I was looking around here for guidance in responding to an e-mail from a customer about an addition I bid for him.
To back track, I made the initial visit and we discussed what he wanted done, 11 x 16 cathedral addition over a crawl with partial deck removal, large wall of windows (including round top) double french doors to the deck, basically complete except for flooring. It's an addition to the dining/kitchen area.
Now, there are some access issues with soil removal and getting concrete in there for the slab, but other than that, pretty straight forward.
I attempted to set a second meeting to go over the numbers I had come up with and the day of the meeting, he contacted me and asked if I could e-mail him what I had as he couldn't make the meeting time.
I figured at first this guy is turning out to be a tire kicker but I sent him what I had which was a detailed scope of work, my proposal number with a budget range AND some 2D sketches I did in Sketchup which I was hoping to show him in 3D walk around.
I hadn't heard from him for about a week so I sent a follow up e-mail to see where his thoughts were about it. He actually replied (which surprised me), until I read it:
I am still reviewnig details of your estimate...I will let you know if I have any questions...
One thing that I would like to mentioned thought is that your estimate seems to be much higher then any other estimates I have, even for a bigger addition (18X16) which includes all realetd work (deck, moving egrass window to the side of the house, removing existing kitchen wall, etc...).
Now the egress window and larger size are factors he did not mention until I was already into the initial estimate. The egress window he is referring to is actually a standard basement vent window which would dissappear with the larger addition. He knows he needs an egress window (which this isn't) even though I have told him this window doesn't qualify.
I stated to him that I would have to rework everything for the larger addition as there are issues with existing windows in the house wall and headroom for the new windows he wants. He had stated at that time that what I had would be fine and to proceed to give him the number for the original size.
I won't (and can't) really reduce the numbers without reducing the scope. I want to keep this guy on the hook but am at a loss for how to respond in an e-mail. I do know I want to try to get face to face with him again before this goes away.