Builders: Listen to Your Buyers
Many knowledgeable homebuyers would like to build an ICF home, but their favorite builder may not be familiar with the technology.
Builders need to listen to their educated buyers and get up to speed on ICF construction to provide a better product to their customers who want a better built home.
In many cases, the homeowner has researched different construction methods and decided they want an ICF home. But they need to work with a builder and/or architect to do the cost/value analysis to see how much their dream home might cost. A professional experienced in ICF can also help factor in utility savings, hurricane, fire and tornado resiliency and other resilient characteristics.
If the homeowner comes to a builder with ICF on the "must have list" of materials, then presumably, other building methods have been researched. Even if ICFs are new for the builder, he or she can tap expertise and training from subcontractors and manufacturers to get training and technical support.
A forward thinking homebuyer wants to know that their builder/contractor is going to be receptive and open towards the methods they want to use. A builder/contractor that dismisses ICFs out of hand will be seen as behind the times. A determined homeowner may switch builders rather than give up on their plan for an energy efficient, durable ICF home.
At this point, most ICF homes are custom homes, although there are a growing number of developments that have opted for ICFs to stand out in the marketplace. That means it's becoming affordable to production builders, and there are more subcontractors familiar with efficiently building an ICF house.
Training is available from ICF manufacturers to help contractors understand how to design and build a home with ICFs. Rather than reject a potential customer's request to use a certain wall assembly, it would make sense to use the available resources -- often free -- to get trained properly.
A builder can add ICF to their repertoire of skills, expanding their market and establishing a point of competitive differentiation while delivering a high quality product.
This blog was developed by Fox Blocks. All posts, sponsored and un-sponsored have been reviewed and approved by the Sustainable Community Media Editorial Team to ensure quality, relevance/usefulness and objectivity.
Companies: Fox Blocks
David Morris A Detroit native, David T. Morris, LEED® Green Associate, used his drive for entrepreneurship, innovation & new product development to develop a patented product and later took a new building product to market. In 2012, he became U.S. East Regional Manager with Fox Blocks, a division of Airlite Plastics Company, managing ICF sales in seven states. Since 2006, David has delivered more than 140 IFA/ICF training seminars to contractors, plus another 120 presentations to architects and engineers. He is a featured speaker and SME on High-Performance Buildings, and his efforts have resulted in environmentally friendly construction being specified for residential, commercial, and institutional buildings throughout the country.