Lightweight family house construction – fashion or a lasting trend?

In Hungary, brick houses have a long tradition. The resulting popularity, as opposed to lightweight houses, is still significant today. However, as a result of the explosion in the real estate market in 2010 and the accompanying significant rise in construction prices, all traditions have been overridden by the central question of the construction industry: how can construction costs be reduced?

As one of the first steps in the path of saving, the use of a traditional technology, the wooden ceiling, has also come to the fore in the case of brick-walled houses. A slab made of wooden beams with thermal insulation of any thickness, covered with plasterboard from the bottom. It looked exactly like any plastered and painted surface, but at the same time it carved a serious amount out of the cost, plus it was finished much faster.

It did not take long for it to become widespread to build not only the floor but also the walls in this way, even in the case of multi-storey buildings.

CLT (cross laminated timber) dormitory built with lightweight technology

Workforce optimization

Currently, one of the biggest advantages of lightweight construction is that it requires less labor to build brick houses. Living labor is becoming more expensive, its costs increase expenditures by a considerable amount, and good professionals are busy, often having to wait months, but even years, for their next available date.

The development of construction technologies has not stopped. With 3D printed houses and new, alternative construction technologies popping up at lightning speed, what future awaits lightweight houses?

In the case of lightweight construction, several working methods can be selected. It is possible to design completely individual houses, but there are also many partially or completely prefabricated options. As cheap and efficient prefabrication is gaining ground in all areas of the construction industry, the emphasis will be on lightweight structures as time goes on. Fortunately, this technology is perfect for factory production and assembly, the batteries are easy to transport, so on-site work can be minimized. Complete ready-made houses can be ordered from the catalog now, or even modular houses selected from the units of your choice, and a bright future awaits in this direction according to the current prospects.

Wooden house

Energy saving and environmentally conscious

A frequently asked question about lightweight houses is whether thermal insulation can be a problem. If we provide a wall with sufficient thermal insulation (be it brick or lightweight), the wall can meet even the most stringent energy requirements. The difference between the technologies is that the lightweight wall consists almost exclusively of thermal insulation (apart from drywall and OSB), so with less thick walls you can achieve the thermal insulation that could only be achieved with a thicker brick wall.

It is true that the walls of lightweight houses do not have the heat and moisture storage capacity that brick walls do. On a hot summer day, a lightweight wall will not exude coolness in itself, as a brick wall would. This allows for rapid warm-up during the heating season, but is no longer such a joyous phenomenon in the summer heat. Fortunately, a wide range of state-of-the-art ventilation and cooling systems are available to solve this problem, which can also be operated with minimal effort.

In the field of lightweight construction, wood and metal construction solutions are currently the most common, which is very favorable for environmental awareness, as these building materials are easily recyclable. The construction process can be optimized with careful planning, resulting in less waste and significantly reducing on-site pollution. However, there are already lightweight mobile homes that arrive at the site in modules, ready to be dismantled and completely recycled at another site.

Easy to convert

In the case of a brick house, relocating the walls requires much more care because the walls also have a load-bearing role. In addition, the demolition of a brick wall is very labor intensive and involves the formation of significant construction debris. In the case of panel buildings, in addition to the panel wall cutting In all cases, a static expert opinion must also be prepared before

Lightweight, prefabricated walls, on the other hand, can be relocated in a short time with little work. This allows you to even rethink the layout of your house from time to time. One new one plasterboard wall construction, or remodeling and demolishing existing walls is only a few hours of work. Constant change has become an integral part of the 21st century lifestyle, and a house that makes it easy to adapt is easy and quick to transform, a huge value.

Lightweight buildings are also proving practical in terms of addition, expansion and remodeling. It is easy to solve, takes place quickly, and there is no need for work to disrupt the lives of residents and neighbors for a long time. In the case of modular systems, it is only necessary to order and set up another unit, which can be solved with lightning speed, without having to wait a long time for the contractor to complete the project. This option can also be very beneficial in terms of funding. Initially, it is enough to build the essential parts of the house, for which the amount of credit required will be smaller, and over time, the addition of the necessary expansion can be planned.

Modular house

Time is money

In addition to the fact that the creation of light-structured houses is less costly than traditional brick houses, the construction time is also much shorter. According to the statistics of 2017-2018, the construction of an average-sized family house takes about 2 years, in contrast, a house of the same size with a light structure can be turnkey in up to 2 months. In fact, if it takes longer to build a lightweight house, it is typically because the contractor is not just dealing with one construction site, but rotating his brigades on multiple construction sites.

Technological development has not escaped the traditional masonry block (brick-built) construction method either. It is now common, for example, to use fast binders and by machine plastering they plaster. These developments will undoubtedly reduce the labor demand for brick-based construction, but at the pace made possible by lightweight technology, it will still not be able to compete. For example, in a light-structured family house, a seven-member brigade can complete the ceiling and all the walls in two days.

Since the lightweight structure is indeed significantly lighter, the advantages are already apparent at the foundation. During the construction of a lightweight house a landscaping and the excavation of the salt base is usually completed in one day. In a brick construction, excavating a more robust foundation typically takes several days.


In terms of prices, what can we expect if we give our heads to build a new family house? Based on estimates in 2020, calculating 27% VAT, an individual will pay about 430-440 thousand HUF / m2 per square meter for an average demand-level, turnkey, brick-built family house. A light-structured house in the same category can be realized at a price of 300-330 thousand HUF / m2. Based on the data, we can say that in the case of an average-sized house with a floor area of ​​100 m2, the customer can save about 10 million forints.

What the future will bring?

Based on the above considerations, all indications are that the light-structured family house will not be forgotten in the near future and, in fact, will presumably demand more and more space in the domestic market. In addition to the huge advantage of construction that can be reduced to a quarter and costs that can be reduced by 25%, the simple expansion and conversion, which allows us to meet the ever-changing needs of modern living, has a lot to offer. All this, sparked by the possibilities of prefabrication, secures the future of lightweight construction technology in the market of family house construction.

Source: Ingatlanhírek by

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