Are you looking into building your first or next home? If your builder is letting you customize the new structure, one of your first considerations might be what type of materials to use, and that includes the frame that the house will be supported by. While a wooden frame is of course the traditional choice, more homeowners and builders are using ICFs or insulated concrete forms to create the house's walls and frame. ICFs use foam panels to help form the concrete and then the foam serves as insulation once the concrete is in place. Here's why this might be the direction you want to go when creating the blueprint for your new home.
Insulated Concrete Can Better Hold Heated or Cooled Air Leading to Better Energy Efficiency
Are you looking to design a home from the ground up with better energy efficiency in order to lower your environmental footprint at the same time that you lower energy bills? Insulated concrete is better at keeping the air your HVAC system is churning out within the house, meaning the system will be able to shut down sooner rather than later and won't have to start back up as often.
That Energy Efficiency Also Comes With Greater Overall Comfort for the Homeowner
Insulated concrete can also help stop a draft in its tracks and help you maintain a more uniform temperature throughout the house. A house built with ICFs will likely lead to better comfort for everyone in the house regardless of which room you walk into. In other words, if you've ever been in a house where the temperature is drastically different in one part of the house, this is not something that is as likely to occur with insulated concrete forms.
Your ICF Home Is More Likely to Survive a Disaster and Your Family Could Be Safer as a Result
It's stating the obvious to point out that wood is a flammable material. Concrete, on the other hand, is much better at standing up to fire, especially if the concrete has been reinforced in some way, like with steel. A concrete frame or structure could give your family more time to escape if a fire does break out and might also increase the chances of your home surviving the fire instead of going completely up in flames.
When first picking the materials you will use to build your new house, make sure you talk to your contractor or builder about the benefits of ICFs for more information.