From the Desk of:
Kris Austin, Chief Estimator for Jim Hicks Home Improvment
It doesn’t matter if you are in Yorktown, Virginia Beach, or anywhere else. If you do a little homework, you can probably save money or get a lot more for your money if you call in the real pros to give you a consultation. Recently my dad, against my recommendations, invited a local big-box hardware store consultant into his bathroom for a free estimate to replace his fiberglass tub – after all, it WAS free and he thought maybe they would have a unique idea. I told him to make sure he gave me a call before doing anything. Over a week later he called me back to tell me what -unnamed big box hardware store – wanted to sell him and asked for my opinion.
My reply was this: 1) They took over a week to get back to you with a price on something they specialize in? You’d think they could give you price on that within a day or so, if not right in the house since its their specialty. 2) They were trying to sell you a product that is right on the shelf in their store at an incredible mark-up. A $400 to $800 item installed for a total contract value of over $6800, no shower enclosure included, no faucet included, no clean up or disposal included. Now, there is labor necessary to perform that work; however, $800 product – $6000 labor? It just doesn’t add up. 3) The quality of the item they were selling was inferior. 4) When you asked them about a glass enclosure they responded HOW?! (The consultant recommended getting a curved metal rod and shower curtain to maximize usable shower space, i.e. their store doesn’t sell or have a relationship with anyone who does sell glass shower enclosures but they DO sell the rods and curtains).
I told Dad, don’t go buy this and pay $6800 for -unnamed big box hardware store – to install it and that I could do much better for him:
Instead, let me get the real pros to come in and build something like the shower on the right. It will cost you a couple hundred dollars more but will include the faucet, glass enclosure, disposal, and clean-up afterward. In addition, you will have the peace-of-mind knowing that it was installed properly, with a professional level of craftsmanship, and it will look great! And, should you, in the unlikely event, have any problems with it, the contractors involved will stand behind their work! I can’t say the same thing for the -unnamed big box hardware store – or their subcontractors.
Which one would you go with?