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When did Thais begin living in concrete houses?

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When timber was plentiful, you could build a house from wood cheaply and some of the hardwoods were pretty rot and termite resistant. My wife's home was built at least 50 years ago, originally all wood with open ground floor (since walled with concrete clocks). The main massive wooden posts of the house (teak or something similar) are still robust and going strong, rest of the wood mainly replaced a couple of years ago with conwood as becoming to fragile.

The floorboards in the lounge are entirely termite and rot free, although the joists have been replaced twice! I have been told they are worth as much as the rest of the house .....


Concrete became more popular as cheaper since the deforestation in the 70's and 80's, more 'modern', more fire  resistant. Only seen 2 new wooden houses in our village in the last 10 years, compared to dozens of concrete/brick ones. You can build a wooden house cheaply, but if you use cheaper timber the termites will destroy it in under 20 years and also just not look as good.

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Teakwood houses are often taken down and recycled. Old wood is very valuable. In many cases the owner can replace a 199 year old structure with concrete without additional cost. They have planing machines that resurface the wood and machines that tongue and groove the boards. 

About 5 years ago we made an addition to our teakwood house and used the lumber from the building we had next door. It was fascinating to see them work. We did use concrete for the kitchen and bathrooms. 

The house is very tight and was easily air conditioned. However, construction with wood is much more expensive, so new houses are mostly concrete.



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Here in  Chiang Mai we have an old recently uncovered temple complex  Wien  Gung Kham  (or somesuch) and that is built of the soft bricks so brick buildings have been around for some considerable time, although only single walls, no double walled structures.


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 Neighbor in Village next lot over just built house on stilts has would look but best guess is composite.. the other side of them 

someone is building modern style.. 

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