If you have plans to hire an earthmoving service in your backyard, you need to ensure you are hiring the right person for the job. This is why it is essential you ask the right question. Four questions that will help you make an educated decision about who to hire can be found here.
Does the company have experience with similar jobs?
It can be reassuring to know that this will not be the first time the contractor has operated an earthmoving machine in a residential, backyard area, or the first time they have dug a dam. You will need to make sure they are an experienced operator with proper knowledge of how to complete the job at hand. They should also hold all the necessary insurances and tickets. If you are in doubt, it is a good idea to ask for references of prior jobs they have done. Quality contractors will provide you with contact information of past customers.
Can they meet your deadline?
While price is an important factor, so is time. You need to find a contractor who is able to provide you a firm date of when they can start, and finish, the job. Rough estimates, such as, "sometime next month," is not acceptable. You need a specific date.
What is the estimated cost and are there any potential variations?
The contractor you hire should be able to tell you what the cost of the project will be. Some contractors will provide a project cost, while others will stipulate the number of hours worked and provide an hourly charge. It may be a good idea to get this information in writing and ask for the potential of cost variations. There may be extra costs added on for:
- The materials being installed, such as mulch, gravel, etc.
- Any obstacles present, such as boulders, tree stumps, etc.
- Ability to access the site.
- The type of materials or fill being moved, for example, clay.
What type of access is needed for the machine?
There are some backyards that are simply not accessible for anything over the size of a mini bobcat, or perhaps a dingo. Larger machines, such as bobcats, can often only be used in a front yard or on pre-construction properties. Even if there is a gate, or other access point, issues such as gardens and trees can make the area unable to be accessed.
Finding a contractor who will come to the property before the project is scheduled is smart. This will allow them to see the property and make an educated decision of the amount of time the project will take, as well as the potential cost.