Interlocking, popular choice among home owners in Canada for decades. Home improvement over boring asphalt and home value increasing potential for sure. But, why would concrete pavers arranged sometimes in spectacular way be a headache for Canadian homeowners, it doesn’t make sense?! Well, many homeowners who had interlocking surface covering their driveway, walkways and backyard surface for longer period could sing a song about how interlocking made their homeownership difficult to sustain.
For reliable information on this very costly investment many Canadian home owners make, we have asked professionals who specialize in installation and interlocking maintenance. Como Maintenance Services is Toronto based property maintenance company who specialize in commercial and residential property maintenance including interlocking installation and upkeep. What we discovered in our conversation with Como Maintenance owner was shocking.
We have asked Arman, owner of Como Maintenance Services to tell us about pros and cons of interlocking surface and why could Canadians benefit from such investment. “Choosing to install interlocking pavers on a residential property is very pricy investment, yet it increases home value tremendously. Something that many homeowners already discovered. Not only it increases the value of the property but it looks good as well. It is a big step up from asphalt surface that a standard builder home comes with.” “Interlocking enhances the curb appeal and therefor the home value goes up. What many homeowners don’t get to hear from interlocking contractors is the information about the upkeep. A must know information before choosing to install interlocking pavers and spending a big portion of money into it.”
Why is the upkeep so important and isn’t interlocking better choice over asphalt and pouring concrete? “Yes and no. Interlocking pavers are only a better choice if you are informed what to look after and how much money you will have to spend to maintain interlocking surfaces.”
Why is that so important, isn’t interlocking lasting for decades? “Interlocking can last for decades easily when cared for properly. After the installation, interlocking surface must be washed regularly in order to remove dirt and grime off it, failure to do so will invite moss and grass to grow in between the pavers. Once grass starts to grow, roots will dig small channels where water can seep through which will slowly undermine the underlayment. Water will slowly wash away the gravel and sand under the pavers making pavers to become uneven.”
What would be the best treatment for interlocking and how much does in cost to maintain interlocking surface on annual basis? “Beside regular washing that should be performed at least every month by simply sweeping of debris and hosing it down with a good garden hose blast, Interlocking should be sealed annually. To seal a single garage driveway, the cost would be about $600 moving up with the bigger the surface is.”
That is not bad at all but what can happen if home owner don’t follow the schedule? “Headache! If homeowner doesn’t wash the interlocking and if he doesn’t seal it, a more costly repair is waiting to happen! Grass roots will open up Chanels for water to wash away the underlayment and pavers will start to move. Once the pavers move and shift, a costly repair is inevitable.”
So, what would be the proper schedule in order to prevent such costly repair? “It all depends on the age and quality of pavers installation. Beside, washing and sealing, if grass should start to grow in between the pavers, professional services must be acquired in order to prevent further damage and removal of pavers. In this case, pressure washing will be conducted to remove all the grass, dirt and old sand, new polymeric sand needs to be added and at the end, the pavers must be sealed.”
How often should this be done and how much does this resurfacing cost? “This should be done about every 3-4 years and the price range varies with square footage. Single garage driveway should cost about $1400 with price increasing as the the surface gets bigger.”
Not many homeowners know this indeed and many driveways look like an overgrown jungle. “Yes, that is true. As money borrowing rates go up and inflation is high, many homeowners save money on skipping property maintenance, a big mistake! Every $10 spend on preventive maintenance is worth $100 and more spend later. Business professionals know this to be the truth. A well maintained car will last long and high breakdown costs are not existing. Same is with home maintenance, if you prevent the high repairs, your back account and your family budget will thank you.”
That sounds good for people who do the right thing, but many don’t know this insider knowledge. “Sadly, this is reality. When we get called to some of the homes, the only thing we can tell the homeowner is everything needs to be removed and reinstalled at rated well over $10 000! Many are in shock as no one wants to spend that kind of money in repairs. And it might not even be the fault of the current homeowner but previous owners who purposely left property maintenance to chance.”
This is surely the case of many who buy a home and don’t realize what maintenance and repair awaits them. “That is correct. Buying a home these days is often combined with fast acting, multiple offers kind of pressure where homeowners don’t have enough time to rethink the consequences or they are simply not informed by their realtor about maintenance and repair costs down the road. Many properties get sold without home inspection, a potential high repair cost waiting to happen. If a homeowner maximizes his spending power to purchase an overprices property, he or she will perhaps not anticipate an interlocking repair cost in height of $20 000.”
That is so true, probably no one thinks about that these days. “We have seen many horror stories where homeowners simply were no aware of homes they purchased or where homeowners simply ignore property maintenance and are unpleasantly surprised about the repair costs. The golden rule is, put aside money for property maintenance, talk to your local contractor you trust regards proper procedure and cost involved and start with maintaining your home the proper way as soon as possible. This way you will be informed about the cost, procedures and consequences and you can make a conscious decision. Don’t leave your property and big investment to a chance.”
An eye opening conversation with professional who takes care of many properties in and around the GTA.
Choosing to install interlocking around the property has it’s benefits yet it asks for constant maintenance and money to be spend on maintaining the surfaces annually. The fact is, many home owners are not aware of these procedures and responsibilities. If left to deteriorate, interlocking could be a big headache for homeowners, an investment perhaps not worth investing into. Only a dedicated homeowner who knows the responsibilities will have a long lasting interlocking worth investing that will actually boost the property value for resale of for retirement investment.
Informing and choosing wisely is the key to home ownership, whether you choose to install interlocking or installing different type of roof or windows. Contact your local contractor or contractors and get multiple estimates when investing into your property. If you are local to the GTA, contact Como Maintenance Services, they will explain you all procedures, costs and outcome without unpleasant surprises.