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What to tell the 2nd contractor?

Old 03-14-2019, 06:11 PM
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Default What to tell the 2nd contractor?

I needed work on my house. A friend mentioned it to two contractors that he knows well. One called in about a week/10 days, I have spend time with him explaining the work (several subs will be involved) and if price is reasonable I will go with him, he is working up an estimate. So he has invested time.

Today, another week or so later the other contractor called.
What do I tell him?
Thinking of just telling him Ive already "just about" selected someone and move on?
I dont want to exercise him unneeded.

Last edited by edwardh1; 03-14-2019 at 06:18 PM.
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:15 PM
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I'd get quotes from both, but if you don't want to do that, tell the 2nd guy you have a preliminary arrangement going and if that falls through you'll contact him next.
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:15 PM
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I appreciate the call. I am a bit too far along with another contractor to cut them off, but will keep you in mind should an additional need arise.

Chances are if your friend knows both, they know one another and are friendly. They may not keep tabs on one another day to day, but would likely not attempt to under cut the other of they knew they were bidding against them.
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:29 PM
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Minimum 3 quotes for work
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:34 PM
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Autobaun has said it perfectly. I own a company and if it was said to me that way, I would not be angry at all.
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:34 PM
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Depends on the scope of work.

I understand your thinking, But It never hurts to get a couple prices if it's significant money.
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:42 PM
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It depends on the dollar value. If you are thinking $2-$5k then stick with who you have if you are comfortable with them. If more then get the second guy involved. You never know when you will need to fire somebody and it is always good to have a plan B. I would even search for a 3rd just in case there is a large spread between the two.

I work for a company that spends upwards of $50k or more on each estimate we perform. We get maybe 10% of what we bid on. All estimates are free.
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:43 PM
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Let them know you are getting more then 1 estimate and go from there, might get a better price out of it too.
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Old 03-14-2019, 07:09 PM
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Originally Posted by tartuffe View Post
It depends on the dollar value. If you are thinking $2-$5k then stick with who you have if you are comfortable with them. If more then get the second guy involved. You never know when you will need to fire somebody and it is always good to have a plan B. I would even search for a 3rd just in case there is a large spread between the two.

I work for a company that spends upwards of $50k or more on each estimate we perform. We get maybe 10% of what we bid on. All estimates are free.
$50k per estimate? What are you bidding?
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Old 03-14-2019, 07:15 PM
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Originally Posted by PMaine View Post
$50k per estimate? What are you bidding?
I’m guessing large projects like stadiums/office buildings/etc. if you have a team of estimators working on the 8000 pages of prints doesn’t take much time to hit $50k.

How much is the project for? A few grand or tens or thousands? I would still meet with the other guy and see what he says if it’s a decent size project.
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Old 03-14-2019, 07:46 PM
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Originally Posted by PMaine View Post
$50k per estimate? What are you bidding?
Mostly water and wastewater treatment plants that involve bringing the new systems online while maintaining flows while also decommissioning the outdated systems. It is not uncommon to have 6-12 people working for a month on a single project. Values range from $30 up to $200 million.
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Old 03-14-2019, 07:51 PM
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Originally Posted by tartuffe View Post
Mostly water and wastewater treatment plants that involve bringing the new systems online while maintaining flows while also decommissioning the outdated systems. It is not uncommon to have 6-12 people working for a month on a single project. Values range from $30 up to $200 million.
Ahh I see, I figured we were in similar businesses.
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Old 03-14-2019, 09:34 PM
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The truth.
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Old 03-14-2019, 11:16 PM
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Get the second estimate. And find a third who isn't a "friend of a friend" as a sanity check. That's their business, it's what they do, and none of them win 100% of their bids. It doesn't even have to be about price. It could be about who you feel more comfortable with, their references, their ability to schedule you in at a time that works for you, etc.

Always separate business and friendships. Not saying you can't do both, but from 9 to 5 it's business. From 5 to 9 it's friendship. If you can't do both, then pick one. Are they better at business or friendship? Then stick with your decision.
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Old 03-15-2019, 04:54 AM
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If you are going with the 1st guy then just tell the 2nd guy.
I personally would get quotes from both if it is a big $$ job.
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Old 03-15-2019, 05:00 AM
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you cant look at just the money part of it, get a second estimate! the second contractor may come in with better solutions on how to complete the project. could be a better way of doing it that could be cheaper or a better way but also cost more. more heads thinking equals more options and solutions!
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Old 03-15-2019, 05:13 AM
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If they both took over a week and a half to return you call, I'd pass on the both of them.
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Old 03-15-2019, 05:18 AM
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Originally Posted by mikefloyd View Post
The truth.
This. I would let the second guy know you are probably going to use the first guy, but if he wants to take the time to meet and prepare a bid you will at least consider it.
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Old 03-15-2019, 05:36 AM
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Originally Posted by lyman24 View Post
Minimum 3 quotes for work
I NEVER bid against someone.
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Old 03-15-2019, 06:12 AM
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Originally Posted by mikefloyd View Post
The truth.
Of course. Because that's the only thing that contractors will tell you, right?

Get the quote from the second guy -- just realize -- if one guy took 10 days and the other guy took 17 days to get back to you, I'd likely look for number 3,4,5. I'm curious to see how someone who takes 3 weeks to get back to you is going to do.
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