Builders' Merchants News
Now is the time for timber, says STA
Published:  21 October, 2013

The Structural Timber Association (STA) is rolling out a series of factory and site tours to engage with UK housebuilders, in order to encourage greater uptake of timber within construction.

The Association has invited industry leaders to the factory tours at a number of member locations across the UK, which will support its industry in capitalising on the current upturn.

STA chairman Lawrence Young explained: “Private developers have historically looked to the timber industry to shorten time to market and provide more stable and predictable building programmes. With the slow and somewhat fickle market conditions experienced over the past few years, fast-build programs haven’t been at the top of everyone’s agenda. However, we’re now seeing developers needing to react to changes in market conditions and bring new sites to market quickly.

“On top of this pressure, as we head towards the winter months, there is the added issue of poor weather conditions. Last year, many developers experienced delays on site because of the weather, with programs ending up between six and twelve weeks behind – leading to missed market opportunities and extra costs to get homes ready for sale.

“The answer to this problem is simple: a move to building in structural timber. Lead times can be reduced by four weeks on an average-sized house and build programmes become predictable – almost irrespective of weather-related issues. While timber frame won’t eliminate all delays it will certainly shorten time to market and ensure developers have homes for sale at the right time.”

The STA is hoping that through direct engagement with housebuilders, it can effectively demonstrate how timber responds to current construction needs, providing flexibility, reliability and speed.

Up until recently, the STA was formerly known as the UK Timber Frame Association (UKTFA). It launched its rebrand at the Timber Expo on 24 September.