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Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?

 
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Old 09-29-2009, 06:47 AM   #21
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


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Originally Posted by jeremy-lvhm View Post
He offered to either work by the hour or quote the job. being that I was going to help whenever possible to save my aunt money we decided hourly would be fair to everyone. I bowl with the guy and from the talk I was fooled that he was actually descent and knew his ****. Keep in mind I have done my fair share of remodel work and my father is a general contractor as well so I know enough. His hourly rate he asked for matches his union cash wage ( keep in mind he is collecting unemployment as well )

As far as some of the work I am not impressed for what he charges and acts like he knows. Uneven floor tile, substandard drywall work, crooked microwave install. anyway....
You do know that in PA, T&M jobs are no longer "legal"?...oh, wait, it was a side job, what was I thinking.
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Old 09-29-2009, 07:12 AM   #22
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


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Originally Posted by mics_54 View Post
So..you have done your fair share of remodeling work and your dad is a general contractor and you hired a HACK rather than a legitimate kitchen remodeler that by the way are needing the work these days... jeremy..dude...did you just come here to get spanked because you know you deserve it?
Jeremy..what would you do differently next time?

Well yes I need to clarify a bit. As in my profile HVAC is my main field and I am so busy with my own stuff that I couldnt devote full time to the project. ANDDDDD my father has "issues" that dont allow him to be reliable at all times. He does amazing work and if he could be trusted to be timely he would be doing the work, its quite depressing actually. Anyway thats why we did what we did. In a nutshell
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Old 09-29-2009, 07:16 AM   #23
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


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You do know that in PA, T&M jobs are no longer "legal"?...oh, wait, it was a side job, what was I thinking.

Yeah thats the best part. When we asked for his "bill" he wrote it up on a proposal form with nothing more than a total and a summary. And his total was just a random number. came to 307.14 hours! So its a number he pulled out of the sky. As far as I'm concerned at this point I will look over his "hours" when we get them and decide what is fair. He has no contract and no recourse because he's collecting. Like I said I thought I was doing the guy a favor since he's laid off and we all know you can't live on unemployment alone. Rape is not what I expected though.
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Old 09-29-2009, 07:29 AM   #24
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


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What union?
WTF is a "union cash wage"?

Carpenters union.

When you talk about union work there is their "total compensation" and what they actually get hourly (cash)

He makes $35 an hour PLUS all of his benefits which the union probably brings up to $55.

SO anyway he was charging us $35 (CASH MONEY)

Here is my biggest issue. When I confronted him about this he claimed this is the time I have on the job! Then showed me his notebook in the truck where he simply puts the time he arrives and the time he leaves. No downtime for lunch / talking / etc. Now when I am on a job and there is downtime like taking important calls, BSing with the customer, unproductive time, etc. I don't charge for that. It's just not fair when your charging top rate. Thats called overhead. And being that he was a "friend" whenever I got there we would chat, he talked alot with my aunt every day, etc. One day on his way out he watched me and my helper installing a light fixture, and talking for half an hour while doing NOTHING. Apparently that was billable time.

Also I don't think paying top dollar for a total job is fair when the job would have went much faster using a cheaper paid helper like I do when on installs. I don't think paying for his inefficiency should cost us more. All he had to say is "this is the the time I had on the job" When I asked him do you really think this is the time it SHOULD have taken he repeated the above. He is one of those guys that think going into business is just like it was when you worked for someone. Punch a clock in and out.

It's just ridiculous.
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Old 09-29-2009, 07:34 AM   #25
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


Heres another fun fact. He wants to install a heat pump in his house and asked me for prices on equipment only since he can run his own ductowork (he claims this is easy and anyone can do it). So I quoted him a price on a system with a small markup. He called MY DISTRIBUTOR asking for prices! Then told me since he is a contractor he doesnt see a problem doing this.

I just laughed at him. The last thing I told him is he's been working for the union too long.
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Old 09-29-2009, 09:22 AM   #26
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


I charge the HO to drop a duce in their spare bathroom.
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Old 09-29-2009, 09:35 AM   #27
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


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I charge the HO to drop a duce in their spare bathroom.

Well if you get away with it and can sleep at night fine. Theres a fine line between normal days and just being inefficient and slow. If I decide to cut a field with a pair of scissors it doesn't mean I get paid more because it takes me longer! If I spend an hour every day yapping the customers ear off I don't think that constitutes a larger paycheck.
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Old 09-29-2009, 11:44 AM   #28
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


Let me make sure I understand this correctly;

You had an unlicensed contractor (oops sorry "union carpenter") remodel your aunts kitchen including not only finishes but also electrical and plumbing work to help her save money. You agreed to a verbal contract that you knew to be illegal with the aforementioned "contractor". You allowed the completely unlicensed contractor to engage in specialty trades that are unrelated to his trade and require additional licensure and or certification (electrical & plumbing). You now want dictate to the unlicensed contractor how many hours he worked or maybe you mean to say how long in your opinion it should have taken (which would actually be the opinion of other contractors posting here as you do not know how long it should have taken) even though he showed you the times he wrote down: when he got there and when he left. I am willing to bet you also pulled no permits in the name of saving your aunt money, which would have been neccesary for the wall, plumbing, and electrical alterations.

If that is correct you now have to worry about a boat load of potential problems that could have easily been avoided by hiring a legitimate contractor in the first place. So do you truly feel you saved any money for your aunt by your actions? You deserve any problems that may arise out of this and must not like your aunt very much to expose her to the liabilities that you have.
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Old 09-29-2009, 12:03 PM   #29
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


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Originally Posted by ARI001 View Post
Let me make sure I understand this correctly;

You had an unlicensed contractor (oops sorry "union carpenter") remodel your aunts kitchen including not only finishes but also electrical and plumbing work to help her save money. You agreed to a verbal contract that you knew to be illegal with the aforementioned "contractor". You allowed the completely unlicensed contractor to engage in specialty trades that are unrelated to his trade and require additional licensure and or certification (electrical & plumbing). You now want dictate to the unlicensed contractor how many hours he worked or maybe you mean to say how long in your opinion it should have taken (which would actually be the opinion of other contractors posting here as you do not know how long it should have taken) even though he showed you the times he wrote down: when he got there and when he left. I am willing to bet you also pulled no permits in the name of saving your aunt money, which would have been neccesary for the wall, plumbing, and electrical alterations.

If that is correct you now have to worry about a boat load of potential problems that could have easily been avoided by hiring a legitimate contractor in the first place. So do you truly feel you saved any money for your aunt by your actions? You deserve any problems that may arise out of this and must not like your aunt very much to expose her to the liabilities that you have.

Who said anything about unlicensed? Being from VA I know you probably have different procedures as far as licensing but in PA the only thing we have for licensing is the new Home Improvement Contractor license of which my buddy currently has as well as myself. All you need to get that is insurance of a measly 300k. As far as pulling permits you don't need to pull permits for moving existing wiring and replacing OUTLETS. And for the things that were changed I made sure it was all up to code. PA has a different set of electrical permit requirements depending on what block your on. In our township it is legal for the homeowner to do their own wiring. That being said I can show you pictures of what was done in my house before we moved in and that was passed for god knows what reason.

And if you read you will see I did the plumbing alterations. Which was only water lines anyway. Nothing required of a "licensed plumber"

My whole point of this was to find out average times. I don't want to turn it into a pissing match about who and what was done according to what you think is "legitimate" The permit process in most of this country is so damn corrupt and ridiculous anyway I don't even want to get started on what a waste it is. My problem is someone charging for substandard work and padding the bill for stuff he shouldn't have.

Get off your high horse please. I don't know alot of contractors that don't do other misc work in other trades.
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Old 09-29-2009, 12:14 PM   #30
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


The whole things a cluster F&*K.

Just pay the bill and move on.

This is what you get when you hire hacks. Hacks and T&M billing come hand in hand.

You learned your lesson, there is no free lunch, there is no great job at a cheap price. Saving money = cutting corners either in quality, productivity, peace of mind or aggrivation, usually some part of all of them.

You hire a hack and pay him T&M, how long do you think it's going to take him to do the job?

Next time have your relative hire a real company to do the work. Pony up the dough and enjoy the process or do this all over again.
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Old 09-29-2009, 12:26 PM   #31
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


You guys are really missing the damn point here. This is a guy that claims he is a contractor. In PA that is all it takes. He has a HIC license, has a business name even (although he cant take checks in that name). The point of making it hourly was that any work that I did was fairly taken off the top and fair for him as well. I've know that guy for many years so we figured it was fair both ways. I didn't pick some guy off of craigslist that is working for $10 an hour. Usually when you charge more theres a reason. And Id rather give the work to someone I know. The saving money thing was a given because her original quote was from the big orange box (don't even get me started, I never wanted her to go there)
. I liked the guy and talking with him it always seemed that he knew his sh!t and was a stand up guy. Otherwise I would have never even considered him.

Anyway stop with the hack and trash talk because I know plenty of licensed, legitimate HACKS in every trade. Just because you're big and have a bunch of employees doesn't make you golden. I've seen better work from one man shows than most companies.

And exactly what dictates licensing or "ability" these days anyway? You have a moulding license, taping license, tiling license, etc? There is no way to tell sometimes who should or can do certain things. I know in my trade there are plenty of things we get wrapped up in that we don't always have to do. You cant call another contractor in all the time for every little thing either.

Man and I thought HVAC-talk was bad with the blowhards.... whew.
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Old 09-29-2009, 12:30 PM   #32
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


I don't think $10,745 is unreasonable (35x307) for the scope of the project and the work that he did. I think you should make him fix anything that doesn't look professional for free and call it a day. I would hope that he didn't charge for just being on the job, and if he was you should deduct how much extra time he spent bull****ting. Normal discussion of the job however is part of the job. If the homeowner engages me in extended conversation, that is part of the job too, as the homeowners knows I'm on the clock, and I ain't going to loose money because the homeowner just has to tell me about his weekend.
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Old 09-29-2009, 12:41 PM   #33
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


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I don't think $10,745 is unreasonable (35x307) for the scope of the project and the work that he did. I think you should make him fix anything that doesn't look professional for free and call it a day. I would hope that he didn't charge for just being on the job, and if he was you should deduct how much extra time he spent bull****ting. Normal discussion of the job however is part of the job. If the homeowner engages me in extended conversation, that is part of the job too, as the homeowners knows I'm on the clock, and I ain't going to loose money because the homeowner just has to tell me about his weekend.

Well thats the problem. He likes to talk. About all of his problems with his kids, etc. Not to mention we asked for the list of his hours which he claimed to have and its been a week and he hasn't produced it. The fact is it was agreed to be hourly so I expect to see hours listed and work performed at a minimum. I do service work and the customer gets hours and work performed at a minimum. I was hanging lights one day and he just jumped in and started telling me how I should do it, taking apart a light, etc to find a way to hang pendant lights without cutting new boxes into the ceiling (the proper way) I didn't ask for his help, I was planning on doing it right and he was there to try to tell me otherwise. Its just too much to explain. The best is when I told him about a crooked tile and he told me that the tile spacers go in and that all you can do, the tile goes where it goes! Or when he ran ten gage wire for a 50 amp circuit. Then he argued with me on that too saying water heaters are 50 amps so whats the difference. Being in HVAC Ive installed many water heaters and knew this wasn't true yet he still argued.

I'm at the point where he doesn't have a contract and I'll offer a fair rate. If he doesn't like it he can take us to court and explain to them his underhanded ways.
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Old 09-29-2009, 12:50 PM   #34
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


Treefiddy hours, give or take fiddy...
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Old 09-29-2009, 01:02 PM   #35
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


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Treefiddy hours, give or take fiddy...

really? I cant grasp that number. If I sit down and break it down into days it just doesnt add up to me. And I always go high with estimates.

Heres a breakdown that I can see perhaps:

Tearout - 16
painting/wallpaper removal - 10
trim - 8
tile - 20
backsplash - 8
cabinet hanging - 40
wall removal/close in old wall - 30
electrical - 8
misc - 32

Ive watched guys change a whole office wing around. steel studs to finish painting in less time!


I just cant see this takeing more than 200 hours. If your working wisely and know what your doing.
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Old 09-29-2009, 01:42 PM   #36
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


Someone please end the pain
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Old 09-29-2009, 02:05 PM   #37
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


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Well thats the problem. He likes to talk. About all of his problems with his kids, etc. Not to mention we asked for the list of his hours which he claimed to have and its been a week and he hasn't produced it. The fact is it was agreed to be hourly so I expect to see hours listed and work performed at a minimum. I do service work and the customer gets hours and work performed at a minimum. I was hanging lights one day and he just jumped in and started telling me how I should do it, taking apart a light, etc to find a way to hang pendant lights without cutting new boxes into the ceiling (the proper way) I didn't ask for his help, I was planning on doing it right and he was there to try to tell me otherwise. Its just too much to explain. The best is when I told him about a crooked tile and he told me that the tile spacers go in and that all you can do, the tile goes where it goes! Or when he ran ten gage wire for a 50 amp circuit. Then he argued with me on that too saying water heaters are 50 amps so whats the difference. Being in HVAC Ive installed many water heaters and knew this wasn't true yet he still argued.

I'm at the point where he doesn't have a contract and I'll offer a fair rate. If he doesn't like it he can take us to court and explain to them his underhanded ways.
You should have requested a daily log from the guy listing what he did each day and how many hours he had put in.

Last edited by bwalley; 09-29-2009 at 02:08 PM.
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Old 09-29-2009, 02:09 PM   #38
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


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You guys are really missing the damn point here. This is a guy that claims he is a contractor. In PA that is all it takes. He has a HIC license, has a business name even (although he cant take checks in that name). The point of making it hourly was that any work that I did was fairly taken off the top and fair for him as well. I've know that guy for many years so we figured it was fair both ways. I didn't pick some guy off of craigslist that is working for $10 an hour. Usually when you charge more theres a reason. And Id rather give the work to someone I know. The saving money thing was a given because her original quote was from the big orange box (don't even get me started, I never wanted her to go there)
. I liked the guy and talking with him it always seemed that he knew his sh!t and was a stand up guy. Otherwise I would have never even considered him.

Anyway stop with the hack and trash talk because I know plenty of licensed, legitimate HACKS in every trade. Just because you're big and have a bunch of employees doesn't make you golden. I've seen better work from one man shows than most companies.

And exactly what dictates licensing or "ability" these days anyway? You have a moulding license, taping license, tiling license, etc? There is no way to tell sometimes who should or can do certain things. I know in my trade there are plenty of things we get wrapped up in that we don't always have to do. You cant call another contractor in all the time for every little thing either.

Man and I thought HVAC-talk was bad with the blowhards.... whew.
Does a HIC license include electrical and plumbing?
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Old 09-29-2009, 02:22 PM   #39
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


Hindsight is 20/20.

You thought this guy was great, he's a turd.

Now you know you are an absolute terrible judge of character.

Next time hire a reputable company. Pony up the extra money it costs to have a professional do the work, along which comes a warranty in writing and no excuses.

References, BBB membership, portfolio of work, copies of insurance... etc... any of that sound good now?

You get what you pay for, tattoo it on your arm and look at it every day.

Always remember T&M is a suckers game. It's the favorite method of all hacks. Now you know why.

Bottom line, you know it, we all know it, you got seduced by trying to get a deal and got bent over by a professional hack. You play with fire and sometimes you get burned.
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Old 09-29-2009, 02:28 PM   #40
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Re: Average Time For Kitchen Remodels?


So you knew he was registered but couldn't take checks in the company name? To me, that would indicate he was not registered.

Swapping out receptacles (no new wiring) usually does not require a permit in PA. Moving water lines and DWV does require a permit.

The PA HIC registration does not cover electrical, plumbing, hvac.

Your numbers seem off in most categories for labor (low).

Bottom line is you hired a guy who turned out to be a hack, now you want to beat him over the head for payment. You are just as guilty as he is. How can you be in the business (HVAC trade) and not know the value of a good contractor, a good contract, warranty, etc, etc.

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