Fed up with lowballers

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Posted by: from Georgetown
5/11/2011 at 1:51:20 PM

Is it just me or has anyone else fed up losing a basement renovation to so-called contractors or "fly by nighters" that are only charging $20per.sq.ft? How is that price possible? How can anyone make a decent living plus pay for business expenses(insurance,licenses,wages,tools,gas/fuel,etc) only charging that much? Do they realize what they are doing to the rest of us?

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Mike from M2R Enterprises in Newmarket
Date/Time5/12/2011 at 8:06:50 AM

If you do the work yourself, don't use licensed subs, don't pay WSIB or business insurance,don't stand behind a guarantee, don't pay income tax and don't charge HST you'd be surprised how low you can go :-)

It kills me the number of times I come up against guys like that and, yes, they do give the business a bad name. What it comes down to is there is a large segment of the homeowner population that is more concerned with price than quality, trust or integrity. The same homeowners are the first ones to call people like you and I when their fly-by-night contractor disappears with the 50% down payment they demanded (and received) after installing $500 worth of lumber and breaking the floor.

There is room for people who operate honest businesses in this industry but a large part of our job is educating homeowners on the risks they accept when dealing with lowballers. If they're willing to accept those risks there's little you can do without becoming one of them.

Mike Himelfarb.

M2R Enterprises.

Renovations Done Right.

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Date/Time5/15/2011 at 4:36:22 PM

Hey Mike.

Well said. There will always be a portion of the market where customers are very price/cash focused although lately this appears to be a greater portion and unfortunately there are contractors that will take advantage of this. I just hope that the good and honest contractors can wait this out and I agree with your closing comment "without becoming one of them". Good luck.

Kingsway Construction Inc.

Glenn Rosborough

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Date/Time5/26/2011 at 12:18:44 PM

Hey Chris,

I just went to qute a basement a week ago, and the owner of the house told me he had a quote from a guy over the phone who said he didn't need to come to the house to look at the job and quoted him $12,000 to do it. The job description was for a 2 bedroom, kitchen, livingroom, and 3 peice bathroom. The basthroom rough-in's were in the wrong place so there is a need to break open the floor and move them.

I couldn't believe the owner was judging the remainder of the quotes he was receiving against this one. He even asked me if he shoud trust the guy who gave him the quote.

I wish homeowners would just think about why these "so-called" contractors can quote so low, and why they could do the quote over the phone, without a visit to the site. It's so obvious that they are out to make a quick buck on the initial downpayment of the job and then go do this to someone else.

What it does do though is devalue what the honest contractors will bring in as a quote for the job. That is what is frustracting to me, and obviously to others as well.

Bill Clawsie

Clawsie Contracting


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Date/Time9/24/2011 at 8:41:57 AM

To Chris, Just want to say that you should report these people to the building department or to a building inspector and have them stopped! If these guys are out there doing plumbing or elcetrical, something they are clearly not licensed for, then someone's life is in danger and something should be done about it right away!

Dominic Choocomolin

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