Bait and switch with low estimate

I’ve got a question on a roofing estimate and final bill.
I received a verbal estimate from a long time roofer in our area, Northern Michigan. It was a decent price on a small roofing job so we double checked that it included materials and labor. We were assured it did. There was some added labor, taking an old chimney down 24" to just below the peak, a sheet of OSB to close chimney hole. Anyway here are the details of the job to the best of my knowledge.
7/12 second story roof
31’ x 12’ area
no hips or valleys
removal of rolled roof & chimney
installed water & ice, felt and 30 yr(?) shingles
verbal estimate = $600
final bill = $1450
We have no contract.
I spoke with a retired roofer in the area who said that was a rip off. How would you handle this bait and switch. I realize the estimate didn’t include the chimney and osb. How do I address this bill that is 2.4 times the estimate?

Sorry if I’ve left anything out. Just looking for some input from the roofer’s point of view. What would a fair price be?



I’m in Grand Rapids area, and I would be around $1600-$1800.

You owe him more money.

I think you must have misunderstood his contract.That price couldn’t have included material,does the guy work for free?As far as the chimney removal,it should not have been more than 2-$300,for the ten or 20 minutes that should have taken.A fair price is what you got I figure,I’m with g-tape on this one 1600-$1800+tax



Wow,$700+ per sq,thats what you get thats incredible :shock:

[quote=“G-Tape”]I’m in Grand Rapids area, and I would be around $1600-$1800.

You owe him more money.[/quote]

I am in Northern Michigan and I agree with G-tape.
Though I would probably be a little cheaper than G-tapes estimate, good ballpark for sight unseen though…
Maybe not.




Wow,$700+ per sq,thats what you get thats incredible :shock:[/quote]

It is more than just a shingle job…
When is the last time you took down a chimney?

I think Lefty meant 2900.00 to remove the chimney. The rest of the work was free.

(not the kind of job to price by the square)

GL1, if the work was done well, you got a good deal.

Chimneys: sometimes you can push them over, sometimes you can beat on them for hours…
Sometimes they hold part of the house up, literally.


Are you only doing one side of the roof?

Unless one side of the roof is 6’x 15’. He did say the chimney came out the peak.

No price is final until contract is signed.

Thanks for all your input.

Just to clarify it’s only one side of the roof. Total SF is just under 372.

Chimney was only taken down 24 inches and only because bricks were falling off already and there is no need for it. Could not have taken more than an hour to remove. Actually I’d expect 10 minutes but everything takes longer than it looks like it would.

Estimate was for labor and material according to the roofer.

Materials come up to $363 (retail at Lowes).

I actually have taken down a chimney recently and it took hours. It was however eight feet poured concrete, not 2 feet of already falling down brick.

Thanks again for all your help. I’m not looking to stiff the guy in anyway and truly believe in paying everything that he is owed. How would you react though if we agreed to 1450 and I only paid you 600. You’d probably be a little…

Whether you realize it or not that says a lot…

Did he do a good job?
Did he clean up well?

If so pay him and thank him.

PS. The pictures are before and after. In the bottom of the second you can see the amount of tear off that is in the lower left corner. Just the lower portion was taken off for the ice & water and no debris removal was done.

maybe,just maybe.verbally he said sixteen hundred and cut you a break.Sure the materials at lowes cost under 400 but are they going to put them on the roof for you,to get all that stuff at lowes probably take you 2 hours and 6 shopping carts.

Called him to verify before job was started.
$600 labor and material.

Last week I did a roof that had to have a chimney knocked down. The home owner and I agreed on $5,500 to do the 21sq roof plus $500 to replace 10 sheets of decking. It was a 10 year old roof that the last roofer just couldn’t get right. From day one it leaked. In the attic you could see light in several spots, it was bad. The price was good because I felt bad for the guy. Last Fall I met him and did the measurement and forgot about him. A couple weeks ago I called him and told him my price would reflect my neglagance. He agreed with the price and secured a loan for the work.

We were thinking about building a saddle on the chimney on the garage side but found rot behind the stones on the chimney. The chimney went up through the garage under the eave and through the house roof with a saddle on top. It had the big fake stones and improper flashing from day one. We decided to take it down with no price figured out. After the chimney was taken down rot was found behind it on the wall sheating. We had to install a new eave facia board, extend a couple rafters, install decking on two parts, and install sheating on the house side. New souffit, facia, drip edge and siding was also installed, steel siding.

When it was time to get paid I told him it would be $1,000 for all the repairs needed to remove the chimney and he cut a check for the total $7,000. The materials with siding was around $220.

Back to the original poster,

I think you got a very good deal at the invoice price. You have to consider not only knocking down the chimney but also hauling away and re-decking. What I usually do is contact the home owner right away if any problems are found.

There was less than 1/2 sheet of redecking and no hauling of removed bricks. In your example, even with all the problems you found you were only 16% over the agreed upon price not 141%.

First off you did NOT have a signed contract. Its his word against yours. If he does not have a license is your only way out and if there is not a contract you might get lucky. Anything over 600 dollars in michigan you must have a license. The price of 600 to do what you described is really cheap. Looks like the whole back side of a home reshingled. It is completely your fault for not having the contract. Like i said before it is his word against yours and if hes an upstanding person in the community your stuck. There is a saying i think it goes like this, You get what you pay for. But since there was no legal contract it might no hold up in court. To be honest i would not do that type of work for such a low price. I would have been around 2000.

He over charged for the chimney because he undercharged on the roof.
Id have charged at least that much probably more and im cheap.
You cant roof a house or half a house for 200 bucks.