Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Kitchen Remodel: Part 10

When I last wrote something on this project, we were still trying to make contact with contractors. Eventually we made contact with four of them and they all agreed to quote the project and get right back to us. Two months later I hadn't heard a word from any of them. So I spent another morning trying to contact them all again and see what the progress was.

Contractor One said a buddy's house burnt down and so he had been working on that right now but will get to our quote soon. (Reading between the lines, we are not important to him and he will get back to us when he has nothing better to do.)

Contractor Two didn't answer the phone so I left a detailed message which has promptly been ignored.

Contractor Three answered but said they aren't doing remodeling right now and are thinking about getting out of the remodeling business. They will keep our project on their list if they make a decision about which way to go. (Reading between the lines, they will go which ever way pays the best and currently home additions aren't paying the best.) I'm puzzled why they even came out and took a copy of the plans if they weren't interested in doing additions. Even more troubling, this one was my favorite of all that I talked too.

Contractor Four didn't answer the phone so I left a detailed message which has promptly been ignored.

Contractor Five was contacted a couple months back and was interested in quoting the project and promised to call right back when he got to his office. He never called back and my phone message a couple weeks later has been ignored for the last six weeks. (Reading between the lines, he wasn't really interested but couldn't tell me so.)

So I am at a loss right now of what to do other than wait and keep making the occasional phone call. to the three contractors who haven't yet said no, but only one of which has responded to tell me his buddy was more important. These five comprise all the contractors in town (and surrounding area) that do more than just odd job kind of work.

I have always heard for any major project you are supposed to get at least three quotes. My past experiences and my current experience all lead me to believe you are lucky if you can get one. What a sad state of affairs.


Bob said...

A sad state of affairs indeed. It's really unbelievable. I think if you, Ed, wanted to get in the business yourself, you could quickly have more than you could keep up with. And if you would return calls and keep your word, well, the sky would be the limit, it seems.

With that said, and considering all the other projects you have done, have you thought about doing it yourself?

Ed said...

Bob - I would like to do it myself and have thought about it. The problem is time. With two school age kids and a mother-in-law who can't drive but maintains a very social calendar, I rarely can find two hours a day for projects. The best case is perhaps me just being the general contractor and hiring all the steps done to smaller specialized folks. I'm just not sure I could do an adequate job to satisfy myself much less my wife.

Susan said...

How fortunate for all of them, that they have so much work they can afford to ignore you. Dripping sarcasm here. We have the same problem in our area. There is one fellow who is good, but expensive, and he IS too busy to take on work. Biggest problem here is that, when you do find someone who will do the work, you have to make sure they arrive early and get as much done before lunch as possible. Because they are fairly worthless after lunch, if they bother to come back at all.

Kelly said...

What a bummer! It sounds as if you may have to do as much of it yourself as you're able to. You would think people would want the work. Sheesh.

Tewshooz said...

Well, better to have a contractor not come than to have one come and then pick up and leave after a couple of weeks because something else he was working on was a bigger job. Then having to threaten a lawsuit to get him to finish. A six week job dragged out to 9 months. Had I known this at the git go, I would have subcontracted everything myself...

Vince said...

It can be incredibly difficult to survive as a contracting business in what is still largely a farming area. I'm actually amazed you have 5.
But what you might do is see if you can assemble the trades yourself. For I expect you'll have out of work, or barely working construction people round.

Ed said...

Susan - I've had pretty good luck with contractors when I've hired them in the past but it always seems to be a struggle to get in contact.

Kelly - I wish people were just honest up front instead of stringing people out for significant portions of a year.

Tewshooz - That does sound like a nightmare!

Vince - It may end up going that way, however I don't look forward to it since some of it will be time sensitive.

Leigh said...

So maybe we should all go into the contracting business - sounds like everybody in it has so many jobs and is making so much money that they can afford to ignore people!

Ed said...

Leigh - What amazes me is that I live in the poorest county in our state and there are so many people throwing money at these guys.