Poor paving is generally caused by being provided under a separate contract when a new house is built.

Paving is one post building trade that would be best provided by the builder as part of the building contract. Otherwise it is likely that your house will suffer from poor paving.

This is our first blog post on this subject. Watch this space for more.

Builders traditionally avoid providing paving around a house for reasons I simply am not aware of. Maybe it is because they know the cost of doing it correctly and consider they wont get the work because they will be too dear.

The result is when I conduct a pre purchase building inspection I often find problems caused because those who don’t know do work that those who do know avoid doing.

Under the control of the builder the paving would more likely be constructed in accordance with the recommendations of the project consulting engineer. The builder is aware of the engineers standard specifications and good building practice and that means they are more likely to do the right thing than a separate contractor will.

When the home owner is responsible for organising a separate contractor, or even doing it themselves under a DIY then there is a good chance of experiencing poor paving, paving with errors that will permit dampness to enter the house structure or which will cause cracking or heaving and dipping that could have been avoided.

They are generally not aware or at least less aware of the engineers recommendations. Rarely does a home owner realise the need to show the paving contractor the engineers specifications.

And paving contractors generally don’t realise there is an engineering report that would be desirable to follow. The blind leading the blind if you were, resulting in poor paving.

My advice to all home owners contracting to build a home; always provide the paving contractors (whether concrete or brick) with a copy of the engineers specifications and ask them to comply with it.

And don’t by guided only by price.

Watch out for observations about the correct preparation, heights and falls and other factors in blog posts to come.