In these days of prefabricated houses, the Brette Haus is at the forefront when it comes to innovation. Not only can you take it with you back and forth with nothing else but a crane and the help of a few skillful friends, but it’s also foldable!
Behind the idea of the Brette Haus is a Latvian startup that launched it in 2019, just like a new smartphone. The house, which folds into a cube, offers the advantage of easy transportation.
Their creators explain that it takes only three hours to install it where the owner requires (see how the Brette Haus folds). In this regard, the company has said that its mission is “to manufacture quality mobile homes considering that today people are flexible, and not tied to one place.”
The foldable feature isn’t new, but the hinges are
The authors of the Brette Haus have clarified on their website that although they haven’t invented anything new when it comes to “foldable houses,” their model certainly has an element that sets them apart from the rest: their hinges.
The patented hinge system of Brette Haus has not only allowed them to reduce three times the surface of the house when folded but also keep the items of the house in place when transported. Additionally, this prefabricated house has another interesting element: the use of the CLT (or engineered wood) in its parts.
According to its manufacturers, the problem with “folding” houses is their weight. This is because they need structural elements that allow them to withstand the deformation that occurs when folding and resist the impact of the movement of loads when transported.
Their creators say that since no wooden or light steel frame could withstand such demands, they decided to create CLT panels to give the house properties that aren’t normally found in wood. “We use cross-laminated timber (CLT) for the manufacture of floors, walls and ceilings,” they indicated.
All this explains how one of their 100-square-meter houses fits folded on any normal platform of 12 meters. This represents quite an innovation in terms of prefabricated houses because it’s an unparalleled advantage since the most expensive aspect of this type of housing is precisely its transportation.
Sustainable and ventilated
Many are concerned that these types of houses aren’t sustainable, because as we have said in previous articles, sustainability and respect for the environment are part of the new vision of architecture.
Well, you have nothing to be afraid of regarding the Brette Haus. The CLT used in its manufacture not only offers natural ventilation, optimal temperature balance and high fire resistance, but also the fact that the production of this cross-laminated timber is CO2 neutral and almost zero in water consumption and waste generation. Besides, the company claims that all materials used in the construction of the Brette Haus are recyclable, made from renewable wood from sustainably managed forests.
Since the design is inspired in the Scandinavian style, these folding houses come in several colors, three different models and a cost ranging between €18,700 (about $22,700) and €37,500 (almost $46,000). The company has stated that a “new form of social structure” will be born with the Brette Haus: sustainable nomads. That is people who due to their love for diversity, walk around the planet with their house on their sleeves, creating ecological villages or temporary camps that appear and disappear by season.
After reading this, we can ask ourselves: Will the new generations leave their sedentary lifestyle behind and return to the lifestyle of their ancestors?