James Mills, product manager at Rockwool, takes a look at the build-up of noise in our homes and why this could be good news for builders
We’re becoming more sensitive about the intrusion of noise in our everyday lives, especially at home. In fact, noise has been proven to have a negative impact on over three quarters of the UK population at home.
Recent research carried out by DEFRA and Quiet Mark – the organisation behind the distinctive purple mark of approval which is awarded by the UK’s Noise Abatement Society to the quietest products and appliances on the market – provides great insight into the problem.
This research showed that 62% of respondents felt that noise from their own household appliances adversely affected the enjoyment of home life to some extent while 53% confirmed that outside noise affected the extent to which they opened their doors and windows. Overall, 76% felt that the quality of their home life is affected by noise.
The daily noise that surrounds us is also changing our sleep patterns. Respondents confirmed they had been woken up or kept awake by noise from within the home or from their neighbour’s home.
According to ICM research conducted in 2012, more than one in ten Britons who have been disturbed by noise in the past 12 months complained about the disturbance from neighbours walking on wooden floors, rising to one in four of those living in flats.
This correlates with the fact that 2.9 million British householders had removed carpet and installed wooden floors in the past three years, according to the same research.
Take into account the fact that we have an ageing housing stock, greater urbanisation and increasing road, rail and air traffic – not to mention the electronics with which we increasingly fill our homes – and it’s clear that high noise levels are not going away any time soon.
The research proves that people care deeply about the noise in their homes and builders are the ones in a position to help and the way they can help is simple – install insulation.
In 2015 Rockwool launched a new range of insulation for this very reason. Stone wool has a dense, non-directional fibre structure which gives the company’s sound insulation the right properties to cut noise pollution in the home, adding further value to a property at the same time.
You might have caught our contractor support teams at your local merchant branch over the past twelve months. They’re out there to provide you with the demonstrations, information and advice that bring this business opportunity to life and enable you to talk confidently to homeowners about the benefits of sound insulation for the customer’s home.
They can also show you the impressive thermal, fire and moisture resistant properties of the product as well.
The support teams’ training and demonstrations are backed up by a comprehensive suite of sales tools, including eye-catching literature and Point of Sale materials to help with selection and specification. If you take a look at the product in store you will also see how we’re packaging the new range to clearly show the intended application, key benefits, dimensions and coverage information.
You can also take a look at the company’s thermal and sound benefits video on YouTube or on our website which provides a useful insight into the product and what it can do.
The response from contractors and their customers has been very positive. In house refurbs, where people are carrying out loft extensions, knocking down walls or building out from their property, we’ve seen the product being fitted inside internal and separating walls, in external walls and between floors to effectively trap sound waves and dampen vibration.
We’re confident that the years ahead will bring more and more work of this type for the small builder, after all the research indicates that noise is a problem that is not going away. If anything, it’s going to become more of an issue and more of a talking point for homeowners in the years ahead.
At the same time, finding the right insulation that deals with the problem and understanding how it can be presented to the homeowner, selected when you’re at the merchant and applied when you’re on site is now easier than ever.
Sounds like the perfect time to do something good for your customer, and your business, wouldn’t you say?