Negotiate estimates?


#1

I am a first time home owner… I have never had to get estimates for any contractor work before. I’ve been getting estimates and I have a question.

Here is where I am now…roughly 13 squares (standard split foyer home)

Estimate #1: $3,125 includes 1 replaced plywood sheet he estimated I needed after looking at roof. Certainteed XT25 shingles, 15# felt, Shinglevent II. Wants $500 more to go to the 30 year Landmark. $50 each additional plywood sheet if needed. $100 for each referral I send their way. Sign has to stay in yard for 90 days. Full payment due at completion.

Estimate #2: $2,600 using the same Certainteed shingles, Cobra vent, etc. $195 to upgrade to Landmark shingles. $40 per sheet of plywood needed. Small company, Faxed estimate a day late and it was a single sheet of paper… no brochure, etc. $1300 downpayment.

Estimate #3: $3,347-$200 coupon = $3,147. Cobra Snow Country Cap. Gaf/Elk shingles $825 more for Timberline Prestique shingle upgrade. Deck-Armor underlayment. He estimated I need would need 6-8 sheets of plywood for an additional $40 per. Said it was due to the siding company attaching “push-pumps” when the house was built and not sealing holes created.

I am really leaning towards Estimate #1 due to him being right on time, friendly, and the detailed presentation while going over the estimate. He does lose points for being a Cowboys fan, but gains points for admitting it… that’s the first step to recovery.

Anyway… would I be out of line to ask him if he would do the Landmark shingles for that $3125 price since #2 would do the upgrade for only $195. I don’t know having never done this before.


#2

Well there ya go.

Would you rather have a happy contractor or one that was a little miffed that you wanted to beat him down on his price.

As for “it was a single sheet of paper… no brochure, etc” most of my estimates are just a couple lines, maybe a paragraph, sometimes verbal. No contract.No brochure.

Do make sure they are insured and carry workers compensation insurance.


#3

sure id go down on my price. But what are we going to take out ? roofs are not like buying cars.


#4

Hi,
in all fairness landmarks do not cost 500 bucks more than 3tabs when your buying 13 square. i don’t usually agree with asking for a better deal. But where do they justify 500 bucks for a landmark upgrade. they are a little eaiser to install and much better curb appeal which should be important to him if his sign is going to be in your yard. I would encourage you to give him a fair chance at matching the other bid before you choose though. Reason being is I have lost jobs due to things that I would have changed had the customer called and requested. Such as you should ask for 30# felt instead of 15#. I believe you should pay for the difference in the cost between the 2 though.


#5

I am getting one more estimate from another Certainteed “Select Shingle Roofer” who a co-worker recommended. He can’t come out for the estimate until the 18th. He had an opening on the 13th, but I couldn’t do it then. I am going to call them tomorrow to see if they had anyone cancel so I can get an estimate a little sooner. … I have some water issues so I want to get this done before it gets worse.

I really like the Landmark look, but the $500 was a bit much for basically a look. I am not planning to be in this house in 25 years, so the 25 vs 30 yr makes no difference to me.

One thing that is frustrating is that I have had a couple people set up estimates, I take off work in the morning, and I get a no show / no call. I thought that with the housing market slow and not as many people pulling money out of their houses, business would be slow and I would not have that problem. A couple years ago, I would see 2-3 roofs going up in my neighborhood at any given time. I have not seen one for a long time.


#6

The thing I don’t like is the first company telling you you need to keep the sign up for 90 days, lol. I mean we always put signs up if the customer allows but it’s crazy to put that in the contract. You might ask it verbally but not put it in writing imo.

**I am getting one more estimate from another Certainteed “Select Shingle Roofer” who a co-worker recommended. He can’t come out for the estimate until the 18th. He had an opening on the 13th, but I couldn’t do it then. I am going to call them tomorrow to see if they had anyone cancel so I can get an estimate a little sooner. … I have some water issues so I want to get this done before it gets worse. **

Ok, don’t rush to sign the contract! Most companys have no problem tarping or making temporary repairs until the job can be completed so you stay dry.

**I really like the Landmark look, but the $500 was a bit much for basically a look. I am not planning to be in this house in 25 years, so the 25 vs 30 yr makes no difference to me. **

We don’t install 25yr shingles so I can’t comment on the upgrade cost. But consider for the extra 500 dollars spent you are receiving equity in your house investment. It may very well you end up spending 500 for a nicer roof now and get a return of a couple thousand when you sell the house in 5-10 years. It’s something to think about.

Also the last company is sounding good to me so far. He was recommended which say a lot and he’s busy which is always a good sign.


#7

Well, they do offer the $100 referral bonus for everyone I send there way that gets a roof from them, so if I am getting referrals, maybe I’ll keep it up year round, or stand out in front of Walmart advertising for them… lol

I am about 2 weeks into the search. Four estimates and I’ll choose one.

[quote]
We don’t install 25yr shingles so I can’t comment on the upgrade cost. But consider for the extra 500 dollars spent you are receiving equity in your house investment. It may very well you end up spending 500 for a nicer roof now and get a return of a couple thousand when you sell the house in 5-10 years. It’s something to think about. [/quote]

You are right there… which is the main reason for getting the other Certainteed Select roofer to come out. If his price falls similar to quote 1, but offers the Landmark upgrade for less (similar to #2’s $195 upgrade charge), I’ll probably go that way.

Yes, he was the first one I called, and was booked. I hear he has 3 crews as well. One thing I noticed about Estimate #1 is that on his referral sheet of houses in the area that he has done, there are 2-3 cases on the sheet where a next door neighbor or someone across the street has gotten a roof from the same people. That’s a good sign as well… the neighbors were impressed enough to hire the same company, even though they might not have been the lowest.

This forum has been great. I like to learn as much as possible about something I am about to spend $3,000 on and put on my biggest investment.


#8

I’m staying out of this one. :shock:


#9

Go with the one that educate you and that you have trust in him when it’s time to replace a roof.
A reliable roofing company would rarely go down with their prices.
A mistake that homeowner often make is to good cheap and encourage the fly by nights. (no insurance, no wsib, no certification)
I got a customer last week told me that the roofer knock to his door to ask him a cash advance so he can put gas in his truck and to pay the dumping fee.
The guy did’nt show up for a week now, she want’s me to go and finish the job and she never got an estimate from me. She was looking for a deal.
I pre-qualify my customer over the phone and from what I just read (no offence) I would’ve politely told you that we were not the rite company for you.