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Old 03-07-2010, 03:00 PM
 
2 posts, read 35,803 times
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We just finished our bonus room over a garage and I am curious about the costs billed by the contractor. My husband and father-in-law actually hung the drywall and completed all of the electric with recessed lighting themselves.

The contractor taped and painted the walls and ceiling of the room. The contractor also put the carpet down, baseboards, and put two 1/2 side storage doors in the room. There are no windows in the room... The bill ended up at $5,000. Does this sound reasonable for an average size bonus room over the garage?
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Old 03-07-2010, 09:38 PM
 
Location: Cary
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Could you provide the dimensions of the room you asked about and a list of all functions performed?
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Old 03-07-2010, 10:40 PM
 
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So you didn't get an estimate first?
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Old 03-07-2010, 11:24 PM
 
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dimensions are definitely essential. I know our unfinished bonus room in a house in N. Raleigh was about 18x13...which is probably pretty typical for a bonus room over a regular sized 2 car garage. I was a contractor at the time (this was 1995) and did most of the work myself so the cost out of my pocket was about $2000; granted that's saving a decent amount of money by doing the work myself and having connections for the material....and it was also in 1995 dollars. Depending on the flooring you used, drywall brand, etc; $5000 is probably reasonable
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Old 03-08-2010, 09:47 AM
 
Location: NC
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You didn't get multiple quotes before they did the work?

Oops, didn't see LoveBrentwoods post until I posted mine. Sorry.

Last edited by RaleighLass; 03-08-2010 at 09:48 AM.. Reason: added oops
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Old 03-08-2010, 05:09 PM
 
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The room is 17 by 18 and we did not get multiple quotes. We used a contractor that we have used for years and trust his work. Since the drywall was up and all of the electrical was complete with lights installed, we were just a little surprised by the $5,000 tab. The contractor had to tape, mud, paint, and install carpet. Additionally, two 1/2 size storage doors were cut and installed as were the baseboards. Just wanted to make sure it was reasonable for the market. If reasonable, we will continue to use this contractor for work in the future. Thanks for the responses!
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Old 03-08-2010, 05:41 PM
 
591 posts, read 1,646,737 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gfayjones View Post
The room is 17 by 18 and we did not get multiple quotes. We used a contractor that we have used for years and trust his work. Since the drywall was up and all of the electrical was complete with lights installed, we were just a little surprised by the $5,000 tab. The contractor had to tape, mud, paint, and install carpet. Additionally, two 1/2 size storage doors were cut and installed as were the baseboards. Just wanted to make sure it was reasonable for the market. If reasonable, we will continue to use this contractor for work in the future. Thanks for the responses!
It seems to me that mulitple bids would be prudent prior to having any work done, but I also understand the piece of mind of using someone you trust and have used in the past. It does make good sense to have a couple others come in and give quotes as well so that you don't question the price once the work is completed. I had a bonus room added approx 400 sq. feet a year ago. I had many contractors come in and give me quotes and I kept getting quotes until I found the right people to work on the project. The right person for the job can't always be decided by the price they would charge. There is a great deal of value I would see in having a positive working relationship with a contractor that you already trust.

One of the areas that mattered a great deal to me was making sure that subcontractors were insured and any workers that worked for them were on their insurance policy as well.
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Old 03-08-2010, 06:14 PM
 
Location: Cary, NC
711 posts, read 3,706,989 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gfayjones View Post
The room is 17 by 18 and we did not get multiple quotes. We used a contractor that we have used for years and trust his work. Since the drywall was up and all of the electrical was complete with lights installed, we were just a little surprised by the $5,000 tab. The contractor had to tape, mud, paint, and install carpet. Additionally, two 1/2 size storage doors were cut and installed as were the baseboards. Just wanted to make sure it was reasonable for the market. If reasonable, we will continue to use this contractor for work in the future. Thanks for the responses!
It seems a little high, even assuming that the contractor bought the carpet & padding. You can get very nice carpet for $25/yard, padding for $5, and installation labor for $5. You have about 34 yards so carpet alone is about $1200. That leaves $3800 for trim, drywall finishing and painting a single room. It seems like a lot for that kind of work. Hard to know for sure without seeing it.
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Old 03-09-2010, 05:37 AM
 
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Depending on the carpet I would say $5K isn't too bad. I bet if you got multiple bids they would all be in that ballpark. There would be some low ballers in the mix, but your statement about hiring someone you trust means you would not just shop for the lowest price (which often ends up being the troubled 'contractors')

Did you guys pull permits for the electric work? If not, it may become an issue when you go to sell the house if anyone asks.
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Old 03-09-2010, 11:19 AM
 
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Drywall finishing in a large room can take quite some time. Remember that you have to apply and sand 3 coats of joint compound. Painting is time consuming as well. Especially if done by hand without a machine.

I would sit down and calculate (based on home depot prices) how much he spent on materials. Then add up the amount of hours he spent working. Subtract the material cost from the $5k to get the labor cost. Then divide the labor cost by the amount of hours worked. You should be able to tell whether or not it's a reasonable hourly wage cost for the work done.
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