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Old 03-13-2011, 04:38 PM   #1
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Questions about Xactimate


We recently had work done on our garage roof (ice and water shield installed, new shingles...), new, seamless gutters with Leaf Relief gutter guards, and other more minor work. The contractor had worked up an estimate on the spot using Xactimate. Only later did we realize how much he had "inflated" the estimate (about $4,000).

He is now claiming that this Xactimate software is used to "establish quantities, location, and as a reference guide in part to achieve the contracted amount that the homeowner will be responsible to pay." One of the contract line items specifies 6 SQ of Slateline shingles at a cost of $286.94 per SQ. The contract also references the price list, VAAR7X_NOV10 followed by "Restoration/Service/Remodel."

Would someone be able to explain to me how this Xactimate software could have come up with numbers that were so far off? The contractor replaced a section of roof that was 4' x 25' (times 2 for front and back = 2 SQ), and I can purchase the shingles myself for about $35 per bundle with three bundles per SQ for this particular shingle.

Thanks very much!

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Old 03-13-2011, 06:46 PM   #2
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Your garage roof that was replaced was only 4 feet wide???

Ed

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Old 03-13-2011, 06:54 PM   #3
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EXACTIMATE is a software program commonly used by estimators, architects, engineers and insurance adjusters to ESTIMATE the cost of work. The program does nothing more than take the quantities you put in, and the item, and evaluate the cost based on a unit price.

EXACTIMATE is not responsible for field quantity takeoff, that is done by the contractor. As for the pricing, well the contractor is free to bid whatever he wants, and you of course are free to select a different contractor. Whatever your issues are with the contract, they likely have nothing to do with EXACTIMATE, and everything to do with the price proposal offered by the contractor.
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Old 03-13-2011, 07:20 PM   #4
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Your garage roof that was replaced was only 4 feet wide???
The garage roof is 25' wide. The contractor removed 4' in height of the old shingles across this 25' width. This came to five rows of shingles.

After removing the old shingles, the contractor put down ice and water shield and then installed five rows of new shingles. Sorry for the confusion.
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Old 03-13-2011, 07:42 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Daniel Holzman View Post
EXACTIMATE is a software program commonly used by estimators, architects, engineers and insurance adjusters to ESTIMATE the cost of work. The program does nothing more than take the quantities you put in, and the item, and evaluate the cost based on a unit price.

EXACTIMATE is not responsible for field quantity takeoff, that is done by the contractor. As for the pricing, well the contractor is free to bid whatever he wants, and you of course are free to select a different contractor. Whatever your issues are with the contract, they likely have nothing to do with EXACTIMATE, and everything to do with the price proposal offered by the contractor.

Yes, I know the issue is not with Xactimate; I am just trying to learn something about how it works. Is there more to it than just the contractor entering the data and then Xactimate doing the math?

The contract had specific line items, one of which was for 6 SQ of roofing shingles. We asked for and received only 1 bundle back upon completion of the job. The contractor is now saying that we signed a "net claim" or lump-sum contract and that the line items were for our mutual reference only. Actually, it seems that he is the one blaming it on Xactimate!
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Old 03-14-2011, 08:30 AM   #6
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....this is exactly why I dont break out prices on my estimates.
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:08 AM   #7
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....this is exactly why I dont break out prices on my estimates.
You know, you are right! I have a very good friend in the contracting business, but too far away for us to use. He builds custom homes (but does not use Xactimate). He lists the work and "bottom lines" the price, and he is honest. In fact, he's lost money big time in this economy because he's had to lower his estimate too much in order to get the job. It's tough out there.

This contractor was referred to us by ServiceMagic, who screens their professionals. However, this guy apparently knows how to "work the system" by changing business name, using other family members to obtain llicenses, etc. Only later did I discover that he is a convicted sex offender and was also associated with a contractor's license that was revoked by the state of Virginia for unethical reasons. I could go on and on, ....

I'm saying all of this just so you know that I am not trying to bash contractors. My husband was home recovering from open heart surgery, we thought we had an emergency repair (contractor again), and very cold weather was quickly approaching. Normally, we would get additional estimates, but the contractor "played up big time" this professional looking software, and at the time, I didn't know what a SQ was.
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Old 03-14-2011, 11:54 AM   #8
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....ahhhhh, Service Magic. Next time get referrals from friends and relatives. Even the yellow pages would be better. Pick 3 or 4 that have been around a while and contact them for estimates.
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Old 03-15-2011, 08:26 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brendajones4lif View Post

This contractor was referred to us by ServiceMagic, who screens their professionals. However, this guy apparently knows how to "work the system" by changing business name, using other family members to obtain llicenses, etc. Only later did I discover that he is a convicted sex offender and was also associated with a contractor's license that was revoked by the state of Virginia for unethical reasons. I could go on and on, ....

Hahahaha, right. And you think the Contractor was bad.

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