Mixing Materials

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Mixing Materials

Build Trend - Building Materials, Mixing Materials

WORDS Erin Jones

Homeowners are being spoiled for choice when it comes to choosing materials to update the exterior of their dwellings. Traditionally, the main materials used by residential builders have been solid stone, brick, double brick and fully rendered facades. Now, commercial materials have popped on to the scene, offering homeowners a way to modernise their houses without blowing the budget. Glazed porcelain tiles, concrete sheeting, corrugates and lightweight cladding are among the commercial materials becoming popular for residential builds.

Alucobond is also making an appearance on everything from high rises to suburban homes. It's made from aluminium cover sheets, with a mineral-filled core, is lightweight, recyclable and comes in a huge range of colours. So what are the benefits of choosing commercial materials, and do you really get more bang for your buck?


The use of corrugated iron, cladding and Hebel panelling on designs by Sarah Homes gives them a lightweight feeling and also has benefits for the floorplan. Sarah Homes' Helen Lowrie says these types of materials leave more area to work with inside, compared to products such as double brick. "These three products (corrugated iron, cladding and Hebel) all work well together and a lot of people choose them because it gives the home a really modern feel," Helen says.


Such products also have one up on their brick counterparts when it comes to energy efficiency. Helen says if the home is appropriately insulated, these lightweight materials are able to cool a house down faster in summer, while bricks tend to retain the heat. Basically, she says, the home will look great and be good for the environment, too.

The architects at Gallery Living think along the same lines, with sales manager Russell Slater saying such commercial products create a modern home with better energy efficiency, but without sacrificing structural strength. By using materials that avoid heat retention, the amount of glass used in Gallery Living designs can be increased, with the end result being open and light-filled houses, Russell says.

Hebel is a popular option as it comes completely rendered and uses only a quarter of the resources and raw material of other masonry products. Cement cladding used to be the ideal material for commercial buildings, but now architects are using it as a flexible, low-maintenance product for residential homes. Hebel, compressed fibre cement (CFC) and corrugated cladding come in a variety of colours and textures and have aesthetically pleasing lines.


18-Oct-2015 - The Sunday Mail Home Magazine

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