Safety and Quality of Products and Services

Product Safety and Quality Management in the Housing Business

Basic Policy

Sumitomo Forestry believes that popularizing high-quality, durable houses as social assets plays an important role in creating a prosperous society. Based on this belief, and taking the opportunity of the enforcement of Act on the Promotion of Long-life Quality Housing in Japan in June 2009, the Company formulated a basic policy for product safety and quality control in its housing and construction business in fiscal 2009.

Basic Policy for Product Safety and Quality Control in the Housing Business

  • Make houses more reliable by improving their basic functions
  • Increase future options for layout to accommodate changes in lifestyles
  • Enhance maintenance programs to support long-term upkeep
  • Monitor information on any production faults, and share information on handling faults promptly

Sumitomo Forestry offers homes that integrate seismic resistance, durability, better insulation efficiency, Net Zero Energy Houses (ZEH), the promotion of universal design, and easy upkeep to improve all aspects of home performance so as to offer customers homes where they can live in peace of mind and comfort for many years to come.

Product Safety and Quality Management in the Housing Business

Product Safety and Quality Management in the Housing Business

Design Performance Evaluation

The Company is actively promoting the use of the Japanese Housing Performance Indication System*1 for customer peace of mind and safety as well as enhancing the value of property. In fiscal 2022, under the Japanese Housing Performance Indication System, implementation rate*2 of Design Performance Evaluation reached 99.8%, Implementation of Construction Performance Evaluation reached 99.8%, and the acquisition of Long-life Quality Housing Certification reached 96.3%.

*1 Third-party evaluation system for design performance at the time of design and of construction performance upon completion so that customers can objectively assess the quality and performance of a house

*2 The ratio of the number of applications against the total number of detached houses constructed, including extensions and/or alterations (applications for design and construction performance evaluation, January 01, 2022 - December 31, 2022) in the Housing Division

Japanese Housing Performance Indication System Implementation Rate*

FY2019 FY2020 FY2021 FY2022
Design Performance Evaluation 99.1% 99.4% 99.5% 99.8%
Construction Performance Evaluation 98.8% 99.3% 99.3% 99.8%

*The aggregation period for fiscal 2021 and onwards is from January to December of each year, the aggregation period for fiscal 2020 is from April to December, and the aggregation period for fiscal 2019 is from April to March 2020

Long-life Quality Housing Certification

Sumitomo Forestry sets the standard specifications for its Sumitomo Forestry Homes to exceed the highest level of Long-life Quality Housing*1 certification conditions*2 (applying the evaluation under the Japanese Housing Performance Indication System). From product development through to construction and after-service, the Company has established its framework for product safety and quality control in order to deliver high quality homes with superior overall balance.

*1 A life-long housing certification system of Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism which aims to popularize housing that will help realize a society that values its housing stock

*2 Detached housing is evaluated for durability, seismic resistance, ease of maintenance and energy efficiency in accordance with the Japanese Housing Performance Indication System

Ratio of Houses Certified As Long-life Quality Housing for New Custom-Built Housing*

FY2019 FY2020 FY2021 FY2022
Ratio of Houses Certified As Long-life Quality Housing for New Custom-Built Housing 94.4% 94.7% 94.9% 96.3%

*The aggregation period for fiscal 2021 and onwards is from January to December of each year, the aggregation period for fiscal 2020 is from April to December, and the aggregation period for fiscal 2019 is from April to March 2020

Excellent Long-Term Housing Standards and Standard Performance of Sumitomo Forestry Home Houses*

Certification Type Certification Criterion Standard Performance of Sumitomo Forestry Home Houses
Durability Long lasting Rating measures for deterioration class 3 Equivalent to highest level 3
Measures to allow regular inspection
Seismic Resistance Strong to earthquake Rating of earthquake resistance 2 or higher Equivalent to highest level 3
Maintenance Requirement Easy maintenance home Rating measures for maintenance level 3 Equivalent to highest level 3
Energy conservation performance The house must be thermally insulated Rating measures for energy-saving performance 5 or higher Equivalent to rating 5 or higher
Primary energy consumption rating 6 Equivalent to rating 6

*The higher the rated level, the better evaluated

Framework for Product Safety and Quality Control

Product Development

  • Undertaking development of housing products incorporating new technology, materials and lifestyle, based on consumer needs and owner surveys
  • Housing Division and Tsukuba Research Institute are collaborating in experiments at validation facilities and testing of prototypes, promoting the creation of products that incorporate customer feedback, including even in the details of guarantees


  • Sumitomo Forestry uses a unique system to check design and structure at the time of contracting and through the final design stage
A dedicated designer responsible for the work

A dedicated designer responsible for the work

Materials Procurement

  • The Materials Selection Subcommittee, which meets once every month to decide upon all materials, conducts design reviews. All materials are checked to ensure that they meet the acceptance and quality standards set by the Tsukuba Research Institute and the Materials Selection Subcommittee
  • After approved by the Materials Selection Subcommittee, materials are subjected to a further design review after actual on-site use (approximately two years later) to confirm whether the planned quantity can be shipped and whether or not there are any quality defects


  • Sumitomo Forestry centrally manages and shares up-to-date information on the construction, process management, quality control and safety management of each building through its own site management system
  • Each on-site operator, contractor manager and construction manager during such stages as foundation, construction and completion, conducts inspections which are managed using a construction management record. Additionally, the Head Office inspection division checks the status of the inspection and management
Construction Management

Construction Management

After-sales Support

  • Sumitomo Forestry includes 30 years of free regular inspections with its homes. After the 10th year, owners can extend the building warranty by going through the paid maintenance constructions according to maintenance plans; then free regular inspections will continue after the 30th year until the 60th year. 60 years of support to ensure the longevity of your home
  • Sumitomo Forestry has developed a 60-Year Maintenance Program that offers renovation and maintenance proposals and manages maintenance records in order to support home owners
Regular Inspection

Regular Inspection


  • The performance and reliability of Sumitomo Forestry's proprietary materials used in anti-seismic reinforcement and so on are verified at the Tsukuba Research Institute. In addition, we are advocating seismic retrofitting by undergoing a technological evaluation of the Japan Building Disaster Prevention Association

Seismic Resistant Housing

The Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake and the Great East Japan Earthquake as well as a recent major earthquake in Kumamoto have been among the disasters that have wrought enormous damage in Japan. In addition, major earthquakes are forecast to occur in the Nankai Trough, resulting in year-by-year increase in demand for seismic resistance for wooden houses.

In response to customer need for seismic-resistant houses, Sumitomo Forestry Home Tech has developed original construction methods that enable heightened seismic resistance without diminishing high levels of the home's structural strength, workability or insulation efficiency, such as installation into existing floors and ceilings without any removal and disposal.

Development of K-shaped Corner Braces and Hyper Panels

K-shaped corner brace bearing walls use 24 mm thick structural plywood that is in order to store 75 mm thick glass-wool insulation inside. This method has great workability because the materials are light, and it underwent a technological evaluation by the Japan Building Disaster Prevention Association (6.0KN/m2 standard bearing wall).

Hyper Panels reduce removal work by only having to remove the gypsum board between existing flooring and ceilings. Hyper Hard T (Yoshino Gypsum Co., Ltd.) improves workability by dividing a high-strength board into three pieces for installation so that each board can be put in place as is. Three pieces of the board for installation enhances the bending strength without the board breaking. The method also got a technological evaluation by the Japan Building Disaster Prevention Association (6.9 KN/m2 bearing wall for the standard type).

Moving forward, we plan to develop new vibration dampers that can reduce earthquake damage to buildings to the greatest possible extent.

Corner Brace Panels

Corner Brace Panels

Hyper Panels

Hyper Panels

Construction Method (BF Construction Method)

Sumitomo Forestry started selling the Big-Frame Construction Method (BF Construction Method) for three-story building products in 2005 and expanded this method to two-story products in 2008 as well as to products with fire-resistant specifications in four-story buildings in 2015. Thereafter, as awareness of customers grew about disasters and other risks, the BF construction method that had further evolved to provide greater strength in high seismic resistance matched customer needs and is now one of Sumitomo Forestry's main products.

Wooden Beam Rahmen Structure

The proprietary BF construction method from Sumitomo Forestry is the first in Japan to realize the wooden beam Rahmen structure, which is used in high-rise buildings, in wooden houses.

The Rahmen structure is designed to stand up to horizontal forces such as earthquakes and wind through rigid-joints that unify the columns and beams with the fixings. The BF construction method uses big columns with a large cross-section of 560 mm which is equivalent to roughly five standard 105 mm columns and incorporates structural materials in addition to a combination of metal-to-metal joints to achieve a robust Rahmen structure. The beams and bases of the big columns join strongly thanks to the metal-to-metal joints.

“Metal-Touch” (Metal-to-Metal) Joint

This brings about horizontal vibration resistance equal to a 22.4 (times/meter) shear resistance of walls. We ensure seismic resistance while being able to provide both large spaces and wide openings.

Introducing and Expanding Original Joining Technology

The BF construction method enables introducing and expanding a variety of original technologies and can support an even wider range of design requirements. Twin-bolt columns (shear resistance of walls equivalent to 33.6 times/meter) that doubles metal joints as well as double-large columns that layer two large columns (shear resistance of walls equivalent to 44.8 times/meter) provide freedom in floor plans and more spaciousness even on land with many restrictions. The pre-stressed timber beams, which allows for a maximum opening width of up to 7.1 meters, enable the design for built-in garages ready for parking multiple vehicles, large open living rooms, multi-dwelling homes in addition to a wide range of other purposes.

Confirmation of Performance by Full-Scale Vibration Test

Sumitomo Forestry conducted vibration testing using a full-scale test model of a 3-story building built with the BF construction method and the actual floorplan.

For this testing, the building with BF construction method withstood the maximum acceleration of 2,699 gal, equivalent to the Great East Japan Earthquake, proving its strength against major earthquakes. Our technology has been proven tough through a total of 22 harsh vibration tests; two of which were conducted at a magnitude of 7 equal to the Great East Japan Earthquake and 20 of which equal to the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake. Furthermore, assuming repeated strong aftershocks, we have confirmed that the seismic resistance of the structural framework will continue to be maintained even after 224 repetitions of severe shaking of intensity 4 to 6, for a total of 246 repetitions of shaking.

In this way, the BF construction method responds to the needs of customers with powerful structures to bring security as well as flexible designs able to provide comfortably spacious spaces.

Strong Big Column with a Width More Than Five Times a Standard Pillar

Strong Big Column with a Width More Than Five Times a Standard Pillar

Realizing a Robust Rahmen Structure via Metal-to-Metal Joints

Realizing a Robust Rahmen Structure via Metal-to-Metal Joints

Promotion of Universal Design

Sumitomo Forestry is a pioneer in establishing soft closers for all indoor furnishings such as sliding doors and hinged doors as an initiative to increase the safety of residents. In addition, an all flat design that does not create any level differences in flooring is now a standard specification while convex corners for inner walls and wall-mounted convex sections have an R-shape specification around living spaces and halls. We have set the standard specifications for the width of hallways to 780 mm to allow the use of assistive wheelchairs with the assumption that wheelchairs and care will be necessary in the future. We also flexibly respond to customer requirements through a freedom in design that includes slopes to entrances and the installation of home elevators.

Anti-virus requirements are utilized for the handrails at the entrance, stairs, and toilets, which are frequently handled on a regular basis, and antibacterial specifications are used for coping in front of the kitchen near cooking area.

In addition, Sumitomo Forestry is committed to designing homes that meet the needs of various customers, such as comfortable bedrooms with wood interiors and indirect lighting that improve sleep, as only Sumitomo Forestry can.

Indirect lighting of wood offers better sleep quality and reduces fatigue. Received KIDS DESIGN AWARD in FY2016 (Survey and Research Category)

Indirect lighting of wood offers better sleep quality and reduces fatigue. Received KIDS DESIGN AWARD in FY2016 (Survey and Research Category)

First Class Architect in the Housing Division

The Housing Division has 893 first class architects on staff (as of April 1, 2022), representing 21.2% of the division's total workforce. This is one of the highest ratios among housing manufacturers, and is the reason for the high quality of construction of Sumitomo Forestry homes.

Proper Management of the Supply Chain

The Housing Division strives to properly manage the supply chain to maintain and improve the quality of Sumitomo Forestry homes construction. In order to continue appropriate business with suppliers, we maximize the use of "factory audits" and "supplier evaluations" by component.

Factory Audit

The purpose of a factory audit is to ascertain the production process, quality control status, raw material procurement status, etc., for the parts and materials to be purchased.

Based on the "Quality Audit Program & Implementation Plan," we target more than 200 supplier factories nationwide to ascertain actual conditions through interviews with relevant personnel and visual inspections at local factories. In addition, corrective actions are requested during factory audits if there are items to be improved.

Supplier Evaluation

The supplier evaluation includes a comprehensive assessment of the supplier's factory audit results, financial condition, quality control status, delivery time, costs, and BCP measures. We will check whether the manufacturer/product is up to the standard required by the Company and provide feedback on the results to ensure appropriateness.

Sustainability Procurement Survey of Suppliers

Once a year, we conduct the Sumitomo Forestry Group Sustainability Procurement Survey of Suppliers.

In FY2022, 85 companies were surveyed. Survey results are fed back to suppliers, and evaluations and opinions are communicated to relevant parties in an effort to improve initiatives on survey items.

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Sumitomo Forestry Group's ISO9001 Initiatives

The Sumitomo Forestry Group promotes the operation of the ISO9001 in order to provide reliable products and services and improve customer satisfaction.

Sumitomo Forestry Home Tech Initiatives

Sumitomo Forestry Home Tech, which handles renovation and after-sales maintenance for Sumitomo Forestry homes, acquired ISO9001 certification in 2017. The purpose is to continuously improve quality and enhance customer satisfaction by utilizing the PDCA cycle, which is the most important part of ISO operations.

As a result of ISO activities, we understand the importance of process management (ensuring that operations flow without delay) by setting and managing targets and utilizing internal auditing, and we are making improvements.

Sumitomo Forestry Home Engineering Initiatives

Sumitomo Forestry Home Engineering, which is responsible for the construction and supervision of Sumitomo Forestry homes, acquired ISO9001 certification in 2006. By unifying construction quality management methods, we ensure consistent quality even in different construction areas and by different contractors. We are committed to building homes that are healthy, safe, secure, and of the highest quality, and putting our customers first.

ISO9001 Internal Auditors

The Quality Control and Worker Safety Management Department of the Sumitomo Forestry Group hosts and conducts the ISO9001 Internal Auditor Training Workshop to deepen understanding of the purpose of the standard and internal audits in order to incorporate the ISO9001 system into its operations and strengthen it. In fiscal 2022, 148 people* in the Sumitomo Forestry Group's housing business obtained certification.

*Including those who have obtained qualifications through external training

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