Low Bid Problem

Questions & AnswersLow Bid Problem
Jim Woodring asked 10 years ago

I’m a homeowner who hired a painter based on a bid of $650 (10 hrs at $65; a remodeling agency). 16 hours later the bill is $1040, the job is about 3/4 done, and my wife and I ended up doing a substantial amount of work (including four doors) ourselves; this company charges by the hour and allows homeowners to reduce the cost by working themselves.

My questions are: at what point does the bill’s exceeding the bid become intolerable; and how do you think the remodellers ought to address this? I am willing to finish the work myself, but not to pay 80% over the bid for a job less than 3/4 done.

3 Answers
Crowder Painting answered.

I only bid as a job with a set price for the work involved, not by the hour. It sound like the bill has become too high and intolerable. You need to shut them down if the price is becoming too high and ask why they were this far off from the original bid.

I can't really say how the company or you should handle this, it depends on the actual contract. If the contract states that the 10 hours is only a guess and it could exceed this then it is up to you to stop it.

In the future consider fixed bids only. This way there won't be any nasty surprises.

Anonymous answered.

Thanks, Karl. That makes sense. What happened in this case was that the agency agreed to charge only the bid amount for the work done and I finished the job myself (and incidentally did a better job than their painter).

Anonymous answered.

You are the victim. Any contractor knows that when they give a bid to any customer they are bound to their contract and it is their mistake not yours. So make them do the job, don't do anything. If they don't want to do it do 2 things;

1- If they have a state license, contact the licensing board and report the contractor. You could get your money back.

2- If they don't have a license either way call the state office they will suspend their license or put the crooks in jail.