Sustainability is now a major focus for residential builders in Australia, as both homeowners and builders look to decrease their carbon footprint in the construction, design, maintenance and operation of new homes. While some wins are clear, such as installing renewable energy sources or prioritising passive heating and cooling, a key area often overlooked is building materials used for construction.
However, with a little forward thinking and embracing innovation, your choice of building materials can make a significant difference to the overall sustainability of your home.
Here are a few of our favourites.
Steel frames and trusses are a fantastic option for sustainable homes because steel is an incredibly environmentally friendly building material. Steel structures are often made from recycled materials, saving on energy costs and the need to generate something new. In fact, the reclaimed steel from 6 cars provides enough steel to build a 186-sqm home.
There is also less chance of wastage with steel frames and because of its recyclability, it can be used time and time again. Our top pick is AusSteel ® Steel Frames and you can read more about the benefits of building with steel frames on one of our recent blogs.
Metal roofing is another great choice for sustainable building – it’s generally made from recycled materials and can be used time and time again. Compared with standard tiling, metal roofs provide better weather and thermal protection, and can last up to three times as long, providing a minimal carbon footprint. Metal roofs have the potential to improve the energy-efficiency of your home, reflecting high amounts of solar radiation to reduce heating and cooling costs by up to 45%. And if you’re considering solar panels, metal roofing is the preferred base.
In addition to its environmentally friendly properties, metal roofing looks great and is lightweight, durable and fire-resistant. Most metal roofs will last much longer than asphalt or other traditional materials and require little to no maintenance.
Our top choice for an eco-friendly and sustainable option is Colorbond® Steel Roofing which provides both protection and sound proofing and tried and tested for Australian conditions.
Residential foundations are undergoing a sustainable revolution and we’re proud to be building homes that allow home owners to be part of it by using Biax Foundations™ in the slabs of our homes. This foundation system aims to offer home builders an eco-friendly option, with a 100% recyclable slab made from up to 100% recycled plastic.
Using a voided design, the amount of material required is reduced, while ensuring a stronger foundation. It also happens to be lightweight, easy to handle and transport, and easily adjusts to fit the required size.
We’re proud to be using another Australian innovation that’s making sustainable building even easier for our homeowners. Weathertex ™ cladding is the material used on the homes’ exteriors to cover the frames and insulation. Weathertex™ cladding offers a range of options, including weatherboards, architectural panels and classic shingles.
These long lasting and stylish exteriors are all made from 100% natural materials and the company uses only PEFC Certified state forest or hardwoods from controlled sources. The timber is then chipped, pulped and pressed with 3% natural wax to make a completely natural timber product, and every design is completely termite resistant with no chemical additives, such as artificial glues, resins or formaldehydes.
The result is an easy to install, durable and low maintenance cladding that allows your home to contribute to a sustainable environment.
Thinking about going green? We are excited to announce our latest release of house and land packages; MODE at Aurora.
In collaboration with renowned developer, Lendlease, MODE comprises of 17 all electric, sustainably built homes in the already thriving 6-star green approach community in Wollert, Victoria.
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