Tougher, stronger and longer: Building for the future

By Abigail Phillips
When it comes to construction, there are a number of ways residential homebuilders are building longer-lasting, safer homes. From single-fami...

When it comes to construction, there are a number of ways residential homebuilders are building longer-lasting, safer homes.

From single-family homes to condos and apartments, durability is a top priority for builders across the country.

Here are just a few ways homebuilders are building stronger homes while saving money in the process:

Steel Bones are Better than Wood

A home is only as strong as its bones, which is why homebuilders are using steel framing instead of wood in residential construction. There's nothing wrong with 2x4 lumber framing, but steel is stronger and lasts much longer than wood.

Light-gauge steel framing is sweeping the nation because of its durability and versatility. Steel framing can do just about anything wood framing can, except it's impervious to termites, warping, and shrinking.

This results in stronger homes and condos that are roughly the same cost as traditional wood construction.

Structural Panels

What's sandwiched in the walls and framing of a home can help strengthen the structure as well. That's why many homebuilders are using structural panels instead of traditional fiberglass insulation in interior and exterior walls.

As the article “">How is America paying for their home improvement projects?” looks at, by choosing materials that will pay off in the long run, it is a win-win situation for both the builder and the resident.

Structural panels do just that by using rigid foam to strengthen the structure while also providing superior insulation for homes in just about any climate.

Modular Construction

Onsite construction has dominated the homebuilding world since the beginning of time, but modular construction is changing all of that.

Instead of building a home that's at the mercy of the exterior elements, modular homes are built in a warehouse and assembled onsite. This gives builders the opportunity to build better, stronger homes with all of their building and fabricating equipment at their disposal.

The assemble-on-site technique is a huge benefit because it allows residential construction companies to build homes faster and more efficiently, which results in better built homes at a fraction of the cost.

Concrete Construction

Although concrete is mainly used in commercial construction, many homebuilders are beginning to use insulated concrete block in residential homebuilding.

Insulated concrete block come in pre-fabricated structural forms that are assembled onsite and filled with concrete for reinforcement. This results in unparalleled strength and durability.

Building Affordable Homes

Constructing a strong, durable home is one thing, but building an affordable home is something else entirely.

From single-family homes to condos and boutique apartments, homebuilders are using low-cost techniques when constructing new homes.

For starters, builders are using energy efficient windows, doors, siding, and central air conditioning systems that don't cost much upfront, but help keep the cost of home ownership down overtime.

Likewise, homebuilders are choosing designs with open floor plans.

Open floor plans result in fewer building materials and actually make smaller homes feel larger.

With that said, residential construction companies are also reducing the square footage of new homes, which helps save on building costs as well as energy costs.

When it comes to affordable, longer lasting residences, more homebuilders are keeping durability and cost in mind.

Adam Groff is a freelance writer and creator of content. He writes on a variety of topics including construction and budgeting.


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