A.David Joyce, owner of Synergy Construction in Leominster, Mass., responds: Advanced framing - also known as OVE (optimum value engineered) framing - eliminates structurally unnecessary elements like double top plates, door and window headers in nonbearing walls, double trimmer studs, and multiple studs in partition corners. Where necessary, metal connectors - such as drywall corner clips - are added to strengthen connections. This can cut lumber use by 20 to 30 percent. Energy savings are harder to quantify, but I'd guess they're in the 20 percent range.

Our company uses advanced framing routinely, and my experience has been that it's up to the trim guys to adapt to the framing method, not the other way around. With a little practice, it's not really difficult. When running baseboard around a room framed with two-stud corners, for example, we like to cope the corners, with the coped end nailed...

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