We have been asked a few times recently why garden offices are built from wood rather than what some consider to be more traditional building materials such as concrete block or brick.
Over the years we have featured a few brick built garden offices, but 99% of the buildings we write about are timber-framed. Actually, the brick garden offices we have featured have all been brick faced with a timber core structure behind.
Why are garden offices not built in block
The buyers who have asked about brick and block garden offices have all felt that the final structure will be more substantial than a wooden version, and offer better thermal and acoustic insulation properties. It is true that block buildings have a substantial feel and they are good at absorbing heat from the sun which they can store to keep the building warm, but wooden garden offices feature these benefits and many others too.
Perhaps the main reason brick and blocks aren’t generally used in garden office design is the time they take to build and the associated costs. It takes skill to lay bricks and blocks well, and compared to modular timber framing it’s a very slow process. All four walls of a timber frame office could be installed in less time than it takes to build one wall in block.
Wood is the material of choice in garden office design for many reasons
Traditional building method – timber framing is a tried and tested building system, dating back to the first houses. Garden office designers use many traditional construction methods in their buildings, for instance, the way timbers are joined to create the strongest frame.
Design flexibility – one of the main reasons garden office buildings have become so popular is the flexibility that you have to take a standard design and alter the layout to meet your needs; this is possible thanks to the flexibility of using wood as the core material. If blocks were being used, you wouldn’t have this option and if you did it would be very expensive to make changes from the standard layout.
Off-site construction – this is a big plus for timber construction. 90% of garden offices sold are built using off-site prefabrication techniques. This means that your building will be manufactured in factory conditions and will be delivered to you ready for quick assembly. This system is a big factor in keeping prices competitive and on-site time and disruption to a minimum.
Latest materials and techniques – garden office design owes its origins to timber frame housebuilding & commercial building, and the industry is moving at a rapid pace introducing new materials and techniques which make construction quicker and the resulting structure highly insulated and energy efficient. Garden office designers are keen to incorporate these materials and techniques into their designs. For instance, the SIPS (structural insulated panels) that some companies use are the same as those used in housebuilding, the highly durable EPDM sheets which offer one piece roof covering both have been taken from the house and commercial building industries.
Multi-layer build-up – wooden garden offices are made up of a series of different layers, several are wood and others are membranes which make the structure weather tight, insulation and decorative finishes. These layers combine to create a very substantial structure that is both thermally and acoustically well insulated. If you need a soundproof office, it is easy to add in extra layers of acoustic insulation into the build-up.
Eco-friendly – timber buildings are an environmentally friendly way of building. The wood used in garden office design is fast growing and sourced from sustainable sources. Timbers such as Cedar and Larch are used as they have long maintenance free lifespans. Timber framing means that there is space within the build-up for substantial amounts of insulation meaning little energy is required to heat or cool the office during the year.
Cost effective – combined, all the reasons for building garden offices from wood make it a cost effective option. Garden Offices designers can offer you a lot of design flexibility, quick lead and on-site build times and a building that will last for decades at a competitive price point because of this material choice.
building in wood is perhaps the tidiest way of building too. With no wet trades like when using blocks and bricks and with most materials being brought to the site already cut to size there will be minimal disruption to your garden. Depending on the size and complexity of the building you choose, the whole project can be built in as little as two days, leaving you to get on and enjoy your new workspace.
To learn more about the benefits of using wood to build your garden office talk to the suppliers on this page who will be more than happy to talk to you and answer your questions.