New Guide Promotes Sustainable Timber Homes for Resilient Housing

The latest design guide from WoodSolutions educates and advocates for the design and construction of sustainable timber homes using a resilience-focused approach to address climate challenges and ensure safety and well-being for occupants.

Photo of sun shining through timber framed house. Photo by: photovs

The effects of bushfires, floods, storms and other extreme weather events are becoming increasingly impactful on our communities, environment, and economy in Australia and, in turn, the need for resilient housing is growing. The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) reports that Australians are five times more likely to be displaced by a natural disaster than someone living in Europe and the costs associated with those events are significantly growing. 

The ICA also reports that the costs directly related to repairing or replacing homes and their contents after natural catastrophes have increased significantly over the past 15 years, and indirect costs are even bigger. The result is that many properties are becoming uninsurable and local Councils are encountering additional planning problems. Improving the climate resilience of new and existing homes would contribute to reducing these costs, allow for sustainable market growth opportunities, and facilitate improvements in the housing supply crisis.

This new WoodSolutions guide details how sustainable timber homes can be designed and built with a Code+ approach to resilience. It indicates that opting for a resilient timber home presents a proactive solution to mitigating climate challenges while providing safety and improved wellbeing to building occupants. The guide also details the increased value for the investors and the whole community through resilient design.

The growing emphasis on minimizing the carbon footprint of buildings presents another compelling reason for the Australian insurance and real estate sectors to actively engage in mitigating disaster risks which will position them as providers of safety, wellness and future-proof value to their clients, and the community.

Engineered Wood Products are now widely utilised for their sustainable properties that are essential for meeting decarbonization goals. Consequently, there is a demand for these products and the structures employing them to exhibit resilience and durability that surpasses minimum code requirements.

This new design guide on resilient timber homes can be used by the building and construction industry in conjunction with other WoodSolutions resources that educate on specific performances such as durability, thermal efficiency, fire, and more. This library of free resources supports climate-conscious planning decisions and smarter real estate development options through resilient design and building initiatives. 

This ground-breaking guide is a result of the Resilient Timber Homes program, launched by FWPA, in partnership with industry leaders and in collaboration with outstanding experts in this field. Its primary aim is to foster innovation in construction solutions via a recently completed design competition, the implementation of this comprehensive design guide, and the facilitation of targeted research and development initiatives.

Resilient Timber Homes are poised to create substantial growth in the demand for innovative, sustainable, and cost-effective wood-based products and services over the coming years. This heightened demand will result in a stronger and more resilient supply chain—an advantageous outcome for both the environment and the broader building sector.

Download the free guide now at. 

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