For many people, inside is where it is at, they bought their home for the great family room, the basement or the awesome view in the master bedroom. For others, however, the outside of their home is the whole keythe beautiful yard, the painstaking landscaping. Now all that it will take to make the yard complete is a brick patio. Before you start dragging in piles of brick and trying to build a patio yourself, think of the trouble, the back breaking labor and your supreme commitment to never completing a single project in your entire lifetime. This is not a job for a weekend warrior. Building a stone or brick patio is a job for the experienced masonry contractor. There are three steps to finding the right contractor for this job: locating, interviewing and hiring. This is how you go about doing all three.
Locating the Brick or Stone Mason in Harris County, Texas
- Do an internet search. Make sure that you narrow your search down to your exact location so that you do not get twenty million responses.
- Use the online yellow pages. They are simple to use and will even show you reviews for the companies in their listing.
- Use professional referrals from other contractors.
- Use personal referrals from friends and family.
- Contact the nearest brick or stone mason union or guild.
- Ask for referrals at lumber or contractor supply stores.
After you have located, at least two masonry experts in your area, you will need to schedule a meeting to discuss your project, your budget and their qualifications. This is done in the interviewing process.
Interviewing the Brick or Stone Mason, ask the following questions:
- Are you certified, licensed, insured and bonded in Harris County, Texas?
- Have you had any specialized training that qualifies you as an expert?
- What is your level of experience?
- How many people do you employ and how many will come on each job?
- Have you ever had your contracting license revoked in this or any other state?
After receiving satisfactory answers to your questions, you can then move on to the actual hiring process, which will include some more in-depth and specific questions.
- What is the estimated cost of this particular project?
- What is the estimated length of time this project will take?
- What is your clean-up policy?
- What do you do with leftover materials?
Make sure that you keep in mind that estimates are just thatestimates. The crew could finish several days before schedule or several days after. The estimated cost could be off by as much as 20%, which should be stated in the contract. Anything higher than 20%, however, and you might be well within your rights to dispute the cost. This is not the norm however, and the majority of masons will complete the job the right way, for the right price.