Concrete Contractors, Independence, MO
WHAT DO I NEED TO KNOW BEFORE HIRING A CONCRETE CONTRACTOR?
See that lovely house down the street, the one where the owners added all that lovely stonework around the entrance? You probably assumed they had to be millionaires to afford it. Surprisingly, that fancy stone isn't made of stone at all! It's made of concrete, and it's a lot less expensive than you thought. You suddenly realize that sprucing up the front walk and installing the patio you've always wanted is, after all, within your budget.
Now that you've decided to get started, here's what you should know before hiring a concrete contractor.
Begin by asking around. Ask family, friends, and coworkers whom they would recommend for the job. Request that they show you the work that has been done in their homes. Are they satisfied? Was the price reasonable? Were the concrete contractor's schedule and budget met? Was he easy to get in touch with and pleasant to work with? If you answered yes to all of these questions, add his name to your list.
Look for information online as well. Concrete contractors with generally positive reviews – from neutral sources such as Yelp!, not just the contractor's own website – are what you're looking for here. Check to see how long they've been in business and if they've received any complaints from the Better Business Bureau.
Once you have a shortlist of concrete contractors – say, three or four – call each one, schedule a meeting, have them come over to look over the area where the work will be done and provide an estimate. Find out if there are any specific issues, such as weather conditions, that you should be aware of. A concrete contractor in Independence, MO, for example, will know what materials can withstand years of snow and ice, followed by scorching summer temperatures, and how to maintain the work once it is completed.
Remember that the lowest bid isn't always the best bid. After all, this is your home, and you want high-quality work that will last. Lower-than-average bids are usually a red flag. They can imply unreliability, a lack of work guarantee, shoddy materials, and so on. If you want quality work that will last, you must be willing to pay for it.
Check to see if the concrete contractor is licensed, bonded, and insured before signing anything. If he does not have insurance, you may be held liable for all costs if an accident occurs on your property while he is working. If he isn't licensed, he could be in big trouble. Ensure that the concrete contractor and his workers have all necessary licenses and insurance to protect yourself, your family, and the concrete contractor and his workers.
Also, before starting any type of construction work on your property, check with the contractor and the local authorities to see what permits are required. Make sure you have those permits before you start working, and keep them in a safe place both during and after the job.
Get It in Writing
After you've decided on a concrete contractor, draw up a contract. The contract must be signed by both parties and should include all details of the work – all materials to be used (with specific brand names, product numbers, and quantities, if applicable), the project timeline, payment schedule, any applicable warranties, and cleanup.