The Different Types of Building Materials That Are Used Today

Did you know that the building industry accounts for 7% of the USA’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP)? It’s no surprise, thus, that the materials used in a building can affect the result, whether that’s the final cost of the project or the structural properties.

And, there are thousands of variations on each building material available. So to get started, here are some of the most common building materials used in America today.


Brick was one of the most popular building materials when houses first arose in America. That led to the development of bricks better than anything that existed before.

Generally, the bricks that exist today are very well-made and strong. They’re fire-resistant, recyclable, and economical. They produce less pollution during manufacturing, making them eco-friendly building materials.  

On the other hand, bricks have disadvantages. They’re time-consuming to build and can’t be used in high seismic zones. The surface of the bricks may cause mold growth if not cleaned properly. But if you keep them clean, they won’t be infested with mold, fade, or turn yellow.


Wood has been around since humans started building their homes. And what we call wood today is artificial materials such as MDF that look like wood.

People still love using timber for various reasons. Structural integrity is one of them. Wood construction materials should have treatment so they can last a lifetime.

One reason is that it gives off a warm feeling during cold weather. It also adds to the value of a home. You can use wood to add value to the home for a more luxury build by giving it a more historic, timber-exposed vibe.

However, wood has its disadvantages. For one, it’s more likely to rot due to moisture penetration, causing cracks and other problems that weaken its structural integrity. Wood is also destructible. It burns in the fire, which causes some safety hazards. 


Concrete is the most versatile type of material that builders use nowadays. You can find concrete in many forms and shapes. There’s no shortage of options for how people build with concrete.

For example, some people set up their concrete plants. In contrast, others hire contractors who do the work for them.

Though unless you’re well-versed in the construction industry or undertaking a large project. Hiring a construction firm to do this for you is the best option.

On the other hand, concrete as a building material has some drawbacks. For instance, concrete’s tensile strength is lower than other construction materials. When the temperature quickly changes, cracks are more likely to happen. The concrete tends to shrink with cold temperatures, and it tends to expand with heat. 


Tiles are another common building material out there. You may even have tiles in your bathroom.

Most of the time, you’ll see small ones, like those found on flooring. Yet, some tile designs allow for larger pieces.

And when it comes to construction, slate roofing is the most popular. Though in the future, we will see a surge in solar tiles. These are tiles that are solar panels providing electricity to the home.

However, using tiles as a building material has disadvantages. They’re easily dirtied and can be slippery since they don’t absorb water. Lastly, tiles are considered fragile because if a hard object falls on the tile, it’ll more likely break due to impact. 


Metal roofs are becoming more popular. If you want your new metal roof to last longer, the best thing to do would be to paint or powder coat it.

Aside from roofs, metal can be used to construct other quality building structures. For instance, a clearspan tent is made from a steel metal frame without vertical support poles. It provides zero obstruction on your property, allowing you to maximize your space.  

Also, you should never install metal right up against an exterior wall. Instead, you should attach it to a solid foundation that attaches to the building itself to ensure its safety against specific structural issues.  

But like other construction materials, metal has disadvantages. It’s susceptible to rust, primarily if the structure is situated outside. Sealing against water penetration and attaching hooks to it is also challenging with metal.


Cladding is a thin layer of sheetrock. The cladding has protective features such as fire-resistant properties. People usually think about cladding only when they think about commercial projects.

But homeowners can also install these kinds of materials. For instance, people often install cladding to prevent snow from damaging their homes.

And, with recent controversies well-publicized all over the world, it’s a good idea to look into cladding replacement if you have existing cladding on your buildings.

However, using cladding has drawbacks. For one, it’s difficult and costly to install. Also, it’s prone to weathering.

Choose the Best Building Materials for Longevity

Suppose you’re thinking about adding something to your home today as a small business owner. Then it would help if you considered choosing one of these building materials.

Whether you buy pre-fabricated parts or build everything yourself, you can choose according to your budget and use case.

Keep reading for more tips and advice to materialize your dreams!

Leave a Reply