There are many differences between contractors, some good and some bad. Remember that no two contractors can give you the same products and services for the same price. Each proposal will vary because those contractors will be supplying you with different grades of materials, different levels of subcontractor skills and different abilities of customer service. Comparing contractor’s bids can be very difficult to understand. You need to ask a lot of questions in order to determine what you want and what you are willing to pay for. Some of what a contractor is offering may not be important to you. Never assume each proposal is the same except for price.

Below is a list of what makes a contractor’s proposal and price so different.

  1. Builder vs. a remodeler:
    It takes a different mindset and skill level to perform the tasks needed to properly remodel your house. Builders are not used to people living in the workplace.
  2. Little experience:
    Contractors who are new to the business or have not performed your type of remodel will not understand the full scope of materials and labor needed. This can result in a lower price.
  3. Lumberyard vs. big box:
    Materials and services provided by Menards or Home Depot will not be the same as a lumberyard. They will be lower in cost and quality. Your selection and availability will be limited. You get full service from a lumberyard.
  4. Skill level:
    All contractors have a different knowledge and skill level. Many may not see the possible problems and solutions. This will add time, headaches and costs.
  5. Working by themselves:
    Some contractors will try to do all the work themselves and lower the cost. The quality of the workmanship will suffer because they cannot be good at all things. Also, the job will take much longer to complete.
  6. Services left out:
    Many contractors will leave out materials and services to make their bid seem lower. It will be your responsibility to provide those products.
  7. Lower priced materials:
    Many materials look the same but are not. You need to know the specifics of each product.
  8. Value over price:
    The cheapest price is just that, the cheapest. Value is getting quality materials, workmanship and service at a fair price.
  9. Subcontractor’s abilities:
    Not all workers will produce the same quality of workmanship.