For some, a house made of wood may seem too traditional and conservative, while others find it timeless and modern. However, this is not a contradiction – wooden houses have a long tradition and have been very trendy again for a few years. This is shown by both the increasing demand from private builders and the growing number of construction companies specializing in the manufacture of wooden houses. And there are many good reasons for that…
the essentials in brief
- As a building material, wood already has a history rich in tradition and is still very much in vogue for many reasons.
- Due to the high degree of thermal insulation, wooden houses reduce energy costs and at the same time protect the environment.
- However, the natural material has numerous characteristic properties that must be taken into account when using it.
The natural building material wood is both traditional and modern
Wood is one of the oldest building materials in the world. The idea of this robust construction comes from countries like Canada, Finland and Sweden, where it has been extremely popular for several thousand years. The first settlers in North America also built their huts out of wood. On the one hand, the renewable raw material was available in large quantities in these northern regions, on the other hand, people were particularly dependent on building houses with good thermal insulation. But why is timber construction still one of the most popular on the prefabricated house market today, in times of modern thermal insulation systems and a wide range of innovative building materials?
One reason for this is the formative character of the material wood. Although the question of what builders find beautiful is a matter of taste, the special charm of wooden houses is undisputed: This is not least due to the cracking and creaking of the natural building material and the pleasant indoor climate – in contrast to the often anonymous, noiseless and cold-looking brick buildings wooden houses convey a feeling of warmth and security to their residents.
The timber construction allows for great planning flexibility
Since wood is a very light material, there are only low demands on the load-bearing capacity of the subsoil and the foundation, which is why wooden houses can also be built on difficult building sites. At the same time, wood as a building material can bear around 14 times the weight of steel in relation to its weight. Because its strength-to-weight ratio is significantly better than that of concrete or steel.
These properties make it possible to create a wide variety of house shapes with wood, such as bungalows or single-family houses. In addition, a wide range of design variants can be realized with the building material, for example houses in half-timbered or country house style. A particular advantage of the timber construction, which will primarily benefit the future residents, is the very short construction time. Due to the high degree of prefabrication and the shift of the focus of production from the construction site to the workshop, a wooden house can be erected in a few days and be ready for occupancy after a short time. In addition, the drying phase of a brick house, which lasts several months, is no longer necessary. In addition, subsequent changes, such as moving or adding to interior walls, can be made relatively easily with the timber construction. And do-it-yourself talents also get their money’s worth with wooden houses, since the interior design is often done by yourself.
Wooden houses ease the ecological conscience
However, wooden houses can not only score points in terms of appearance and planning, the ecological conscience also remains clear through the construction of a wooden house. A big advantage is the efficient thermal insulation of the building material wood. They enable the residents to save energy costs over the long term and permanently reduce their energy requirements. The air-filled wood cells ensure good insulation even with a low wall thickness. For example, an approx. 30 cm thick larch wood wall with sheep’s wool insulation is excellent. Wood insulation systems made from natural materials, such as wood fiber insulation boards with cellulose or hemp, are also free of harmful substances and can therefore be recycled at any time. This not only ensures cozy warmth, but also a healthy indoor climate. The latter is also promoted by the good moisture exchange between inside and outside, which is made possible by the high moisture storage capacity of the building material. Wood buffers the room climate and stabilizes the humidity levels, which is why allergy sufferers and people with lung problems feel particularly comfortable in wooden houses.
Anyone who wants a sustainable home builds with wood
With all these reasons that speak in favor of planning, building and living in wooden houses, it is hardly surprising that more and more wooden houses are shaping the appearance of housing estates. Many construction companies also know about the advantages of prefabricated houses made of wood and offer a wide range of different models, styles and design variants.
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