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baloney12 07-11-2007 01:06 PM

Am I being overcharged for general construction work?
My wife and I are renting out a commercial space for her business and the landlord want us to use his contractor to do all the tenant improvements. We don't mind per se, but it seems like his contractor is us charging much more than the contractors we have used in the past.

We were initially were going to do a lot of the work including building a custom front reception desk, but decide to take it out since it was 50% of the quote costs. My questions are:

A. Is a 15% premium on the materials and labor customary? I had one contractor say it was on materials only. The 15% is on top of the quote the GC gave us, which also has a penalty clause for any changes in the stated work at $150/hour of design work and $90/hour labor.
B. We were told that with smaller jobs like ours (sub $15,000), that the price quote will not go down much even though there is less work and less materials used. Can this be true? For example, the cost of installing 4 electrical outlets and 2 light switches is about $1100, while the cost for 2 electrical outlet and 2 switches is $900.
C. There is a clause in the contract about design consultation fees. Shouldn't this be a stated cost in the quote?
D. Does is really costs $2000 to build a separating wall dividing one office space into two that is approximately 11ft. X 11ft in size? (To rise up through grid to the bottom of the truss joists, sheetrock, paint and new base.)


johnny331 07-11-2007 05:29 PM

doesn't seem you like have much say in the matter so why worry about it? If you have to use that contractor, then you have to pay his price. Or find a new building? If he suddenly dropped his price 20% he'd look like a snake, and if you force him to drop his price it'll probably be sub-par work. a catch22

Cost is all relative and there's no "set cost" for anything, search and you'll find a 100 posts with the same title as yours, and they'll all have the same answer. good luck.

clasact 07-11-2007 06:09 PM

you might want to check your lease to see if it states all renovations must be done by his contractor and if your allowed to renovate as you see fit for the purpose that you leased for.If it is not stated in the lease you can use whom ever you see fit as long as it meets code and conforms to the lease.I ran into a situation like this years ago on a restaurant their contractor knew nothing about how to set up or build for a restaurant.Short of it was that I had my lawyer check out my lease got to hire who I wanted and all was fine.The owner wasn't happy at first cause he lost his kick back and when the lease was up he wanted to raise the rent till I said I would just move then he was as nice as could be but know your rights before jumping off

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