In a low-key, in-house ceremony last month that involved cider donuts, coffee and brief remarks by founder Tedd Benson, Unity Homes celebrated its Five Year Anniversary.
When Unity was launched as a spinoff from Bensonwood, one of our goals was to demonstrate a different, more efficient way to build homes. We knew that this “better way” would be based on the off-site construction techniques developed over the course of decades by Bensonwood, and on Bensonwood’s extensive experience designing high-performance homes. Despite having these advantages right out of the gate, we also knew that developing a better way to build would be a challenge. The five year mark feels like an appropriate time to reflect on Unity’s considerable accomplishments, and on what the future holds.
That Unity has flourished, after having been founded in the midst of an uncertain economic recovery, feels like an accomplishment in and of itself. Our growth and development to date have been primarily thanks to “bootstrapping,” rather than extensive outside investment. We may have been constrained by lack of resources, but our steady, organic growth has resulted in a strong foundation from which to expand.
We have built homes: over fifty to date, with another twenty or so in the pipeline. These are healthy, comfortable, durable homes that our clients appreciate. These are also homes that raise the bar for the industry on performance.
We have grown our team. We’ve added to our sales, marketing, project management and procurement teams. In fact, we are still expanding our team – specifically on the design side. Please see the “Jobs” page of Unity’s website for additional information.
We have continued to refine Unity’s design system, and we’ve developed tools and protocols that streamline our process.
Unity has received numerous awards and recognitions, including BuildingGreen’s “Top Ten Green Building Product of the Year.” The demonstration home that we assembled in three days at the Greenbuild conference in 2015, and which subsequently became Unity’s show home in New Hampshire, achieved LEED Gold status, was the first certified Zero Energy Ready Home in New Hampshire, and received the “Project of the Year“ award from the US Green Building Council’s New Hampshire chapter.
Our success during these five years has bolstered our confidence that Unity and Bensonwood together will be able to make full use of the new production facility that we are now bringing online, with greatly increased capacity.
We anticipate that the next few years will be exciting for Unity. Interest in off-site construction methods is increasing steadily among building professionals. Tedd Benson recently returned from presenting at a national conference on off-site construction, and declared that there is a growing “fever” for these innovative methods. Many thought leaders in the industry contend that off-site construction will be a cornerstone to addressing issues of affordability, quality and skilled labor in the coming years.
Unity will continue to be at the forefront of the off-site construction movement. We are proud of what we have accomplished in the past five years, and we look forward with anticipation to what the next five years will bring.