The strides in precision manufacturing are allowing not just cars, solar panels and wind farms to become cleaner and greener, but also home construction, with new materials and energy-efficient construction methods available to modular home-building that are changing the game. With the more accurate prefabrication under controlled factory conditions coupled with the reduction of on-site risks such as weather and topographical shifts in the natural landscape, it stands to reason that modular homes present an approach to the affordable housing crisis that is not only faster and more economical, but also quality.

All around us, we are seeing signs of this revolution today. Factory-built modular homes have moved beyond their connotations as trailers and social housing, and have become something you’d actually want to live in. Japan’s R&D-intensive Sekisui House has produced 2 million units of quality housing. Germany’s Huf Haus has made their name in highly desirable wood and glass modular homes.

And it would be remiss to discuss the evolution or disruption of any industry without mentioning Amazon, which has, perhaps unsurprisingly, also entered into the modular housing game. Prefabricated homes are already available for purchase on the platform – a simple search yields multiple options, from a 292-square-foot “getaway cabin,” albeit with no plumbing or electrical, for $18,800, as well as a 1,336-square-foot “proper home” for $64,650, that comes complete with two floors and an insulated roof. Not content with just that, however, Amazon has also recently partnered with the largest home builder in the U.S., Lennar, and invested in Plant Prefab, a California-based sustainable construction and smart home technology startup, and plans to hard-wire Alexa into new home constructions.

People are now making investments that they intend to last. People now need their homes to fill the needs of a living space, office, Airbnb and more. Wouldn’t they rather have a well-built, affordable, sustainable house that they won’t need to fix or straighten? Looking toward the expected lifespan of these homes, due to the precision of factory construction and the availability of new materials, some prefab or modular homes have the potential to even outlast traditionally-built, on-site housing. And alternately, looking at the beginning of their “lives,” these homes have the potential to be constructed quickly and used right away. For example, the DeLuxe-Built modular housing factory based in Pennsylvania offers steel-framed, multistory buildings designed by architects and engineers that arrive ready to move in – down to, for their hotels, sheets on the beds and towels on the racks.

It’s clear that this method has enormous promise, turning the holdout perception of the U.K.’s postwar prefab housing or the U.S.’s trailer parks upside-down. Prefabricated modular housing has the potential to address the affordable housing crisis in a revolutionary way. The key is not just for the amount of new homes to increase, but for the speed at which those houses are being built to increase, without a corresponding drop in quality or scale. And the speed at which modular housing itself is growing is increasing as well: about 3% of construction in America is currently modular and factory built, but this is anticipated to reach 10% over the next five years.

Looking back at the U.S. again, where the gap between available, affordable homes and the people who need them is even wider, and the potential return on capital invested is likewise far greater, is there any reason to hold out on prefab modular housing? It’s time to acknowledge, and invest in, the promise of factory-built housing once again.