This article provides the most comprehensive list of tips for residents of Richmond, VA, to find the best local paving company. Click to…
If you live in Virginia and found this post by typing “best paving contractor near me, local pavers in RVA, or driveway paving Richmond, VA,” then you’re in the right place.
Driveways and parking lots are often the most overlooked part of a home or business’s exterior, and that can be bad for your wallet.
If your driveway deteriorates it can lower your home value. If it has developed potholes it can cause trips and problems with your car’s steering alignment.
Without regular maintenance the asphalt can crack and allow water to penetrate the surface, resulting in expensive repairs.
If you’re a business owner, your paved parking lot is the first thing people see when they arrive at your business. When it’s ignored, it can be unsightly and result in a negative experience.
Maintaining your driveway is possible for do-it-yourselfers, but there is a learning curve and risk if it is not done properly.
That’s the purpose of this article.
A high-quality paving contractor will ensure your driveway is properly installed and maintained, lasts its full lifespan, and provides the highest return on investment possible.
So let’s start looking at the 11 Tips to Find The Best Paving Company In Virginia
Whenever you need help with home improvement what’s the first thing you do?
Research and gather information on the contractors in your area.
If you live in Richmond, VA, or the surrounding areas the same rule applies.
There are many paving contractors in Virginia that pave driveways and parking lots.
That’s why finding the best paving company for your home or business starts with online research.
Skilled pavers have a great track record of good reviews that prove their driveways and parking lot projects last and have long and lasting smooth surfaces.
Here are some bullet points of what to look for during your research:
Your research doesn’t have to end at Google.
If you’re a homeowner or business owner, check with your friends, neighbors, business partners, etc.
They could recommend a paving contractor that is small, local, and doesn’t have much of an online portfolio.
You might get super high-quality and attention a larger company can’t provide.
The next section is about Credentials and Insurance
This one is super important.
In the home improvement industry contractors say to avoid “Chuck in a truck.” Who is this Chuck?
This phrase refers to a contractor who is not licensed, bonded, or insured.
They are your neighbor or friend who is a handyman.
While this option may look like a time and money saver, it could cost you tons of money.
In fact, Virginia Code Section 54.1-1115 states no one may contract for or bid upon the “construction, removal, repair, or improvements to or upon real property owned, controlled or leased by another person” without a license or the correct type of license.
Virginia takes unlicensed contracting very seriously, and a paving contractor who performs work without the proper licensing can face:
If a paver doesn’t have their licensing listed on their website, be sure to ask them for proof of their license.
This keeps you safe from having to deal with the legalities of hiring a contractor who shouldn’t be paving your driveway or parking lot.
This is very very important when you are interviewing a paving company, and it doesn’t matter if you’re having work completed on a gravel, asphalt, or concrete driveway or parking lot.
The contract agreement is one of the most important pieces of documentation you will receive from your partnership.
It’s the main agreement between you and the paver, containing all the project details.
This agreement should have detailed outlines of what work is being completed, payment and deposit information, project scope, and the schedule.
The agreement is so important that if the paving company is dishonest or refuses to complete certain work, you won’t have any ability to take them to court without it.
This can be verbal, included in your agreement, or on separate paperwork.
But, it’s something you should ask the paving company you’re interviewing about.
Ask the paving company where you can see the paving crew’s daily start and finish times, project beginning and completion dates, and the different project phases.
Paving projects can be completed in a single day but it depends on the size and scope of the project.
The paving schedule your paver gives you could be as simple as starting at 10 AM and finish by 4 PM, or the job will last multiple days.
There’s a huge difference between paving a single driveway and a massive parking lot or roadway.
Just like the paving schedule, you will usually find this piece of documentation in your project agreement.
A high-quality paving contractor should include whether their crew will be completing the job, or if they hire sub-contractors to pave your project.
The best pavers in Richmond will also tell you the techniques, methods, and materials they will use to pave your property.
If you have any changes to make during the project’s duration, this is where you’ll likely find the details.
Your estimate will be simple or highly detailed depending on the type of contractor you’re hiring.
A paving company should be able to give detailed estimates on the spot when they see the project site. This is key.
In order for any contractor to give a proper estimate, they will need to inspect the site where they will be working.
The paver you reach out to should not give random estimates over the phone, and if they do, be sure they ask very detailed questions about your property.
Why is this?
A contractor who just wants to give the lowest price is usually doing so to undercut other contractors and close the job.
But there are many negative side effects to process:
A true, high-quality paving company will want to come and see the property.
They will either charge a travel fee or remove the travel fee should you hire them for the job.
This may sound like random charging, but the contractor is traveling to your property and using the gas to be sure YOU get the most accurate estimate possible.
When a paver can see the project site they will know whether any unseen issues might arise, whether more or less materials need to be ordered, and how long it will realistically take their crew to complete the job.
Another set of documents your paving contractor have are bonds and insurance.
These documents are vital to ensuring you and your home are protected if anything goes wrong during the project.
The bond is an agreement between you and a paving contractor stating they will complete the project as agreed upon and intended.
In other words, the paver will finish the project as written in the project agreement and up to the high standards you expect.
A bond protects you from losing out financially if the paving company is unable or fails to complete the project to the agreement’s specifications.
You should be able to obtain this documentation before signing any contracts.
Before the project begins, the paving company should provide proof of liability insurance and workers’ compensation.
Again the documents are usually found in your project agreement with all the others we have discussed in this section, but its very important you ask the contractor to point it out.
Because liability insurance protects your property from any damage and worker’s compensation pays workers who get injured on the job.
If the contractor doesn’t have these credentials, YOU will be liable for damage to your property or worker injuries.
Hiring a paving company is exciting because you’re finally beautifying your driveway and increasing property value, but without the proper documentation, you could find yourself liable unexpected charges.
In the next section, we will be discussing experience.
When it comes to paving driveways and parking lots in Richmond and the surrounding areas, experience is vital to making the right choice.
If you’re actively contacting paving companies get out your pen and paper, because when you ask them about experience you’ll want to note more than just the number of years in business.
Here’s a list of things to look for when it comes to experience:
And yes, you will finally need to ask them how long they have been in business.
This statistic isn’t relative to the state of Virginia.
But 96% of contractors go out of business before they reach 10 years, and that number includes paving contractors.
For example, Richard’s Paving has been in business for more than 15 years and is going strong.
If they have been in business for over a decade, they obviously don’t rush through projects, over/undercharge, or perform bad work.
Step 4 is going to be about paving portfolios.
If you find a paving company online and they come to your home/business for an inspection and estimate, you need to ask for a portfolio.
The best pavers in Richmond, VA, are honest.
The will not make up stories about successful paving jobs or merely claim to have completed tons of jobs.
They will have a photo gallery or portfolio of completed projects.
Usually, you will find the gallery on the paver’s homepage or a special page on their website.
You can also check out the paving company’s social media or Google Business Profile to find good photos of their past projects.
Even better, look for before and after photos so you can see how they made a worn-down and faded driveway/parking lot shine again.
For a sample, you can view the Richard’s Paving Gallery.
We touched on this topic previously in the article but in case you skipped to this section we will cover quotes and estimates more in depth.
If you look at your driveway, walkway, parking lot, or roadway and its in need of gravel or repairs, don’t just call and get 3 quotes.
We repeat, don’t just call the 3 closest paving companies and get 3 quotes.
This is a long-lasting stereotype people say when it comes to hiring contractors.
But why is it false?
First, a paving contractor can’t provide a truly accurate quote unless they are able to view the project site.
A driveway may have curves and bends that affect the grade or amount of materials needed.
Or a parking lot’s asphalt could be more deteriorated below the surface than you can see.
Second, every paving company has its own way of providing estimates for the job.
A contractor in Hanover County may have much higher labor charges than one located in Richmond, VA.
Thus, the paver in Richmond could provide higher quality at a lower price.
Finally, it can waste your time.
If you get 3 – 5 quotes and have all these contractors coming to your home or place of business, it can be confusing trying to figure out all the ins and outs of the estimates they provide.
Trying to find out how much one charges to come to your home by the mile vs. another, and then comparing it to each one’s labor charges can be annoying.
Then, in the end, the best paver providing the most value could be the paving company with the worst reviews.
And that’s not what we want.
Thankfully, there’s good news.
If you follow all these tips then the right paver should fall into place.
A contractor who charges a little more but has incredible reviews, a good-looking portfolio, and many years in business will be a better choice than the cheaper guy.
The next section is about paving materials.
Another question you should ask a paver is what kind of materials they use.
Here’s why you should ask about materials.
If the contractor is using DIY (do-it-yourself) materials, it means they are starting at a big box store like Home Depot or Lowes.
Why is this an issue with paving?
Because even though these stores can offer a variety of paving products, the materials are of lower quality and can chip, crack, and fade faster over time.
Professional paving companies have access to higher-quality materials at more affordable prices.
That means a professional paver can get you better stone for gravel driveways, asphalt for parking lots, and concrete for parking areas, walkways, and driveways.
A professional paver also has more advanced technology, paving tools, and state-of-the-art equipment.
All of this ensures your pavement will stand the test of time.
If properly maintained of course.
Our next tip is on reviews.
This is self-explanatory.
Whenever you go to a new restaurant, hire a professional, or purchase a product, it’s natural to check the reviews.
Because it tells us whether the product or service is of high enough quality someone else bothered to write a review.
Do you know who else loves reviews?
The Big G.
That’s what we call Google.
Google will improve website rankings, Google Business Profile rankings, and other platforms if a company has many high-quality reviews.
This has caused many paving contractors and other professionals to purchase reviews from fake customers.
Luckily Google has created ways to punish these shady business practices.
But some can still slip through the cracks.
When you’re looking at reviews make sure they are not all one-word sentences with 5 stars.
Reviews should be well thought out and talk about the paving contractors’ professionalism, quality, and communication.
Among other values.
If you look up a paving contractor and their HomeAdvisor or Google Profile has tons of 5-star reviews with people saying “great work,” or “they do a good job.”
Be sure to check for others that are more intricate.
And check multiple platforms to get the best picture.
Up next is step 8. Understanding paving timelines.
We are all busy people.
Whether you’re a home or business owner, you have to juggle family, hobbies, work, and other extracurricular events.
This makes sitting at home or closing your business’s parking lot for a paving project demanding.
You don’t want to miss work or have your lot closed to customers.
This means you want to job done as quickly as possible and when it works best for both parties.
When you’re interviewing contractors ask them when they are available and match it to your schedule.
If the paving company is reliable they will know when they can get out to your location for an estimate, how long the project will take, and if they think there will be any issues that can extend the project duration.
Be wary of paving contractors who want to come out, give an estimate, and then promise unrealistic and ultra-fast timelines.
This is a red flag the company is rushing through projects and not providing high-quality work.
When you start contacting pavers, ask them what kind of warranties or satisfaction guarantees they provide.
Typically, pavers will offer a 1 – 2 year warranty with a 100% satisfaction guarantee (this varies greatly).
But, you can find a range of different offers.
Here are some items to look for when it comes to guarantees:
Ask for documentation on what they guarantee.
When you’re dealing with gravel, asphalt, or concrete driveways and parking lots, a lot of variables are at play.
And a good, high-quality warranty or guarantee goes a long way saving you money if anything goes wrong in the near future.
This one will varies based on the locality you live in.
Each county may have different requirements and different permits based on the project you want to complete.
A well-rounded and high-quality paving company will know what permits are required to complete your project.
This one is easy.
Go ahead and hire the pacing company!
If you have followed the steps and tips in this guide to be sure the paving company is the right one for you, then it should be an easy decision.
And the completed paving project will increase your property value, make your neighbors jealous, and make you happy.
To conclude our article “How To Find The Best Paving Company In Richmond Virginia,” we want to say thanks so much for reading, and we hope this helps you find the paving company that works best for you.
We are a gravel and asphalt paving company that provides service in Richmond, VA, the surrounding areas, Virginia’s Middle Peninsula, and Northern Neck.
Our paving company has been in business for 15+ years and has plenty of references.
We’d love to help you out.
This article provides the most comprehensive list of tips for residents of Richmond, VA, to find the best local paving company. Click to…
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