As the Australian property market struggles there are still plenty of people eager to purchase their first home or create their dream property. In fact, the current economic challenges may even make this a better time to build your own home than ever!
But, you’ll need to ask yourself, do you build with the traditional wood or opt for a steel frame kit?
It’s becoming normal to think about your impact on the environment before you do anything. This is especially true when you look at creating a home. However, you may be surprised that metal is more environmentally friendly than wood, even if it’s reclaimed or ‘green’ wood.
Metal construction beams are often used in renovations on house, they have been used in industrial buildings for many years, and are starting to become more common in domestic houses.
Metal is natural and can be melted down and remade in the future, creating a completely recyclable home!
A metal home is likely to cost you as much as 50% less to build than a traditional wood one. You may think that this trade-off is not worth it because of the difference in look between metal and wooden homes. However, metal homes can be made in an array of colors and can actually look like wooden homes, eliminating the issue.
Metal is considerably stronger than wood. Every panel is made in the factory and delivered to your site. This ensures high-quality for every piece of your home and allows the finished home to withstand hurricane-force winds. The same cannot be said for wood houses.
Of course, it should be noted that there are fewer metal contractors currently available. This will make it harder to find a contractor that can build your metal home for you.
On the plus side metal can’t be attacked by termites and other insects, they prefer your wooden home.
Metal doesn’t burn. If the temperature gets hot enough it will melt but this is unlikely in a normal house or bush fire. In contrast, wood burns easily.
Your metal home can provide you with extra protection, giving you valuable moments to escape from a fire.
It should be noted that wood is much better at insulating than metal. You’ll need to add more insulation to a metal home to keep it cool in summer and warm in winter. This does increase the cost slightly although most people do insulate wood as well.
Because metal houses are still relatively new you’ll find the approval process for planning permission is more difficult than for a wooden house. Expect to jump through several hoops before you get the permission you need. This isn’t usually an issue with wooden homes.
But, the small inconvenience will give you time to locate the right contractor, finalize your plans, and prepare for the build. That means you can get the project just right and get a fast result once planning approval has been granted.