You have dreamed about a new stone patio, flagstone fireplace, brick fireplace or other extensive masonry project long enough. You decide it is time to get started, and you are going to need to find the right masonry contractor to get the job done right. Hiring a professional to do major brick, stone or tile projects can be a bit overwhelming at first, but by following a few basic guidelines, you will find the right pro for your project.
A simple maxim to keep in mind is that there are bricklayers and then there are professional masons. The difference in the two types of people who could be vying for your business is training and experience. Experts in the field of bricklaying and stonework are usually certified by the Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA). The MCAA certification demonstrates that this is a masonry specialist that has been trained to work with all types of materials. It also helps ensure that the masonry contractor is someone who values their reputation and will therefore be adapt at communicating with you about your project.
Always ask for, and follow up with, references from customers who have had similar jobs to yours done in the past. If possible, go take a look at the projects the mason you are considering hiring has completed, and ask the homeowner direct questions about how well the contractor stayed within agreed upon budget, met deadlines, protected the property from damage, and delivered a satisfactory final result. Don’t worry about putting anyone on the spot; most people usually love to tell the story about what a great deal they received, or how badly someone took advantage of them.
When you have narrowed your list down to three possibilities, it is time to select the masonry contractor to begin work on your project. Base the final selection on your previous research and how thoroughly and clearly each potential contractor presents their bid for the job to you. If you follow these suggestions, you will choose a professional who will create something that you can take pride in and increase the value of your home.