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Mojo Rising
07-01-2007, 11:21 PM
I just bought new windows and had them installed. I have worked with a guy I know for all of the projects in my house. In the past I have felt he has worked slow and padded some hours but he was cheap so I overlooked it.

He has since raised his price to the point where overlooking is getting expensive.

I had a quote from a pro installer to put in 7 windows and it was going to take a day.

My guy came in with a cheaper quote and it was hourly. There are 2 guys at $25 each. I thought I was looking at $1,100 and then he gave me a $1,500 bill.

2 major discrepencies I have are this:

The inside trim was cut, windows installed and caulked. He then billed me for 3 guys at 5 hours each to install the trim.

The next was billing me for 2 guys to paint the inside 7 and outside of 5 windows at 3 hours each for 2 guys.

My guess is that he added this "helper" to pad his hours. What would be the expected time for each job?

The windows are standard 36 x 25 on average.

DaneMcCloud
07-01-2007, 11:25 PM
If Train A leaves the station traveling at 45 miles an and Train B leaves a station 4 miles from Train A, when will both arrive at...

Bacon Cheeseburger
07-01-2007, 11:26 PM
OK, I skimmed a little two quickly the first time. 6 total hours for painting the inside of 7 windows and outside of 5 doesn't seem excessive to me.

Mojo Rising
07-01-2007, 11:45 PM
Thanks. It seemed to me like a 3 hour job once my suspicion was raised.

The pro installers said they would have the job done in a day so the 15 hours they billed me for to install already cut trim (different line item on the bill) got my suspicions up.

Also, the 1st day they told me they only worked for 3 hours. This is the 1st time I noted what I knew of their time. This is also the 1st time I asked for their hours.

They billed me for 5 hours the 1st day (X2 = $100 overcharge.)

I only wished they would have mailed me the bill like in The Firm so I would have had them on Fed charges ; )

PastorMikH
07-01-2007, 11:50 PM
Phil would probably give you your best answer, but having done similar work myself and knowing how much time it would take me, I'd say the 5 hours for trim should have taken care of painting too.

I put vinyl windows in the last house we were in. Took me on average about 2 hours average per window (by myself) from start to finish including final paint inside and out.

Say, they didn't apply the first coat of paint, let it dry on the clock then apply the second did they?


I know a local handyman that I got some tips from that charges a flat $125 install on standard first floor residential windows. But that is the price in this area, yours may be different than that.

Mojo Rising
07-01-2007, 11:53 PM
I forgot to add the the windows were already primed (inside, again different line item) for the 6 hour painting job I have in question.

Bacon Cheeseburger
07-01-2007, 11:53 PM
Thanks. It seemed to me like a 3 hour job once my suspicion was raised.

The pro installers said they would have the job done in a day so the 15 hours they billed me for to install already cut trim (different line item on the bill) got my suspicions up.

Also, the 1st day they told me they only worked for 3 hours. This is the 1st time I noted what I knew of their time. This is also the 1st time I asked for their hours.

They billed me for 5 hours the 1st day (X2 = $100 overcharge.)

I only wished they would have mailed me the bill like in The Firm so I would have had them on Fed charges ; )
Actually I didn't catch that the trim was already cut. 10 man hours to nail up trim does sound excessive. And am I correct in assuming the painting was for bare wood that had to be primed and painted 2 coats?

Bacon Cheeseburger
07-01-2007, 11:54 PM
I forgot to add the the windows were already primed (inside, again different line item) for the 6 hour painting job I have in question.
1 or 2 coats of paint?

BigMeatballDave
07-01-2007, 11:59 PM
1 or 2 coats of paint?Avatar thieving bastard...
:)

Bacon Cheeseburger
07-02-2007, 12:00 AM
Avatar thieving bastard...
:)
Shit. You weren't supposed to see that in this thread.

Mojo Rising
07-02-2007, 12:00 AM
1 coat over the primer. My house was built in '25 so I have slat and plaster. Thus, there was minor mud and paint on the walls next to the trim.

The next question is why haven't I asked him about it. Waiting for BofA to cancel the extra $500 check I sent, that now I wish I didn't.

Here is a copy of the email he sent me with the hours yesterday. On 6/19 he told me the cost was 1,000 - 1,100. Then hetold me it was 1,500. Because of 7 years of good dealings I sent the check. Then I started to add it up...and it didn't.

I never met this Andreas that is listed and think he was added, with the extra 2 hours (4 total) on day 1 to bring the 1,100 cost to 1,500.

labor date Rich Josh Andreas job
6/7/2007 5 5 demo
6/8/2007 5 4.5 install
6/11/2007 7 6 install&trim
6/12/2007 5 5.5 5 trim&caulk
6/13/2007 1 patch
6/14/2007 2 dump
6/15/2007 1 1 patch/prime
6/19/2007 1 patch
6/26/2007 3 3 paint

Total 28 24 8 60

Bacon Cheeseburger
07-02-2007, 12:03 AM
Yeah, it sounds fishy. You open yourself up to that when you hire people by the hour. I rarely work that way unless it's something that I simply cannot estimate the time on, and this certainly doesn't sound like that type of job. They should've been able to give you a total price (in writing) up front.

Phobia
07-02-2007, 12:06 AM
I can't comment on how long it takes somebody to paint. At first glance it doesn't seem crazy out of hand and the labor prices are cheap, especially for your neck of the woods.

It's entirely up to you. If you have an established relationship with the guy, just talk to him about it. If you cancel the check, kiss the relationship goodbye.

Mojo Rising
07-02-2007, 12:09 AM
The installer I had give me an estimate was 1800. I pinnned this guy to no more than 1600. I think he regretted it when it only came to 1100 in actual work.

The sad thing is that the guy has worked for me for 7 years and now it is turning out this way. He used to charge $15/hour.

On the last 2 jobs I helped so I think he is bummed he couldn't pad hours or work slow on those jobs.

I just hope BofA doesn't process that check tomorrow.

Phobia
07-02-2007, 12:10 AM
I would suggest that if you agree to pay somebody by the hour in the future you should have some method of monitoring their activity so that you don't have these types of questions in the future.

We contractors are pretty reasonable people. Again, just talk to the guy about it. He'll probably take care of you if you have concerns especially since he's been doing work for you for 7 years.

Mojo Rising
07-02-2007, 12:19 AM
I think this will be our last job together. There is not much more to do to the house and we will be heading to the burbs before long.

I tried to monitor the hours. All the pad came on days when my wife and I weren't there.

I wish I had the conversation before I sent the check, but, such is life. Lesson learned.

BigMeatballDave
07-02-2007, 12:19 AM
Anyone hear of this...

http://www.neverpaintagain.com/

Iowanian
07-02-2007, 08:21 AM
Its appropriate you're in San Fran.

You might mention to him that you'd at least prefer a kiss on the neck first next time.

PastorMikH
07-02-2007, 12:14 PM
After reading more in the thread, if the contractor was bidding $1,800 and this guy got the job done for $1,500, even if he's padding his figures, he still saved you $ over the other guy.

Probably not what you wanted to hear but if I were in your shoes I'd probably just pay him and then make him bid the job in the future instead of going hourly.

Simply Red
07-02-2007, 08:58 PM
I scanned through this thread fairly quickly, Scared you may be watching me "pad."

The contractor seemed fair. Because if he worked too quickly, chances are you'd grow concerned about sloppyness.

So I think overall he did you right.