Paving projects require a lot of upfront decision making including best times to pave, which areas need attention, and who to hire for the job. It’s in your best interest to first collect bids from several reputable paving contractors in your area. Below we outline what those paving estimates should include so you can make good decisions.
1) Who & Why: Info About The Contractor
Any reputable paving contractor, at a moment’s notice, should be able to provide the following information in the bid itself, as an addendum to the bid, or by special request:
- Your project manager or point-of-contact’s information
- The company’s years in business
- Awards or industry recognition
- Positive customer reviews of the business
- A list of referrals so you can contact them
- Their experience with similar jobs
Red Flag: Think twice before hiring a paving contractor that does not have a substantial number of recent, favorable online reviews. Any paving company that has been in business for a reasonable number of years should be able to provide references for jobs well done. We recommend a contractor with no less than 70 reviews.
2) When & Where: Info On Project Timing & Location
While exact start and end dates are typically not included in a bid, the contractor should be able to give you a verbal on approximate dates of when the project will begin and end as well as which areas will be paved.
If your estimate is light on details, ask your pavers for a timeline of the major milestones that happen before, during, and after the job so you can set expectations for the board and your residents. This will also clarify small but important details such as when to pull permits and when to notify residents. At A&A, we take care of this for our customers –as any thorough contractor should.
For the location, your estimate should include information on project phases including where they’ll start, where they’ll head to next, and where they’ll finish. Ask for detailed maps in the proposal so you understand the order of the paving phases. This will help you handle traffic flow and accommodate anyone impacted by your project.
Red Flag: Think twice about a paving contractor that does not build in time for securing permits from your city or village. This could delay your project.
3) What & How: Info About Work and Materials
Your estimate should spell out the type of work to be done including:
- Drainage plans
- Paving & Concrete repairs or new paving work
Ask for detailed information about the recommended thickness of the pavement and the materials needed to do the job. Based on traffic patterns or areas that will see heavy equipment such as garbage trucks in front of dumpster pads, your contractor may specify a different level of necessary thickness.
Red flag: This section should be the most detailed. If your contractor is quoting a $1MM job in just 5 lines, you should question that.
4) How Much: Your Estimated Costs
Finally, and most importantly, look at the costs provided in the paving estimate. Make sure that your estimate covers everything so there are no surprises. Ask about little details like certificates of insurance and W9s so you don’t have to chase them down after you sign on.
Red Flag: If one paver is quoting a significantly lower price than the others make sure to ask about the thickness of the paving being quoted. Ask them specifically about compacted thickness. You want an apples-to-apples comparison before signing a contract.
Details Matter When Choosing A Paving Contractor
At A&A Paving, every estimate we draft starts with an on-site walkthrough to understand your objectives and the nature of the work. This helps us ensure that we catch important details such as tripping hazards or drainage issues. If a contractor is only willing to do a drive-by before they submit an estimate – that’s another red flag!
Contractors should take the time to explain their estimates in detail and be eager to answer any questions you may have.
Finally, once you’ve received your estimates, ask the contractors if they can take you on a walk-through of a paving job they’ve done in your area. Make sure it’s at least a few years old so you can see how it’s holding up to daily wear-and-tear.
Contact us if you would like an A&A paving consultant to visit your property so we can provide you with an accurate asphalt paving estimate.