What to look for in a quote

It can be a little daunting comparing quotes from different surfacing contractors. You want the job done well, to a high specification for a fair price. On occasions we do get asked by prospective customers why our price is higher than another they have been given. Where we are able to see the competitors' quote it is usually very apparent to us why the price is different - for example a competitor is cutting corners and not doing the job properly.

This is why we have put together some handy tips and points to consider when reviewing different quotes. The old saying of “if a price appears to be too good to be true, it probably is” can apply here.

Does the quote  include a full specification and a detailed description of the work? Are the different elements of a job clearly identified?

Is the quote like for like – same area, specification etc?

Does the  quote include the office address and a landline number and company registration number? In the event of a problem arising you will want to be able to make contact. Be wary of any quotes that just include a mobile number.

Check to ensure that the surface is not just being covered over. A particularly common practice with door to door callers. The first impressions may be good, but the job is unlikely to continue to look good for long.

Ensure that the preparation is appropriate, durable and long lasting. Is the sub base constructed correctly?

Is the tarmac going to be laid hot? If not it will not set properly.

Is the quote for a single or double layer of tarmacadam?

Does the quote allow for any necessary preparation and taking away old material/excavated, surplus or rubbish? Ensure by asking questions that there are no hidden extras e.g. waste removal, skips.

Will the site be left clean and tidy?

Determine whether variations in the job can be accommodated.

Depending on the usage i.e. a well used drive or one where a caravan is to be sat, is the surface appropriate. Look for stone mastic asphalt (SMA)?

Are the workers employed by the firm and do they adhere to health and safety standards?

What third party liability insurance cover does the firm have in place?

Does the firm have street works accreditation and insurance that allows them to work on highways including things like drop kerbs.