Housing Specification Blog

Housbuilding hike proves problematic

August 14, 2014 PaulGroves Housing IssuesPlanning & Legislation

With recent studies indicating a significant shortage of bricks and indeed skilled workers, greater focus needs to be made on alternative methods of construction to ensure the current boom in demand is met, says Bruce Macdonald, MD of Durisol UK:

“With housebuilding projects growing at the fastest rate since 2003, brick manufacturers are struggling to cope with demand. Coupled with a notable shortage of skills, the construction industry needs to act fast to ensure projects do not fall behind – a closer look at alternative construction methods is surely the answer.

“According to the Markit/CIPS UK Construction PMI report, activity across civil engineering, housebuilding and commercial construction continued to expand quickly in July.

“Whilst this news is a welcome break from what we’ve seen over the past few years, there is simply not enough being done to ensure that materials are readily available at an affordable price.

“In that vein, skilled workers are also in short supply – unfortunately, this means those who do have the skills are able to command increasingly high rates, which will undoubtedly lead to greater financial problems in the long run.

“Of course, the age old problem does seem to be a lack of education when it comes to sourcing alternative materials. Permanent Formwork Systems offer developers ease of construction not hindered by the weather.

“What’s more, the speed of construction results in significant installed cost savings with the system make-up also providing superior levels of fire resistance and acoustic insulation – all this from a construction method that will never fall foul of the issues surrounding material shortages or specific skill requirements.”

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