No one would argue that attractive, high-performance buildings are a prerequisite for the best neighborhoods and communities. Though not all areas boast the newest, most efficient structures, there's no doubt it's something a community aspires to create. However, what many people may not realize is how important building codes and regulations are to the areas that do contain the nicest architecture.
Regularly updated codes put an impetus on builders and architects to construct residences and offices that make use of the latest building materials, the best insulation and the highest-grade air barrier systems. On the other hand, outdated building standards allow inefficient or even unsafe buildings to remain in use, creating expensive upkeep at best and hazardous conditions at worst.
"Building codes are a rubric for new construction."
All buildings benefit from codes
One way to think of building codes is as a rubric for new construction. They aren't there to punish builders or enforce unreachable expectations – they exist to inform architects on the necessary materials and steps to ensure the building is safe and efficient given the climate zone.
With that in mind, it stands to reason that every new building constructed to code should be a high-performance structure. But these codes may also apply to old buildings – if a longstanding structure has fallen into disrepair, regional codes can provide grounds for refurbishment. Without the regulations in place, such buildings could fall into complete disuse, or worse – break down and injure the occupants. Codes can act as a safety standard by which all buildings are measured.
Surefire methods to align with building codes
Building regulations vary by state, region and governing body. Regions may have higher or more specific requirements than federal or international building codes. So with all the variety, how can builders, architects, contractors and occupants be sure the building in question is up to code? There are several resources available that list codes by region and governing body. But there are also certain building supplies that are known for their ability to contribute to code compliance.
High-performance systems from Sto Corp serve as a near-guarantee of code compliance. To be sure, every builder should refer to regional or local guidelines above all else. But with continuous insulation, high-grade air and moisture barrier systems, exterior finishes and liquid-applied coatings, Sto Corp offers a suite of building materials designed to bring old buildings up to standard and allow new buildings to maintain their performance for the long haul. What's more, these materials still provide a clean and attractive appearance.