It came as shock to Niki Pickett of Ital Paving when a soon-to-be client asked how much of a deposit she wanted. Her answer was simple: “Nothing.”
As Niki explains, there’s no need for a deposit when paving driveways with asphalt, because the materials don’t need to be purchased that far in advance.
“It’s hot asphalt,” she says. “We pick it up the day that we’re coming to pave your driveway. We don’t need to purchase the materials ahead of time.”
She says that some contractors in other trades need to purchase their materials in advance. However, paving is not an industry that requires materials to be prepurchased.
Niki warns that paving businesses that are asking for deposits are not being forthcoming with their potential clients.
“There is a serious risk with anyone in the paving business who is asking for a deposit up front,” says Niki. “We’ve seen this happen before where a person pays a deposit and then that company goes under, and the homeowner loses their money. You must ask why this person or business requires a deposit.”
Ital Paving has great working relationships with their hot asphalt suppliers, and their equipment is well-maintained and up to date.
They employ people who are experts in paving, who are fully trained, and have obtained all the appropriate licences and certificates. The company is fully insured and licenced – something that homeowners should always check whenever they hire any contractor to do work on their property.
Also make sure when getting quotes on work that the company provides a detailed breakdown of the work to be done. Under provincial consumer relations laws, a quote must include a description of the materials, equipment being used, labour costs, and taxes in order to be considered a legal contract.
“It’s part of being a professional paving company,” says Niki. “Beware people who are offering prices that seem too good to be true. There are paving contractors who are essentially operating out of the back of a pick-up truck, and have no local connections to your community.”
Specialists in asphalt, Ital Paving has been in business for 37 years, completing projects both big and small across Central Ontario.
“Local contractors like us understand the diversity in different geographical locations because we live and work here all year round,” says Niki. “We can visit your property and provide the best advice on what you need to have a durable, smooth and attractive driveway.”
TEXT CHRIS OCCHIUZZI | PHOTOS ANDREW FEARMAN