Rehab costs and contractors

10 Replies

Is there any place, website etc where contractor bids, rehab or building costs from previous projects are stored by investors to compare/learn from? This info would be helpful and would be great in learning rehab costs in an expensive market vs. other markets.

Also, any recommendations on good information available regarding the costs of demo and building vs. costs of expensive rehabs in different markets?

Check out the book Estimating Rehab Costs by J Scott. Its a great place to start. Prices can vary widely even in the same market. I have been trying to hone this down for a few years. The best way I have found so far is comparing multiple quotes. Even this isnt straight forward as every contractor splits line items differently, so there is a good bit of work involved to get apples to apples comparisons. Im a data nerd at heart so heavy excel work is something I enjoy. Im interested to see if your concept of sharing prices exists. This seems to be the one area of the real estate world where investors dont readily work together. Good contractors are so hard to find most investors tend to keep them close hold. I personally believe there has to be a better way of doing business.

Thanks for the response and yea, that all makes sense! I actually did read Estimating Rehab Costs by J Scott. Great book and I learned a lot in understanding the process of how rehabs are priced and all possible work to consider... but I still feel pretty lost as far as pricing and ranges, especially in an expensive market like Los Angeles. Agreed tho, multiple quotes and comparing etc would be helpful, more info the better.

Originally posted by @Alex Blonigan :

Is there any place, website etc where contractor bids, rehab or building costs from previous projects are stored by investors to compare/learn from? This info would be helpful and would be great in learning rehab costs in an expensive market vs. other markets.

Also, any recommendations on good information available regarding the costs of demo and building vs. costs of expensive rehabs in different markets?

Much of that is going to depend on each investor, contractor, or developer's charting of each line items and all that info would likely be held as proprietary and not shared on any public site. Plus, one off's will have different costs each time as you experience different scenarios each time.

Best thing to do is hire an experienced person to help you through this. What exactly are you looking to do if you could get your hands on such info?

 

@Will Barnard Thanks for the response! I guess I'm envisioning a shared drive of contractor bids that represents completed and billed projects (redacted to remove or black out the contractor info). But I do think it is wishful thinking that someone would compile and share this type of info. I just see it as an easy way to self teach/learn from if it was something I could get my hands on in my market. There's only so much I feel I've been able to learn from reading about rehab costs etc, but seems everything could vary so much by contractor and by market.

I am house shopping right now in Los Angeles tho. Looking at multiple houses each week, all which need various work and having a tough time projecting rehab costs on each property. Feel I could be way off in some estimates. I do agree with you tho in that best practice may be to hire an experienced contractor and pay them to walk a property with me or help me understand how they would breakout the costs. I haven't built or found that relationship with someone in my market yet.

@Alex Blonigan Sorry for the blank reply. Try Rehab Valuator, you can create a free account, awesome sauce. Rehab Estimator Pro, is another great site. Prop-stream is also a really good one. All three use local pricing according to the zip of the project, to help you get a very close estimate.

@Alex Blonigan I agree that it would be tough for a contractor to give out their "numbers" due to the fact it takes years (and many projects) to figure out. Even as a GC myself, we sometimes have to go out of our network to meet new subs. So that way we can keep our subs honest or on their toes. Definitely a lot of work lol. However, I would say there are people who you can hire to save money on your construction but you will need to have certain knowledge so they don't bs you and get away with things. Hope that helps!

As far as cost, I would try to get 3 bids on each jobs (if you are new) maybe even 5 bids (seems excessive but you will learn a lot by talking to each trade). Also, it is better to hire someone who knows what he is doing for the first time so you can learn it "right", it will build your knowledge and standard for quality of work from the start.

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