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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,
I am a new business owner (not new to painting though, over 10 years exp.), I have a potential big deal I am trying to set up with a residential builder and am not exactly sure how to bid a job that large. I don't want to overbid the contractor already working for them, but I don't want to shaft myself either. Any suggestions as far as finding out what the other guy is charging, etc would be very appreciated! :) thanks
 

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check the builder out, talk to his subs, how long have they been working for him, does he pay on time, does he any any liens against him, as far as bidding you need to know how long it takes, and put your your number on it. new work is probaly one of the hardest markets to make money in the painting industry. Im not trying to sound like a jerk, but what the other guy is charging shouldnt have anything to do with what you are going to charge.

I have met more crooked gc the good ones.

thanks
dave mac
 

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Rock On
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So, you want help in steeling some work eh?

It's best you charge what you need to get the job done
If you find out the other guy's bid, lop ten percent off it, and submit that, it won't necessarily buy you some work
It's not always about money
You could really suck
And if that guy doesn't charge what he needed to get the job done, and he was buying himself some work, you'll now have to live off 10% less then not enough
It's hard to chop those packets of Raman Noodles in half

How do you know I'm not the other guy?
If I am...I can tell you...you'll need way more than 10% less to get this job
I don't get hired because I'm cheap
I'm not saying it doesn't happen, I'm just saying I don't care
Someone who's willing to drop me because some dumb new kid, fresh out of jail crackhead, or fugitive immigrant (<not saying you are any of those, it's just to progress a point) will do it for less...well...they are not what I'd call a good customer
In fact, they are a bad customer

Let's say you get the job, because you are 10% less than his regular guy
Well, that's a damn shame that bldr. didn't stick with his regular guy...but besides that-how long is he going to stick with you?
What happens when the next project, a van full of warm bodies with paint brushes shows up looking for work?

Charge what you need, let the chips fall where they may
You win some, you lose some, you learn along they way
 

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WOW ! Great answer Slick I agree 100%. A lady emailed me yesterday saying she was waiting on one more estimate and I am the highest by a "large margin " but she would Really like to work with us. I politely wrote her back suming up that the cheapest price isn't always the best way to go and if she is just looking for price, she will probably be disapointed in the results
 

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some dumb new kid, fresh out of jail crackhead, or fugitive immigrant (<not saying you are any of those, it's just to progress a point) will do it for less..
always has to come back to me...lol...NOT! I'm straight as a whistle....

I do agree with John's (slickshift) take on it. It's hard to get your foot in the door, but when you do...life is good, usually. Keep your head up and keep getting advice and the only thing that will hold you back is yourself :thumbsup:
 

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Why don't you have a sit down with this builder guy and find out how you get along with him?
Why would he hire you?
If it's a price thing, is the price he will pay acceptable to you?
If it's a matter of quality, can you deliver?
We're talking about a relationship here that is going to last quite some time.
I'd suggest buying him lunch.
See how you get along together.

If you can work out the business end of the relationship, you will.
r
 

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This thread reminds me of a painter who came to me looking for work.
He wanted $2 per hour more than I was willing to pay. He said he'd been doing work for a builder who was paying him $30 per hour.

I asked why he was looking for work.
He said it was because the builder hadn't paid him in two months.

--
Tom
 

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the cheapest price isn't always the best way to go and if she is just looking for price, she will probably be disapointed in the results
now thats the truth. ive been in business for only 5 months now and bidding large jobs is probably the biggest challenge ive come across. theres no point in under bidding yourself just to get work
 

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now thats the truth. ive been in business for only 5 months now and bidding large jobs is probably the biggest challenge ive come across. theres no point in under bidding yourself just to get work
Couldn't agree more with everyone, we took a job for $40k that almost took us under (we bid $lOK more than their "budget".)Turned out the numbers would have worked but remember that if there are going to be other trades, they will slow you down if the GC is unorganized or lies to you. this one happens to do both.

I agree with Dave Mac talk to their Subs, that will teach you a thing or two.
 

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It is REALLY best to grow your business as your experience also grows.

A big job is an opportunity to lose LOTS of money.

Best advice I would have is break it down into components you are familiar with.
r
 

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You never said what part of the country you are from. Different states has different prices. Do you like painting several times? Different trades working for a builder , don't care how bad they mess your work up, as long as they get there work done. You could be touching stuff up several times before that house closes ,at your expense.
 

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It is REALLY best to grow your business as your experience also grows
this is a good quote
I'm not taking it literally though

I think "growing" might not mean in numbers, but in your systems and marketing strategies, in your profit margins, etc.

As you perfect these things and keep adding to your years of experience in the field, it only seems fit to charge more and work smarter, to maximize your profits.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
To Jeff----I live in Ohio, don't know how much different costs of labor and jobs are over here as opposed to the western U.S.
I know exactly what you mean about repainting several times, I have been working for a company for about 6 years now that specializes in new construction homes. We are allways waiting for the other trades to finish up before we get anything done, and there are some sloppy ones too! Very frustrating at times.
My boss has become unreliable, and he is being investigated by workmans comp and Irs, so you see the need for me to find my own work promptly, as my boss probably isn't going to be around for much longer!
I don't want to underbid jobs based on the fact that I am a "fugitive immigrant", and have never done jail time. I am very good at what I do, quick and picky about how my work looks. I'm just looking for jobs that are going to keep my family fed! Way too many foreclosures, our current builder isn't building anymore for a while cause no one is buying.....

thanks for everyone's input
 
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