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To think tradesmen should come back with a quote quickly?

(34 Posts)
audreyroberts Sun 31-Jul-11 21:59:58

I am thinking of having my bathroom done. Had 4 tradesmen round to quote. But only 1 given a quote
How long do you think you .should wait for a quote. I was thinking 2 days unless they have advised you it will be longer. I am i expecting too much?

FabbyChic Sun 31-Jul-11 22:02:07

I'd say a week, some do have to work too you know and fit in the quotes on one particular day of the week.

izzywhizzyletsgetbusy Sun 31-Jul-11 22:02:28

Yes, I do think tradesmen should come back with a quote quickly but they very often don't.

If you haven't heard within a week get back to them or look elsewhere.

audreyroberts Sun 31-Jul-11 22:06:28

dh would not let me get back to them - he is very much if they want the work they should get back to you quickly.
As mentioned we have 1 quote for bathroom - i want to take as need to get a date sorted but worried other tradesmen may eventually get back to us and be cheaper. Dh is of opinion - so what if cheaper they are unprofessional as not got back sooner so would not want them anyway.

squishysquashy Sun 31-Jul-11 22:08:40

Plumbers are a law unto themselves. I am waiting about 3 weeks from one, 2 weeks from another and 5 days from the latest. (the first guy is definitely reliable and hard working he has spent ages fixing various faults with our boiler and not charging us for the extra time, and he did say he was busy....but still!)

squishysquashy Sun 31-Jul-11 22:10:05

Oh and I have had one back that took about 10 days, he did apologise for the delay though. Feel terrible not replying to him to let him know yay or nay.

NickRobinsonsloveslave Sun 31-Jul-11 22:11:58

Think you'll find the reason the quotes come back late is because it's not the tradesmen that type them up, it's their wives.
And what with cooking, cleaning, chilcare etc, they do come low on the to do list.

CristinaTheAstonishing Sun 31-Jul-11 22:12:56

Well, you either want them to take a look, suck their teeth and give you a "quote", or let them get on with the job of looking up prices etc. I don't think 2 days is reason to start feeling all snooty just because you have the money they want - they have the skills you need.

VirtualWitch Sun 31-Jul-11 22:15:14

Be wary of tradesman who come back with a quote too quickly/eagerly though. 5 days to a week is about right.

Plumbers are bad, but roofers are another thing alltogether!

timidviper Sun 31-Jul-11 22:15:26

This summer I have had 2 companies to quote for some work in the garden, neither have come back.

I am getting a new kitchen soon, overall we have had 6 companies to measure up and quote. One never got back to us at all, two did plans which didn't include most of the things I had asked for, one did a plan but then dropped out as they couldn't get curved doors, which just lefy us 2 to choose from.

It's not a good hit rate when times are this hard.

ChunkyMonkeyMother Mon 01-Aug-11 01:34:18

I had to get some quotes for our garden to be levelled out and turfed for our landlord (My uncle was doing the work but LL wanted to ensure he was getting a good rate) - I phoned 4 companies to obtain said quotes.

2 did not get to back to me, they BOTH arranged a call out, after having the work explained to them but neither showed up to measure, I then got a sales call from one of them, I sharply told them where they could shove their "15% off all garden remodelling" and put the phone down.

The other 2 came to measure up, one told me there and then we'd be looking at over £1000 and that he didn't think he could work without decent access (Just a small alleyway behind the house with a teeny tiny gate) so understandably I thanked him and just asked him to write what he had said down on headed paper, he did and left.

The final guy arrived late to measure and when he got here he took one look at our small garden and clearly realised we weren't made of money, took a deep breath and kind of sighed, I turned to him and said "You ok?" He replied that "It'd cost more than its worth just to get rid of the shit underneath the slabs" I replied that he needent bother getting his tape measure out and that we wouldn't be requiring his services - a few days later we got a call to ask how we felt it went, needless to say I don't think they'll be calling again!

So out of 4 companies I got ONE quote! That was more than double what my uncle had quoted - my garden is mid-remodel and already looking exciting!

Maybe the trick is to just phone like 10 of the little blighters and maybe you'll get 3 quotes? Or try a recommended website, I know BnQ do a workmen list that the council have given them to give to customers?

Good luck!

TheFarSide Mon 01-Aug-11 01:46:28

I never did get a quote from my builder, but he came recommended by a friend ... and he always answers his phone. Not only did we not get a quote, but we also haven't got a bill yet for about £3k worth of work completed a year ago. We have chased him for an invoice and he says he'll get round to it eventually, but in the meantime he says he trusts us and knows we'll pay him (!). He's just very bad at paperwork.

I suppose the moral of this story is lack of quote does not always mean unreliable builder.

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 01-Aug-11 07:12:00

I'm with your DH. I tend to think that if they can't be bothered to submit a quote within 2 or 3 days of seeing the job, they're either not interested in doing it or they've got too much other work on.

HPonEverything Mon 01-Aug-11 07:41:15

Well if you're down my way I'll get my DH (a bathroom fitter) round for you and he'll get a quote to you within a day - he prides himself on it.

You won't get the actual job done til next January though (booked up, not lazy!)...

daimbardiva Mon 01-Aug-11 11:36:33

I'd say a week is reasonable - often they'll have one designated day in the office to get quotes done.

I tend to operate on the principle that if they're not reasonably quick at getting a quote out they're not keen on doing the job, and wouldn't be reliable anyway. Unless, of course, they've been honest and told you that they are very busy and won't be able to get back to you for X amount of time

harassedandherbug Mon 01-Aug-11 11:42:06

What's the problem with roofers Virtualwitch??

Dh is a roofer and doesn't have the time to take a day off to do quotes etc, so they're squeezed in during evenings and weekends along with accounts and other paperwork.

He normally takes 5-7 days........ then generally waits weeks/months or never to hear back. Then when he does hear back the customer moans because he can't fit them in immediately! Never go with someone who can fit you in straight away, it means they haven't got much work on and there's generally a reason for that.

D0G Mon 01-Aug-11 11:47:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CupcakesandTwunting Mon 01-Aug-11 12:01:29

Agree totally.

I started a thread like this and got responses like "You're obviously a nightmare to work for that's why they didn't get badk to you" Yeah cos you can tell that just from me saying "Hi, come in, this is the work I need doing, shall I leave you to measure up? Can I get you a cup of tea?" hmm

I think a week is a reasonable length of time to be expected to wait.

nickelbabe Mon 01-Aug-11 12:06:03

I had to have my roof done (lead was pinched) on an insurance job - it had to be done quickly because the roof had a huge gaping hole in it.

I rang about 8 roofers, 4 got back to me and came round to do a quote, 2 sent in a quote.
the one that sent in the quote the quickest won the contract, actually.

not because it was the quickest, but because it was the cheapest (and that's what insurance people do) - but as it happened, the company was a local company, very pleasant to deal with, worked quickly and efficiently, barring the nearly-week-long wait for the scaffold licence, it was done in just over a day.

nickelbabe Mon 01-Aug-11 12:07:43

sorry, I was supposed to say how long i expected to wait for a quote.

I would say a week is sufficient (because as someone else says, it allows for sole traders or small companies who do quotes on a specific day).

any more than that and they really don't care.

and my roofer actually spoke to me by phone before he sent in the quote, which I like too, because it shows that they're actually dealing with you.

Groovee Mon 01-Aug-11 12:20:00

My hubby can sometimes take a week as prices can be hard to confirm with manufacturers and wholesalers, especially when they don't answer their phones for hours on end. 2 days is unreasonable IMO, as dh normally does the estimate on the day arranged, then will spend 2 days trying to get all the costs confirmed before drawing up a quote which then has to be typed up by his secretary(that's if he's not off sick) and then get sent out to the customer. Bear in mind he has to do lots of other estimates and jobs in between this.

lesley33 Mon 01-Aug-11 13:30:06

Have friends who are tradespeople - plumber and electrician. They always say a week is reasonable for quotes. But I know sometimes they don't give quotes when they go and decide they don't want the job - but neither seems good at being honest!

The reasons they give to me range from the person seems a nightmare to work for; the house is squalid; and the person wants them to do a job in a certain way that won't work e.g. size of boiler they want is too small for house - in spie of them telling the person this.

But 2 days is very quick. Person is probably desperate for work.

2 days is a bit quick.......the builder will have to price things up and then get someone to type his estimate for him. DH is a builder and I have the craplovely job of typing his estimates. I have a full time job plus DS so I do them as quick as I can but sometimes it may be a few days!!

We are usually quick but not 2 days - thats a bit U really!

CristinaTheAstonishing Mon 01-Aug-11 19:06:34

DH has turned down jobs because he thought the person would be a nightmare to work with. He was doing this as his away-from-the-9to5 job, not worth him taking on difficult people when that's what he wanted to get away from. For a variety of reasons he's back to 9 to 5 empolyed work.

lilmissminx Mon 01-Aug-11 19:43:44

My family are in various 'trades', so speaking from experience!
Beware a quote that is too quick as I know of a builder who recently sub-contracted my friend who is an electrician. The electrician carefully produced a quote having checked with his suppliers for most competitive price, and worked out his labour costs. Quote came out at £1200 altogether. Builder had already given a quote, (based on not checking) of £600 hmm You don't want any nasty surprises part way through, and end up feeling obligated to pay more just to get the job finished.
Don't jump in for the cheapest, and avoid ANY trades person who say they can do it cheaper for cash - harder far you to have proof for recourse if there are any problems
If you have 2 low quotes, 2 high ones and 2 in the middle - the middle ones are usually the best bet. Do try to speak to people who have had jobs completed by the tradesperson - NOT a job in progress!
Also - my brother got behind with some quotes this week because our Dad had a bad accident and ended up in hospital (he's still there) so maybe give them a chance if you can as they may have a very good reason smile HTH

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