When you set out to create a new building, move the earth, or start a new construction project, the first step is to find the right civil construction company. Civil construction in Northern Colorado often involves moving land and working with natural resources, so you want to be confident you are hiring a company that understands your vision and can help you reach your goals. To make the best decision, do you research before signing the contract. Here are the top questions to ask when hiring a civil construction company.

1. What is your experience on this type of project?

Start by getting an idea of what kinds of projects the company typically works on. Do they specialize in a certain type of industry or construction? Are most of their projects in a certain geographic area or climate? Do they focus on large-scale projects or work on smaller projects? A civil construction company that has experience working on similar projects to yours will likely be familiar with the unique challenges and know what it takes to create a successful project that meets your goals and stays within budget. You can also ask about how long the company has been in business and what other projects they’ve worked on.

2. Do you have the proper accreditation and licenses?

Civil construction companies must have certain types of accreditation and licenses to work. The requirements vary based on where the company is located and the types of projects they work on. Hiring a company that isn’t accredited or licensed comes with huge risks and isn’t recommended. Having the proper paperwork shows that the company follows local regulations and is in accordance with current business and safety measures. You’ll also want to check that the company is insured and that it will cover any accidents that could happen on the job site.

3. What is your timeline?

CSU construction project​Every construction project hits unexpected roadblocks, but the company should still be able to provide you a general estimate of how long the project will take. This is also your chance to ask about their availability. You might find a company you like that is busy with other projects and can’t get to your project for a few months. Make sure you and the company are on the same page about when the process can begin and how long it will take.

4. What is included in the cost?

Every civil construction company you talk to should give you a detailed bid about how much the project will cost. When you start to narrow down your options, make sure you know exactly what is included in that bid. Does it include the entire process, including labor and materials? Does it cover the cost of getting permits? Make sure you are completely clear on what is included so you can fairly compare bids and don’t get blindsided with an extra cost later.

5. What is your safety record?

With large machinery and dangerous situations, safety is crucial at all construction sites. Ask potential civil construction companies about their safety record, including how long it has been since their last accident and how many accidents have occurred in the lifetime of the company. You can also ask about the contingency plan of what would happen if an accident were to occur.

6. How do you communicate with clients?

Be clear from the beginning about how involved you want to be in the process and how to best communicate with the team. Some companies send updates to their clients every day with pictures and notes, while other companies are less frequent about their communication or wait to be contacted by the client. Match the communication style and frequency of the company with how often you want to be updated.

Asking these six questions for civil construction companies can help you get informed and make the best decision for your project. Hiring a civil construction company is one of the biggest decisions of the project, so take your time and ask plenty of questions.