Do we have an award for most outrageous pond estimates?


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Hi Folks,

I thought I would share this little gem with you. The pump in my Helix skimmer went out so I bought another pump and went to replace it but after messing with the PVC pipe and banging it around my wife said just hire someone. Ok, so I call the place I bought my stuff and they gave me a name. Called him and he said he was too busy and gave me another name. Called them and said mind you, I have the pump, I just need the old one unscrewed from the pvc pipe, removed and the new one screwed in. Probably will take someone who knows what they are doing 10 minutes at best. The guy said he's not sure if they could do it but the pricing would start at.....drumroll please......


500 dollars. Starting at 500 dollars!

I laughed so hard I thought I was going to drop the phone. The pump itself was half that price!

Do I win? :)
 

addy1

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Well with me you do, have never called for help, yet
 

sissy

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Amazing that they really think people are stupid .2 flooring guys I called told me over 4000 dollars to take up my laminate floor and put down the new floor and that is with my buying the flooring no thank you .Now I have repaired the flooring my self by taking up the laminate floor in my master closet and replacing all the damaged ones in my kitchen .I am going to replace the master closet and both my master bathrooms myself next .
 
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When he said they didn't know "if they could do it" - is that because they are so busy overcharging other customers, or do they just not really know how to unscrew some plumbing... and yet charge top dollar?

Sometimes I think people throw out ridiculous prices to try to either A. make you go away or B. hope you'll bite and they will reel in a sucker.
 
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3k to expand the pond from 14'wide 18' long 4' deep to 18' wide x 24'long x 6' deep in same spot of orginal and to add skimmer and bottom drain . saw qoute was missing bottom drain it went up 4k. so 7k total.

f that i'll rent a mini excavator and have fun doing it my self once i get all the materials together
 

Becky

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Sometimes I think people throw out ridiculous prices to try to either A. make you go away or B. hope you'll bite and they will reel in a sucker.
Agreed. I think contractors often don't want to do small jobs because they feel it's not worth their time, so they give a ridiculous quote. Not great for the consumer though!
 

Jhn

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Agree with Becky, being a contractor myself. It is not worth my time to come out to a job for a hundred dollars or so. Probably actually losing money. Now if I am already on site or nearby working then I have no problem doing small jobs. Granted my line of work is specialized somewhat and mobilization is not as simple as driving over to someone's house for the most part.
 

addy1

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One reason we do almost all of our own work, most prices we have been given are unreal high. Every now and then we hire someone when it is out of our scope. But even then we could figure it out eventually.
 

sissy

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I use youtube as a big source of info .I put in my bigger pressure tank with the help of youtube and how to change idling pulleys on my lawn mowers .It even showed me what was wrong with my fridge when it wouldn't make ice
 
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As a contractor, I have always found that the customers I give a low price to always end up being the biggest problems in the end so I'll estimate high and give a discount later if all goes well and they are ready to pay right away. Nothing is more irritating then giving someone a low price for a little job and then having to chase them down or return multiple time to try and get my money.
 
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As a contractor, I have always found that the customers I give a low price to always end up being the biggest problems in the end so I'll estimate high and give a discount later if all goes well and they are ready to pay right away. Nothing is more irritating then giving someone a low price for a little job and then having to chase them down or return multiple time to try and get my money.
as a biz owner i agree
 

sissy

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Maybe charging a little extra is OK but extreme over charging is out of hand .I know these guys just looked at me as a rich northerner and thought since i was retired and maybe knew nothing they could take advantage of me .Sad bunch of people that will take advantage of seniors .My son is a contractor and laughed at the quotes ,all he said was what are they nuts .I even asked if I took up the floor what they would charge and they took off a laughable 500 dollars .4000 minus 500 and I buy the flooring ,yeh sure
 

HARO

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As some of you may know, I run (Well, actually, I AM) the pond/water garden section of a local garden center. A few years ago, a new customer told me they had just bought a house in a nearby village that had a BIG pond in the back yard. The water was so murky they couldn't even see their koi. I told her I'd be in her area on Sunday morning, and would drop by to take a look. As it turned out, the previous owners had both passed away, and the pond had been untended for over a year. The filters were TOTALLY plugged up, and two of the three pumps were unplugged. I showed her how to clean the filters, figured out what pumps did what, and got everything working again. She asked what she owed me, and I told her $80. That,s when she told me she had talked to two pond companies (by phone) and the LOWER estimate was $4,000! The higher one? FOUR TIMES THAT AMOUNT! This guy told her he would rip up the 10,000 gallon Gunnite pond, and rebuild it with a rubber liner! There was nothing wrong with the pond, it just needed a cleaning.
Sorry, @texmaster, but I think I have you beat! :rolleyes:
John
 
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The good news for me is that a local company replaced the pump in 40 minutes for 95 bucks which I was happy to pay considering the effort and that it was rainy and 35 degrees! :wideyed:
 

HARO

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the LOWER estimate was $4,000! The higher one? FOUR TIMES THAT AMOUNT!
Geeze, I must be getting old. That was supposed to read "TEN TIMES THAT AMOUNT!" Yup, they wanted $40,000 to fix a green pond!
John
 

HARO

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Gotta build a TIME MACHINE, so I can go back and fix my screw-ups before anyone notices! :D
John
 
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I am a masonry contractor and I also have a minimum price to go do a job. I do free estimates. I built my own pond and it took over 100 man hours and approximately $3,000 in materials. If I needed to charge someone for the same job I would need to get around $12K or more. I know a local pond company and before I built mine that company told me their pond jobs start at $10K. If a business is legit, licensed, insured, good equipment etc then there really has to be a minimum cost. If I bring my truck, trailer, operator and bobcat to even dig a 4ft hole I could not do the job for a $100.00 even if that all it is worth. There is over $100K in equipment for such a small job.

Not all contractors are out to rip people off but that does not mean we can all afford someone to do the work for us or should it.
 

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