Custom homes are a great alternative to purchasing as you can get the exact features and layout that is perfect for your family. Though, when constructing a custom home, there is a lot to consider. However, the first thing you’ll have to pick out is the building materials. It is important to choose durable and sustainable building materials so that your investment is protected for the long run. 

Sustainable materials are often affordable and provide greater energy efficiency which will save you money. Of course, durable materials will prevent tons of maintenance and repairs. 

Need some ideas? Here are some of the best durable and sustainable building materials for your custom home. 

1. Hurricane Grade Windows

Even if you don’t live in a state with hurricanes, hurricane-grade windows are sustainable and durable no matter your location. They are insulating and durable against winds, rain, and accidents that may cause typical windows to break. Hurricane grade windows can be a bit more of an expensive option upfront, but between the energy savings and the durability, they often pay for themselves in a long time. 

2. Composite Terracotta Roofing

Composite terracotta roofing is a great alternative to traditional asphalt roofing material. It is lightweight, has around a 50-year lifespan, and does well in every climate. Unfortunately, a lot of custom homes opt for asphalt roofing which has only about a 20-year lifespan, can be damaged by high UV rays, and is heavier which makes it harder and more costly to install. If you are looking for a more sustainable and durable option, composite terracotta roofing is the better choice for your custom home. 

3. Steel Siding

Though there are a lot of options for siding materials each of which that have their own benefits, steel siding is a popular durable and sustainable choice. Steel siding comes in a variety of colors and can even be hung vertically for a unique look. It also fairs well in any climate. Many custom home builders choose to go with stone or stucco, but steel siding is low maintenance and will hold up in the long run just the same as well as provide a sleek, modern appearance. 

4. Eco-Friendly Insulation

Insulation is a necessary part of any custom home. After all, a well-insulated home is able to withstand the elements and cuts down on energy costs. To make insulation more sustainable, opt for eco-friendly materials. There is a lot to choose from including wool, cellulose, cotton, Icynene, Aerogel, and Thermacork, just to name a few. You can choose the best option for you based on price, location, and needs, but eco-friendly insulation is a wonderfully durable and sustainable building material for a custom home. However, don’t forget to insulate the less common places like the garage and attic. A well-insulated garage can make it a much more comfortable and usable space and well as provide extra energy efficiency for your custom home.

5. Bamboo

Bamboo is a wood alternative and can be used in a lot of places instead of wood. It is low-cost material with high durability that can be used both structurally and aesthetically making it highly versatile. Bamboo is great for flooring, framing, and even finishings in your new custom home. It is also highly sustainable as it is fast-growing and takes far less water to produce and process. Not to mention it is a beautiful material that can be finished in all the ways similar to wood. 

6. Insulated Concrete Forms

Insulated concrete forms are another durable and sustainable building material. They are used to hold fresh concrete in place but rather than them being taken off after the concrete is dry they remain to create a tight seal from the elements. The advantage to this is greater energy efficiency and higher durability. They make an excellent choice for the structural component of your new custom home. 

7. Cork

Cork is similar to bamboo in the way that it is sustainable to produce and has a high durability rating. Cork absorbs pressure and bounces back which is why it is so durable. Though it cannot be used structurally like bamboo, cork is a great insulating material and is also perfect for flooring. Many homeowners put it in their bathrooms because it holds up well to water and moisture better than traditional hardwood floors. It is also great for sound reduction so that there is not a large echo in your new custom home. 

Protect Your Custom Home with Durable and Sustainable Building Materials

The purpose of building a custom home is to get everything just the way you want it. If you have been looking for some durable and sustainable building materials to work into your plan, these are fantastic options. Use them all or just one or two, but these durable and sustainable building materials will help protect your custom home investment for years to come. 


Natalie Akins is an editor for the Innovative Building Materials blog and a content writer for the building materials industry. She is focused on helping fellow homeowners, contractors, and architects discover materials and methods of construction that save money, improve energy efficiency, and increase property value.