When it comes to building a new home, innovation and sustainability go hand in hand. This is because there is a global focus across industries on preservation and sustainability – both in the way we build and the materials we use.

The green building movement has been driving this initiative in both large-scale construction and smaller home improvement projects.

The South African government is also becoming more conscious of sustainability, which is evident in its requirements for approving building plans.

However, to drive change across the construction industry, it takes time to start having a significant, positive environmental impact.

The great news is that if you’re planning a home renovation or building your dream home for the first time, you can already start using innovative building materials.

Accessibility to some of these has become a lot easier in the last couple of years.

When you’re planning your construction project with a designer or contractors, investigate some of the following innovations that have radically changed the construction industry:

1. Using Recycled Bricks

Over the last five years there have been significant strides in using recyclable materials to make bricks for construction purposes.

Some of the most innovative materials being recycled to create these bricks are paper, plastic, and even polystyrene.

Although these types of brick aren’t readily accessible in all regions, the idea of using our trash and turning it into building materials is most certainly a key driver towards a more sustainable future through construction.

A more accessible alternative, would be to use regular leftover bricks from other projects where possible.

The advantage in doing this is that the practice starts to lower waste and it also repurposes materials that that would otherwise pollute our planet.

2. Using Safer Glass

Unless you’re building a completely windowless house, glass with definitely be on your list of building materials – and most likely, a lot of it.

Most of us have had the unfortunate experience of a bird flying into a window or glass door.

Because birds are part of almost all urban environments, they should form part of an eco-friendly build’s objectives.

Traditional glass isn’t visible to birds, which is why they often crash into windows. By opting for a UV-coated glass for your windows or sliding doors, it will make these “flying hazards” visible to birds and reduce feathery casualties.

3. Consider Brick Alternatives

In recent years, architects and engineers have been innovating the centuries-old methods of using wood to build houses.

Timber structures do come with their own set of challenges, but incorporating wood as an alternative to traditional, less-sustainable materials could already reduce your new home or renovation’s carbon footprint.

These innovative building materials and practices are all contributing to a more sustainable future for our society as a whole. However, progress will take time and using some of these could present additional challenges along your construction journey.

It’s important to talk to your contractor and designer at the outset of your building project to determine where and to what extent you can use some of these materials. Binastore offers you advice and guidance every step of the way.

Contact us for reliable advice and to get started on building your dream home.