We have staining over stamping, stamping over overlay, stamped walls, stained walls. It's crazy — who keeps raising the bar? The answer is THE MARKET. This explosion of decorative concrete is market-driven. Folks want it, and it's more than just a fad. It must be a little overwhelming to contractors just entering this exciting business.
Proline Concrete Tools has recently released several new products for the precast industry.
There is not a comforting way to say the word “cancer.” Even in this day of strong chances of recovery and survival, it is a word that gets our attention every time. Although the products we use turn normal concrete into extraordinary works of art, some of those products are carcinogenic. Are you taking the proper measures to be safe?
There are many stereotypes associated with sales professionals. There's the slick-dealing used-car salesman type who makes people feel suspicious. There's the natural-born salesman who walks into the room and is instantly everyone's new best friend, with talents in every area and the best jokes. Then, there's the talesman, the unknowingly annoying salesman.
If you work with concrete you already know how abrasive, alkaline and caustic it is.
To put it simply, as portland cement dries, it will absorb water from any source in order to harden. That means it will suck the moisture from your skin as well.
Many years in the making and rigorously reviewed by dozens of experts in the field, the much-anticipated 310R-13 Guide to Decorative Concrete was officially published by the American Concrete Institute in December 2013.
The fear that we may lose touch with the concrete artistry in our industry is a legitimate feeling. It seems like more and more projects require firm decisions and designs before they ever reach our eyes. Are we losing the chance to add our expertise, advice and artistic touch to decorative projects?
The science magazine Rubin reports that engineers at Germany's Ruhr-Universität Bochum have developed a shotcrete that can render tunnels, bridges and other structures more resistant against fires and explosions.
The decorative concrete industry is a niche market with a lot of players competing for work. An internet search for “decorative concrete contractor” will bring up nearly 3 million entries, and “concrete artisan” generates nearly 1 million. In local phone books, however, there are typically no such entries.
Over the last few years, I’ve noticed a shift in the polished concrete market. As the industry has grown, there has always been three sizes of contractors.
Being successful in business, as in life, is knowing when to be right, and when to allow the other person their thoughts and views, especially when the “other” person is a potential or existing customer.
The value to your business is best determined on a per-unit basis. However, many contractors don’t exactly make widgets for their customers. So if your primary business is something like concrete staining, polishing or stamping, I recommend you calculate your margins on a per-square-foot or per-project basis.
How Canadian construction supply retailer, Hard Rock Developments promotes decorative concrete and helps its customers make money, too.
The way to homeowners' hearts is through their kids. So why not market decorative concrete to second graders?
CarbonCure Technologies, a Halifax-based startup that has developed the technology to recycle carbon dioxide gas back into solid concrete.
Beauty may only be skin deep, but the performance qualities of an MQ Whiteman SlabArmor concrete surface are just as impressive as the strikingly good looks the SlabArmor system delivers.
There are a lot of questions that don’t always have easy answers. Fortunately, plenty of people have headed out in different directions within the concrete industry and found the journey has taken them to a pretty good place.
A small sampling of helpful hints shared at demonstrations sponsored by the Decorative Concrete Council during the recent annual meeting of the American Society of Concrete Contractors.
Are you content with installing decorative concrete countertops, overlays and stamped concrete, or do you have what it takes to rise to the occasion?
Choosing the right manufacturer is a dilemma every contractor in our industry faces every day. I’ve heard many analogies used to describe the decorative concrete industry over the years, but two comparisons have always resonated the most: “Polished Concrete is part Art and part Construction,” and “The polishing industry is still the Wild West.”
Pricing a polished concrete job is hardly cut and dried. There are many things to consider. There are more obvious factors, such as labor, fuel (diesel will probably be your largest expense next to labor), tooling, and travel expenses. There are also various factors about the floor itself that must be considered.
Doug Carlton discusses his favorite trait of the decorative concrete industry: Passion.
Turning a profit in today’s construction industry is no accident. This is why it is essential — now more than ever — to practice the strong fundamentals that every successful business is built on. I witnessed a perfect example of such a business this fall and it made me rethink my effort as a decorative concrete professional.
For those of us who work in the U.S., Canada and Western Europe, we take for granted the quality of our everyday materials, let alone how easy they are to obtain. In developing countries, the amount of time and cost involved in getting everything needed for a job can be staggering. But staggering to who?