The average concrete construction company is more likely well versed with foundation repair than stamped concrete driveway design. Finding just the right concrete contractor will make the concrete design look great while not neglecting the science of the work.
Concrete Contractor or Concrete Designer?
The ideal professional for the job will be a concrete construction company that knows the intricacies of proper concrete mixing while having identified the minute windows in the formula that allow for the manipulation of the texture. The concrete contractor should also have an eye for color choices and perhaps even color mixing, to properly further the illusion that a stamped concrete driveway portrays.
S/He might go so far as to spread different colorings – especially in the case of a brick pattern – to complete the illusion. Depending on the size of the town and the number of concrete contractor businesses operating there, the homeowner may have to opt for a third alternative: working with two different professionals. One company provides the expertly mixed concrete while the other does the artistic part of the labor.
Identifying Concrete Construction Professionals for the Job
The best way of starting the search if by talking to friends and family members; solicit referrals to companies they worked with. Another option is driving around the neighborhood and looking for nice examples of workmanship. Stop at particularly stunning stamped concrete driveways and ask the homeowner for the name of the company that did the work.
Background Checks are a Must
No matter how glowing the recommendation from a friend, family member or neighbor, always take the time to check the concrete contractor against the Better Business Bureau (BBB) database. A great concrete construction company with dismal business practices might produce a neat looking stamped concrete driveway; at the same time, it may cause suppliers to place liens on your home for non-payment of invoices. Avoid the headaches and only choose a concrete contractor with an average or above BBB rating.
Check the License
Concrete construction almost always requires state licensing. For example, in California a concrete contractor must have a Class C Specialty Contractor License from the Contractors State License Board. Research this for your own state by relying on the Contractor’s License Reference Site. Only do business with licensed contractors!
Invite Bids and Negotiate the Contract
Invite the top-rated licensed concrete construction companies to bid on the stamped concrete driveway project. Seriously consider the bid of the company that holds industry specific voluntary certifications, employs crews rather than farming out the work to subcontractors or unskilled day laborers, and offers proof of liability and workers’ compensation insurance.
Service Magic. “Stamped Concrete” (accessed February 6, 2010)