The future of housing? This three-bedroom home was 3D printed in just 12 hours

·5 min read

Watch: Take a peek inside this 3D printed house which was built in 12 hours

You'd expect a house could take weeks or even months to build, but this entire three-bedroom home was 3D printed and move-in ready in just 12 hours. 

In a move that could offer a hint at the future of housing, the entire 1200 sq ft home was 3D printed using liquid concrete and took just half a day to complete. 

The impressive pad, in Williamsburg, Virginia, USA, is now ready for its new homeowner, April Springfield and her 13-year-old son to move into. 

A similar home would typically take around four weeks to build, but it took just 12 hours to print the concrete foundations of the three-bed, two-bath property.

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This entire three-bedroom house was 3D printed using liquid concrete in just 12 hours.(SWNS)
This entire three-bedroom house was 3D printed using liquid concrete in just 12 hours.(SWNS)

In 1,200 square feet of living space, it includes three bedrooms, two full bathrooms, and a covered front porch where Springfield and her son can soak up the sun on summer evenings.

Springfield also now has her own personal 3D printer that will allow her to reprint everything from door knobs to light switches. 

As well as looking swish, the smart new home has some pretty impressive eco credentials.

The use of concrete as its primary material means building costs can be cut by up to 15% per square foot.

It is also a great insulator so lowers heating and cooling bills, and its strength provides great protection against tornadoes and hurricanes.

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The impressive kitchen in the 3D printed house. (SWNS)
The impressive kitchen in the 3D printed house. (SWNS)

The building is EarthCraft certified, too, meaning it minimises environmental impacts and will not cost as much to maintain.

The home is the brainchild of charity Habitat for Humanity, in partnership with 3D-printing company Alquist, which aims to provide affordable homes for people who need them. 

Springfield has a low income as a worker at a local hotel, and struggled to save up enough to get on the property ladder.

Watch: This home was made using 3D-printing

The project offered her a mortgage with repayments of no more than 30% of her income, and puts money back into the community to build more affordable homes around the country.

As a Habitat rule, new homeowners must spend some of their own time working on the project, so Springfield put in 300 hours of sweat equity to make her new home a reality.

"My son and I are so thankful," Springfield said in a live feed streamed on Habitat's Facebook page. "I always wanted to be a homeowner. It's like a dream come true."

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The house has all the mod cons. (SWNS)
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The house is eco-efficient too. (SWNS)

This the charity’s first 3D printed home – crafted in a cooperative effort between volunteers, house sponsors, and buyers – but they expect to launch a second in Tempe, Arizona, in February.

While 3D printed homes are still relatively rare, experts predict it could have an impact on the housing industry in the future, which means we could soon be seeing 3D printed homes in the UK. 

Bruna Pani property expert from We Buy Any House believes 3D homes could potentially be the future of property development. 

"Beneficial in terms of construction time, material and construction costs, and their creative ability to make varying design styles of property, 3D printed homes are certainly on the radar of those in the property industry," she explains. 

Pani says the industry shift towards 3D printing could potentially change the shape of property development and construction. 

"By depositing materials in a layered manner in order to build your desired object, the seemingly complex approach is actually quite simple, and relies on technology to do most of the leg work - something which is easily accessible as we thrust towards the peak of a digital age," she continues. 

Some of the benefits of 3D printed houses, according to Pani, include a reduction in the time it takes to build houses, with 350-square feet houses being printed in just 47 hours. 

"Additionally, 3D printed houses lower costs across the spectrum, from construction materials, to reduced labour costs as the workforce can be lowered," she adds. 

"Most importantly perhaps, 3D printed houses will enable the construction industry to become energy and material efficient in comparison to more traditional routes. 

"Feedstock can be made out of recyclable materials, and whatever is left over can be redistributed to the next project as materials are shapeless."

The strength of 3D printed homes could be another plus point.  

"They are designed to use materials which are weatherproof and have been tested out in various locations during chaotic weather conditions, such as typhoon season in Florida," she adds. 

The housing industry isn't the only area getting the 3D treatment either. 

In a move to make fashion a little more high tech, 3D printed clothes have been incorporated into the collections of designers like Iris van Herpen, Chanel and Noa Raviv. 

Meanwhile the MODECLIX project, recently launched a 3D fashion range that is as wearable as it is technologically impressive. 

By ‘printing’ textiles that are flexible in movement and mimic traditional materials, the collection which features eight dresses and two headpieces, aims to be the first 3D fashion range that could eventually be stocked on the high street.

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The house was 3D printed in just 12 hours. (SWNS)

And last year KFC caused quite the stir after announcing it plans to start 3D printing chicken nuggets.

KFC partnered with a Russian biotechnology company called 3D Printing Solutions for a project titled ‘Meat of the Future’, which aims to craft the “world’s first laboratory-produced chicken nuggets”.

In a press release, KFC said the process will use “chicken cells and plant material, allowing it to reproduce the taste and texture of chicken meat”.

The company claims its 3D-printed nuggets will be “as close as possible in both taste and appearance” to the chicken nuggets meat-eaters know and love, with the cell-based nuggets containing the 11 herbs and spices currently featured in KFC’s chicken nuggets recipe, to make them as similar as possible to the real thing.

Additional reporting SWNS.

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