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Why build a house when you can print one? That's what one nonprofit did

SARAH MCCAMMON, HOST:

Building a house can be expensive and time-consuming. So why build a house when you can print one? Well, that is exactly what Habitat for Humanity is doing.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

JANET V GREEN: This is the first 3D-printed owner-occupied Habitat home in the nation.

MCCAMMON: That's Janet Green, CEO of the Habitat for Humanity chapter in Williamsburg, Va. She presented the inaugural 3D house at a ceremony to a very grateful mom and her 13-year-old.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

APRIL STRINGFIELD: I always wanted to be a homeowner and - I always wanted to be a homeowner, and it's like a dream come true.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

April Stringfield bought her brand-new house through the Habitat Homebuyer program, which helps to provide affordable housing to families in need. Springfield's home was built with printed concrete instead of lumber. You've seen the images of people hammering - Jimmy Carter hammering for homes - but this process means cheaper materials and savings on heating and cooling. The building process only took 12 hours, although Stringfield, the new homeowner, put in a lot more time.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

GREEN: She's also performed over hundreds of hours of sweat equity, helping to build her home and other homes here in this neighborhood.

(APPLAUSE)

MCCAMMON: After all that work, it was time for Stringfield to cut the ribbon.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

GREEN: One, two, three.

UNIDENTIFIED PEOPLE: 3D.

(CHEERING, APPLAUSE) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.