How many bids is enough?

7 Replies

In the past, I've contacted 1 or 2 contractors and decided whether they were reasonable. Do you think it would be better to get bids from more than that? I've never felt like I've been ripped off, but lately, I'm working with people outside of my area. Any help here would be great. Thanks.

Originally posted by "columbia28":
In the past, I've contacted 1 or 2 contractors and decided whether they were reasonable. Do you think it would be better to get bids from more than that? I've never felt like I've been ripped off, but lately, I'm working with people outside of my area. Any help here would be great. Thanks.

If you have a good idea of what a project should cost, and you are happy with the contractors you meet, then go with them. Numbers are meaningless. What is important is price, trustworthyness, and the ability to get projects completed in time & under cost. Always check references.

Finding a good contractor is extremly important, especially if you're going to be devoting lots of time and money intop your investing career. Do your homework, and find someone who will work alongside you for years to come.

Medium fbprofileJoshua Dorkin, BiggerPockets | http://www.biggerpockets.com | Podcast Guest on Show #100

I usually try to get 3 bids on major work. Sometimes you will have to call more than 3 to "actually" get 3 to show up and give you bids.

I've found that "World Famous" has a great point. You often must call several contractors to get one to show up. Especially on smaller jobs. Because the company willing to do the small jobs usually gets covered up pretty easily.

But, three bids gives you a realistic median price to judge from. Unless you have some contractor that comes well recommended or you personally have some accountability with.

Good Luck!

If possible you want to get 3 bids. With three or more bids, you can get an idea if something is wrong with a bid.

For example:
If you have 3 bids one for $1,500 and one for $3,000 and another for $2,800 there might be a problem with the $1,500 bid. Where if you have only 2 bids of $1,500 and $3,000 ho do you know which one is off.

as a rule, I tell clients to get three bids.

Interview each contractor throughougly and check out the license with the bbb and check to see if the state website posts complaints.

Ask for references. Ask for 3 good ones and a bad one. (nope, im not crazy)....The bad one will tell you if the contractor showed up for work in a timely manner, if the contractor did everything that was asked and if the contractor completed the project.

You cant pick a good one 100% of the time, but you can help protect yourself.

Also dont be afraid to have the contractor sign a contract specifying your expected begin date and end date of the project and a percentage drop for each DAY that your contractor is not finished. But do be reasonable. Many times we crack into a project and other issues need to be addressed right away and you have to accomadate for that in the contract.

Good luck!

It really depends on your local market...and the job.

I manage an office building that had a nearly 10' X 10' window catch a flying metal chair back in December. I've managed to have two contractors LOOK at it, but no proposal yet...

I'd be happy to get one solid commitment!

We do dozens of Kroger stores every year, and Kroger usually bids it out to at least 3 GC's per project. Three seems to be the popular number.

Please remember that the lowest price is not always the best price. If you have to pay a percent or two for a more experienced GC, its usually worth every penny. (This goes hand in hand with a couple posts above mine)