Timber frame market withstands recession

21 May 2009

The market share for timber frame construction has continued to advance again and now stands at 25% of all new housing in the UK, despite the sever trading conditions, a new report has found.

According to the interim market report published for members of the UK Timber Frame Association (UKTFA), the estimate of housing starts for 2008 at around 139,000 units would be the lowest levels of homebuilding for over 60 years in the UK. While non-timber frame methods of construction saw their volumes plummet by almost 40%, timber frame units declined by 29%.

The market share for timber frame has risen for the tenth year, up from 8% in 1998 to 25% in 2008, with the affordable housing sector being a major contributor in this continued growth. In Scotland, timber frame’s market share is over 75% and still rising.

Geoff Arnold, chairman of the UKTFA and managing director of Pinewood Structures Ltd, said: “The timber frame industry in the UK has continued to show its strength, resilience and maturity in 2008 despite these difficult times for homebuilding and the housing market.

“Timber frame is the right building solution for now and the future as it has the ability to comply with and exceed current forthcoming Building Regulations. Timber frame also performs better than any other building material in meeting the need to build sustainable homes and the speed and efficiency of construction delivers the best economic solution for customers.

“When the economic upturn comes and the urgent need for fast, sustainable building becomes even more critical, timber frame looks set to be the number one choice. The timber frame industry can look to the future with real confidence.”