How Can I Tell If My Apartment Complex Is Made Of Concrete Or Wood?

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Living in an apartment where you can’t tell if it’s concrete or wood may not be ideal because if you know the structure of the building you’re living in, it will help you determine the right ways to take care of it. Knowing this, the question in your mind is, how can I tell if my apartment complex is made of concrete or wood?

Apartments made from wood are more economically friendly because you can easily dismantle and restructure them. But, you cannot easily break down a concrete apartment to restructure because they’re sand and cement that forms solid once you mix. Read on to learn more.

How Can I Tell If My Apartment Complex Is Made Of Concrete Or Wood?

A concrete wall cannot absorb sounds, unlike a wood apartment complex that can absorb sounds. For instance, if you fold your palm and knock on your concrete wall, it will make a bang sound. But, if you do the same to a wood apartment wall, it will make a hollow sound. 

On the one hand, a concrete apartment isn’t soundproof because it’s solid. On the other hand, a wood apartment naturally absorbs sounds and reduces echoes. For instance, if you talk inside a concrete apartment, your voice will be heard outside, unlike the wood house where your activity can go unnoticed.

Asides from the sounds that the concrete and wood walls make, there are other essential features you can use to tell if your apartment complex is concrete or wood. The first is the structure of the apartment. For the design, constructing a wood apartment requires drilling nails into the wood to form a building. Concrete requires mixing sand, cement, and water to create blocks. 

Other factors include;

  • The roof and floor construction.
  • Check the interior and exterior decoration for the presence of wood studs. An apartment made from wood has studs running through it, while a concrete apartment doesn’t.
  • Rub your palm on the wall to have a feel. A concrete apartment is usually rough, while wood is smooth.

Naturally, woods have a very smooth texture. Once you use sandpaper to scrape the edges, it adds more beauty to the wood’s surface. If you rub your palm on the surface, you’ll not feel any roughness.

A concrete apartment is not smooth. Due to the mixture of sand and cement, the surface usually has a rough patch. However, you can paint it to make it smooth.

Is My Apartment Wood Frame Or Masonry?

The easiest way to know if your apartment is wood frame or masonry is by checking the walls. An apartment made with a wood frame usually has wood studs running through them. These studs make it effortless for you to install electrical wires in your home. However, masonry apartments don’t have wood studs. 

On the one hand, a wood frame apartment requires joining woods together to form a whole. On the other hand, constructing a masonry apartment demands using mortar to mold bricks and cement. Here are additional ways you can use to identify if your apartment is  wood frame or masonry;

  1. A masonry apartment is usually thicker than a wood frame. The reason is that when you mold sand and cement to create a masonry building, it forms into a stone, and naturally, a stone has more weight than wood.
  2. Drill a hole in the wall. If the wall has studs, just know it is a wood frame apartment. A masonry apartment doesn’t have studs.
  3. When you try to drill a hole in a masonry apartment, sand particles will fall to the floor. But for a wood frame apartment, you’ll find small and light strips of wood. 

Wood Vs Concrete

Both wood and concrete apartments perform uniquely in their way. You cannot categorically state that wood is better than concrete or vice versa. However, there are features you should know about both structures which will help you determine the one that best suits you.

Concrete – Pros

  1. A concrete apartment is more durable than a wood frame. They are thicker, and you cannot penetrate them easily. 
  2. A concrete apartment doesn’t rot or burn. Anything made of stone isn’t organic that is prone to decay.
  3. A concrete apartment requires maintenance of low quality.
  4. Concrete apartments are not prone to insects attack.
  5. A concrete apartment can easily absorb water and retain heat.  It can also resist natural disasters like erosion and strong wind.
  6. You can construct a concrete apartment in any length and size you desire.
  7. It can last for as long as 100 years. You cannot easily break down a concrete apartment without using an iron or applying force.
  8. A concrete apartment can resist any type of weather.
  9. You can decide to style a concrete apartment with any preferred style.
  10. A concrete apartment is safe because it is built with materials that don’t wear out quickly.


  1. A concrete apartment requires a high cost to purchase building materials. The reason is that its building materials are not natural as they need to be refined and processed before usage.
  2. Over time, it may begin to absorb water. When this happens, the concrete will form algae which are unhealthy for humans.
  3. Most of its usage depends on the location. For instance, many US homes are buildings with wood.
  4. A concrete apartment is less flexible. Lack of flexibility here means you cannot just demolish a masonry apartment and restructure it unless you break down the entire structure.
  5. Over time, a concrete apartment becomes weak. It will deteriorate and begin to crack.
  6. Modern concrete can collapse if not well-structured.

As much as a concrete apartment has cons, you can maintain and make it durable.

Tips On How To Make Your Concrete Apartment Complex More Durable

  1. Ensure that when constructing, the bricklayer uses mixes enough cement. If the quantity of sand is too much, the building will not be durable. It could even collapse.
  2. Clean thoroughly, at least once a week.
  3. Seal all holes to avoid crack expansion.
  4. Do not use sharp objects to scratch the walls.
  5. During the winter, scrape out the algae that formed on the wall during the snow.

Wood Apartment – Pros

  1. Wood is a light material that makes house construction easy. You can find it in natural habitats.
  2. A wood apartment is renewable. You can break the building and build another if you want to restructure.
  3. A wood apartment has low thermal conductivity. It absorbs heat and allows you to enjoy coolness during harsh weather conditions.
  4. It does not require a high cost of labor and capital to construct.
  5. A wood apartment doesn’t generate noise. It absorbs sounds natural.
  6. A wood apartment is faster, cheaper, and more economical to construct. You can erect it in the space of six months.
  7. A wood apartment is more sustainable.


  1. Wood is organic. For this reason, a wood apartment rots fast.
  2. A wood apartment cannot withstand harsh weather conditions like the rainy season. The reason is that the more water touches, the more it weakens, and its lifespan reduces.
  3. A wood apartment is prone to insect attack.
  4. Due to its nature, wood isn’t fire resistant. 
  5. Sometimes, woods are unavailable for construction. When this happens, it could be due to afforestation.
  6. A wood apartment can easily collapse.
  7. There is an international code that limits the construction of a wood apartment. You cannot erect it to be very high. 

Despite the cons of wood apartments, there are simple ways you can care for them to make them durable.

Tips To Make My Wood Apartment Complex Last Longer

  1. Oil the wood frequently.
  2. Seal all holes to avoid risky expansion.
  3. Sprinkle baking soda on the surface thrice a week to maintain its quality.
  4. Wipe off tough stains. To remove the tough stains, you can decide to use vinegar or baking soda. Simply dip a wet microfiber cloth into the vinegar or baking soda, then use it to scrub the stained part till it cleans off.
  5. Ensure to keep the wood dry.
  6. When cleaning, apply wax to the surface to make it shine.
  7. You can also decide to paint it. Painting helps retain the quality.

What Are Apartment Complexes Made Of?

An apartment complex is a structure that houses several apartments in it. It can be concrete or wood, depending on preference. In some locations, apartment complexes can be detached structures with multiple entrances. When apartments have separate buildings, they’re known as an apartment community.

The structure of apartments mostly depends on the location and preference of the owner. Some can use sand and cement to form a concrete apartment, while some may decide on a wood structure. However, most US homes are made of wood.

Apartment complexes are structures with different units. Regardless of being a concrete or wood structure, certain features make it a comfortable place to live. One such feature is soundproofing. Naturally, people love staying in a building where they can’t quickly get distracted by the activity of their neighbors.

Other features include;

1. Security

When choosing an apartment, the first ideal thing you’d look out for is the security of the place because you want to feel protected. So, a good apartment complex should be a haven to dwell in. Some of the security features are; good security doors and cameras.

2. Swimming Pool

Most people who dwell in an apartment complex love it when they have access to amenities that can make their life comfortable. Sometimes, they just want to return home after a long day, then relax in a pool.

3. Large Space

When you rent an apartment, you don’t want to be scrambling for a space to keep your belongings. For that reason, you’d likely choose an apartment complex with enough space for household furniture. 

4. Constant Power And Water Supply

Most times, some apartment complex owners tend to ignore this part. But this is one of the features people look out for when choosing a place to live.  Nobody wants to stay in an apartment without water or a power supply. 

Other components of a good apartment complex are,

  • Quality staircase
  • Non-leaking roof
  • Smooth walls
  • Strong foundation
  • Quality lintels

How Can I Tell If My Apartment Complex Is Made Of Concrete Or Wood – Final Thoughts

When you touch a concrete apartment, you’ll feel the solidness. The surface is usually stiff with a rough surface. If you knock it, it could cause friction on your palm. But then, a wood apartment is lighter with a fine and smooth texture.

Whether you decide to live in a concrete or wood apartment complex, they’re both beneficial. However, you must understand their pros and cons to enable you to choose the one you’ll feel more comfortable living in. Additionally, wood apartments are not as popular as concrete apartments.

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