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to wonder how anyone manages to get quotes?!

(57 Posts)
VelvetSpoon Thu 20-Oct-16 18:47:06

I've got a list of jobs that need doing at home. I don't have the time, inclination or ability for much of it, so I need to pay someone. No issue with that. But getting anyone out to give me a price seems impossible...I've this week contacted 12 people, no response from most of them, and the rest...

'can I come now and take a look'
(half 3 on a Weds)
I explain sorry, I'm at work but if I make a special effort I'll be home by 6pm.

That's too late, can I let them know when I'll be home before 4.
(I work til 5, so short of taking a day off, can't be home at 4!)

Other responses have been similar, asking to come in the middle of the day, or at 9am - when I said I'm at work from 9 one guy said he'd come at 8.30 - not much help as I leave at 7.45 and I don't really want anyone here at 7.30.

Is it me? I appreciate that one of the jobs is outside, so might be easier in daylight, but it's still lightish here at 6.

Honestly, I give up! I just want to pay someone to do some work. The worst bit is, from experience I know I'll only get a quote from half the ones who turn up, but getting anyone to come out at 6 or weekends seems impossible.

I do appreciate people have lives etc but I also have to go to work - am I really going to have to take a day off to do this, assuming of course they can even turn up on that day!

How do other people manage?

Laiste Thu 20-Oct-16 19:04:32

What are the jobs OP? What type of companies are you ringing?

EnterFunnyNameHere Thu 20-Oct-16 19:06:24

One of the things I have found is that it's particularly hard when you have lots of little things, so no one trade sees it as a big earner...

The way around that which works for us (no promises!) is rolling all the small things into a larger chuck of work which is more attractive as a job?

If you're already doing that then i sympathise but can't help beyond let me know if you find an answer!

Have you tried one of those websites where you advertise what needs doing with pics or whatever and the trades cone to you? Never tried it, but I think the point is you can get indicative costs without home visits, and also I guess save contacting everyone and their dog separately...?

Good luck!

User100 Thu 20-Oct-16 19:12:17

I suppose they work during office hours too and want to be home to see their families etc. Are you expecting them to do the job in that time too or will you take a day off / leave a key? Could you just get a recommendation of someone (from a friend or something) and get them to come and do it rather than bothering with multiple quotes?

VelvetSpoon Thu 20-Oct-16 19:13:47

There are various jobs, one is roofing/ guttering (the outside job)- contacted several small local companies and sole traders; the other internal jobs I've contacted handymen/ odd job men. I'd mentioned various jobs to some, just one or two to others, but the response has been the same.

I had some bad experiences from posting jobs previously so not keen to do that again.

Afterthestorm Thu 20-Oct-16 19:18:17

Sounds like they have plenty of work and don't need to be out looking for more at 7.30 am, 6pm or at weekends.

Laiste Thu 20-Oct-16 19:19:41

To give you DHs point of view: he is a builder. He starts his day very early and finishes by 5. For small ish low earning possibly 'weekend' jobs in the past he's spent lots of time going to peoples homes taking notes, coming back home working into the evening pricing up materials and writing out ''quotes'' (estimates are easier, but everyone demands quotes) only for time and time and again to not get any response at all from the customer, or to be told they're horrified by the price, told they've gone for some dodgy bloke who can do it for £20 or to be told they've gone off the idea for now but ''might be in touch''. Total waste of time for DH and he shies away from that sort of work now.

The customers responses are up to them of course, and of course they're allowed to shop around, but sadly over time these experiences put genuine trades people off doing the smaller domestic jobs.

VelvetSpoon Thu 20-Oct-16 19:20:15

None of my friends are able to recommend anyone. I have asked.

I would take a day off when work is being done, if required but I can't take time off for every quote!

I appreciate people have families, but having lived with someone who ran their own business, giving quotes in eves/ weekends is part of the job, and bring self employed isn't 9-5, that's normally what attracts people to it.

I don't get what other people do - does everyone expect to use their annual leave?

BeattieBowRisenFromTheDead Thu 20-Oct-16 19:22:09

A few years back we had a few issues in the office with a dripping tap. I called a company which boasted "No job too small" but they told me it was too small 😂

missymayhemsmum Thu 20-Oct-16 19:24:10

Contact a reputable local general building company and email the whole list. Ask for an itemised quote. They will need to look at the job in daylight, so you might need to take half a day off to go through all the jobs with whoever prices jobs for them.

BeattieBowRisenFromTheDead Thu 20-Oct-16 19:25:07

In other words I empathise OP, I had a terrible time trying to get a few small jobs done for a business. We were prepared to pay over the odds but nobody would touch it!

Shurelyshomemistake Thu 20-Oct-16 19:26:05

Post it on mybuilder? You'll get lots of chancers but also lots who will be ok and actually want the work.

I can see that quoting is a drag but why don't tradies modernise?? Ask for photos of what needs doing and pics of what client is aiming for. That will weed out any timewasters and if there's mutual interest then a formal quote can be drawn up.

Shurelyshomemistake Thu 20-Oct-16 19:28:16

I do sympathise. It's totally a suppliers' market, especially in south east or other met areas. Even shit tradies with appaling customer service skills seem to do very well thank you.

Laiste Thu 20-Oct-16 19:35:03

''giving quotes in eves/ weekends is part of the job,''

To be blunt - if the job is going to be big enough it is worth giving up a weekend or an evening, yes. But for small jobs, then no.

I don't know the answer. But if no one is rushing to you to give you a quote at the time you want them to then it seems they have a lot of work already and you'll have to be a bit more flexible.

User100 Thu 20-Oct-16 19:36:17

Personally I wouldn't take a day of to get quotes but I wouldn't bother with quotes. It sounds like you just have a few jobs for a handyman - just find one, give them the list and pay the £15 an hour (or whatever the going rate will be). If it's around a days with it will probably be £150 or something - is it really worth all this faff!?

VelvetSpoon Thu 20-Oct-16 19:46:22

I don't mind being told the job is too small. Bit honestly no one has said that. I've either had no reply at all, or this endless can you do 10am/ midday/ 3pm or whatever.

If it's not worth their time that's fine, bit why engage me in endless to-ing and fro-ing over times? If they want the work, then come at 6 (which really isn't late) or if they don't want it, just say from the outset.

Just to add whenever I've had any work done over recent years I've never had anything more back in terms of a quote than an overall figure in a one line email or text ie 'my price for the job is £xxx'. So I'm not expecting a detailed or itemised breakdown!

VelvetSpoon Thu 20-Oct-16 19:51:15

I can't really just get anyone in, no one will start without seeing the job first.

Plus I don't think it will be £15 an hour. The only quote I've had so far for the roof/ guttering (replacing 7 ridge tiles, plus a couple of downpipes, and clearing out all other gutters and sorting out a couple of joints) I was told was a days work, but would be £500 inc materials....

Hence why I don't want anyone starting without knowing the costs involved!

emma6776 Thu 20-Oct-16 20:00:33

I'm having a similar nightmare. We've been stuck without a light in our kitchen for 6 months now! Think I've contacted every electrician in the county sad

museumum Thu 20-Oct-16 20:04:51

It's a complete nightmare. I have no idea how to get work like joinery done. Most trades round here seem to get jobs gutting and redoing whole houses for developers and are not interested in working for owner occupier families 🙁

stiffstink Thu 20-Oct-16 20:06:08

We tried 4 plasterers before someone would do one wall. I was on the verge of starting an NVQ in plastering to do it myself.

About 3 months ago a guy came round to measure to price a different job. Never heard from him again with a price!

Gardencentregroupie Thu 20-Oct-16 20:07:49

I know people are saying some jobs are too small to bother quoting, but I had the same problem and I needed 2 whole bathrooms completely gutting and refitted, hardly a small job!

LadyPenelope68 Thu 20-Oct-16 20:10:25

My DH does various property repairs and like lots of people in this line of work, he works for himself. His days are leg enough as it is, without coming out to do quotes in an evening, particularly at this time of year when it's not daylight in an evening. If you want quotes doing, you've got to expect them done during the working day, particularly if they're outside work. So yes, YABU.

FlabulousChic Thu 20-Oct-16 20:10:27

Have you tried gumtree or your local facebook buy and sell groups

Laiste Thu 20-Oct-16 20:16:48

I can see both sides of this. I'm asking DH. He's saying are you ringing the right people? ie: big job needs a big firm. Have you asked neighbors who they use?

The roofing job needs a roofer. It will be expensive. It's a skilled trade.

If there's difficulty from the outset ie: awkward to arrange a time to see the job, any immediate haggling, wanting exact quotes ect, it will put trades people off if they've got more work than they need.

I'm just quoting DH here.

VelvetSpoon Thu 20-Oct-16 20:29:09

I've tried fb, no real response on our local area site (it's mostly full of people selling fake designer gear, or homemade tat items).

I don't really speak to my neighbours, most of them rent anyway so don't have building work done.

I appreciate roofing is not an easy job, but £500 for a day's work seems rather a lot...

I'm not being difficult about times for quotes, but I have to go to work! Do builders really expect every household had a SAHP? I am out 8-6 every day, like many people. I'm not saying I'm only available at 10.25 on a Saturday.

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