How to select a builder or construction company to build interlocking driveway in Ontario
1) Get quotes from 2-3 contactors. You may be tempted to go with the contractor who got
recommended to you by a friend or contractor who did a good job at a project down the street.
While referral comes with certain promise for quality you may be overpaying greatly when
selecting a contractor this way. When contractors get clients from referral or word of mouth,
they tend to quote a higher than usual price because a) they know their reputation is working
in their favor b) they know a client is likely not shopping around.
2) Don’t put too much trust in reviews online. Large companies like Google and Facebook only
relatively recently started enforcing major fight on fake reviews. Smaller companies tend to
be slower at this because they neither have the resources nor have an incentive to tackle
fake reviews ( often their business model depends on fees that they charge to contractors
hence they are hesitant to remove the fake good reviews from their platforms).
3) While selecting the most affordable contractor it’s better to be weary of the ones that quote
prices below general market price. Firstly, inexperienced contractors may do a bad quality work.
Uneven grade surface, bad stone cuts, or not deep enough excavation (1ft is a standard) are only
some of the examples of bad quality work. While some things are easy to catch right away, others
such as poorly compacted grading may not present themselves until couple of years later.
Secondly, small companies or the ones that haven’t been in business for long may not live
long enough to fulfill any possible warranty incidents that may arise in future.
Unfortunately, some construction companies go out of business and if the grade of your driveway
becomes uneven the company that’s out of business will not get fixed it as promised.
4) Ask contractor about the warranty that they are offering for the installation.
2 – 3-year warranty is the general norm among good quality contractors.
5) Check out contractor’s portfolio and pictures of previous projects. If you are building a driveway,
it’s normal to ask for the addresses of those projects and check them out in person.
Ask if contractor has done commercial projects before. If they have usually it’s a good sign
of their expertise.
6) When it comes to payments the good approach is to break it into 2 – 3 instalments that come due as project moves along.
Every contractor does things different here, but a good rule of thumb is split payments into 3 parts:
1. Contractor brough team and equipment on site and is ready to start work – 1st payment is due.
2. Middle of the project is done – excavation, grading, and compacting is done – 2nd payment is due.
3. Project is complete – garbage/bin is taken out. – 3rd payment is due
Also, it is normal for contractors to take small deposit of $500 after the estimate in order to put your project in their list of future work.