PATH - A Public Private Partnership for Advancing Housing Technology

PATH Case Study

Concrete Beauty:

Builder Finds Niche with Concrete Floor Finishes


Printable Version [.pdf, 1.21 MB]

[IMAGE: Scorecard image]


Sammy Herrell
Sammy Herrell Builders and Development
Villa Rica, Georgia

Builder Type:

Production Builder

The Technology:

Concrete Floor Finishes

The Project:

A one-story, 1,864-square-foot, single-family home in Carrollton, Georgia, with decorative concrete floors throughout the home and on the driveway.

"I certainly have a lot of people who are interested in decorative concrete. It has a great look and a great feel. And there's no real maintenance."

-- Sammy Herrell



[IMAGE: Herrell increases the drive-by appeal of this Northpoint Grand home with decorative concrete in the driveway.] After experimenting with decorative concrete finishes in his own home, Sammy Herrell decided to try them in one of the new homes in his subdivision, Northpoint Grand. Herrell believes the features of concrete floors--durability, low maintenance, and the absence of allergens that are typically found in carpet--will interest many homebuyers.

"Decorative concrete is a product that a lot of people haven't seen," Herrell says. "I wanted to test the 'sell-ability' of it, and to discover how the customers would react. This is a new product for homes in this price range. Here was my opportunity to gauge the level of interest."

As part of an agreement with Bob Harris of the Decorative Concrete Institute, Herrell would complete one home at Northpoint Grand with decorative concrete that Harris installed at cost. In exchange, Harris, who also teaches decorative concrete methods, made a video of the installation process and uses the images in his marketing and educational materials.


Decorative concrete covers the foyer, dining room, living room, kitchen, and bathrooms--and the driveway and sidewalk, which attracted buyers right away.

"So far, people have been very excited. I've been getting a lot of nice compliments. They really appreciate the unique look," Herrell says. "They tend to be most interested in the driveway, since it's right out in front and really catches the eye. The entire home is drawing interest."

"Sometimes, we do need to educate homebuyers a little bit. They tend to ask about what sorts of styles are available and what sort of maintenance is required. Those are the types of questions you like, because then you can tell them about how little maintenance is needed and how concrete has greater longevity than carpet and vinyl."

"Also, sometimes there's a misperception that concrete floors are cold and uncomfortable. However, in Atlanta, I would say it is actually the opposite. I have experienced this first hand in my house. Once you get the house to its temperature, the floor in that home is going to stay the same temperature. People will be surprised how comfortable it is to walk on."

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[IMAGE: Sammy Herrell]

Sammy Herrell, owner of Sammy Herrell Builders and Development, began building homes in 1978. About 70 percent of his business is in spec homes in Northpoint Grande, his development in Carrollton, Georgia. Herrell's homes sell for $190,000 to $280,000.

Why he offers a concrete floor finish:

"It's another product to offer along the cost baseline of ceramic tiles or hardwood floors, which helps differentiate me from other builders. Some people are tired of wood and tile, and concrete offers less maintenance and greater longevity than carpet and vinyl."

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Content updated on 9/25/2006

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