15 Low Cost Building Material Used in Construction

No matter the size, it gets more and more expensive to build a house because of the rising cost of building supplies as well as real estate. When it comes to building, the majority of people consider using low cost building materials like wood, concrete, and bricks.

You can use low cost building materials to help bring down the price of your new home by using inventive material selection techniques. When looking for inexpensive building methods, consider using alternative materials for the structure of the complete house or specific components. While some of these materials might work well for your new house, some won’t. Your location, climate, and regional building regulations all have a role.

How Much Does It Cost to Build a House?

According to HomeAdvisor, the average cost of building a home is $298,136. Despite the fact that it may seem expensive, the median price of a home sold in the US in July 2021 was $361,800, according to the US Census Bureau and the US Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The cost of building a house naturally varies depending on factors like the size of the foundation and the design of the house, as well as the cost of low-quality building materials.

Popular Low Cost Building Materials

We have compiled a list of the most popular materials that can be utilized to construct affordable homes.

Prefabricated panels

low cost building material

A new home’s construction can be done more affordably with prefabricated panels. In order to cut labor costs and construction time, these panels are first made off-site before being put together there. Because these panels are produced in factories, they can be assembled more quickly and with a better fit in homes.

Premade panels can seem upscale nowadays, and manufacturers can create them depending on your unique design requirements. Prefabricated panels are a practical option for any environment because they are also energy-efficient and offer good insulation.

Concrete Sheets

concrete sheet

Concrete sheets also come in the category of low cost building material. The cheapest way to complete the exterior of your home with the appearance of concrete is by using concrete sheets or panels. They are simple to install, stable, and safe. Strength, resistance to the elements, noise reduction, and insulation are all advantages of concrete panels. They are additionally fireproof. Due to these advantages, concrete panel homes are among the less expensive to build and can help save money on utilities and insurance.

Stone Cladding

low cost building material

An affordable method to give your property a touch of elegance and natural beauty is with stone cladding. The exterior or interior walls are covered with a thin coating of stone veneer to produce a stunning visual impact. The various types of stone that can be used for stone cladding include limestone, granite, and slate. Each has its own aesthetic appeal. It weighs less than a typical stone exterior and is considerably less expensive as labor and material costs are lowered. It requires less maintenance and has the capacity to withstand the test of time.

Used shipping containers

Low Cost Building Materials

Used shipping containers have gained popularity as an affordable and eco-friendly building material. These containers can be repurposed into functional living spaces, offering a modern and minimalist design. used shipping containers have gained popularity as an affordable and eco-friendly building material. These containers can be repurposed into functional living spaces, offering a modern and minimalist design. However, it is important to ensure that the wood has been adequately treated and is free of vermin or rot.

Reclaimed timber

Reclaimed timber

Reclaimed wood is also a cheap, sustainable, and low cost building material. Your home can have a unique, rustic appeal by reusing old wood from barns, factories, or other buildings. Reclaimed wood has high insulating qualities in addition to being environmentally beneficial. However, it is necessary to ensure that wood has been adequately treated and is free of rot or bugs.

Corrugated metal sheets

Low cost building material

Corrugated metal sheets are another cost-effective option for constructing a cheaper house. It has several advantages for building a home. Steel has a long lifespan and resists fire, decay, and severe weather. It is one of the simplest materials to keep up because all it requires is a fresh coat of paint or zinc coating to stop rust. It can be recycled as well.


Low Cost Building Material

Bamboo can be a low-cost, environmentally friendly building material if you live in a region where it can grow. Since ancient times, Asian nations have used bamboo, which is known for its durability and capacity for regrowth. As a low cost building material, it is used in houses, scaffolding, falls, floors, roofs, and other structures.

Industrial steel and Iron

Low Cost Building Material

Cheap building materials like industrial steel and iron are becoming more and more popular due to the appeal of the industrial style. Cold-formed steel, according to steel sustainability, is excellent for residential construction since it does not decay, bend, split, fracture, or creep. It is completely recyclable and has a longer lifespan. The steel frame is more durable and economical. Its longer lifespan makes it an excellent selection for roofing as well.

Eco-friendly straw

Low Cost Building Material

Natural material straw has good thermal and insulating qualities. It is among the affordable building materials that may help you save money.  According to Building with Awareness, straw bales can be used to form a home’s walls, resulting in an environmentally friendly and well-insulated building.

Straw bales are resistant to fire because of their thickness. The practicality of using straws for your home can also depend on the climate. In humid, wet weather, straw bale construction is not advised, according to experts.

Fresh concrete

Low Cost Building Material

Raw concrete can be the best building material for you if you are searching for cheap home-building ideas. Concrete walls are a stronger building material and are also fire and water-resistant. It may be used in areas where the cost of brick masonry is too high. Raw concrete requires less maintenance. It can be easily painted in its natural state without plastering it.


Low Cost Building Material

Plastic is a low cost building material available in abundance. The lightweight nature of plastic makes installation and transportation processes simpler. This quality makes it simpler to handle and lowers the cost of manpower during building. It requires less care and repair because it does not rot, corrode, or deteriorate as some conventional building materials do. Empty plastic bottles are used as building materials to create homes in several parts of the world.

Reinforced Mud Bricks

Low Cost Building Material

Natural fibers like coconut and straw are used as reinforcement as mud bricks. The unadulterated (untreated) soil is strengthened and made more durable by coconut and straw. To make them corrosion-resistant, other fibers including rice husk, bagasse, oat straw, and corn straw are also mixed with cement. The bricks are given a sulphur coating to make them waterproof. Houses are built with these bricks to make them durable and weatherproof.


Low Cost Building Material

Every home contains glass components. However, glass is a common building material used by architects. Because it makes the interior area bright and light, it is quite attractive. Glass may not be the most affordable building material, but it has benefits for creating homes.  It is lighter than other options and comes in a variety of glass types, including shatterproof, tempered, and glass blocks.

Concrete Blocks

Low Cost Building Material

Another low cost building material are concrete blocks. Concrete blocks are available in a variety of shapes, sizes, and textures, providing flexibility to the designers.  They are able to offer a range of architectural styles. These blocks are made up of Portland cement, aggregate, and water. To accommodate windows, doors, and partition walls, the blocks can also be easily drilled, cut, or modified on the site. They are durable, lightweight, and fireproof.

Waste materials

low cost building material
Image Credit: Rethinking the future

Some people use recycled materials to construct new houses. For example, construction workers can form walls for a new house using old doors and windows. With the help of creative thinking and modern technology, builders use different types of waste and scrap to utilize as cheap materials for making homes.


Q: What is the cheapest type of house to build?

The cheapest type of house to build is a simple, single-story home with a basic design. This type of house typically has a straightforward floor plan and utilizes cheaper materials and construction techniques. Prefabricated or modular homes can also be more economical because they are manufactured off-site and erected on-site, which reduces labor costs and building time.

Q: What is the best material to build a house?

When it comes to constructing a house the ideal choice of building material can vary based on a range of factors including the location, budget, and individual preferences. Nevertheless, materials such, as concrete, brick, and wood are frequently employed due, to their long lasting nature as well as their widespread availability.

Q: What is the average cost of building a house?

The typical expense, for construction tends to hover around $150 per foot. However, this figure can fluctuate based on factors such as the location, size of the project choice of materials and design well, and labor costs.

Q: How long does it take to build a house?

On average building a home takes seven months as per the U.S. Census Bureau report. However due to problems in getting labor and high demand. This period may go up to 10 months without considering weather and other factors.

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