys are handed over.

Can you build a second dwelling for my site?

Yes, a prefab is a great choice for a second dwelling because there is minimal site disruption. You can ask our team, check with your local council, or read more here.



Can you deliver to all site locations?

We only deliver in the South Island. Although we do our best to deliver to all locations, narrow roads and site access can present barriers. Please contact us with your site address or send us a Google pin drop so we can let you know if delivery is feasible.

Is delivery included in the price?

The cost of delivery is not included in the base price of our houses. It is an additional expense that varies based on factors such as the size of the house, its style, and the location of your site.

While you may have a specific budget in mind, it is important to allocate funds for delivery costs either within your budget or as an additional expense.

How much does delivery cost?

Our delivery costs vary based on the location of your site. Please contact us with your site address to get an estimate. Or even better, send us a Google pin drop so we can let assess if delivery is achievable.

Do I need to do anything to my site before delivery?

Before the contract is signed, our transport team will complete a delivery assessment of your building site and the delivery route. We will let you know of any additional works that need to be completed for us to successfully deliver your house. For example, these works may include trimming trees, widening the entrance, or removing a fence.

Still have questions?

If you cannot find the solution to your query within our FAQ section, feel free to reach out to us. We are committed to providing prompt responses and assistance.