Dome houses are not a common sight in the UK and it probably isn’t an option that would spring to mind for the average self builder on this fine Isle.
It is however an option, so we thought we’d mention it, and with a few strong characteristics it might appeal to those of you who like something quite different and a bit of a challenge.
Why A Dome?
The dome shape has several fundamental qualities that make it an attractive option:
- A sphere is the shape that encloses the most volume with the least surface area. In a dome home this ratio means less surface area for the same internal space and less surface area means less energy loss, less materials and a lighter relative structure.
- The dome shape is also inherently strong, with loads dissipated evenly throughout the structure.
- The aerodynamic shape allows wind to flow over and around the structure reducing wind loading.
These qualities have made dome homes popular in areas affected by hurricanes, tornados and earthquakes, particularly in North America where their numbers are steadily increasing.
Types Of Dome Houses
There are two main and very different methods of dome home construction:
Both methods are a rarity in the UK and as such you’ll need to be prepared for more work than your average build. Getting an engineer and designer on board who share your enthusiasm will be invaluable in getting you through the planning process and meeting the requirements of building regulations.
Before progressing too far, find out the implications of a dome home by discussing your plans with:
- Structural Warranty Providers.
- Self Build Mortgage Lenders.
- Insurance Providers – Both during the build and long-term home insurance.
If you are keen on building a dome home in the UK, there aren’t really any local resources to help. But don’t let that put you off, follow the links to the resources in the States for more information and in the true spirit of a self builder, just keep taking the next step until it’s finished!
If you know of any dome houses anywhere in the UK or have designed or built one yourself (or are just about to!), please, get in touch and let us know.
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