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Old 05-04-2009, 03:13 AM   #16
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I can't really comment on the hardwood prices, but I'm in Calgary and have just had quotes on tiling the walls around my tub in my bathroom. Last time I got quotes was 3 years ago during the boom and it was insane and basically hopeless getting trades. Since I had heard we were in a recession and things would be better I went at it again...apparently the media is exaggerating again. I've been quoted as high as $100/sq ft. with me supplying the tiles and having the cement board up. Now I am sure that was a PITA quote since a lot of these guys still do not want to work for homeowners if they can still do new construction but I have still found prices to be varying wildly. I imagine Red Deer is somewhat the same.

With this last batch of estimates (done in the past 2 weeks) they went from $4 to $30/sq ft . Same deal, all they have to do is tile with what I have, all prep is done. All you can do is keep asking for referrals from people you know or stores you can trust until you find someone you are sure can do the job properly. I got some referrals from flooring stores, tiles shops, and other tradespeople. This time I took a huge leap of faith and went with the $4/sq. ft. barely speaks English guy who told me 'no pay if no like' and was free to work the next day (normally that would have scared me but I am so sick of seeing no tile I just went with it) and he did a perfect job. I think I got lucky there and would have to say he is not typical. You are using larger tiles than I was so that is less cuts and generally less work so that does effect price.

Also, it's really important to make sure your subfloors will take that tile. Plywood just won't cut it I'm afraid. All I have heard and learned says it flexes too much and you are going to end up with cracked grout and tiles in a couple of years if not sooner. You have to have someone who measures your joists and knows the tiles you have (size matters here.. a lot because the bigger the tile the more solid the floor must be) to see what subfloor you need. If you just use wood in your bathroom you also have to worry about moisture which is why something like cement board is usually put down.

If you can hear the floor creak or feel it flex at all walking on it, tile isn't going to hold. If vinyl was down before, that's the wrong subfloor for tile. Same for the wood, it takes a different subfloor than carpet so make sure whoever you hire checks that stuff out. If they don't you are dealing with a hack. Your basement should be okay with tile (although it may be cold if you tile right on top of concrete...might want to consider underfloor heating there).

Now I will also tell you I cheated with my bathroom floor and so far (3 years) so good. My bathroom had vinyl flooring that I pulled and the subfloor is not the right stuff for tile at all. Worse is it's a type of MDF which is quite stupid in a bathroom, and no way suitable for tile. I knew if I was to save myself some grief I would have to go with the smallest tile possible so I went with .75" hex. A tile store gave me the cheat method and that was applying something similar to Detra which is waterproof and has a fiber coating that helps the adhesive work better. I had to put a lot of screws in the floor to make sure it was as solid as possible first. Anyway, I did that and so far, no problems at all. Had I used a larger tile I suspect they would all be in a pile in the corner of the yard by now so that is why I mentioned size of tile being such a big consideration and 12 X 12 tiles are considered pretty big in the scheme of things.

Just a word on the wood. If the wood flooring you purchased has a warranty on it, look on the box for warranty info. There should also be a logo from a wood flooring organization that monitors all wood floors (I can't remember their name off hand right now but their logo usually appears on the box or papers that come with the wood). I know it's there because I had a huge problem in a brand new house I had and they helped me get it replaced. The key here is finding their site and you will see that most warranties will not be honoured unless you get a certified (by them or the manufacturer) installer. So if the wood ends up defective as mine was and you didn't have a certified installer, no warranty. Believe me, trying to get those folks to back up their products is quite a task so you want all your bases covered by checking the fine print. Mine looked great initially but within a couple of months the finish started coming off and it took a year of the builder and I going after them to get it taken out. Just a bad batch from an otherwise reputable mfg. So check your boxes and the mfg site especially for the small print on the warranty. The mfg site is probably the easiest way to find their installers too as they should list them or have a number you can call to get the names.

I wish you luck. It's really frustrating in AB to know what prices are doing since the trades still seem to have the upper hand.

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Old 05-04-2009, 08:35 AM   #17
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Thaks for the reply's guys, I have got a few more quotes as high as $12sq/ft. Maybe I'll just D.I.M.(DO IT MYSELF). Thanks again.
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Old 05-04-2009, 02:57 PM   #18
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Dusty,

Quote:
Why is it you are a professional on flooring installations but don't have the balls to fill out your own profile?
No legitimate professional installer would waste his time offering-up a phony estimate if he had plenty of any kind of work. I suspect there is more to your needs than you are telling us.


Quote:
Same deal, all they have to do is tile with what I have, all prep is done.
Therein may lie the answer to the higher estimates you are getting. I suspect your prep work is substandard and no one wants to deal with it. The high estimates account for fixing the things you have screwed up.


Quote:
You are using larger tiles than I was so that is less cuts and generally less work so that does effect price.
That statement right there shows ignorance of the tasks at hand. Nothing could be further from the truth my friend.

Quote:
Plywood just won't cut it I'm afraid. All I have heard and learned says it flexes too much
More nonsense, that's NOT WHY plywood is undesireable.


Quote:
the bigger the tile the more solid the floor must be
Simply not true, not at all true.


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Same for the wood, it takes a different subfloor than carpet so make sure whoever you hire checks that stuff out.
Makes me smile.


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Your basement should be okay with tile
Based on what?

Quote:
Now I will also tell you I cheated with my bathroom floor and so far (3 years) so good. My bathroom had vinyl flooring that I pulled and the subfloor is not the right stuff for tile at all. Worse is it's a type of MDF which is quite stupid in a bathroom, and no way suitable for tile. I knew if I was to save myself some grief I would have to go with the smallest tile possible so I went with .75" hex.
Words of a true HACK.

Quote:
and 12 X 12 tiles are considered pretty big in the scheme of things
BULL DROPPINGS. That just simply isn't true either. What a crock of nonsense.


Quote:
There should also be a logo from a wood flooring organization that monitors all wood floors (I can't remember their name off hand right now but their logo usually appears on the box or papers that come with the wood).
There's a wood flooring organization that monitors all wood floors?????
...and whom might that be?


Quote:
The key here is finding their site and you will see that most warranties will not be honoured unless you get a certified (by them or the manufacturer) installer.
BALONEY!!! All manufacturers offer their own warranty. No organization is going to warrant the goods of any manufacturer.

Quote:
It's really frustrating in AB to know what prices are doing since the trades still seem to have the upper hand.
That'll be the day!

Ignorance is certainly bliss.
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Old 05-04-2009, 04:12 PM   #19
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Old 05-04-2009, 06:37 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bud Cline View Post
Dusty,
Quote:
Why is it you are a professional on flooring installations but don't have the balls to fill out your own profile?
No legitimate professional installer would waste his time offering-up a phony estimate if he had plenty of any kind of work. I suspect there is more to your needs than you are telling us.
Where did that quote come from? Sure wasn't me. Nor did I ever claim to be a professional. I was relaying what I have learned over the past few years as a homeowner (and one who happens to have 18 years of 4 houses being updated to tell you I am not completely clueless). I didn't presume to represent anything but what I have found here and here is about a 1.5 hr drive from where the OP is living so pretty similar situations. I can tell you for absolute sure, a legitimate professional installer will do PITA quotes. Even a contractor I had working here was complaining to his trades about them giving PITA quotes vs just being honest enough to say they didn't want/need to do small jobs. It's called appearing to be willing while preferring to take easier or larger jobs and not having the jam to just say so. Some will say so and I totally respect that but others won't using the PITA to get them of the hook instead.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bud Cline View Post
Therein may lie the answer to the higher estimates you are getting. I suspect your prep work is substandard and no one wants to deal with it. The high estimates account for fixing the things you have screwed up.
Your suspicions are quite incorrect I'm afraid as I had a very reputable contractor do all the prep including putting in all the durarock and red guard and he made sure it is all straight, plumb, and everything else. Those walls were knocked right back to the studs just to make sure it was right. As a matter of fact he is one of the contractors that usually only does the nice high priced jobs but since he's a friend of a friend he offered to help me out trying to get this little bathroom done and even he just couldn't get a tiler to come in within reason.

He himself was more than miffed at the trades he normally uses wasting everyone's time by doing PITA quotes. The tiler I did have do the work had no complaints at all and was actually very impressed given we are dealing with a 70 year old house here and all that means when it comes to walls not being close to straight any longer. The others who quoted also had no issues with the prep. So I have not screwed anything up (nor am I difficult to deal with or late in paying or any other excuse you might be able to come up with). Thank you very much for passing judgment without just asking politely.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bud Cline View Post
Quote:
You are using larger tiles than I was so that is less cuts and generally less work so that does effect price.
That statement right there shows ignorance of the tasks at hand. Nothing could be further from the truth my friend.
Well maybe your guys are different than the ones around here but they all tell me the smaller the tiles, the more cutting and work they have to do and one quoted me $400 less (and that included the price of the new tiles in that quote) if I would use 12X12 tiles just to save him some work (his words). Believe me, I have had to listen to the whining these guys come up with when faced with using subway tiles. I can't imagine where that logic isn't working for you given it takes more effort/time to lay tiles which require 8/sq. ft than 1. Give me a break please for knowing something of what I speak. This isn't my first time nor am I someone who doesn't thoroughly research things before either doing them or having them done.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bud Cline View Post
More nonsense, that's NOT WHY plywood is undesireable....
For that and the rest of your quips that followed, I'm not going to bother. Go to the John Bridge forum and see how many professional tilers comment on just these things.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bud Cline View Post
There's a wood flooring organization that monitors all wood floors?????
...and whom might that be?...
BALONEY!!! All manufacturers offer their own warranty. No organization is going to warrant the goods of any manufacturer.
Yes there is. Look them up. They are the overseers of all the wood warranties. The mfg has their own warranty and these industry folks know all about them and act as mediators and as an information source for both suppliers and customers. They have a site and a phone number and everything you need to know about the various wood companies, standards for warranties and installations. Their info is good for the US and Canada. I'm not looking for them for you since you seem to believe you know better anyway and would rather knock me than go find out for yourself. I told you their logo is on the mfg warranty info.


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Originally Posted by Bud Cline View Post
Quote:
It's really frustrating in AB to know what prices are doing since the trades still seem to have the upper hand.
That'll be the day!

Ignorance is certainly bliss.
Are you in Alberta? If so, your experience here would be worth hearing about. If you aren't here, you have no idea. There has been a shortage situation for all trades here for over 3 years now. AB is not like other places in N. America when it comes to this as it's been booming here over that period to the point of importing foreign workers by the boat load. It's been exactly that long since I have been attempting to have this and other jobs done in this house so if anyone can tell you what it's like here, I am one good source. In the past few years, unless you were building new homes or having a $M+ reno done (and no that isn't an exaggeration) you were not able to get trades and prices more than tripled for just about any job you can think of.

Even with the recent slowdowns we have experienced, most are still busy just playing catch up with all the jobs that didn't get done over that period. Add to that a recent tax incentive to do home repairs (a move to keep the construction folks and trades working as the slow down hit the rest of the country) and you still have a very busy bunch of trades people here. The ones who aren't busy are finally paying for being so arrogant or inflating their prices over the same period because a lot of people aren't calling them back. If you are here I suggest you make a few calls and see how the prices vary for the same jobs. If you aren't, you know not of what you speak when it comes to our local conditions. You can call it ignorance but I have the quotes to prove it and they range from $250 - $5000 for tiling around my shower, all prep done, tiles, grout and adhesive all supplied.

Meanwhile I'm not sure why you feel compelled to respond as you did rather than just asking for clarification. I'm not impressed with your judgmental comments when you don't have all the info you need to begin with. You could of just asked.

Last edited by Dusty; 05-04-2009 at 06:47 PM.
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Old 05-05-2009, 01:02 PM   #21
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Hey guys didn't mean to start an argument, but could anyone please tell me why plywood, which is glued and screwed to a sound subfloor of 3/4 t&g o.s.b. is not good enough.
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Old 05-05-2009, 07:05 PM   #22
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Why isn't plywood good enough? Well it may be good enough, depends on your standards.

I think one of our more brilliant contributors already answered that for you in post #'s 9 & 13.

Jaz

BTW, you'll make it worse by gluing it too.

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