Trends come and go quicker than cement dries, and the construction industry is no different.
In this article, we will look at the biggest trends in this industry.
Technology has always been a huge trend so as gadgets for the home are becoming increasingly popular and accessible, the question is why wouldn’t we start buying tech to make our home lives easier and more interesting? From ovens that turn on at a scheduled time and heat your dinner to bathtubs which fill up at the perfect time and temperature, there’s an invention for every room and everyone.
Smart speakers are a device which many of us have invested in over the last year. They are designed to interact with their buyers and to act as a personal electronic assistant by answering questions or completing requests, such as letting you know the weather forecast or adding a missed item to a shopping list. There are a variety of versions of this gadget on the market as manufacturers such as Google, Amazon and Microsoft have all designed a different one. Multiple speakers can be used in different rooms of the home for synchronised music playback.
Intelligent appliances are taking over kitchens. Intelligent ovens with high tech sensors that can present recipes, monitor cooking processes and even self-clean afterwards by degreasing and creating enough steam to prevent limescale build-up are becoming more common in modern kitchens. Fridges are also becoming a big tech investment with more and more being Wifi enabled so you can have a sneaky peak on your phone to see if your fridge is fully stocked up. To add to this, to reduce wastage, some fridges are so futuristic that they can remind you through a panel on the front when you need to use your perishable foods by.
Protecting the Planet
Natural materials that have a much smaller impact on the planet are increasing in popularity compared to mass-produced and synthetic products. Materials such as organic cotton textiles, recycled steel and bamboo floors are being used more because they are natural elements which don’t harm the environment. Recycled steel is favoured as it uses steel which has already been produced for structural use in the home. It’s a material which is readily available as so many items are made with it.
“The reclaimed steel from six junked cars provides enough recycled steel to build a 2000-square-foot house. Recycling saves 75% of the energy costs utilised in making the steel.” (Wild, M. 2018)
Solar panels give us an insight into the future as the intelligently turn sunlight into energy. They are innovative as they come in a variety of different styles and textiles that can blend into your roof design; they are also said to be cheaper than glass solar panels.
Traditional Building Methods
We are starting to see more modern building technology used when building a house. Nowadays, more and more new innovations are being created to speed up the build process and these materials are factory-made. The UK is seeing more and more houses built from timber frame and brick skin, compared to the traditional brick and block.
These builds are becoming more popular as they are structurally sound and go up quick. To continue, another example is Glulam Beams which are becoming more commonly used because of their simplicity. In the UK, it’s impractical for us to wait for the big tees to be ready – one: because we have limited sources left as they have all been chopped down and two: because they take too long to grow. If we waited for the trees to grow to their full potential nothing would get built.
Therefore, to get the houses built we are starting to use smaller trees and smaller pieces of timber glued together to create a larger structure. These are constructed in a factory and sent to site to be custom cut and fit. In addition to this, we are seeing an increase in SIP Panels. These are pre-made wooden frames filled with insulation. Using SIP Panels allows you to buy pre-manufactured and ready to go rooms, such as bathrooms. These rooms come fully furnished, covered in plastics with all the doors cut out and the pipes and electrics ready to connect.
All you need is a crane to place the room in the correct place and hey presto you’ve got your bathroom fully installed and ready to go! However, can it be argued that our building methods haven’t aged that much? We are still stacking small items on top of each other to create a space in which we can shelter, the inside of this space is then designed to different degrees.