Construction Cost Question? - Building & Construction - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum


Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > Home Improvement > Building & Construction

CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY...IT'S FREE!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 10-10-2011, 10:45 AM   #1
Newbie
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 10
Rewards Points: 10
Default

Construction cost question?


Hi. I recently received a check from my insurance company for the replacement of my entire roof as well as the repair or replacement of drywall in several rooms in my home (the ceilings) where the roof leaked through. I have gotten estimates from two contractors, one which states they will stay within the insurance amount and replace the ceilings and roof, another which claims we may be able to put up a metal roof (which I prefer) because we can save money by just repairing the ceilings and repainting them rather than completely re-drywalling the entire ceilings. The ceilings are NOT completely damaged. There is, in fact, only one ceiling that needs to be completely replaced and that is my bathroom.
In essence, I have approximately $5,000 for the interior and $10,000 for my roof. I did one of those calculations online and it said I would need approximately 6-8 sheets of drywall. Add to that the labor for hanging, sanding, and painting 4-5 ceilings and I'm wondering what the cost should be for the interior? It seems like it should be well below $5,000?

And the roof -- according to both contractors -- only one piece of wood needs to be replaced. So the remainder of the cost is tearing off and removing the old roof and putting the new one on. I have a standard one-story rambler with no special dips or valleys to the roof. The only thing I have up there is a chimney and the dips for a garage. Otherwise it's a standard a-frame roof.

My Rec Room has one section of ceiling that they say needs replacing - about an 8 foot section. My bathroom ceiling needs replacing - it's about 7.5' x 8'. My hallway ceiling may need replacing- it's about 12' x 4'. The rest of the damage just requires Killz and all ceilings require paint.... 21x18, 8x7.5, 12x4, and 12x13. There's a small area in the garage which they said would require one sheet of drywall, and it's unfinished.

Any help that anyone can offer would be greatly appreciated. If you could give me a ballpark figure of what you think I should be quoted, at least I'll know I'm not being grossly cheated?

And should I get another contractor in here and this time NOT show them the insurance money that I have to work with? The only reason I even showed it to them to begin with was because I was told the amount was rather low and might not get anyone to do the whole job, especially the roof, for what the Insurance company was paying. So I wanted the contractors to know right up front what I had to work with.

Can anyone help?

Thanks!

Advertisement

dreamlily27 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-10-2011, 10:56 AM   #2
Tileguy
 
Bud Cline's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 10,466
Rewards Points: 2,580
Default

Construction cost question?


Showing that information to potential contractors may not be the best idea. When one knows what funds are available it is easy to "come-up" to that amount in an effort to maximize profits as everyone likes to do.

A homeowner attempting to profit from insurance proceeds is also sometimes a grave error if future claims arise for the same or similar work that wasn't earlier performed or performed up to standard.

I would think a person could copy the scope of work deleting the figures and show that same scope to all contractors invited to bid on the project. This way everyone has the same information but they don't know how much money has been allocated for the repairs.

Keep in mind that insurance adjusters can also make mistakes and an insurance companies financial well being depends on not paying out too much money on claims.

Advertisement

__________________
XXX
Bud Cline is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-10-2011, 12:01 PM   #3
Newbie
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 10
Rewards Points: 10
Smile

Construction cost question?


Thanks for the quick reply Bud. So I guess I should get another contractor in here and tell them what work is authorized but not how much it's authorized FOR, based on your reply. As for profiting from the insurance money, I hope I didn't come across that way. That's not what I'm trying to do. I was merely hoping that if I could save a little money in one room that didn't need to have all the drywall replaced, that I could apply that savings toward a metal roof as opposed to a shingle roof. For example, I have one room where there is just a tiny stain yet the Insurance Co gave credit for replacing ALL drywall in the ceiling of that room and repainting it. Both contractors stated that the stain could be sprayed with stain killer and the ceiling could be repainted because the drywall was NOT damaged. In that case, I thought I could apply the money for that room towards the roof if I needed it.

As far as any money NOT used for the overall repairs I would expect that any funds not legitimately claimed by the contractor for repairs would be returned to the Insurance Co.

I was told by the Ins Co that the money was there to get the repairs done as I saw fit. If doing this "manipulation" of the funds when it didn't harm anything is illegal, I wasn't aware of it and certainly wasn't trying to cheat the Ins Co in any way. I was simply trying to get a better roof for my home and still be able to make the needed interior repairs at the same time.

Again, thank you for your fast reply.
dreamlily27 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-10-2011, 12:06 PM   #4
Civil Engineer
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Boston
Posts: 4,300
Rewards Points: 2,178
Default

Construction cost question?


The question of "how much should it cost" comes up on this forum repeatedly. And the discussion is almost always the same. This is not a cost estimating forum, very few people here are cost estimators by trade, and cost estimating is a tricky, complex field. A cost estimate, even if you hire someone to do it for you, is NOT equivalent to a contractor's bid. The two are almost never the same, sometimes they are wildly different.

I recommend you write down a complete, detailed scope of work that you want the contractors to bid on. This is not as simple as it sounds, as you clearly have options (partial repair, different type of materials etc.). If you want the contractors to bid on alternates, write down the alternates you want them to bid on. The act of writing down the alternates will force you to think through the process very clearly, or at least it should.

When you get several bids, you can compare them, and discuss the bids with the contractors. There is usually a reason for different numbers, whether it be different means and methods on the part of the contractors, different interpretations of scope, quality of work, insurance certificates etc. The time to discuss these issues is before you sign the contract, once the contractor gets going it becomes increasingly difficult to discuss options, techniques, contractor insurance certificates, building permits etc.
Daniel Holzman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-10-2011, 12:23 PM   #5
Tileguy
 
Bud Cline's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 10,466
Rewards Points: 2,580
Default

Construction cost question?


Quote:
As far as any money NOT used for the overall repairs I would expect that any funds not legitimately claimed by the contractor for repairs would be returned to the Insurance Co.
H-m-m-m-m! Now that's a novel idea!

Quote:
I was told by the Ins Co that the money was there to get the repairs done as I saw fit. If doing this "manipulation" of the funds when it didn't harm anything is illegal, I wasn't aware of it and certainly wasn't trying to cheat the Ins Co in any way.
Cheating the insurance companies is a fact of life these days but that's not what I was referring to. I'll give you an example.

A few years ago our area experienced a large hail storm. My wife's car received damage. We reported it to the insurance and at that time the insurance company was set up in a tent at the shopping center due to the large volume of claims. The insurance company was writing checks on the spot. Getting an appointment to have her car repaired was taking on average about three months to get it in the shop. In the meantime damned if we didn't have yet another major hail storm before we could get her car repaired from the first storm.

Here we come with additional damage and another claim. Because we didn't have a receipt for repairing the first damage they deducted that amount from the proceeds of our second claim.

I suppose that is the fair way to do it. We still had the check from the first claim and that added to the amount paid for the second claim in no way covered the cost as it should have and we were socked for two $500 deductibles in the process.

The moral of the story is if you don't repair what you have been compensated for to repair it could easily backfire on you down the road.

So if you shift funds from one aspect to another you need to be aware that this could backfire on you.

Also, be sure that each contractor is bidding on exactly the same thing. Contractors will have ideas and alternates pop into their heads when they appraise the work and if you allow a downgrade in performance from one contractor without having the others re-calculate their prices in the same manner you will find yourself swimming in confusion and not getting what you have coming to you in the form of the scope of work being performed.
__________________
XXX
Bud Cline is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-10-2011, 06:23 PM   #6
Newbie
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 10
Rewards Points: 10
Smile

Construction cost question?


Thanks again for the fast responses. And as it turns out I'm in the same predicament here.... I'm stuck with 2 $500 deductibles because another hurricane hit before we had resolved the FIRST claim and those repairs could be done. I was in the process of disputing the Adjuster's amount when another hurricane hit and caused even more damage. But the Ins Co is claiming that it's 2 different claims, thus charging me 2 deductibles. I've tried arguing with them to no avail and at this point my roof is so bad that I just need to get the work DONE! So I really don't have a lot of time to spend bringing in different contractors for price comparisons.

Unfortunately the contracting company that the Ins Co RECOMMENDED to me has been dragging their feet and been very slow in returning calls or getting back to me with answers, despite the fact that they supposedly will be able to work within the Ins Co's estimate. I'm very reluctant to work with this contractor now because they barely return my phone calls even within a WEEK, and when they do, they say they are ready to schedule the "jobs" even though they were supposed to get back to me about WHAT exactly they were going to DO!

For example: they felt that the amount of money allocated by the Ins Co for moving my furniture and other belongings out of each room while they worked was extremely low. So they said they were going to contact the Ins Co and state that the belongings needed to be "stored" in a rental unit and more money allocated for both moving the items AND storing the items. They said they would get back to me about this AND they said they would let me know whether they could put on a metal roof instead of a shingle roof and still remain within the Ins Co's estimate.

I heard NOTHING from them for almost a week and a half and then their secretary called to say they needed to know when they could start the work! WHAT??! I told her that I was still waiting to hear how they were going to handle moving all my furniture and belongings... What was the outcome ? AND were they going to put on a metal or shingle roof? She said she didn't know I was waiting for any answers and would talk to her boss. That was almost a week ago! I haven't heard a word since! And THAT is the company referred to me by the Ins Co!! That contractor is stationed approximately 100 miles from me. I have a feeling I'm not at the top of his priority list.

So this is why I'm starting to look on my own. I thought I could just let the Ins Co get the contractor for me but you see what happened.

I'm concerned that I may get taken advantage of--being a single woman and not knowing any better. I don't know what a typical going rate is for such work and I wouldn't know if I was getting a good deal or not.

Thanks for helping. It means a lot.
dreamlily27 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-10-2011, 06:59 PM   #7
MJW
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 938
Rewards Points: 500
Default

Construction cost question?


There is no "bidding" when it comes to insurance work. Usually the ins. company estimates low and they often forget items.

You need a contractor who does insurance work and make sure they didn't just start when the storm hit. Also, make sure you get quality work done. There are hundreds of scams when it comes to insurance work. Do some research and find a good contractor in your area. Show them what the insurance company paid to replace and have them check over the entire property.


We had a large storm about 4 years ago near us. We got a bunch of work from it. We often had to compete against a company who moved into the area almost overnight. They had a license, plenty of latino crews, and set up an office in town. They did a bunch of shoddy work around town. You look up their company now and the phone lines are disconnected, they have many complaints, they have a "F" rating with the BBB in two states....etc..

Now, every time there is a storm, you see a bunch of pop up companies who got their license that month. When the work is done, they collapse the company to nothing and move on using another name. All the while using illegal sub-contractors for the work.

Careful what you are doing and don't sign anything until you find a contractor you want to work with. Meet them in person and don't even talk to the appointment setters they hired to answer the phones.
MJW is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to MJW For This Useful Post:
dreamlily27 (10-10-2011)
Old 10-10-2011, 08:37 PM   #8
Newbie
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 10
Rewards Points: 10
Default

Construction cost question?


Thanks MJW!
dreamlily27 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-10-2011, 10:26 PM   #9
Tileguy
 
Bud Cline's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 10,466
Rewards Points: 2,580
Default

Construction cost question?


Quote:
There is no "bidding" when it comes to insurance work. Usually the ins. company estimates low and they often forget items.
In all my years of doing insurance work I have never found that to be the case.
__________________
XXX
Bud Cline is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2011, 08:44 AM   #10
MJW
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 938
Rewards Points: 500
Default

Construction cost question?


I would say that 9 out of 10 estimates from adjusters miss at least one line item on a simple roof or siding job.

They make it some trouble for the contractor to get the change made, and they do it on purpose.

Their goal is to give the homeowner a check to pacify them for the time being. Hopefully they will try to get a contractor to come in under the estimated amount. This way they save money. $500 savings on 3,000 claims is quite the savings.

If homeowners would just read through their paperwork from the insurance company, they would understand the process. It says to show the estimate to the contractor of your choice. If anything is not correct, have the Contractor contact us before any work begins.
MJW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2011, 09:35 AM   #11
Newbie
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 10
Rewards Points: 10
Default

Construction cost question?


Actually that HAS been the case in my situation at least. Both contractors pointed out specific items and materials that were NOT included on my list from the Ins Co and said that these items were critical to the completion of the job.
dreamlily27 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2011, 09:43 AM   #12
Newbie
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 10
Rewards Points: 10
Default

Construction cost question?


And here's one example of them lowballing the figure: they estimate a mere $37 per room for the contractor to pack up and move ALL of my furniture and belongings OUT of the room and then move it all back in! They SAW what I have in these rooms, which includes some heavy furniture, as well as china cabinets filled with expensive and valuable keepsake items! BOTH contractors stated they would NOT pack and move all these rooms at $37 per room AND they wanted to know WHERE they were supposed to moved all this stuff TO?? There was no indication of any kind of temporary storage unit or anything else while they would be tearing whole ceilings out!

That's an example of just one of the line items the contractors' disagreed with the Ins Co on.

I'm stuck in the middle here. I don't know how I am supposed to resolve this !

Advertisement

dreamlily27 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
garage door construction question S54 Building & Construction 0 05-14-2010 11:06 AM
Boilers cost estimate - newbie question jschmoe HVAC 4 04-05-2008 12:13 PM
Crazy question about full house construction. firemanpato Building & Construction 7 03-29-2008 06:32 AM
Cost of installing Attic Furnace in new construction marejw HVAC 3 01-11-2008 05:00 PM
New construction porch question bayoudonnie Carpentry 3 09-23-2006 03:11 PM




Top of Page | View New Posts