Timber Frame Will Triumph

“These economic advantages come at the same time as regulatory changes that will hit masonry construction hard, but that are negligible to us. New energy efficiency regulations for the construction of new homes being introduced from 1 April 2006 can be achieved with a simple, highly insulated timber frame solution that is already standard across our industry. This means more timber frame homes that use less energy to run, which is a benefit to home buyers that will continue to increase in importance as domestic fuel bills rise.

“We are nowhere near as dependent upon expensive fossil fuels. In fact, 77% of the energy used in the production of wood products in the UK comes from wood residues and recovered wood. Through recycling our own waste we help to keep our manufacturing costs and environmental impact as low as possible.

– Open panel timber frame construction in England and Wales currently costs GBP798 per square metre, compared to GBP799 per square metre for traditional brick and block construction;

– Timber frame construction (both open and closed panel systems) requires 20% fewer on-site labour days than masonry construction, and ensures a significantly faster construction period overall;

– Timber frame homes are weathertight in almost half the time, leading to important quality, efficiency and health and safety benefits;

– The cost of snagging timber frame homes is a third less than for brick and block homes;

– There are no high risks associated with open panel timber frame, compared to traditional construction which is perceived to be at high risk of price fluctuations, delays due to bad weather, lack of key trade skills, service installation faults, health and safety hazards, construction errors and other defects at handover;

– Multi-storey buildings favour modern methods of construction like timber frame because the costs of complying with stringent building regulations for high-rise buildings increase faster for brick and block construction than for off-site manufactured elements;

– Timber frame systems are also particularly suited to brownfield sites with poor soil conditions (sites that favour lighter buildings), and sites with restricted access.



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