Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Great Paver Adventure

I'm always looking for a deal.   After seeing the first round of quotes for the pool deck I decided to check out craigslist for some pavers in hopes that I'd find something cheaper than what the pool builder quoted which varied from $5 sq.ft. for brick pavers and $9 sq. ft. for travertine.  I'll be adding a post about the pool very soon (we are still picking out a pool company).

Pavers in the driveway at Tampa
As luck had it I found an ad on craigslist for 1500 sq. ft. of travertine for $2 sq. ft.  There was one catch however; the pavers were installed on a driveway in Tampa some 60 miles away and we had to remove them ourselves.  Being the skeptic I was we contacted the seller and then drove to Tampa to see this great deal.  As it turned out the house was located in south Tampa (a pretty nice area).  The pavers had been installed about 5 months earlier and because they had been installed wrong were separating and cracking.  They were a little dirty from being driven on and some were cracked; but most were in good shape and just needed to be pressured washed since they had been sealed.  We quickly met with the seller and provided a 10% deposit with the agreement that we'd pick them up the following Saturday.  The driveway however was huge!  There were actually over 1700 sq. ft. of pavers. 

The following day I texted my lawn guy to see if he could help.  He's not real good with english and his daughter called me directly to figure out that I needed a crew and more importantly a truck with a fork lift.  We'd need to stack the pavers on pallets and then transport them the 60 miles to the Sarasota house.  After some negotiation and with her acting as the translator we reached an agreement that he'd help the following Saturday and more importantly had access to a truck and forklift.  Another Craigslist ad and I found some free pallets.

The week went by and  the Friday before I texted my guy to confirm that everything was ready to go for Saturday.  I immediately got a phone call from his cousin looking for clarification on my text.  Needless to say he had no truck and was not ready.  Needless to say I was not real happy.  A quick call to the seller looking for another week on my end did not go well.  They were installing the new driveway on Wednesday and needed the pavers up.   I frantically started searching the Internet for companies that rented trucks with forklifts to no avail (for a reasonable price).    We had a party to go to and I needed some time to think through the problem so we headed out passing through Elwood Park a semi-rural area with horses and lots of blue collar type dwelling.  That's when we saw the sod guys place that we had driven by a 1000 times.  He had a fairly large truck parked nearby so we stopped and I called the number on the sod-by-the-piece sign.  To make a long story short he had a buddy that had a large truck with a forklift and we worked out a deal.  $375 to pick up the pavers on Saturday and deliver to Sarasota.  Another quick call and my yard guy said he'd have 2 guys at my house at 7 AM.

We started picking the pavers up at 8:15 AM and finished at noon - 11 pallets worth.  Along the way I had to find a few more pallets at the local Home Depot.  By 3:30 PM they were delivered to Sarasota and we had a happy ending to the story.  Jan and I had a sore back the next few days - but we had found a deal - remember I like a good deal!  Next deal is to get them installed... and that's another story I'm sure.