Hiring a Mason, Like hiring anyone requires you to do a little research before hiring the right one. Below will be some questions you should ask them. Not all Masons are created equal, so it’s important to make sure you ask the right questions for the job.
Do you have experience with the kinds of materials I’d like to use?
All Masons have specialties and all Masons have areas of weaknesses. Some may be good at working with stone, others may be good at working with brick. Make sure the mason is comfortable working with the material you’d like to use. Many prefer to work with certain materials and are specialists with that material. There’s a chance you may be talking with a great mason, just one who’s not good for your project.
Do you have references?
Always ask for references from past jobs. You can find out a lot from talking to people a contractor has worked for. Ask if the mason was neat, clean and efficient. Did they clean up when they were done and do everything they promised to? Another homeowner will generally give their true opinion of the masons work.
What are the payment terms?
Cost is obviously very important, but when you get past that, what are the payment terms? Most masonry jobs require a great deal of material to get the job started, so don’t be surprised if they ask for half the money up front. After the job is complete, and you the customer is happy, is generally when the second half is due.
Is there anything I need to do before the work gets started?
It’s generally nice to be on the same page with your masonry contractor, so you should ask if there’s anything you need to do. Sometimes the work area will need to be cleaned up of furniture or other items by the homeowner. Other times, you may need to have the vehicles out of the driveway so the mason can have access to the site. Whatever it is, it should be discussed prior to starting the job so there’s no surprises.
What kind of cleanup will happen after the project?
This should always be pre discussed as it could lead to problems for both the contractor and homeowner if not talked about. Sometimes masonry work can damage the landscaping if equipment is used. General clean up should be included in the job costs but many times a masonry contractor will not include landscape restoration. If it’s not written in the contract, it generally won’t be included. If you don’t know, it’s always best to ask what is included. Many times homeowners believe the site will look like before the contractor started when the project is completed.
Who will buy the materials?
Many times homeowners want to purchase the materials because they think they can save some money. This can be the case on some occasions but most of the time it’s not. A masonry contractor has suppliers who they use on a regular basis and usually get better pricing that a homeowner. Also, if there’s a defective material used that the homeowner purchased, the masonry contractor will not be liable for it. It’s always better to let the contractor purchase the materials in case any issues arise. Manufactures will be more likely to work with a contractor for defective material versus a homeowner.
Please contact DiFranco Contractors Inc if you’d like an estimate for stone, foundation, brick, block, fireplace or any other type of masonry project In Mentor, Ohio and the surrounding areas of Northeast Ohio at (440) 946-2029.