Is my contractor ripping me off

11 Replies | St. Louis, Missouri

Hi, recently came across a bid for office renovation. Contractors seems like a nice guy but following items in bid doesn't make any sense

-Project Management - 4275 $

-Coordination with trades - 2250 $

- Foreman - 1775 $

-Overhead 10 % =  10,082

- Profit 7% = 7058.03

Does this sound like a usual practice ?

My project cost seems to have exploded :(

what the scope of the project.

Likes a good amount of work based on overhead number.  A lot moving parts involved in contracting.

Are you getting an onsite project manager?

Rates seem a little high but don't really know the scope and how detailed the project is, could be in line or way over kill.

A contractor can not "rip you off" by charging a high price .  You can agree to the price and hire them , or you can decline and hire someone else . Contractor prices are not regulated . We charge what the market will bear . Most contractors have more work than they can handle , so therefore prices are higher 

Originally posted by @Matthew Paul :

A contractor can not "rip you off" by charging a high price .  You can agree to the price and hire them , or you can decline and hire someone else . Contractor prices are not regulated . We charge what the market will bear . Most contractors have more work than they can handle , so therefore prices are higher 

there is an inverse relationship with investors and contractors.. investors want cheap contractors want to make a living .. 

and your dead on.. that's why you have bids.. 

I was building some new construction a few years back on the Oregon coast.. and I got a framing bid on a 2200 sq ft house that was not complicated and I got one bid at 52k.. I wrote the contractor thinking maybe that was for lumber framing and siding.. NOPE just framing labor  LOL.. when I said really .. we pay 5 bucks a foot in PDX for framing labor he said that's what we charge.. so he was looking for one off homeowner who simply did not know any better.. but on the Oregon coast we did have to pay 7 bucks.. I had that happen in Charleston also got bids at 20 bucks a foot just for labor and we have found a great crew at 8 bucks.. but its all regional. 

Thanks guys for all the valuable advice

And yes, I don't have other bids to compare. Will get them before agreeing to anything

It's for an office - city is asking me to make the building ADA complaint by fix up outside concrete ramp, remove another small ramp, build a new ADA washroom and open up the small hallway

Jay is spot on, for me to come in and drywall one room and be worth my time you're looking at $3,000-$4,000 (which is ridiculous). Contractors are busy and they will charge accordingly, it really shouldn't matter how much they're making on profit either. You either like the whole price or you don't. Don't pick the contractor bid apart trying to get a better deal, you're just going to train your contractor to be less transparent. I don't even break my bids down for the open market people because they try to cut out sections of the job to save money when I specifically bid the pricing for each line item in consideration of acquiring the whole project. It becomes frustrating, just had that happen with a guy I met on BP. 

I gave him an estimate for certain things, for example we put $5,000 kitchen and he went and spent $4,500 on kitchen materials (not exact numbers) and our profit was gone, the whole job was picked apart like that and we lost money trying to keep the friendship and working relationship going and the job didn't turn out like it should have. Long winded but the point is, don't look at the break down unless the contractor is specifically offering it for you to pick apart. You like the number or you don't. If the numbers work they work, if they don't they don't.