Polished and Stamped Concrete: Essential Options for Decorative Concrete Contractors

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By Sunil Kumar Jha, Content Writer for Global Market Insights

  • The global decorative concrete market is expected to reach over $23.8 billion by 2026 (annual assessment)
  • Concrete Decking Market Expected to Grow Around 7% CAGR through 2026
  • Players in the decorative concrete market have shown an attraction for waxed concrete

The main selling points of decorative concrete among contractors tend to revolve around durability, customization, strength, ecological and aesthetic attributes. Contractors have shown a tendency to reduce costs by using concrete or products made from such materials. Players in the decorative concrete market are driven by the trend towards architectural expressiveness in the construction sector.

With the use of increasingly tangible stamps, colorants, stains, white cement, color pigments, ornate saw cuts, textured patterns and epoxy overlays, decorative concrete has become the linchpin and a lucrative business portfolio with which facilities and owners can increase the value of their properties. Moreover, several contractors do not hesitate to use the must-have concrete in their construction projects – decorative concrete has expanded its consumer base to convert simple cement slabs into designer flooring.

The global decorative concrete market size has been predicted to reach over USD 23.8 billion by 2026 in annual valuation. Stamped concrete has appeared on the horizon as an innovative product mainly used for the flooring of patios to add strength and provide an attractive appearance.

Contractors view this as affordable landscaping that requires less maintenance compared to other materials. Stamped concrete, also dubbed as “printed concrete”, comes with an ocean of color and pattern options and mimics stones including tile, slate, flagstone, making it trendier in entryways , courtyards and pool decks of residential buildings.

From patios and countertops, to gardens and specialty shopping malls, to stone walls and walkways, stamped concrete has become a versatile and natural complement for added value. Not only does concrete provide a decorative touch, but it also offers other real benefits, such as durability and increased longevity regarding aesthetics, cost savings and performance.

Global Market Insights Inc. has forecast decorative concrete market share from application in patios to grow at a healthy compound annual growth rate of around 7% through 2026, primarily attributed to the versatility of stamped concrete .Adobe Stock Photos | By Bobcat Beasley

Concrete patios are here to stay

Stamped concrete is not averse to inconvenience, as harsh chemicals, oil spills, sharp objects and hot tires can adversely affect the quality of the product. That said, stamped concrete has become one of the most sought after concretes for maximizing return on investment through customization, performance, speed of installation, ease of maintenance, and durability. Global Market Insights Inc. has forecasted decorative concrete market share from application in patios to grow at a healthy compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of around 7% through 2026, primarily attributed to versatility stamped concrete.

Stamped concrete is not averse to inconvenience, as harsh chemicals, oil spills, sharp objects and hot tires can adversely affect the quality of the product. That said, stamped concrete has become one of the most sought after concretes for maximizing return on investment through customization, performance, speed of installation, ease of maintenance, and durability.

Patios are making their way into residential and commercial spaces, thanks to the growing popularity of stamping tools and staining techniques. Why?

In short, money. Concrete patios are growing in popularity as a versatile, inexpensive material that can withstand the elements to increase durability. Concrete contractors have shown a penchant for decorative concrete patios, following the trend of outdoor dining and entertaining spaces. Customers demand non-slip and hypoallergenic areas. This is where concrete patios can be perfectly suited: durability, safety and low maintenance have made this material a strong added value in the ecosystem.

Decorative concrete walls will provide revenue increasing opportunities for contractors with creative design, attractive colors, attractive texture options and maximum durability. Unlike wooden or acrylic walls, decorative concrete walls are naturally designed to withstand harsh environments.

The decorative wall construction process will include installing form liners inside the forms, setting the forms in place, and coloring the concrete to look like masonry or stone.

Entrepreneurs are dynamic

With an ocean of options available, decorative concrete has become a viable concrete flooring solution as polished concrete floors continue to grow in popularity in office buildings, retail stores and LEED certified buildings.

With surfaces such as colored concrete, polished concrete, and exposed concrete used aesthetically, manufacturers of decorative concrete are likely to rely on growing construction business. According to Global Construction Perspectives and Oxford Economics, the global construction industry will reach US$17.5 trillion by 2030, about 57% of the growth seen in China, the United States and India.

The gradual but bullish growth of infrastructure, housing and workplaces will generate benefits for entrepreneurs that go beyond economic growth. An increase in investments in the construction industry will have a positive influence on the revenue growth of the decorative concrete market. The opportunities in stamped and polished concrete underscore the pivotal role that concrete contractors will play in ensuring clients’ interests are best served.

Polished concrete, cost-effective flooring option?

Conventional flooring systems are fraught with drawbacks including hydrostatic pressure, dust, coating defects, downtime during installation, delamination, and high maintenance. Decorative concrete market players have shown a trend towards polished concrete to gain a competitive edge in the landscape.

Polished concrete flooring has hit the sweet spot in terms of longevity, durability and abrasion resistance. Stakeholders, including project managers and concrete contractors, are encouraged that polished concrete is LEED compliant and can leverage concrete to maintain interior temperature longer. This type of concrete keeps out additional materials, such as coatings, and does not contain pronounced VOCs, making it a lucrative material for green buildings in the LEED Green Building Rating System certification process.

Mechanically dry-polished concrete can be put into service immediately after completion of the process. Additionally, the benefits of mechanical grinding boost the coefficient of friction and increase slip resistance, while also turning a floor into porous concrete to repel oil, water, and other contaminants. Since polished concrete requires minimal maintenance compared to other flooring systems, concrete contractors view the material as a cost-effective flooring option.

It is pertinent to mention that polishing takes advantage of the rejuvenation of old concrete and recognizes the attributes of sustainable design. For existing buildings, this concrete minimizes the impact of construction by recycling old soil. Meanwhile, polished concrete uses non-toxic components, including water-based hardeners for new or old buildings.

Polishing has become common for refurbishing old concrete flooring and introducing a low-maintenance, durable, high-gloss installation. The decorative concrete market outlook will remain robust on the heels of impressive demand for polished concrete noticeable in industrial buildings, warehouses, public buildings and retail stores.

About the Author

Sunil Jha has been in the content industry for almost 2 years now. Having previously worked as a voice-over artist and sportswriter, he now focuses on writing articles on many topics, ranging from business and technology to trade and finance. With a business-focused education, Sunil brings intensive research expertise and a strategic approach into his pieces.

Find more analysis on the global decorative concrete market on the GM Insights website.

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