Low Prices Are Not Always Your Friend
A bargain should be a two-party arrangement. You are agreeing to give something of value — your money — in exchange for something of value — the product or service you are purchasing. The word to focus on in this definition is “value.” If you are not receiving something that you want or need that will perform to your expectations, you are not getting anything of value. Whether you paid the highest price for your purchase or found it at a discount is immaterial to the true value of the item.
Similarly, if you choose an asphalt contractor based solely on the lowest bid, you will not always receive something of value in return. There are many factors that go into asphalt-related work, and it is not always possible to assign a specific monetary value to all of them. For example:
• How long has the contractor been providing the type of work that you need?
• What do his former customers say about the quality of his work, his reliability and his customer service?
• Does the contractor have the equipment and staffing to ensure that your job is completed correctly and on time?
• Will the contractor’s employees perform the actual work, or will he sub-contract the work to others who might lack the expertise to handle the job?
• Does the contractor have the necessary insurance and licensing?
If all contractors submitting bids can answer the above questions to your satisfaction, then you still need to look at the details of what each is quoting. Make sure that you are comparing “apples and apples.”
• Are all quotes for the same scope of work? For example, if you are having pavement installed, is the depth of asphalt identical on all quotes?
• Do all contractors quote the same types of incidental fees? Watch for discrepancies in things like additional trucking fees or equipment charges.
• Are any of the quotes specifying terms that you did not request? Many asphalt contractors are willing to bring crews in on holidays or weekends, for example, to minimize your disruptions. However, some contractors charge extra to cover overtime payments to their crews. If you do not require that the work be performed at such times, make sure that you are not being charged a premium just so the contractor can complete the work at his convenience.
Dirtworks has been providing asphalt paving, maintenance and repair services to customers in the Cape Cod area for more than 20 years. During our two decades in business, we have not always been the low bidder, but we always endeavor to offer the most affordable price for the quality of work we deliver. In addition to a complete range of asphalt-related services, we also offer excavation services and site work. You can request a free quote by submitting our online form, or if you prefer, give us a call at (508) 240-5541.