10 to Watch Winner: Aux Box

Parksville-based modular building company Aux Box began with a simple question: “What if we design and build a bonus room that could be delivered to someone’s backyard?”

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Aux Box co-owners
Morgan Seeber and Landon Sheck. Photo by Dean Azim.

What if you could add a home office, yoga studio or spare bedroom to your property without weeks or months of on-site construction and high costs?

It’s a problem two longtime “construction guys” — Landon Sheck and Morgan Seeber —
set out to solve with Aux Box.

Based in Parksville and Nanaimo, Aux Box is a modular-building company specializing in small, prefabricated outbuildings that provide critical extra space.

Each fully wired, insulated and code-compliant Aux Box is built at a quality-controlled indoor manufacturing facility while a minimal foundation is built on the owner’s property and electrical is installed. The Aux Box is then delivered and set up, often in as little as one day.

Sheck and Seeber see Aux Box as a lifestyle-efficiency solution, designed to save property owners time and to eliminate the “pain points” of construction — the mess and disruption, the cost uncertainty (Aux Box has a fixed price), and the fears about quality.

Interest in Aux Box has grown as property owners find more and more uses for Aux Boxes, from art studios to wine rooms. Aux Box has also attracted those seeking solutions for Airbnbs, campsites and other commercial uses.

At just over 100 square feet, Aux Box’s smallest units don’t require building permits, and Sheck and Seeber have also been working with the City of Nanaimo to modify bylaws so residents can generate income by renting out Aux Boxes in their backyards.

“We recognized it was just a matter of time before we see the huge benefit of a modular construction process,” Sheck adds, “so we were trying to get ahead of the curve.”

A Q & A with Landon Sheck and Morgan Seeber of Aux Box

What advice would you give to someone just starting out?

In the book Oh, The Places You’ll Go!, Dr. Seuss speaks about the ‘waiting place.’ This is the horrible place where everyone is waiting for something … their turn, or that phone call, or that person to show up. Skip the waiting around and get out there and chase whatever excites you. Do this relentlessly. Life is short and fragile, and your time ought to be well spent!

What was the scariest part of starting up?

The business not being able to survive long enough to get our product to the people who want it and appreciate it.

What would you do differently if you could do it all again?

Take more time to identify our minimum viable market. In many ways, we built a product and then went looking for a market.

This article is from the April/May 2019 issue of Douglas.