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Old 11-19-2013, 04:13 AM   #1
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negotiating with contractor post-job


We sought out a demo contractor to take down a plaster and metal lathe ceiling in our basement. The one who came to look at the job was local and a good guy, but made it sound like a huge pain to do and even suggested to leave the ceiling alone. He did however say they would do the job, and quoted us $1500. Sounds high but I was under the impression that this would be a longer-duration job, and they also had to dispose of the debris.

Much to our surprise, two men did everything in about 3 hours, not all of which was spent actually working. They did a good job with the actual work and cleaning up afterwards. We were just shocked at how little time it took.

Before we are billed for the work, is it within my right to call the contractor and ask whether he assumed the job would take longer, and therefore priced the job accordingly? $1500 for 6 man hours plus maybe a couple hundred for disposal now seems like a lot of money. I'm not looking to haggle at this point. We'll pay the quoted price, but just want to make sure we're all on the same page. In hindsight I should have flat out asked how long he thought the job would take.
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Old 11-19-2013, 04:23 AM   #2
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You really should have gotten more than one quote, before doing the job. Massachusetts is pretty strict, when it comes to demo and rehabbing buildings. Where permits pulled at any time for the work, and disposal of materials by you or the contractor?

Really all I can say, is that you need to back up even though the job has already been done, and contact city hall, to see if permits were needed for the job in the first place, depending on the age of your home, was there any asbestos in the material, if the home was built during a period that asbestos would have been used in the building process (there will still be enough free floating material even at this time, they can still get a good reading, or if they did a wipe sample they can tell.

Also, were there any signs of mold on the walls, when they demoed, if the area was a basement, bath or Kitchen area.

Really no one can tell you if it is reasonable, due to too many factors at play here.



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Old 11-19-2013, 04:45 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by debiasio View Post
We sought out a demo contractor to take down a plaster and metal lathe ceiling in our basement. The one who came to look at the job was local and a good guy, but made it sound like a huge pain to do and even suggested to leave the ceiling alone. He did however say they would do the job, and quoted us $1500. Sounds high but I was under the impression that this would be a longer-duration job, and they also had to dispose of the debris.

Much to our surprise, two men did everything in about 3 hours, not all of which was spent actually working. They did a good job with the actual work and cleaning up afterwards. We were just shocked at how little time it took.

Before we are billed for the work, is it within my right to call the contractor and ask whether he assumed the job would take longer, and therefore priced the job accordingly? $1500 for 6 man hours plus maybe a couple hundred for disposal now seems like a lot of money. I'm not looking to haggle at this point. We'll pay the quoted price, but just want to make sure we're all on the same page. In hindsight I should have flat out asked how long he thought the job would take.

On a job like that, its har to determine the exact amount of time it will take to complete. So it has to be priced for the day, since they may not be able to go to another job site and get anything done.

You must live on the same block as the disposal site, for them to have driven to it to get rid of all of the debris in that 3 hour time period. Or are you forgetting to add that time to the job.
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Old 11-19-2013, 04:50 AM   #4
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no permits pulled

no mold

plaster was tested for asbestos, came back negative

our town dump is a 5 min ride from my house
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Old 11-19-2013, 05:07 AM   #5
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An agreement is an agreement and it cost you some coin to learn something.

Consider it money well spent.
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Old 11-19-2013, 05:14 AM   #6
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you are probably right. live and learn.
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Old 11-19-2013, 05:17 AM   #7
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no permits pulled

no mold

plaster was tested for asbestos, came back negative

our town dump is a 5 min ride from my house
Plus time to weigh in and weigh out, plus paper work time. About 4 hours total time.

Sounds like it was done for a cheap price. Pay them as agreed.
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Old 11-19-2013, 05:18 AM   #8
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You got one price from one company and agreed to pay that price, he showed up did the job to your satisfaction, pay the man.
Very poor taste to try and go back and negotiate a price the fact.
That's one nasty dirty, dusty, tough job.

Anytime I've had this done to me I refuse to go back and do any more work.
We had a contract to build a 2, car two story attached garage. He had three other prices but chose us.
The whole thing was done in 7 days despite the fact the home owner had insisted on running his own French drain and it was completely wrong and we had to redo it for free, insisted on hanging his own sheetrock but only used 1/2 on the joining wall and ceiling so it all had to be redone. (spec was 5/8 fire code on the prints) Insisted on his son doing all the wiring which did not pass because there was no GFI's, no Arc fault breakers, did not tie in the smoke alarms with the house.
He wanted us to do extra work for free because it took less time then he thought it would to build the dried in garage we where contracted to do.
He went on to build 2, decks with no permits, one was built on the land governed by the Chesapeake bay act. Both did not meet code and had to be torn down. Funny how Kama works.
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Old 11-19-2013, 05:35 AM   #9
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alright thanks for the different perspectives. I shall pay the man no questions asked.
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