EX­PERT VIEW: CHOOS­ING CLADDING FOR YOUR TIM­BER FRAME PROP­ERTY

Build It - - RENOVATION & BUILDING -

Tom Gres­ford, founder of Gres­ford Ar­chi­tects, shares his ex­per­tise on choos­ing a suit­able cov­er­ing for your tim­ber frame project: “It’s hugely im­por­tant to get the cladding for your new prop­erty or ex­ten­sion right. Choos­ing a suit­able prod­uct is a very sub­jec­tive ex­er­cise, but it also re­lates to the con­text, sus­tain­abil­ity, qual­ity, cost, longevity and struc­ture of your project.

The sur­round­ings of your home are also crit­i­cal, as the fin­ish should relate to (although not nec­es­sar­ily ape) the ad­ja­cent build­ings and land­scape, and the his­tor­i­cal ma­te­ri­als used in the area.

It’s al­ways prefer­able to spec­ify sus­tain­ably sourced ma­te­ri­als that have low em­bod­ied en­ergy. Qual­ity and cost of­ten go hand-in-hand. How­ever, all schemes have an al­lo­cated project fund avail­able, so choose the best qual­ity over bud­get where you can, whilst con­sid­er­ing what ma­te­ri­als will last the long­est and need the least main­te­nance.

Fi­nally, the per­fect cov­er­ing is of­ten made from the same fab­ric that you’re build­ing with. It can work re­ally well to re­flect the in­ter­nal struc­ture of your project ex­ter­nally, be it a ma­sonry house with a brick outer leaf, a tim­ber frame fin­ished in wood boards, in situ cast con­crete, and so on. Think of your cladding as much more than just a fa­cade – it should re­flect the essence and am­bi­tion of your whole project.”

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