Do You Understand The Difference Between Price And Quality When Remodeling?
Getting three bids will not automatically help your find the best contractor, but it may be a good place to start. If your objective is to get a quality job at a fair price, simply comparing three estimates can be very misleading if you aren’t comparing “apples to apples.” That’s why it’s important for you to have a clearly defined project.
Suppose you have a relatively simple job of tiling a floor. One contractor’s materials and methods can be drastically different from another’s, and code requirements are not specific enough to eliminate these variances. So, if you are comparing estimates without thoroughly knowing the specifics of what your project involves, and how each contractor plans on performing the job, you really aren’t making an accurate comparison. Don’t assume that the contractors are more alike than they actually are. This assumption will tempt you to choose the contractor with the lowest price, but this selection method has major flaws.
You can’t hardly walk in some stores without seeing more items on sale than not are not on sale. People have become accustomed to finding everything on sale. We have come to believe the low price saves us money. This may be true when you are standing in a store looking at an article of clothing and you can see exactly what you are buying but it is rarely true in the remodeling business.
Unfortunately many contractors follow the path of least resistance. They know that the easiest way to get the customer to sign a contract is to offer the lowest price which will meet with the least sales resistance. Once the contract is signed the contractor has to figure out how to squeeze a profit out of the job. He will then have to cut corners to make some money on your job and he will. He will operate under the principal “What you don’t know won’t hurt you,” and it won’t. That is, it won’t hurt you until you find out about it, and then it will probably be too late.
We have all heard the adage “You get what you pay for” this is especially true in the remodeling business. If you solicit several estimates and simply select the lowest one what you are likely to experience a remodeler who uses inferior materials, shoddy workmanship, isn’t insured, isn’t registered, illegally removes and dumps toxic waste from your house, and puts your job in reserve status if something more profitable comes along.
Often times the low-priced contractor has (intentionally or unintentionally) omitted something from the contract. Whether it was intentional or not, it will end up costing you more to complete the underestimated job. The higher priced contractor is often more experienced, accurate, and realistic with his prices.
There is nothing cheap about running a remodeling business. Remodeling is labor intensive and that is highly skilled labor which doesn’t come at a discount. Then there are materials that need to be bought, as well as insurance, vehicles, gas, specialized tools, advertising, planning, scheduling, and permits it all cost money. After all this the contractor is in business to make a profit.
First and foremost you want a quality remodeling project that you are happy with and trying to make that happen around hiring the contractor with the lowest price is an illusion. Remodeling is inherently expensive and if you embark on a remodeling project with the mindset that you are going to get it for less you are most likely going to be sorely disappointed. A better strategy is to primarily look at remodelers with a good reputations, good references, and experience then consider price as a secondary consideration.