In recent years American homeowners were subjected to some of the most severe natural disasters the U.S. has ever experienced with hurricanes, tornados,
In recent years American homeowners were subjected to some of the most severe natural disasters the U.S. has ever experienced with hurricanes, tornados, and floods leaving thousands of home destroyed. When it came time to rebuild, homeowners increasingly chose the one building material that offered durability, energy efficiency, and protection from storms, floods and fires.
In 2005 concrete homes accounted for 17.9 percent of all new single-family detached homes, up from 16.3 percent in 2004, according to the National Association of Home Builders Research Center’s Builder Practices Survey and Portland Cement Association research. More than one out of every six new houses built last year utilized an above-grade concrete building system, affirms PCA Market Research Director Craig Schulz.
One of the fastest-growing building systems is insulating concrete forms (ICFs) where concrete is sandwiched between two insulating layers of foam. Research has shown that homes built with ICFs require 44 percent less energy to heat and 32 percent less energy to cool than comparable frame homes. This can save the typical owner of a 2,000-square foot home in the central U.S. more than $250 in annual energy costs.
In addition, because of concrete’s natural resistance to fire and its strength against tornadoes, hurricanes and earthquakes, insurance for concrete homes is often 15 to 25 percent lower than for wood frame homes.