April 2, 2006
AUBURN, Maine --Termites wouldn't like the house Mike Mercier built.
Mercier, of Auburn, built his house out of concrete -- 85 yards of it. From the outside, the new 2,300-square-foot ranch-style home doesn't look a lot different from most. The basement and foot-thick exterior walls are made of concrete -- but so are the floors, windowsills, countertops and end tables.
Mercier and his wife are often asked if their bed is concrete. It is not.
Mercier, who has run a concrete contracting business for three decades, said he got the idea of building a concrete house from an exhibit he visited at a World of Concrete convention.
Construction involved no wood framing or plywood, just windows, siding and interior Sheetrock. Hollow foam blocks were stacked and angled inside the walls before concrete was pumped around it.
The walls are so soundproof that the Merciers' dog has a hard time hearing people come up the driveway now. They are also energy efficient, because foam and concrete homes are supposed to use two-thirds less oil to heat, Mercier said."