Style Magazine - - Interior -

When it comes to build­ing your dream home, it goes with­out say­ing you’re go­ing to be over­whelmed with de­ci­sions to make.

Early in the process, a vi­tally im­por­tant com­po­nent of your build is choos­ing what frame­work you’re go­ing to use — and a num­ber of home­own­ers are turn­ing to steel frames as an al­ter­na­tive to tra­di­tional wood.

The steel ver­sus wood de­bate will al­ways prompt the ques­tion: is steel more ef­fec­tive at keep­ing the dreaded ter­mites at bay? And the an­swer is yes (and no). Ob­vi­ously, hav­ing the skele­ton of your res­i­dence built from ma­te­ri­als that ter­mites don’t at­tack is a big pos­i­tive.

It most def­i­nitely re­duces the square me­ter­age they can de­stroy, but al­ways be mind­ful that ter­mites can still at­tack other wood fea­tures of your home like pan­elling, skirt­ing boards and win­dow sills, etc.

No mat­ter what frame­work you choose for your house, al­ways be sure to con­duct pe­ri­odic in­spec­tions (and treat­ments if needed) to com­bat the pos­si­bil­ity of ter­mite in­fes­ta­tions. But a steel frame is a great start.

As well as a proven ter­mite de­ter­rent, the ben­e­fits of steel as a build­ing ma­te­rial are nu­mer­ous with its strength and re­silience seen as ma­jor ben­e­fits.

That dura­bil­ity en­sures less main­te­nance is­sues, mak­ing it a more at­trac­tive eco­nomic choice when it comes to build­ing op­tions.

While sur­pris­ingly light­weight, steel frames can of­ten of­fer a stronger foun­da­tion; as well as greater re­sis­tance to dam­ag­ing storms and cy­clonic winds.

Steel is also fire re­sis­tant and, while house fires can al­ways oc­cur, a steel frame is less likely to warp in a fire and if the un­think­able does hap­pen, it might just make the dif­fer­ence be­tween repairs and to­tally start­ing again.

And while ad­dress­ing fire con­cerns, a com­mon mis­un­der­stand­ing with steel frames is the per­cep­tion that they may at­tract light­ning in an elec­tri­cal storm.

How­ever, a cor­rectly built home by a qual­i­fied, reg­is­tered builder will be earthed (in keep­ing with strict in­dus­try stan­dards) and, as with all new builds, a cir­cuit breaker will be in­stalled as part of the home’s elec­tri­cal wiring. This en­sures to­tal safety for the oc­cu­pants in the case of storms or elec­tric­ity surges.

No mat­ter what fram­ing you choose be sure to dis­cuss all your op­tions with your builder to find the right fit when cre­at­ing your dream home.

One in four homes are af­fected by ter­mites. Re­search con­ducted by Pure Pro­file on be­half of Ren­tokil, Septem­ber 2014, with 1382 re­spon­dents

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