Dollhouses in Texas

While the U.S. housing industry suffers through its worst slump in 15 years, Dallas-based Fox & Jacobs has sold some 600 cottage homes in Dallas, Fort Worth and Houston since July. Reason: the houses are going for as little as $34,500. Fox & Jacobs, which uses assembly-line methods, has become a master builder of low-priced homes.

The company cuts costs at every step, beginning with the concrete slabs on which each home sits. Crews stretching out for four blocks lay foundations for a whole neighborhood. Construction hands then nail frames and panels assembled in company factories to the slabs, and add prebuilt...

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