What is ICF?

Insulating concrete formwork (ICF) otherwise known as permanently insulated formwork (PIF) is an insulated concrete system of building that is quick to construct and offers significantly better levels of performance than traditional building techniques.Born and received popularity in Germany in the early 50’s, ICF has grown rapidly in North America starting as a basement construction and now has approximately 8% share of the low rise housing market in Canada and the USA.

Insulated Concrete Forms (ICF) are revolutionizing the global building industries for residential, commercial, and institutional developments. Building with Insulating Concrete Forms is gaining momentum over other building methods because of its unparalleled comfort, energy efficiency, and safety ratings at comparable costs.

ICF is based on hollow lightweight block components that lock together without intermediate bedding materials, such as mortar, to provide a formwork system into which concrete is poured. The block is formed of sheets of insulation materials normally expanded polystyrene tied together with plastic or steel ties or an integral web of the same insulation. The later is manufactured as a complete block whereas the forms with ties are formed from sheet material. Some systems are delivered complete and some with ties which are clipped together on site to make the ‘forms’. These latter have the panels delivered flat packed. Some of the systems which are complete with hinged ties are also delivered flatpacked.

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    Kitchens are complex renovation projects and often require a significant investment. Needless to say, a successful custom kitchen renovation adds tremendous value to your Ottawa home. Based on our experience installing kitchens in Ottawa, your preparation work, which would include walls, flooring, electrical, and some plumbing for an average size kitchen start from about $10,000. Your kitchen cabinets for an average size kitchen usually would start from about the same amount of $10,000. There are exceptions to this. We have installed many kitchens in basement apartments that cost less. The best thing is to reach out to us to discuss your project in detail. Below you will see some before and after pictures of kitchen renovations. We have also provided short descriptions of what was done and rough costs of the projects.

    To ensure the ease of the process for you and us, we remove the stress of all the supporting materials selection and simply leave it up to you to choose your finish materials. Even with that, help is available if you need to choose the right style of the cabinets or the functionality that will meet your needs. We can help you design your kitchen cabinets, or you can use one of many kitchen companies that will design and sell the kitchen cabinets to you. Perhaps you have already designed and purchased the cabinets and installation of them, such as the Ikea kitchen cabinet, and simply need to prepare the space for your new kitchen. We offer complete and partial kitchen renovation services, where you can have us handle the entire project, or we can do a partial preparation for your kitchen and a kitchen manufacturer will come in to install kitchen cabinets.

    At Miracle Dream Homes (MDH), we have been renovating, remodeling, and redesigning bathrooms and kitchens, and finishing basements in the Ottawa area since 2004. Our experience ranges from updating older homes to restyling newer ones, renovating for aging-in-place requirements, expanding smaller spaces for greater convenience and comfort, personalizing home designs and layouts, and much more. Our customers across the Ottawa area count on our skilled crews and the experience of our team to complete their home renovation projects on time and on budget.

    It takes about 10,000 hours of practice to master a skill. Tradespersons such as plumbers and electricians, when going through an apprenticeship program, take at least 5 years or 8,280 hours before they are fully ready to start working on their own. DIY enthusiasts often feel excited about projects such as bathroom renovations, kitchen remodels and basement renovations. Of course, it is exciting to think of a home makeover! However, it’s important to know that whether you renovate your bathroom, basement or kitchen, getting professional help will not only save you time but potentially thousands of dollars.