SIP Building Materials – Are SIP Homes Worth the Extra Money?

You can build a quality, comfortable home that uses much less energy to heat and cool. An SIP home is one way to do that.

Question: What is an SIP home and should I build one?

Answer: SIP stands for Structural Insulate Panel. But what is that?

In some ways, a SIP home is just like any other traditional “stick built” or “site built” home. You would never know, just by its outward appearance, that it was a Structural Insulated Panel home once it was finished. There’s nothing magical or strange about it. But, it certainly is different in its structure and ability to save energy.

A SIP home is a home made with engineered exterior wall panels of OSB, cement board, or plywood fused to an inner core of foam. These panels can also be used for floors and ceilings as well. Because of engineering and manufacturing techniques, SIPs become structural components that are often much stronger than traditional framing. 

What are the Benefits of Using SIPs?

These panels create a tighter seal and protection from the outside world. They really maximize the energy consumption in your home. Yet, the efficiency of the SIP panels calls for more efficient windows, appliances and heating and air systems. You really want to make sure that the value of the walls’ efficiency isn’t lost through other parts of your home.

They are considered a “green building approach” because of the fact that they reduce the use of wood during construction, and require less energy to the home for heating and cooling.

Are They Worth Your Investment?

Depending on the cost of labor and materials in your area, SIP homes can cost between three to five percent more than the traditional stick built home. But, you can often cut energy consumption in the home by 30 to 60{6a6f606e37cd9d9ea72282daca64070620822df4bee8779b5efb00ecd3f9b257} resulting in lower heating and air conditioning bills. And, as costs for fuels rise, the benefit only grows over time.

Because of the extra building cost, it makes the most sense if you can live in the home for a few years to maximize the economic value you receive.

Keep up your researching and be sure to check various SIP styles and options.

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