If some of u charge $30 - $45 per opening what if the GC is buying the materials then what would you charge?? Im all mixed up like a lost dog in a sea of tires. Also do most of u price the same for the t.v and phone?
stan, As i would venture that the figure constitutes 85% time, give GC a 15% break, otherwise the per-stop arrangement would probably not work. Hey, it's a dog-eat-dog trade, and we're all wearing milkbone skivies out there !!!!
In an ideal world, we would always supply our own materials. There is too much potential for problems(low quality, wrong spec., used or out-dated materials) when others provide materials and you are expected to install them.
If I am running CAT5 cable but only using it as CAT3 the cost is roughly the same per stop. However if it is configured for CAT5 with the proper jacks the price is much higher, i.e. greater labor and material costs. I received a price list from a data-comm shop that wanted to sub-contract my LV work at $115 or so PER drop for CAT5.
GC furnishing the materials, that's ok too.....as long as he knows what YOU need, communication is very important.... you need to point out the types of stuff you have a problem with such as different brands that just aren't up to your standards. If the stuff that is GC / homeowner provided is unusable - then you need to say so.......it is your toosh on the line, if the materials are junk.
It is a good idea to have a "data base" of prices, if you are providing the materials for the job. You bring materials, you know what they cost + mark up of whatever you set.
There will always be the "extra's" used such as wirenuts, blah blah......keep receipts and notes.
Depending on how you present your bill to the person paying you, whether it be the home owner or the GC, they may ask for an itemized list of materials used.
(Estimating is tough to say the least, many a muttering I have heard coming from '66 when he is doing an estimate..... but hey, how you gonna get good at it if you don't DO IT.. And you will have some of them days where you just can't believe how terrible things are going.)
You as an electrical contractor have the power to set your own rate of pay. Find the "average" range for your area, by doing some "secret shopping" if you have to. Then set yours accordingly. People due tend to talk, and word will get around on how reasonable or unreasonable you are. Your work, be it good or bad, will speak for itself. Good Luck, Tiff
Very well said, Tiffany. I would add that as a contractor, you should have a written contract signed before beginning any work. This may be a standard contract or one designed by you and your attorney. Also, make very sure that you and your client understand the work to be performed. In my end of the business, this is what we call an alignment meeting. It is designed to insure everyone is on the same page, that there will be no surprises when we are half way through the project. It also is a place to promote our company and our ability to perform the Scope of Work as outlined in our contracts. Any thing outside of our Scope becomes a change order. But then, change orders are where a lot of money is made . As far as material is concerned, again, that should be in your contract as to what materials are acceptable and the result if they are not. And, yes, as a large company, we have a competent legal staff. But as a small independent contractor, you too can protect yourself by using standard forms and hand writing notes at the end or in the margin, so long as you and client have copies of all signed contracts. A standard form could be as simple as the statement used by your local car dealer's shop authorizing the work to be done.