Choosing the right materials can give you the best start to your building project

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You will have often heard advice about choosing the right materials, but does this apply to everything?

At Fibre Architects we believe that design and planning correctly in the first place gives you a solid foundation to be creative and innovative with your designs and this opens up the doors (quite literally) to use the amazing range of materials currently available in the architectural field.

Starting with a ‘fabric first’ approach to building design concentrates on maximising the performance of the building’s components and materials that make up the building’s fabric, allowing you to achieve a well-built thermal and energy efficient build; then you can focus on the imaginative use of the wide palette of other materials available – elements that can look great and help reduce capital, operational & maintenance costs and/or lower carbon emissions.

Buildings designed and constructed this way can also minimise the need for energy consumption through:

  • Maximising air-tightness.
  • Using super-high insulation.
  • Optimising solar gain through the provision of openings and shading.
  • Optimising natural ventilation.
  • Using the thermal mass of the building fabric.
  • Using energy from occupants, electronic devices, cookers and so on.

Concentrating on fabric first is considered to be more sustainable than just installing energy-saving technology or renewable energy generation later on, which can be expensive and often relies on you, the user, being efficient in the way you use the technology.

Having energy efficient materials integrated into the building from the outset means that occupants have less to do less to operate their building, creating fewer changes to their living habits.

Fabric first building systems can also be constructed off-site to be of higher quality and better performance, lower labour costs and increased speed of build.

At Fibre Architects, we are constantly keeping abreast with the latest materials and construction practices, so why not talk to us about your ideas and plans in a free consultation so you can get the best advice for your next build.

Chartered Architect | Land & Property Adviser | Sustainable Design | Managing Director at FIBRE Architects Ltd

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