Concrete staining can be the greatest idea you ever had, or the worst one. The benefits of staining concrete and stamping it are that you’ll get this brilliant, stone look that aesthetically is identical to rare stone pulled from a quarry – and at a fraction of the cost! The bad news in staining concrete yourself is that it takes experience to get just the right skills needed to achieve “just the right look.” Here’s a guide on selecting the right professional contractor for the job, and working with them to ensure your driveway becomes exactly what you envisioned.
1.Dream It, Then Do It
The first step of any good home improvement project is planning. Do you know the particular hue, color, saturation and luster of the concrete staining you’d like to achieve? Is there a particular stone family you are trying to mimic? Take time beforehand to do some research on common types of stones used in driveways. Often, stained concrete is done so to mimic the appearance of marble or slate, two stones that come in a variety of colors.
Take a look at your garage and home as well. Does the color and style match well with the home’s design and architecture? What about the color scheme? Is this stain complementary to the siding of the home? These are all questions to think about when planning out your concrete staining.
2.Finding the Right Pro
Maybe you have “just the guy” for this project, and are already planning with him on what to do next. But if not, it’s always a good idea to ask around before calling the first number you find in the yellow pages. Ask your neighbors, friends and family members if they’ve ever decided to stain their concrete. Did they use a contractor? How were they? Are they satisfied with the work the contractor did? See who your friends recommend, and call them first. A word-of-mouth reference from a close friend can be as good as gold in the home improvement arena.
Ask the contractor about their experience working with concrete, and ask them specifically about their expertise level with concrete staining. Everyone has to start in the industry somewhere, but you don’t want that “somewhere” to be your project. Get the experienced, honest contractor with a proven track record.
3.Communicating Your Vision
Make sure to meet with your contractor before the installation of your stained concrete driveway. Make sure you provide them with any and all details and specifications regarding your project. This is your chance to convey exactly what you want to the crew that’s going to get it right for you – always communicate!
4.Seeing is Believing!
Make sure to schedule the staining at a time when you will be around. Unlike other home improvement projects, concrete staining is one you’ll want to be present for. Being able to give direct feedback to your contractor will ensure that your dream is realized in real-time – this is good for both you and the contractor. They get the job done right at one time, and you get exactly the kind of driveway you’ve always wanted.
The first step of any good home improvement project is planning. Do you know the particular hue, color, saturation and luster of the concrete staining you’d like to achieve?