Everything You Need To Know About Earth Home Building

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Earth homes are a construction trend that is seeing recent popularity due to cost effectiveness and sustainability, but the construction techniques have been around for centuries. While your local earth home builder can offer a product more energy efficient than conventional homes, not everyone is familiar with earth home construction. Here's what you need to know.

What are earth homes?

There are a variety of earth homes, also called earthen homes, earth-sheltered homes, or natural homes. An earth home builder uses materials that come from the earth, such as wood, sand, straw, clay, and even animal dung. Earth homes can be very simple or quite elaborate.

Are earth homes new?

The use of the earth and other natural elements as building materials is not new. Adobe homes, for example, have been around for centuries.

What are pros and cons of earth homes?

There are many benefits to building with natural materials. Earth homes are very energy efficient. The dense, earthen walls provide great insulation, keeping the interior of the home cool in summer and warm in winter. The U.S. Department of Energy even states that bermed earth-sheltered homes are "less susceptible to the impact of extreme outdoor air temperatures than a conventional house."

Additionally, because they are made with natural materials, earth homes are also very sustainable. They require minimal maintenance and can be easily repaired or modified.

There are some downsides to building with the earth, however. Chiefly, building and zoning requirements of local municipalities can hinder construction. Working with an experienced earth-sheltered home builder can make the process run smoothly for everyone involved.

What are some common earth homebuilding techniques?

There are a variety of ways to build an earth home, including:

  • Adobe. Adobe is one of the most common methods and involves making bricks of dried earth, straw, and clay and, once dry, stacking them to build walls.
  • Wattle and daub. This involves a wooden frame similar to a wood lattice, the wattle, that is filled in with a sticky mixture of mud, clay, sand, and straw, called daub.
  • Cob construction. Although the name of this earth home construction technique may suggest corn cobs, it is actually a technique that blends clay, sand, and straw into sturdy walls.
  • Rammed earth construction. This type of construction was used to build sections of the Great Wall of China and is extremely long-lasting. It involves compacting layers of earth into wall forms.

Earth homes can be very sturdy and durable, and they offer excellent protection from the elements.

Building an earth home is a labor-intensive process, but the result is a unique and sustainable home that will last for generations. Look into earth home builders near you for more information.

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Keeping Up With The Trends In Construction With the ever-increasing scale and complexity of construction projects, many construction companies struggle to meet deadlines and stay on budget. Thankfully, the increased adoption of new technologies in construction makes it easier to streamline the entire project management process and improve project outcomes. We recognize the important role that technology plays in fostering the rapid growth of the construction industry. That’s why we find time to research new and emerging trends in construction so we can analyze and predict their potential impact on the industry. While we do our best to give you valuable information about the construction industry, the content on this site does not constitute professional advice and should be used for general information purposes only.