So it is decided: you need a retaining wall on your property. Perhaps it is to hold back a hillside that is close to your home, or perhaps you are building it along your driveway to keep out that annoying and dangerous debris and dirt from sliding over it. Or maybe you have chosen a retaining wall to be built to make a fancy and ornate display of your backyard, such as using it as a barrier around your garden, shrubs, or trees.
Building a retaining wall is far more complex than simply laying out some bricks and hoping for the best. Before considering doing the job yourself, ask yourself these following questions:
- Are you aware of what materials and tools will be required to complete this project?
- Do you have these tools and materials on hand, or will you need to purchase them yourself?
- Are you willing to spend the money to rent these tools (and materials, if applicable) to accomplish the look you want?
- If you do need to buy new tools, are you actually saving money ? and stress ? by doing this project yourself? Or would you benefit from enlisting in the help of a professional?
If you have not performed work like this before, I bet you will be buying a lot of tools brand new ? which can easily make the job cost a lot more than if you hired on a professional who already has these tools on hand. Also consider how you may make a mistake with the job (it happens) or how you may be actually putting yourself and those who live on your property in danger. You may be endangering your personal property too, and/or violating any sort of insurance you have for your home and property.
A retaining wall is meant to restrain some heavy, pressuring material, such as compost or dirty. It is often used to prevent an entire hillside from sliding on to your property, and it can also protect your plants and trees from any sort of pesky animals and other pests. Less endangering to your home, though also important, is having a wall to provide a sort of border to your garden.
Think about it ? holding back an entire hillside? Do you really want to be accountable for that when you do not know what you are doing, and lack the experience? You may be surprised what sort of a punch a ton of dirt also has (that stuff is extremely heavy!). If you hiring a retaining wall contractor, you are making sure that the job is done right. You can easily find a retaining wall contractor through:
- Other general contractors? recommendations
- Handyman or hardware store recommendations
- Any related guilds or professional organization recommendations
- The recommendations of friends, family and neighbors
- Internet searches
- Phone book
- Local media, such as newspapers (classifieds) and television
Be sure to interview your retaining wall contractor before you hire them, such as asking them what sort of experience they have, any licensing and certifications, and be sure to ask for any referrals. When you ask for the referrals, CALL the referrals and ask them if they like the job that they received. Remember: you?re investing in having this job done, so you want to be sure that it is done correctly.
Once the job is complete, do be sure to inspect the quality of the workmanship and do speak out if you see something that, to you, is not up to par. You paid the money, you deserve satisfactory results. Any good quality professional will ensure that you are happy with the job that is done before walking off with a paycheck.