''Building Smart Foundations''

Housing Recovery STARTS in the Basement
Superior Walls of America Sees 20% Growth Over Last Year

Wednesday, 18 June 2013
 

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NEW HOLLAND, PA - According to leadership at Superior Walls of America, the housing market recovery is in the basement --- literally. The leading manufacturer of precast concrete foundation systems has seen a 20 percent increase in year-to-date sales for 2013 over the same January through May timeframe in 2012. 
“Our business definitely began increasing once new construction started back on a positive track,” says Jim Costello, president of Superior Walls. “Just for the month of May this year we hit sales numbers that we have not seen for any month since October of 2008. That’s a great indicator that we’re in for a solid, growth-oriented 2013.” 
Younger Home Buyers Desire Basements
The precast concrete panels manufactured at Superior Walls facilities across the country are the foundation system of choice for both energy-conscious homeowners and construction-savvy builders. According to the 2012 National Association of Home Builders™ (NAHB®) “What Home Buyers Really Want” study, basements are considered especially desirable in homes by younger home buyers and those living in colder climates. 
“The study findings show that 76 percent of Gen Y respondents and 74 percent of Gen X respondents would prefer a basement in their homes,” says Costello. “Younger home buyers, who are investing in new construction homes, are looking for added living space and easily-accessible storage areas in the homes they purchase.” 
Energy-Efficient Basements on the “Must Have” List
The same study showed that energy efficient features of products are extremely important to home buyers in all age ranges and in all geographic locations. This does not surprise Costello, whose company has seen steady growth of sales over the years thanks to the energy efficiency qualities of their precast concrete basement foundation systems. 
“Superior Walls can help create an ENERGY STAR® qualified home. As a custom wall assembly, Superior Walls contribute to the overall home insulation value and reduce air infiltration into the home, thereby making a huge impact on the overall energy efficient rating of the house. 
“When homeowners select a Superior Walls basement system, they’re adding comfortable, energy efficient living space to their home. Choosing a precast Xi™ or Xi Plus™ concrete foundation can help save on the total heat loss in a home. That’s a ‘bottom up’ consideration that has long-term financial benefits for a home buyer.” 
Xi precast concrete panels by Superior Walls are steel-reinforced and created in the manufacturing process with DOW® insulation boards, which provide excellent rigid foam insulation. The resulting wall panels provide a dry, warm and exceptionally energy-efficient foundation for a home. 
Superior Walls insulated precast concrete wall systems have earned the Green Approved Product designation by the NAHB Research Center. For homeowners, the benefits of Superior Walls foundations systems are substantial. The energy-efficient walls help lower energy costs and reduce energy leakage while providing increased living space in a comfortable setting. 
For more information visit www.superiorwalls.com.  

 

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Thursday, 6 June 2013


Superior Walls of America, Ltd. is the first and only foundation manufacturer whose products are approved to contribute points toward certification of a building under the National Green Building Standard. By using Superior Walls, builders can earn 13 total points toward the NAHB Research Center National Green Building Certification.

Research indicates that an uninsulated basement can accountfor up to 33 percent of the total heat loss in a home. In today’s environmentally conscious world, it’s reassuring to know that home builders have a green alternative to the standard block and mortar basement wall foundation.

An important part of green and sustainable construction is to minimize disturbance to the site and the environment. This includes minimizing the amount of construction waste produced as well as respecting the land around the building site. Prefabricated products such as Superior Walls make great sense in building green.They are manufactured offsite under strict quality assurance guidelines. Superior Walls XI wall uses built-in 2.5 inches of Dow Styrofoam blue-board insulation. (Additional cavity insulation may be siteinstalled to maximize insulation up to a value of R-50+). Everything about this wall is insulated, including corners, studs and top bond beam, making a complete thermal envelope. Special engineering makes the wall thermally insulated and isolated from the exterior elements. It is poured all at once with highstrength concrete for solid structural integrity and reinforced with steel rebar and polypropylene fibers.


Reduces Energy Leakage. Superior Walls concrete wall panels minimize the potential for energy leakage. The combination of preengineered built-in insulation and high strength concrete makes a great foundation for energy conservation.

Lowers Energy Cost. Built-in insulation lowers energy loss through the basement walls. The R-12.5 insulation throughout the wall panels minimizes thermal transfer.
Saves Valuable Natural Resources.The foundation panels are engineered and manufactured with insulated concrete studs, thus
reducing the amount of lumber, stone, sand and concrete in a new home.
Pre-Engineered for Energy and Strength.
Superior Walls 5000 psi concrete, engineered with a lower water-to-cement ratio, ensures durability and helps prevent the transfer of moisture through the wall. A dry basement
limits the possibility of mold and other airborne fungi found in other basements, which can affect your air quality.
Reduces On-Site Soil Contamination.
Superior Walls are built in an indoor production facility; therefore no form oil is used at the job site. Because damp proofing is built-in (ESR-1662),there is no need to use on-site bituminous coatings.
Call 800-521-3788 or visit www.YourBasement.com

Basements Most Popular in Colder Climates and With Younger Home Buyers

Thursday, 21 March 2013
 

NEW HOLLAND, PA - According to the 2012 National Association of Home Builders (NAHB®) “What Home Buyers Really Want” study, basements are considered especially desirable in homes by younger home buyers and those living in colder climates.

“The study findings show that 76 percent of Gen Y respondents and 74 percent of Gen X respondents would prefer a basement in their homes,” says Jim Costello, president of Superior Walls of America. “Once you get to Baby Boomers category that preference drops to 63 percent --- and then down even lower to 54 percent with Seniors.

“I believe we can surmise from these results that younger home buyers are looking for added living space and easily-accessible storage areas in the homes they purchase, whereas older home buyers may be ready to ‘trim back’ on their living space and also prefer one-level dwellings.”

Energy Efficient Basements

Costello points out that the geographic areas where respondents most prefer a full or partial basement in their homes coincides with where Superior Walls precast concrete foundation systems have seen the most sales increase in recent years: the areas of New England, East North Central and Middle Atlantic. “The study shows that more than 80 percent of respondents in these cold climate areas prefer to have a basement, as opposed to areas of the Pacific and West South Central areas where less than 50 percent of respondents stated a preference for basements.”

The same study showed that energy efficient features of products are extremely important to home buyers in all age ranges and in all geographic locations. This does not surprise Costello, whose company has seen steady growth of sales over the years thanks to the energy efficiency qualities of their precast concrete basement foundation systems.

“When homeowners select a Superior Walls basement system, they’re adding comfortable, energy efficient living space to their home,” says Costello. “Choosing a precast Xi™ or Xi Plus™ concrete foundation can help save on the total heat loss in a home. That’s a ‘bottom up’ consideration that has long-term financial benefits for a home buyer.”

Xi precast concrete panels by Superior Walls are steel-reinforced and created in the manufacturing process with DOW® Styrofoam™ boards, which provide excellent rigid foam insulation. The resulting wall panels provide a dry, warm and exceptionally energy-efficient foundation for a home.

Another survey finding illustrates the growing importance of energy efficiency with home buyers, 89 percent of respondents said they would prefer “a highly energy efficient home with lower utility bills over the life of the home” versus just 11 percent who said they would choose a home without energy efficiency features that costs two to three percent less. This preference toward low utility costs reflects a realistic look at the rising costs of energy and home buyer’s desires to address this issue at the initial time of purchasing a home.

Superior Walls insulated precast concrete wall systems have earned the Green Approved Product designation by the NAHB Research Center. For homeowners, the benefits of Superior Walls foundations systems are substantial. The energy-efficient walls help lower energy costs and reduce energy leakage while providing increased living space in a comfortable setting.

For more information visit www.superiorwalls.com

 

Homeowner’s Perspective: Max Out Your Living Space with Precast Concrete Foundation
Monday, 04 March 2013

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NEW HOLLAND, PA. – Homeowner Roger Deihm was so pleased with the Superior Walls precast foundation system used in the construction of his first home in 1997 that he made it a requirement for builders to use the same Xi wall panels in the construction of his new home in 2012. 

“I actually designed the new house specifically to use Superiors Walls,” says Deihm, a Pennsylvania resident. “The finished basement --- made with the precast concrete foundation panels --- was written into the floor plan to flow into another floor, not to just have a stairwell leading to a cellar.” 

The three sections of his basement are used as a media room, billiards room and utility/work area. According to Deihm, he and the family spend almost three hours a day in these lower level rooms. 

“We had additional insulation added to our Superior Walls Xi wall panels to gain the maximum R-values,” says Deihm. “This definitely makes the basement a comfortable extension of our home’s living space. 

“In my opinion, far too many houses waste the valuable usable space available in the basement. Superior Walls allows you to take advantage of that space and maximize your home’s space to its fullest potential. I wouldn’t consider building a home without these energy-efficient products as the foundation of a well-insulated house.” 

Understanding Superior Walls Products

Superior Walls Xi wall panels feature steel reinforced concrete and 2-1/2-inches of DOW® Styrofoam insulation. The panels are custom designed and constructed in a factory-controlled setting. Unique features of the Xi wall panels include:

     - 5,000+ PSI concrete

     - Steel-reinforced top bond beams, concrete studs and footer beams

     - Horizontal steel rebar inside top and bottom beams

     - Vertical steel rebar inside each stud

     - Access holes for ease in wiring and plumbing

Superior Walls insulated precast concrete wall systems have earned the Green Approved Product designation by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Research Center. For homeowners, the benefits of Superior Walls foundations systems are substantial. The energy-efficient walls help lower energy costs and reduce energy leakage while providing increased living space in a comfortable setting. Builders also benefit from saved job site time and labor when certified Superior Walls installation crews set the walls in place in less than one day, so that home construction can immediately begin the following day. 

Each Superior Walls panel is custom made to the specifications of an individual home, including built-in openings for windows and doors. Pre-engineered access for wiring or small plumbing elements along with smart stud facing for easy drywall installation are included and help speed up the installation process. 

Superior Walls products are resource efficient, using up to 70 percent less concrete in a new home than conventional foundations. The energy-efficient walls help lower energy costs and reduce energy leakage while providing increased living space in a comfortable setting. For details on Superior Walls products, visit www.superiorwalls.com.

Superior Walls Withstand Devastation of Hurricane Sandy
Tuesday, 05 February 2013

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NEW HOLLAND, PA - With many coastal areas of New Jersey taking the full brunt of Hurricane Sandy's damaging effects, it's surprising that any structures survived. But, once the flood waters cleared, several homeowners with Superior Walls foundation systems found they could quickly and easily return to their homes.

When Scott and Sherri Nevins evacuated their Barnegat, N.J. home 12 hours before Hurricane Sandy struck, they had no idea what they'd find when they returned. Several days later the couple came back and was amazed at the damage in their neighborhood --- and even more astonished at their own home.

"We found lots of debris around our home and a little sand in the garage," says Scott Nevins. "We sprayed out the garage and that was it --- cleanup done! While others in our neighborhood were not as fortunate, we're reaping the benefits of our smart decision in 2009 to include Superior Walls in the construction of our home.

"Initially we selected the product because it provided a straight foundation for the framer and it wouldn't sway like a house on pilings. Since this is a windy location, we also liked the idea that the garage was airtight with the Superior Walls foundation. Now, when we look around and see the extensive damage other homeowners face, we're exceptionally grateful that we selected this precast concrete system."

Nevins points out that there was no sheet rock or insulation mess in his garage from the flood waters to clean up after the storm. The surge of 18" of water in his garage was easily cleaned up and life went back to normal for the family.

In Ortley Beach, N.J., one of the hardest-hit areas from the storm, builders were amazed that an under-construction Superior Walls foundation was completely unaffected by the hurricane. Total devastation surrounds the construction site that was undamaged by the storm.

"There are numerous stories of Superior Walls projects simply defying Mother Nature in New Jersey during this storm," says John Ruga with Northeast Precast Superior Walls. "One home in Strathmere, N.J. was left completely unharmed by the hurricane while neighboring houses were severely damaged. This particular house has above grade Superior Walls with flood vents. As the waters rose, they went through the vents and left the house with little to no damage."


The Superior Advantage
As opposed to concrete blocks or poured concrete, precast concrete panels by Superior Walls are steel-reinforced and created in the manufacturing process with DOW® StyrofoamTM boards, which provide excellent rigid foam insulation. The resulting wall panels provide a dry, warm, damp-resistant and exceptionally energy-efficient foundation for a home.

"If you're constructing a home, the foundation selection is critical for building an energy efficient structure," says Jim Costello, president of Superior Walls. "Choosing a precast XiTM or Xi PlusTM concrete foundation can help reduce heat loss in a home. That's a ‘bottom line' consideration that has long-term financial benefits for a homeowner.

"In addition, in extreme weather situations like Hurricane Sandy, there's a great deal of ‘peace-of-mind' from knowing that your foundation system can really handle severe weather conditions. Each storm is different, but to continue hearing ‘survival stories' from homeowners who had minimal damage as a result of the superstorm really proves the durability of these precast foundation systems."

Superior Walls insulated precast concrete wall systems have earned the Green Approved Product designation by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Research Center. For homeowners, the benefits of Superior Walls foundations systems are substantial. The energy-efficient walls help lower energy costs and reduce energy leakage while providing increased living space in a comfortable setting. Builders also benefit from saved job site time and labor when certified Superior Walls installation crews set the walls in place in less than one day, so that home construction can immediately begin the following day.

Each Superior Walls panel is custom made to the specifications of an individual home, including built-in openings for windows and doors. Pre-engineered access for wiring or small plumbing elements along with smart stud facing for easy drywall installation are included and help speed up the installation process.