Cob houses are nothing new. There are different descriptions and definitions for the term but they all describe a mixture used for thousands of years as a building material. You may see a definition for cob building material which uses words like fibers or aggregates but actually it is a simple mixture of clay, sand and straw mixed with water.
So, what is a cob house? It is a structure built with this mud and straw material and the idea is to use the local resources available on the site of construction. A cob house is cheap, sustainable as and ecologically friendly. Nowadays it is almost revolutionary to use local materials for habitat building without fancy tools. The companies offer modern materials which are easy and quick to work with, offer many benefits like visual appearance, durability yet these materials are manufactured to create a profit, right? With regard to using sustainable materials and with the growing trend for green living, these houses get more and more popular as they only use natural materials available in the area.
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Cob house ideas – advantages of natural building materials
A cob house is unique as it offers many advantages that conventional homes do not have. What are the benefits of living in such home? On the first place a cob house is very strong. The straw which is a part of the building mixture is essential and has a very important role. It helps to the structural stability of the cob house and makes it exceptionally strong, stable, solid and resistant to earthquakes. Clay homes are resistant to fire. The fireproof properties of the material are very high yet you have to carefully choose the roof as the other elements of your home may not be as flame resistant as clay. Termites or insects can be a great problem to conventional houses while a cob house does not have such concerns.
These habitats are energy efficient as they absorb sunlight. They are one of the best examples for passive solar heating which provides the warming of the home during winter and cooling in the summer. Further to that, the price of a cob house is significantly lower than the price of a conventional one. The materials for the cob mixture – clay, sand, and straw are cheap and easily accessible. Salvaged or reclaimed materials for the finishing touches are also affordable and you will not end up with a huge mortgage when you opt for a cob house. Another great advantage which is also a major budget saving factor is that a cob house can be built by the owner and many people take advantage of workshops that help them in understanding the technique of building such home.
Clay houses offer many health benefits as they are not constructed from industrial materials but from natural and clean materials. In a cob house the air is always fresh and they are called “breathing homes” which eliminate allergy problems and improve your quality of life. These homes are soundproof and offer exceptional sound-absorbing properties. A cob house is a quiet place as it insulates exterior noises as well as noises from inside.
Cob house ideas – the concept of environmentally friendly homes
As you can see, cob house ideas combine tradition, sustainability, energy efficiency and offer many benefits to the occupants. The concept of a clay home is to live in a simple way and enjoy a life in home built as per your needs. When you build a home with your own hands you plan the living space to reflect your lifestyle and very often clay houses are small sized. The size also helps the energy efficiency features since a small home does not suffer energy losses like large sized one.
The appearance of a cob house is unique. Many people are attracted to it for its creative design and artistic look. You can break all the building rules and build a place without a straight angle or line. There are beautiful cob house ideas which feature organic shapes and the design options are numerous. There is no limit for the creativity and inspiration when you want to turn your clay home into a work of art.
The idea of building a place to live with the materials available on the actual construction site is appealing to many people. You can use the earth on the site and all other materials – sand, gravel, stones, timber, etc. can be found easily and at a reasonable and affordable price. As a DIY project, building a cob house is a project that can involve the whole family, friends and neighbors, which is very important for the quality time of the family members.
A cob house is eco friendly and in the process of construction there is no pollution to the environment. The material is recyclable and you can use the clay over and over. Despite the fact that building a clay home is more time consuming and involves a serious amount of manual labor, the satisfaction of having a unique home, beneficial to the human health and Nature, is worth the effort.
Cob house ideas – the charming simplicity of interior design
When it comes to interior design of a cob house, homeowners prefer simple designs with respect to green living and architecture. The fact that the place is made of clay does not mean that homeowners would not have a convenient lifestyle and all the equipment of a modern home that a man is used to. Often the interiors are decorated in rustic style with wood floors and furniture of solid wood. The main living area features open plan concept and accommodates a fireplace which gathers the family, functional kitchen and dining area. Plastered walls, curved lines and beautiful accents add to the feeling of warmth and coziness.