5 Benefits Of Building Sustainably In Construction
Building sustainably is becoming the new norm when constructing new residential buildings, offices and even hospitals. As a responsible business owner in the construction industry, therefore, it is crucial to understand the benefits of sustainable building practices. Let’s take a look at the five main benefits.
1. Saves money
Building sustainably can save a significant amount of money in the long run. Sustainable building materials and practices may seem more expensive at first and materials may be more expensive than traditionally-used, less sustainable materials. However, sustainable materials tend to be more energy-efficient, longer-lasting, and often require less maintenance. Simple changes in the design and fit out of a building can increase airtightness and reduce U-values, meaning that you use energy much more efficiently and with less waste.
Additionally, sustainable, environmentally friendly structures increase in value over time compared with traditional builds, and there are often government incentives and grants available for businesses that choose to invest in sustainability. These incentives can help reduce the overall cost of the project.
2. Better energy efficiency
Conventional buildings and construction projects use a lot of energy, which leads to high volumes of carbon emissions and other pollutants. Sustainable buildings, on the other hand, are designed to be energy-efficient at all stages of construction, so they require less energy to heat and cool, and often incorporate renewable energy sources.
Using ‘renewable energy’ means harvesting free energy from the sun (including photovoltaics and biomass), the air (air-sourced heat pumps and MVHR - Mechanical Ventilation with Heat Recovery), wind turbines, or the ground (ground source heat pumps and geothermal energy) and storing the energy or exporting it to the grid when you’re not using it. Although the initial outlay may be higher than just tapping into the National Grid, the cost of equipment is coming down and the savings can be significant, especially as fossil fuel prices rise.
3. Environmental sustainability benefits
When you build sustainably, you can proudly say that your business is ‘going green’ and doing its part in reducing carbon emissions and preserving the environment. Building to sustainable standards can help build a positive reputation for your business, as more individuals and businesses are becoming environmentally conscious.
More and more construction companies are taking steps to go green, making better use of sustainable and recycled materials, reducing waste, and implementing energy-efficient methods to improve their builds and the environment. With the laws on builds changing and becoming stricter on going green, why not start now?
4. Reduced build times
Some people assume that building sustainably takes longer than building traditionally, but often this is far from the truth. In fact, building sustainably can often be a lot quicker. Building using structural timber (timber frame) methods can reduce your site build time significantly, reducing costs and time on site. In addition, structural timber elements are typically prefabricated off-site, which means that they can be quickly assembled on-site, saving significant time and money on construction, and providing health & safety benefits due to off-site manufacture.
5. Better for the community and the environment
Sustainable construction isn’t just about saving energy. It also considers the needs of the local community and ensures natural habitats are protected during and after the construction phase. When we take care of the environment, it benefits us all. Sustainable building practices often improve indoor and outdoor air quality, reduce waste, and make better use of locally sourced and eco-friendly materials. A sustainable building development will aim to reduce operational and embodied carbon (reducing the project’s contribution to climate change), and ensure the sustainability of the water cycle, infrastructure, connectivity and transport, land use and biodiversity, health and wellbeing, community, and social and economic value throughout the construction and life of the building.
Sustainability is more than just a buzzword in the construction industry; it is an essential part of creating a better-built environment for current and future generations. Building sustainably saves money, reduces energy usage, and is better for the ecology. The reduced build time of timber frame buildings and other eco-conscious construction methods makes sustainable construction not only the right choice for the environment but also a smart decision for budget-conscious property developers and main contractors involved in a wide range of construction projects.
Image Source: Canva
Connect with Us
- SC4 Completes A-rated Eco Home in just 7 Months
- Diversity in Construction in 2023
- Kickstart Your Construction Career With A Joinery And Carpentry Apprenticeship: Find Out More During National Apprenticeship Week
- Typical timber frame installation crane day
- What is the Impact of Neurodiversity on the Construction Industry?
- Women in Construction – Your Questions Answered: Part Two