The day you realize your walkway or patio is starting to look like an obstacle course is the time to think about replacing it.
Replacing a walkway, driveway or patio is known as hardscaping, and finding a hardscaping contractor who can design and install one that suits your house, your sensibilities and your pocketbook often requires diligent research and some price comparison to get the best value for your money. Not surprisingly, the best value is not always the cheapest.
A growing number of homeowners have discovered that one of the most versatile and customizable pavement options is interlocking concrete pavers. That said, the next step to a new walkway is finding the right person to install it. In order to ensure a quality installation, you should ask questions of the contractor like:
How long have they been installing pavers?
Have they been trained by a manufacturer or the ICPI? Are they ICPI Certified Installers?
What percentage of their total business consists of installing concrete pavers?
Will they provide you with three references? Be sure to ask for references from recent and past jobs. Can you contact their references and inspect the jobs?
Do they have a portfolio of photos and letters to qualify themselves?
While the contractor is working on your property, they should be insured for any damage and injuries that may occur. Check your homeowner's insurance policy for coverage of the contractor while on your property.
Can the contractor provide proof that worker's compensation insurance covers all employees on the job?
Do they have current liability insurance? Ask for a copy of the certificate.
Will they install the job per ICPI specifications? Can they supply a copy?
Do they provide a written, itemized proposal outlining the scope of work and terms of payment? It should include starting and completion dates, demolition and excavation, paving and base materials, and taxes.
Do they guarantee their work and will they return to inspect it?
Are they members of the ICPI or other associations?
Check out the Contractor Comparison Checklist. You can learn more about concrete pavers and find an ICPI Certified Installer by visiting the Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute www.icpi.org. Dreamscapes Landscape & Design is an ICPI Certified installer. To schedule a consultation to discuss your project give us a call at 1-800-468-1597 or fill out our contact form.