Backyard Patio Extension
- Concrete Foundation for Storage Shed
April 1 - 3,
You may be asking yourself, why
would I create a web page on my website regarding
boring concrete slabs?
Ahhhh...because of the journey I took.... to get to
the point when the concrete was poured.
The first part of this page will be the
rant. If you are not interested in
hearing about the problems with hiring a
contractor, just skip this part. Here
Every time I need to hire a contractor, it
is the same old bull-poo.
You find a company name and you call them
up. Rarely does anyone actually answer
the phone. So I leave a message.
In clear English, I leave my name, number,
and a brief message. Then I wait for
the return call........which 90% of the
time, rarely comes.
Rinse and repeat. Over and over again.
Oh.......and then there are those that DO
return your call. You arrange for them
to come-by to see the job site, take
measurements, give you an estimate.
You give them the address and arrange a
time. Then they don't show-up.
Then there are the ultimate no-shows.
They come to your house, they give you an
estimate, you agree to the price. You
then schedule the date and time for the work
to be done. You take time off from
work, you schedule a kennel for the
dogs.....You basically rearrange your entire
life for this contractor who........wait for
it.......does not show up. No phone
calls. Does not return your calls.
If you paid him any money, you are now
far, I have not lost any money. Lucky?
Perhaps. Sometimes, it is just a
feeling I have that something is "off".
Knock on wood.
In the past, on my website, I just mentioned the problem
with trying to get hold of contractors.
I did not name names. Hell, now I will.
Contractors need to realize, that when they
blow you off....it will sometimes blow back
The first problem with finding a concrete
contractor nowadays is.......finding a
"name" for a contractor. Very few use the paper
phone book, if there is one for your area.
The rest are online. You can almost
guarantee that they don't have their own
website, except for large concrete supply
companies. There are a few online
websites that list contractors like; YP,
HomeAdvisor, or Porch. Reviews may or
may not be legitimate. There is just
no way to tell if a review is legit or not.
First contact - Why not hire the
contractor in my own small neighborhood?
Easy enough. No long commute for the
contractor. Making a fellow neighbor
happy in a town with only 4,000 people...
where word of mouth is golden. So I
tried to contact......
Biggs Concrete, Elgin OK. - Also
under David Biggs. Has 2 phone
numbers. The first number I
called was located on a billboard on Old North Trail Road in far east
Elgin. 580-591-6542. Twice I called
this phone number, on Mar 18, 2019 and Mar
26, 2019. Both times the recording
said that the message mailbox had not been
set-up. WTF! You put your number
on a billboard and then don't answer the
phone and make it impossible for someone to
leave a message?!? I called their other phone
number 580-591-1106. Same days, left
messages. No return phone call.
Billboard for Biggs Concrete on
NE Trail Rd in Elgin, OK
Other Contractors Around Lawton, Oklahoma
that did not want my money
Houston Munez - 580-418-8196 - Called on
Mar 19 and 26, 2019. Both times phone
mailbox was full. Could not even leave
Joe Ferring - J&S
Construction - 580-595-0982 - Left a
message. Did not call me back.
Archie Garret - Residential Concrete
- 580-353-9893 - I save the best for last.
I called and left a message on Mar 19, 2019.
- He called me back the same day.
- Came by the house on the same day.
- He took measurements.
- We talked about the job requirements.
- He gave me an estimate. I agreed.
- I scheduled his next available date to
begin the project, which was
Mon, Mar 25,
2019 at 11:00 am
- Monday, Mar 25 came and went. No
Archie, no phone calls, no return phone
Fortunately, I did not pay anything. I
was going to do that on the Monday they
- where a phone call was
returned or an offer was made to help in
There were some contractors whom I did have
contact with, which resulted in a short pleasant phone
conversation......like how a business
Jim Adams, LLC - out of Duncan, OK.
Actually answered his phone. Was nice.
Explained that he did not do poured concrete
jobs, took my name and number to give it to
this "other guy" who does.
Lawton Transit Mix - Concrete
supplier only. Took my name and number
and gave it to contractor Carlos Medrano
who contacted me the same day and was very
nice on the phone. However, he was too
late because I had already found a concrete
guy an hour earlier. But I am holding
onto his name and number....... just in
Juan's Concrete, whom I also found on
the Home Advisor website, was the guy that
Jim Adams, mentioned above, referred my name
to. I had also left a message for Juan
earlier that day. When he called, he
just happed to be in Elgin (he lives in
Duncan.) And..... he was in-between
appointments and could be at my house in 15
minutes. What are the odds of that???
He arrived, took measurements, provided me
an estimate, which was around the same price
as the Archie Garrett estimate. I
agreed with the estimate and we set a date
to begin the project on Apr 2, 2019 at 9:00
we moved into our new house, we knew that we would
eventually need to extend the little under-roof-patio it had, out into the backyard. For that
reason, when we purchased the house, I held back
$10,000 of the house down payment.
With this money, I needed to budget 3 items:
1) The cement for the patio and a storage shed, 2) a
storage shed, and 3) gutters.
When we moved into this house last summer, it was
too hot to have cement work done. A couple months of
90's and 100's Autumn arrived and left in a
blink of an eye and then there were temperatures in
the 30's. Too cold to have cement work done.
Spring and Fall, the perfect time for cement work,
are very short seasons in this area. Since the
beginning of March, I have been closely monitoring
the weather waiting for the time when no more
day-long freezes were in the forecast.
This happened at the last half of March 2019 and why
I started to make my calls on March 19, 2019.
Now I am a week behind because of the contractor who
did not show-up on Mar 25th. Everyone else is
also scrambling for a concrete contractor. A lot of
new houses in this area have teensy tiny patios in
After living in
the house for 9 months, I now have a better idea of
where I wanted the concrete slabs to go. So
this 9 month delay, could be seen as a blessing.
What happened during this time period was rain and
where it pooled in our backyard.
The water turns into a lake during heavy downpours,
right where I had wanted the storage shed to go, in
the southeast corner of our backyard. If I had
immediately had a storage shed installed in this
corner when we moved in, it would have been a costly
mistake, even with a cement foundation. The
second option was the northeast corner which was
worse. The southwest corner is out of the
question because our septic system is there.
The only corner left, was the northwest corner of our
Northeast corner of yard on Dec 26, 2018 during
After the rain stops, the pond remains for a few
The storage shed WILL NOT go on this side of the
I want this storage shed to be as far away from the
house as possible because it is where flammable
materials like gasoline and propane will be stored.
So the northwest corner of the yard is where it will
go. The rain does pool a little in this area
during downpours....but with a 5" slab of concrete
and the raised bottom of the shed, the floor of the
shed will not have water sitting in it after it
rains. Based on the rain we have had this past
9 months, only a couple inches of rain pools here
until it moves downhill or is soaked into the
Northwest corner of yard on Dec 26, 2018 during
After the rain stops, this water disappears.
Northwest corner of yard on Mar 29, 2019.
Ready for cement slab.
Storage Shed Size
The type of shed I decided to get was a
12 x 16 Tuff Shed.
I needed to balance the size and price.
I needed something big enough for a riding
lawn mower to be rode into AND to store the
yard related junk we have.
It also had to be tall enough for my 6' 2"
husband to walk into without hitting his
Plan for the storage shed foundation.
May actually move the front of the shed
the edge of the concrete.
A simple 12' x 16' shed was all I
could afford with my budget. The only
additions I added was a 3' x 3' window, vents on 2
walls, and a 6' wide double door. I will be
painting the shed myself and creating the shelving
and hanging system inside. Solar powered barn
lights will provide lighting inside.
Concrete Slab Size
With my shed picked
out, I could then determine the size of the concrete
slab. I decided on a slab that is one foot
wider than the shed. 14' x 18'. This way if
something is leaning against the wall of the
shed, it can rest on the concrete and not the
ground. This will also give us 3' of space
between the shed and the fence.
The 252 sq ft of concrete will be 5.5" high.
As mentioned above,
the existing patio area (if you could call it that),
is only 7' deep. Without the gutters, the rain
comes off the roof and hits the now absent sod,
splattering mud all over the cement. Then the
dogs trample through this mud to come back into the
house. I feel like I live in a very expensive
barn. We need to cover the floor in blankets
to try and catch the muddy paws. AND there are
three rugs the dogs walk over, before they
get to the floor
blankets. Mud everywhere!!
Having cement under the edge of the roof will
eliminate the muddy quagmire issue. The gutters will help further.
eventually want cement around the entire back of the house.
I want to be able to walk around the outside of the
house in bad weather without walking in mud.
However, I do not have enough money to pay for all
this cement AND purchase the storage shed and
gutters. So, I am going to do the patio in
sections. Additional sections will be added when
we have the money.
For the patio this
year, I will extend the existing patio by 10 feet.
To the right of this extension will be a curved
section that forms a sidewalk that will narrow to 3
feet along the 19 foot section of the house.
Back of the house with the tiny patio under the roof
Plan for the patio on the back of the house.
Current patio to be extended out 10 feet. 19
foot house section on the right to have a 3"
sidewalk added that expands to 10 feet with a curve.
Ramp was added because of the high drop-off.
The pale yellow areas on the left, will be added at
a future date.
Pouring the Concrete
The contractor for this job was Juan's
Concrete from Duncan, OK. 580-606-8097.
The price for this job was just under $3000.00,
which is below the national average for a poured
concrete job. In SW Oklahoma, the price for
concrete is inexpensive because the materials are
readily available. The concrete company is in
Fletcher, OK. About 5 miles from our home.
As mentioned above, Juan contacted me soon after I
left a message on the same day. He gave me the
estimate, I agreed, and he wrote up a contract.
I paid him a $1000 deposit. The rest would be
payable when the job was completed. The job
was scheduled to begin on Tue, April 2, 2019.
April 1, 2019
I received a phone call from Juan about 10:30 am on
Monday, Apr 1, 2019. He explained that he had
finished a job in Lawton early and wanted to stop by
our home for a few hours to start the job early.
Which means he could have the concrete poured on Tue
instead of Wed.
For some folks, this could be a problem. I
welcomed the early start. First off, it means
I don't have to keep the dogs cooped up as long.
Second, the weather report had changed for
Wednesday. Evening thunderstorms with possible
hail were now in the forecast.
Juan and his helper showed up about an hour after
his phone call on Mon, April 1 and started setting
up the forms for the cement slabs.
While working on the patio, Juan realized that the
grade was a little steeper 10 feet away from the
house, than he had originally thought. I had
warned him that it was about 15-16 inches based on
my measurements. He said he measured 17".
Close enough. Therefore, he needed to pick-up
some aggregate to raise the area up a little.
He was back in 30 minutes with the aggregate.
Juan Diaz and his helper shoveling out the aggregate
for the raised portion of the patio on April 1, 2019
Forms being laid for the storage shed foundation.
April 2, 2019
Juan and his helper showed up on-time at 8:45
am. He explained that the concrete truck would
be here at 10:30 am.
I made a last minute change on the job. I
added the patio ramp. This was not part of the
original estimate and I paid extra for the work and
concrete. The past evening I had thought about
the height of the patio and my husband's hip and
knee problems and my back and feet problems.
I should have made this ramp request sooner.
My fault. However, Juan accommodated my
request and added the ramp for an extra $200.
Juan and his helper added the rebar and finalized
the forms for the concrete in preparation for the
cement truck's arrival.
Patio forms complete. Ramp added. Ready
Patio forms complete. Ramp added. Ready
Foundation forms complete. Ready for concrete.
their work......and then we spent 2 hours waiting
for the cement truck, which was running very late.
Cement truck pouring patio cement
Foundation concrete being poured
Patio cement being leveled and smoothed out
The only major problem for this job was the cement
truck. The driver was young and inexperienced.
The yard soil too soft for a large truck.
The photo to the right is the result of the driver
spinning a tire in the ground until it had dug a 2
foot deep trench. See the photo on the right.
Hard to tell the depth in the photo, but our medium sized dogs
disappeared from view when they ran into it.
If he did not get out of the hole, a tow truck would
have been called to pull him out. More damage
to the lawn.
2 foot deep gouge in lawn made by cement
This was filled and leveled the next
April 3, 2019
Juan and his 3 helpers returned this morning to
flatten and fill-in the section of our lawn that the
cement truck had damaged. The had a pickaxe,
wheelbarrow, and shovels. Within an hour the
ground was pretty much flattened out. Not
perfect, but acceptable The sod is just
starting to turn green, so the now barren spots,
will be filled-in in a couple of months.
There were thunderstorms late this evening that
produced small pea size hail. Not a
problem...the concrete already had over 24 hours to
And oh my goodness what a difference!!!! No
more rain pounding sod and splattering mud onto the
Cement slab ready for shed
New cement patio
As you can see in the above
photos, the edge of the concrete is rough around the
patio. I will be adding something like a brick
facade to the horizontal surfaces and planting some
bushes around the edges. When I complete this
work, I will add photographs to this page.
For the shed, I have created a separate page.
visit this page here...
Dogs enjoying the sun on the new extended patio.