Post # 1
Thank you to those bees who responded to my first kitchen contractor woes thread… same contractor different problem.
So I got a bill from the contractor… it says the following
Took out old cabinets, installed new cabinets, placed countertop $7850.17
thats it, no hours break down, no materials costs, no nothing and I have no way to tell if he is over charging me or if he is being honest. I want to give him the benefit of the doubt, but I allready paid for the cabinets and counters and they charged all the materials to my account at the hardware store, so I have a hard time believing that my tiny little kitchen cost 7,000 just in labor!
Is it okay for me to ask him to write out specifically what he did and how long it took and how much he charges per hour so I know? What if it comes back as more!
And as an update, the crooked counter tops etc. still have not been fixed.
Post # 3
You should definitely ask for a breakdown of the charges, including dates and hours he worked and how many men were on the job.
Post # 4
Ok, I just asked my FI – he works as a contractor. It seems it should be pretty standard to put a break down on there of all the costs. It is well within your rights to ask for that! It’s like getting a receipt at the grocery store.
Post # 5
so thats almost $8K to assemble and install as you are supplying materials? is this a quote or he has already done the work? and if he has already done the work why did you let him without a quote first? gosh im hoping the $8K is just the quote
either way demand a breakdown – especially if you are providing the cabinets etc
Post # 6
Thank you ladies,
Its a bill, not the quote. He provided a quote that was basicly null and void after we made so many changes and I never asked for a new quote to include the work that we agreed on after making the changes, so I guess that part is my fault.
I just sent him an email requesting a breakdown of the charges and will see when he gets back to me I guess.
It seems insanely high even compared to some friends kitchens he has done around town. Also the fact that my countertops are crooked and I ended up doing half the work leads me to believe that something strange is going on here.
Post # 7
It depeneds on your orginal contract with him, was this a lump sum project or time and materials? Do you know his hourly rate? Did you have a quote?
Were you not home during the rennovation… so you don’t know how long it took? Becuase he can say X was a problem.
Some items he can pontentially bill for – Did he have more than one person working? Did you need electrical, painting or plumbing? Did someone come out for your countertops (are they granite? we’re they precut? were they prerounded?) Delivery charges? Fuel? Milage? Tool rental (or he can charge an hourly cost for certain tools)? Did you have a time frame that required early or late work? Permits?
Typically you can withhold 10% in rentention for him to come back and fix things after a walk though.
Post # 8
I got an itemized bill back and showed it to my Future Father-In-Law, who is an electrician and knows how to read bills better than I do, he noticed right away that according to the bill it took 3 guys 26 hours to install the two sinks and then another 14 hours for the plumbing. that is a combined total of 40 hours just for the sink? hmm?
I was home for a portion of the time they did the work each day, but I leave for work at 1:00pm and get back at 9:00pm, so can tell you when they got there but not when they left. Part of the problem. Also the quote that he gave me included a bunch of stuff that they did not do becuase I did them (floor, trim, painting) and the quote was not itemized, so I don’t know the cost for those things were which really makes it null and void.
@Captain013: The countertops were pre-cut and pre-rounded all he had to do was install them, which I understand is still a task, but my carpenter (who is totally unrelated from that company) noted today that cabinets under the countertops are not actually secured to the ground! He noted that this could be a potential problem becuase if the cabinet get bumped or shifts the counters could potentially crack if they are not secured! SCARY!
Fiance is comming home on leave this weekend, and I don’t want to worry him with all of this, but I think I might just hand it all over to him when he gets here, I am not nearly intimidating enought to get the truth at this point.
Post # 9
@globalmargaret: Unfortunate but true fact: there are people who believe women are pushovers but won’t try to pull that stuff on men. Sometimes I have to put Fiance on speakerphone and literally script out things for him to say because he’s non-confrontational; I’ve accepted this about him and I have no problem telling people that if I am paying for something, that thing had better be done correctly. I don’t mind handling that, but every now and then someone will ONLY listen to a man. This is especially bad with my mechanic. I will ask him a question and he will turn to my father to answer. My father will look clueless because he’s so not mechanical (almost killed himself screwing in a lightbulb once, no joke). I follow up the answer with another question and the guy won’t even turn his head to me. If I go alone, he dumbs all of the answers down for me and it drives me crazy. If he didn’t do really good work for cheap, I’d move on fast.
Your Fiance may get further with this guy. He sounds shady, and I would threaten to file a complaint against him if he doesn’t return to do the job correctly and if he doesn’t justify how it took 3 guys that long to do the work. I can install a sink in a few hours, and I have no formal training, so I hope he can explain that one.
Post # 10
@globalmargaret: Since we are doing our kitchen and have a contractor I find that to be very expensive. We are installing new cabinets and 66 square feet of counter top and labor is less than $3500, and I think our kitchen is a pretty good size, a little bigger than average and includes the installation of a new island. You should definitely ask for a breakdown of everything.