DIY Home Improvement Forum banner

1 - 20 of 33 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I have a question.........I have always been of the opinion when you hire a contractor, you pay for labor, and whatever the materials are you pay the actual cost. I recently had a bathroom done, and the contractor saved all his receipts, showed them to be, so I knew exactly what the cost of supplies were. Several months ago I hired a different contractor, who did my tile floor in hallway and kitchen, on his estimate he quoted me $1200 for expoxy grout, (I thought that was high but I didn't question it) later while the job was in progress I found out the cost of the grout was actually $600, when I questioned him about it, he gave me some lame excuse that he has to use his own buckets and sponges which he didn't charge me for ($600 for sponges???? ) so I ended up paying the $1200 and felt violated....so is this normal procedure for you guys to over charge customers on marterial? or did I get scammed?
 

·
fabrk8r
Joined
·
849 Posts
Was the price of the job quoted before work started, or were you paying time and material?

In my opinion it's a mistake to pay T&M for a large project. A small project on the other hand will usually be cheaper if paying T&M because the contractor doesn't have to take the time to prepare a bid.

If I was going to hire a contractor to do a T&M project i would ask up front about material mark-up, just to avoid the shock.
 

·
Tileguy
Joined
·
10,705 Posts
Ah...there you are again...feeling screwed again.

You haven't been "over charged" that is asinine. You were charged the amount you agreed to pay for the job. It is none of your business what the contractor paid for his products. You were happy with the price going in.:)
 

·
Retired Moderator
Joined
·
25,768 Posts
I'm sure that price was for labor and the actual materials---Epoxy grout takes a lot of extra time to install

almost three times as long as conventional grout.

It also destroys most equipment that is used. Sponges are $3.00 each and only have a life of about 30 minutes each.

Was the price labor and materials?
 

·
Not so new
Joined
·
968 Posts
"Is it normal to overcharge for materials?"

Its normal to add OH and profit. Some more than others. Very good friends and family only get cost on materials.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
32 Posts
How many hours did the job take him? I agree, "overcharging" might not be the right word for it. Next time you could ask your contractor ahead of time to tell you how they came up with the price they did. It sounds like you agreed to $1200 but only felt cheated after you saw that the material were half the amount.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,802 Posts
I often buy the materials myself - alleviates the out-of-pocket expence and carry charges for the service provider. I do the gofer work or they can select and pick up - the contractors desk calls me with the price and I pay be credit card. The receipt shows me exactly what I bought and paid.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
8,864 Posts
The only items I install, supplied by the customer, are light fixtures and ceiling fans.
I can't warranty the items if you bought and paid for them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
BUd
Let me ask you, do you pick on all the newb's that post here or should I feel honored by your self serving egotisical comments directed at me in an offensive manor....for that I take exception, and I don't expect an apology from you, I can tell already the kind of person you are, It's pretty sad when someone comes here with all good intentions to get info, and then gets taken apart and judged by others that have no idea what they are talking about. Now I'll give you some advice,, don't try to make a living in the customer service industry, you won't last a day.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
584 Posts
BUd
Let me ask you, do you pick on all the newb's that post here or should I feel honored by your self serving egotisical comments directed at me in an offensive manor....for that I take exception, and I don't expect an apology from you, I can tell already the kind of person you are, It's pretty sad when someone comes here with all good intentions to get info, and then gets taken apart and judged by others that have no idea what they are talking about. Now I'll give you some advice,, don't try to make a living in the customer service industry, you won't last a day.
Just junping in here. I guess you agreed on the bid price and paid it ? Now if the contractor happen to get his supply's for free than what?? my 3 cents for inflation . Jump on me if you want broad sholders .
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,194 Posts
This opinion, "I have always been of the opinion when you hire a contractor, you pay for labor, and whatever the materials are you pay the actual cost.", is not a correct one. Contractors do not stay in business long with that cost formula.
What goes into a job estimate is labor, material, profit and overhead. the same as goes into every other business on the planet.
When you buy a can of corn, you're paying for:
Farmer cost to plant and harvest.
Cost of the can
Cost to make the can
Cost of the label paper
Cost of printing the label
Cost of getting all that to the canning facility
Cost of processing the corn and getting it into the can
Cost of getting the product to the warehouse
Cost of getting the product to the local store.
Cost of getting it out of the box and on the shelf.
Cost of the stores utilities
Cost of the cashier who rings up the corn.
And you walk out of the store with a $1.29 can of corn.
All the costs get passed on to the end consumer.
Contracting is no different. Some where in that one estimate figure are all the catagories.
That's how businesses are run.
 

·
Tileguy
Joined
·
10,705 Posts
A few last comments then I'll give the OP the last word which he seems to want anyway.

You said:
"I ended up paying the $1200 and felt violated...."
You agreed to the $1200.00 to begin with, now you feel "violated". Give me a break!!! What probably happened was you stood around micro-managing the whole job and when you saw how easy the work was you realized how inadequate you had been and didn't want to loosen your grip on your money.

Then you said: "so is this normal procedure for you guys to over charge customers on marterial?"
I'm the one that should be offended my friend. You came here attempting to paint all contractors with your broad brush of accusations that we don't deserve.

Then you also said: "Let me ask you, do you pick on all the newb's that post here or should I feel honored"
Who "picked" first? If some dummy comes here slamming a contractor and his own words don't seem to warrant the slamming then I'll certainly defend the contractor. Your words and tone started off offensive and now I'm the bad guy??? You're goofy!:)

And again you offered:
"I can tell already the kind of person you are, It's pretty sad when someone comes here with all good intentions to get info, and then gets taken apart and judged by others that have no idea what they are talking about."
Whaa whaa whaa! You are kidding...right?


And you still weren't finished when you said:
"Now I'll give you some advice,, don't try to make a living in the customer service industry, you won't last a day."
Being self employed does require a lot of "Customer Service" and I guess we'll have to see if you are correct. I've already been successfully self-employed in this business for thirty-five years. so I guess we'll have to see what the next thirty-five years brings. But, maybe you should try to take over Dr. Phil's job with your advice.:)

I'm surprised you can find anyone to work for you with your requirements.

Your problem here is that you ran in to someone that just isn't interested in your BS and sees right through your thin vail of "Oh woe is me, Oh woe is me.":laughing:

Now I have to go and beg to get my position back on the Welcome Wagon Committee thanks to you.
 

·
homeowner learning quick
Joined
·
70 Posts
When we had our basement finished in the townhouse we used to live in, I had an agreement with the GC that he would go to Home Depot and pick out all the materials he needed for the job and I paid for them at the contractors desk - it was a win/win because I paid the non marked up price for the material, got the credit card points (actualy it was 5% cash back because of the Discover promo running), and the GC didn't need to come out of pocket for the materials and wait to get paid the money back.

Regardless of the situation I would alsways ask for a breakdown of the material cost when getting a bid on a project. If you don't ask for that up front I don't know how you could get upset from seeing the 100% profit margin the contractor charged -- I guess I should say I would probably be upset too, but I would blame myself for not asking for the info up front.

Just my $.02
 

·
the Musigician
Joined
·
10,404 Posts
I suppose we're going to have to teach people
This is a public forum, please expect replies from anyone at all... even Bud.
to read between the lines around here....

DM
 
1 - 20 of 33 Posts
Top