Are you interested in getting your driveway or parking lot resurfaced? Before signing the agreement, always qualify the company you’re looking to hire. That applies to all types of contractors, including asphalt contractors.
Although many contractors are honest workers, some aren’t.
You need to vet them with questions to protect your money and time. Whether it’s your home’s driveway of a commercial lot, you deserve exceptional work. The contractor you hire should be professional, experienced, and personable.
Not sure which questions to ask during your consultation? Here are the 7 key questions to ask asphalt contractors before signing the agreement.
1. How Much Experience Does Your Company Have?
The asphalt laying industry is a competitive one. Contractors that have lasted for decades in business prove that they can stand the test of time. They’ve also likely acquired a long list of testimonials.
You should clarify what kind of experience those decades entailed. They may have been doing other construction for most of it and only recently started paving.
Plus, who has that experience in the company? Will the people working on your job have that experience? These may seem like small details but they’re important to know before you hire.
2. Are You Licensed & Insured?
Each state has different requirements for contractor licenses. Some fields of contracting might not require a license in your state. If that’s the case, you want to emphasize the importance of experience even more.
Insurance, on the other hand, is a must for any professional contractor. You should ask to see a copy of their insurance policy to know how they are insured.
Do they have workers’ compensation? Liability insurance? Is their insurance up to date?
If the prospective asphalt contractor isn’t insured, don’t hire them.
3. When Will My Driveway be Done?
You deserve a concrete timeline of when the work will be complete. Some contractors are notorious for missing deadlines and taking longer than they say.
For your personal or commercial driveway, ask for a complete timeline of events. Ask when equipment and supplies will get dropped off and when work will start.
Find out the daily work schedule for the contractor’s team. If the subcontractors will be working on your driveway at 5 in the morning, you’d like to know. Also, if you expect them at 9 AM and they show up at 3 PM, that’s a problem.
Luckily, asphalt paving isn’t as loud as general construction. It’s nice to know when you can expect to see the work getting done.
4. How Will You Protect My Property?
For your commercial driveway, it’s crucial that the materials don’t affect the landscaping. If it’s your business, having clean exterior landscaping is important.
How will this contractor ensure your property stays in perfect condition?
Some asphalt contractors will bring protective materials to cover your property. Ensuring they don’t damage the surrounding landscape is key.
You should also ask how they plan on leaving the work site at the end of each day. Professional pavers will clean up after themselves after each shift. You should expect this from a quality contractor.
5. What is Your Payment Schedule?
There are differing opinions on how much of a down payment you should give. Some say 10 percent of the final cost, others say as much as a third.
The one thing everyone agrees on is to never pay the full cost upfront.
In the world of asphalt paving, it’s rare for unexpected costs to come up. Most of the time, your contractor should be able to give you exact dates that the rest of the payments are due.
6. What is Your Preferred Communication Method?
No one likes chasing down their contractor to get an answer from them. You could be calling and calling you contractor only to get their voicemail.
If you asked their preferred communication beforehand, you would know to send an email instead!
Understanding how to contact them from the start sets you up for success. They’ll be able to respond faster and you’ll feel heard and understood.
7. What Do Your References Say?
You should always ask for a contractor’s portfolio. Asphalt contractors should be able to show you photos of driveways they’ve paved. That includes both commercial and residential.
Their website may have a section for testimonials; these are a great resource for you. Feel free to also ask for references.
Ask their previous clients how they enjoyed working with them. Did any problems arise? How did the company handle them?
Reviews online are also important to read. You check their Google My Business listing for public reviews.
Contractor Red Flags to Avoid
There are a handful of red flags to keep an eye out for when searching for an asphalt contractor. These signs usually indicate the contractor is a scammer, unreliable, or inexperienced.
Here are some red flags:
- They pressure you to make a decision fast
- They suggest a private lender to fund the work for you
- They want the entire payment upfront
Also, pay attention to how they treat you. If they seem gruff, rude, or uninterested in answering your questions, run.
Their customer service is an indication of how they’ll be to work with. You want a contractor that’s kind, organized, and professional.
Ready to Hire the Top Asphalt Contractors for Your Next Project?
At Roanoke Star Paving, we’ve been serving the VA community for years. Our insured and experienced contractors are happy to answer any of your questions.
We provide an exceptional driveway and parking lot resurfacing, paving, and seal coating. Whether you need asphalt contractors for your lot or tar and chip paving, we’re here to help.
Feel free to contact us for a free consultation. Send us a message or call us today.