Construction output in the UK is expected to increase by 1.2% in 2018 with growth primarily driven by infrastructure projects and private house building (Construction Products Association, 2017). The residential market has grown steadily over the years due to the increased demand for housing. In addition, public policy to support private housing initiatives has stimulated its growth. There is a strong demand for residence housing including flats and townhouses. 2018 will see different trends in building and design with technology playing a big role in constructing efficient and sustainable structures.
Technology Advances Impact the Construction Industry
Philip Hammond, the Chancellor of the Exchequer said that about 300,000 new homes must be built each year to address the housing shortage and improve accessibility. Last year, the government delivered 217,350 homes in England according to a BBC report. More could be done, however, to ease the housing crisis. Technology advancements can help reduce costs by improving housing construction. Customers can design their own unique home using virtual reality and 3D printing. The use of drones in mapping out and monitoring construction sites is also valuable in job inspections and providing updates to clients.
Modular Construction Can Address Shortage of Housing
The shortage of affordable housing in the UK is a very hot issue. Modular construction which involves assembly of a structure off site and then moving it to the desired location, can get the job done 65x faster according to Westchester Modular reports. Build times are reduced improving efficiency dramatically. Remote assembly of houses are not affected by adverse weather conditions and strict quality control ensures that manufacturing is carried out according to specifications. Modular construction reduces overhead costs and times making it affordable. For instance, building apartments in blocks with modern amenities will become cost-effective with savings passed on to customers seeking inexpensive flats.
Demand for Green Housing Increases
According to the Committee on Climate Change (CCC), 18% of UK carbon emissions come from buildings, mostly houses. In 2015, the plan of the Government to adhere to ‘zero carbon’ new homes from 2016 onwards was abandoned. In its place, the ‘2050-ready’ new homes policy was introduced under the Clean Growth Plan. This means that new homes must have minimal use of energy and lower carbon emissions. High insulation, low water demand and instant connection to renewable sources for energy are the highlights of these types of homes. Potential homeowners are going to benefit from green houses that are comfortable and cheaper to maintain. It is now up to the Government to support and implement the policy.
The overall outlook for the construction industry remains optimistic. Modular constructions enable production of homes that are cost-effective. Technology advancements contribute to efficient results whist green homes benefit homeowners with houses that are cheap to run and comfortable.