Basement Framing in Pickering, Ontario.

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5/9/2012 at 8:16:40 PM

Can anyone give me a rough hourly rate and the time involved for framing 100 lineal feet of basement wall (7' high) with three basement window openings and three door openings?

I only need the LABOUR cost for framing alone (I have the lumber) with no insulation, electrical, or drywall included.

Thank you.

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Date/Time5/10/2012 at 10:23:06 AM

Rough hourly rate would be 50/hour. It would probably better off for you to get a quote on a whole framing job, regardless of hours spent.

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Jim in Pickering
Date/Time5/10/2012 at 10:36:42 AM

Thank you Nik! But this *IS* the entire framing job, as it's the only area of basement which is unfinished.

I wanted to know approximately how long it would take to build/install the 100 lineal feet of framing required, to get an idea of how much it would cost for framing only, as I've already bought the lumber.

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Date/Time5/10/2012 at 1:47:43 PM

Like i said, if you're looking to employ somebody per hour, going rate is around 50. And keep in mind, having lumber is not everything. You're not supplying tools, transportation or insurance.

Would i be you, I would invite several contractors, ask them for the estimate and go with a middle guy.

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Jim in Pickering
Date/Time5/10/2012 at 3:28:37 PM

Nik -- Thanks again for your reply.

I understand that supplying the lumber isn't everything, and I'd assume that the $50/hr would cover tools, insurance etc. But $50/hr for approximately how long? In other words to build 100 ft of straight framing as outlined previously, 7' high, roughly how long would that reasonably take?....8 hrs?....16 hr....20 hrs?

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Date/Time5/10/2012 at 6:24:25 PM

I think there's a misunderstanding.

You can:

a) employ a carpenter. Then like i said, good carpenter is gonna ask around 50/hr because this is how much current GTA union package is. You probably could get off with somebody with a cheaper rate, because it does not require that much skills for project like yours. You're the employer, you're responsible for hours spent and you are paying whatever it takes. And you're responsible for quality, even if carpenter makes mistake, you're still paying hourly time to fix that.

b) hire contractor. Then i could say 1 dollar or a million dollars- it does not matter. What matters, is a lump sum contractor agrees to complete the job for. However, contractor has to provide you with a quality product, and must come back if anything is wrong.

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Jim in Pickering
Date/Time5/10/2012 at 8:05:56 PM

Nik -- I'd have to agree that there definitely appears to be a misunderstanding, or a communication problem . I've asked a few times now for a ballpark estimate of the approximate TIME it should take to frame 100 lineal feet of wall, 7'high. That actually seems like a pretty straightforward question to me, given that there's no curves, cathedral ceilings or any special requirements other than window and door openings I've previously outlined. Maybe I'm wrong though.

You've answered half of my query by telling me to allow $50 an hour. Thank you. That's perfectly clear to me, and whether I use a master carpenter, a union member or a fully-qualified cabinetmaker, I realise that the cost per hour will vary, as should the length of time required, somewhat..

All I've been repeatedly asking, is what would be considered a REASONABLE length of time for someone familiar with framing, to frame 100' lineal feet of basement wall? Is 8 working hours enough? Or would 16 hours be more realistic? Is 20 or 24 hours excessive? If that's such an extremely difficult query to answer I'm sorry, but I really don't know how to phrase my question any more clearly or simply. But thank you anyway for your partial answer.

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Date/Time5/10/2012 at 11:33:28 PM

Hi Jim, I think Nik is helping you out as much as he can. We can't see what you are seeing and there are so many variables in this type of project that it is impossible to give you an estimate on the number of hours involved. There are projects that I have quoted at $10.00 per lineal foot plus materials and done OK and others where I have quoted $15.00 per foot and gotten killed.

If you are just looking to create a budget, use $15.00 per foot or 30 hours @ $50 and hope to get a bit of change.

Quite often, the per foot thing can only be figured out accurately afterwards when you have all of the numbers in hand.

If you are serious about this and have the plans and specs, why not put your requirements in the "post your project" section so you can get some local contractors to come and have a look at your situation and give you accurate numbers - usually no charge.

Good Luck with it!

Jim Kuzma

Kettleby Handyman Services

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Jim in Pickering
Date/Time5/11/2012 at 9:33:11 AM

Thanks for your reply Jim. I appreciate your input.

When I posted my initial query though, I wrongly assumed that getting a "ballpark" estimate would be as simple and straightforward as obtaining a "ballpark" estimate from say, an electrician who can say, "As a rough guide, allow $X per point " (A point being each switch, light and receptacle.)

Or a roofer who can say, "For a standard shingle job on a peaked roof measuring 70ft by 25ft on each side without valleys, a ballpark cost would be $X, plus an additional $X for any vents, and don't forget that removal of existing shingles would cost an extra $X."

I realise that endless "what if" scenarios could be introduced to complicate matters, like if the electrician wasn't told that the house in question was built entirely of reinforced concrete and 2" thick steel, or the roofer later discovered that the entire roof deck consisted of corrugated steel sheets and the roof trusses are completely rotted.

But surely a "ballpark" estimate for a simple straightforward situation, is simply that? A rough estimate for a simple scope of work -- which in this case is 100 lineal feet of framing, as outlined in my initial query. Believe it or not, I was actually naive enough to expect a simple reply something along the lines of, "If it's straightforward framing, it'd probably take around "X" hours, unless there are some unseen complications, and you should expect to pay around $X an hour." End of story.

I must apologise though, as I really didn't expect my query to develop into this ongoing saga. I just wanted to get a rough idea of approximate cost, before calling a contractor. You've given me a rough idea.

Thank you again.

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Robert from Electrilight Ltd. in Oakville
Date/Time5/13/2012 at 8:40:39 PM

Providing the floors and ceilings are straight forward, a 10' wall can be erected in about an hour to an hour and a half with no openings, add 30-45 minutes per opening and allow a few extra hours for corners and angles, and this should get you a ball park. Plus don't forget the commute time.


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Jim in Pickering
Date/Time5/13/2012 at 9:58:48 PM

Thank you Robert for your clear, concise and informative reply, which fully answers my question.

Thank you!

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Gaby from Amg Renovation in Hearst
Date/Time5/29/2012 at 11:23:34 AM

Hi jim,

My name is Gabriel, Certified Contractor and Inspector.

I see your frustration but those guys are right! you can never tell the price but here is your answer, lets say 30 hrs of work x 2 carpenters at least and x 50$/hr = 3000$ fuffly for labour only, now you must have electrical to do, for the electrician I can't say but that's another cost for you + wires and stuff. hope I helped you with your answer.

Good luck with your project.

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Cliff in Brantford
Date/Time10/20/2014 at 7:55:05 PM


I frame basements a lot. My going rate for 100 ft would be 6 dollars per lineal ft. That's 600 dollars if that helps.

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