A home like no other: How SHAWOOD stands out from the pack

08 November 2023

“Blown away.”

That’s how Sekisui House Australia’s General Manager, David Malvern described his first impression of the factory where Sekisui House’s specially engineered SHAWOOD timber beams are manufactured.

“I've worked with large construction and development businesses for decades, and…the quality of material and engineering was like nothing I've seen before,” Malvern says.  “They really set themselves apart from the pack.”

What he was referring to is a fundamental tenet of the SHAWOOD ethos: an engineered solution that marries precision, quality, and reliability.

The result? Beautiful homes that are built to stand the test of time.

Norman Estates, Lot 35


Strength through engineering

SHAWOOD was developed by Sekisui House in Japan in the mid-1990s to respond to a unique market demand: beautiful homes that could withstand the harshest conditions. Namely, earthquakes.

The result of extensive research and development, the one-of-a-kind SHAWOOD construction system is comprised of prefabricated timber frames and precision metal joins.

Wood might seem like a surprising choice, but our 120mm glue-laminated beams far exceed the industry standard of 90mm, placing SHAWOOD frames among the toughest on the market.

The layered nature of the glue-laminated boards enhances the wood’s natural strength and every SHAWOOD beam is assessed to ensure its quality and durability meets our incredibly high standards. 

Our hybrid frames are connected on-site using specially engineered metal joints and fortified by joists.

By prefabricating and assembling as many parts of the structures in our purpose-built factories as possible, we can respond to on-site variables quicky and efficiently, meaning your SHAWOOD home can handle whatever nature throws at it.

A deconstructed animation of the SHAWOOD metal joint system which brings together our timber posts and beams to form the structural foundation of SHAWOOD homes.


Protection from the elements

The SHAWOOD collection is constantly evolving to meet customer needs and changing conditions.

As Australia weathered record rainfall in 2022, SHAWOOD’s engineers were working behind the scenes to develop a sophisticated waterproofing solution that could withstand the downpour.

“We found a technological solution that eradicates the opportunities for leaks to occur,” says Malvern.  

That solution is twofold: first, a Japanese-designed waterproof membrane is coupled with a Colorbond steel roof, providing two layers of protection from heavy rain.

Additionally, a secondary water protection system has been built into the windowsill to prevent any rainwater from seeping in.

The double-waterproofing approach is standard in Japan and has been installed in all SHAWOOD in 2023 and beyond.

SHAWOOD in construction at Norman Estates featuring ceramic Nichiha fuse cladding


Engineered for efficiency

From October 2023, all new homes built in NSW must meet new standards for energy consumption and thermal performance. Homes are graded on a star-rating system, with a possible seven-star rating granted to homes that achieve the highest-possible standards.

We’re proud to announce that SHAWOOD homes have been awarded 6.5 stars under the Building and Sustainability Index, placing Sekisui House well ahead of the energy efficiency curve.

This achievement was made possible by our commitment to engineered solutions from the outside in, starting with our highly rated exterior cladding system.

Inside, our cavity wall system promotes airflow and aids in moisture management, meaning the need for air-conditioning interventions are minimised.

Elsewhere, solar panels and battery facilities are being trialled in our Norman Estates in a bid to minimise reliance on traditional thermo-regulation systems. And that’s what we call engineered solutions.