At the centre of the housing debate there is this seemingly never ending ethical dispute between profit verses environmental sensitivity. It has forced me to reflect on how we might have arrived at this point which, in my mind, could have been avoided.
Institutionalisation means: to physiologically make part of a structured and usually well-established system. The negative attributes of this definition when applied physically describe the majority of our housing industry.
- A volume home construction company is formed.
- That company rapidly grows in size because of the countries housing demand.
- The company strives toward offering an affordable housing solution that will appeal to a broader demographic. Standardised designs and the integration of cheap materials result.
- Typical construction details follow in suite producing a form that has no reference to place.
- Systematic detailing requires the same materials and treatments to be applied to each dwelling. With that comes an authoritative monopoly regarding the buying power of specific products further pushing the build price down and increasing the company’s profit margins.
- The market is then flooded with homes that are cheap and nasty, these days usually garnished with a small insignificant smattering of environmental fluff, just enough to meet the government set minimum standards.
- Big advertising campaigns promote lifestyle opportunities in these unsustainable, un-environmentally responsive developments that over time institutionalise the public into thinking, when you can move into one of these project homes, you have made it!
- This belief is further exaggerated by the banks and real-estate agent’s advice on what will sell best.
- In the end we are left with a large proportion of the general public (97%) living in these inappropriately designed and constructed mcmansions. They are the epitome of falsity in relation to what could be conceived if it weren’t for the greed of big business and market