Term: Prefab

1. A building, manufactured in standardized parts or sections ready for quick assembly and erection.

2. A structure fabricated at an offsite location and brought to the site as fully assembled for installation.

3. A broad term that encompasses several different types of building. Technically, any home that has sections of the structure built in a factory and then assembled on site can fall under the “prefab” designation. Both Modular and Panel Built fall under the umbrella term of prefab, but just as different types of dogs are all canines but differ from each other, Modular and Panel Built both qualify as prefab, but are still different.

4. The manufacture of whole buildings or components in a factory or casting yard for transportation to the site.

Sources:,, The Penguin Dictionary of Architecture, 1980, p. 253

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