When managing an association, shopping center, commercial or industrial property, big picture items and small details are essential to the aesthetic and utility of your property. You generally consider the more noticeable things like landscaping, paint, and overall cleanliness, but your asphalt surface is no exception. In fact, unlike some maintenance issues that are simply cosmetic, asphalt maintenance and repair are important factors in keeping your property safe and useable.
In general, most paving companies recommend a seal coat every 3 to 5 years and a full replacement around every 20-25 years considering certain usage, exposure, and environmental factors. Depending on what’s going on with your asphalt’s surface, your repair or maintenance plan could include patches, overlays, seal coat, or a full removal and replacement.
Whether you’re presenting proposals to an HOA, Board of Directors, or a scrupulous building owner, it’s important to gather a few proposals to compare so a common scope of work and cost expectation can be established. But how do you make sure that you’re comparing the same thing from proposal to proposal? Different Estimators may have different measurements, opinions on what is recommended, and interpretations of a customer’s needs; how do you reduce these discrepancies and get the same apples-to-apples proposals?
Solving the issue of varying proposals is easier than you would think, although it seems counterintuitive — bring the Estimators out at the same time to walk the property together! Yes, they’re competing for the same job (and only one can win) but having everyone meet together to learn about your needs, pain points, and the current and ideal state of the property ensures that they all receive the same information and can discuss (and agree on) measurements and what the issues are and how to best address them. Will this be a simple seal coat? What square footage? Is a patch needed? Is it too damaged to patch and requires an overlay? Should it be a removal and replacement instead? Are there drainage issues? Can the cracks be sealed? How many parking spaces are needed? Do manhole covers or concrete trenches need to be addressed?
The number of variables on any project increase the odds of receiving different scopes of work for the same property and only adds to confusion. Having the Estimators arrive at one common course of action can save you many headaches in the long run and prevent important maintenance or repair issues from being overlooked. Once you receive the proposals from all the Estimators, you can really compare the cost now that you know the scope of work is the same, and any discrepancies will stand out since the measurements and scope should be consistent across the board.
Below, we’ll outline some of the questions you should be asking while you have all the Estimators on site; and next month, we’ll walk you through the scheduling process now that you know how to get the scope of work you need.
- Are all companies licensed, bonded, and insured to perform the work outlined in their proposals?
- Are the measurements (square footage of areas, lineal footage of cracks, etc.) the same? Are the number of areas being addressed the same?
- Is grinding included with a proposed overlay, and would it be a full grind or edge grind? For what areas?
- Are the thicknesses of asphalt overlays the same?
- Are valves and manholes being addressed? Raised? How high?
- How many phases are expected in the proposal?
- Are dumping fees addressed for any removed Petromat or asphalt?
- What seal coat manufacturer will be used? How many coats?
- Are striping and pavement markings included?
- Does the proposal include homeowner/business notification requirements, traffic control, or permits?