I have always wondered why residential buildings in the US are typically built out of wood. For someone that grew up in another country, this seems unconventional. I notice that this is an unchanging norm here in the US and so far it has worked great. Growing up in Nigeria on the other hand, residential buildings are really and almost never built out of wood. In cases where wood might be used, it is used for framing. The main reason to my knowledge is because termites eat the wood and the building eventually fails.
Another thing i have noticed is that there were never basements where i grew up. I was surprised to see a basement coming here, and I thought it was pretty cool to have one. Whatever the case may be, I am sure the is a reason as to why any building with a basement does exist, or existed while i was there some 13 years ago.
As part of my research for the term paper, I will be looking into these two cases and see why residential houses In Africa are still not built out of wood and how that can be changed. I am sure somewhere, there has to be a technology that can prevent termites from eating wood. I will also be looking at how basements can be incorporated into future designs. I am positive that the temperature, climate or even availability of certain building materials play a role in this. It would be nice to know why going forward.