When you think about it, your driveway is one of the most frequently used parts of your home. Most homeowners pull in and out of their driveway at least twice a day. It’s a place to work on projects, dribble a basketball, and so many other things. In many homes, the driveway is one of the first things that you see. So for both practical and visual reasons, it makes sense to keep your driveway in good shape.

If it’s time to get your driveway repaved, getting the job done right is crucial. It might be tempting to cut corners and save a few bucks, but this is almost always a more costly approach in the end. A well-paved driveway will last much longer, serve its purpose better, and save money over the long term. Here are three worst case paving scenarios you definitely want to avoid.

1. Hiring a bad contractor

Anyone who has ever worked with a bad contractor, whether it’s a bathroom remodel or a landscaping job, knows what a headache it can be. Dishonest communication, inaccurate quotes, and low quality work are just some of the issues that could come up if you are not working with an experienced and reputable expert. The same goes for pavement. Save yourself hassle and frustration by taking the time to find a reputable paving specialist who you can trust. There are some dubious contractors out there, and in the end, you’re the one who pays for the corners they cut.

2. No written guarantee

Sometimes, even with professional and experienced pavers, mistakes can happen. Sub-contractors can botch a job, equipment can malfunction, or misunderstandings can arise. Take care of any potential problems before they happen by getting a written guarantee. By having a contract and guarantee in writing that is signed by all involved parties, you are covered in case something goes wrong with the job — and there is a clear outline of who is responsible for what in a given situation.

3. Poor design and planning

If you hire an inexperienced or a dishonest contractor, you are likely to end up with a driveway that isn’t well-planned or executed. If the design you have in mind isn’t feasible for whatever reason, your contractor should be able to clearly explain why the design isn’t going to work — and present you with a solid alternative. Maybe the materials you have in mind are not conducive to your region’s climate. Maybe your original design creates problems with the layout of your property. Experienced contractors will be able to flag these issues before the project gets underway so that no one is wasting time or money on a design that isn’t realistic.

Choosing the Right Contractor

When it comes to hiring a paving specialist, ask around with friends and neighbors for recommendations of experienced contractors who do high quality work. Get quotes from a number of established contractors in your area. Remember — a well paved driveway can last you several decades. It’s worth putting in the time, effort and money to get it done right.