This is Hardly News: A Flaky Contractor

So I'm beginning to get annoyed with our recommended general contractor. And why do I tend to start my thoughts with "so"? Anyway, so this general contractor. He comes as a recommendation from the co-worker that graciously drew up our building plans for dinner and beer. He (the GC) used to work for my husband's company, but in a different office so he has never met this guy. This project is, by definition, a small job. A 120 square feet single story addition, that requires throwing up two new external walls, and breaking down one. Not exactly economically thrilling for contractors, this type of job.

I am drifting away from my point, as I usually do, since I have a bad case of non-squiter disease. I am getting annoyed because I have yet to get a number out of this guy. A dollar value. How much will this cost? He knows I am looking to be frugal about this, so I'm not sure if this is contributing to his shuffling of the feet.

First, I asked for a VERY ballpark number when all I had was my crappy Visio drawing of the floor plan. Never got that. Then, I sent him the full building plans about 2 weeks ago. He told me he would have something by last Friday. OK. Call him on my way up to Mammoth, he is out at the park playing with his kids. No problem, I say. He says he'll email me something Monday or Tuesday. Well, yesterday, still nothing. I email him, asking if he has an update for me. I get a voicemail this morning (its already Thursday! sounds like he is in a car) that says: "Hi, this is [so-and-so"], it's 9:30 on... [bit inaudible here, something like asking himself what day it is] Thursday... I'm losing track of days! [his number]. Thanks!"

Um. That's it? How about, "I have finished the estimate, please give me a call".

I am beginning to think I may need to be my own GC. This scares me some, but I have detailed building plans. I'll have to find licensed contractors to do the pieces, but I feel like I could actually get it done faster myself. Sure, I'd have to use my own time to call and get quotes from people and schedule them. That's the hard part, and knowing what comes first, and such. Some of it is obvious (like you need your foundation laid before you start framing walls), but my relative inexperience with construction makes me worry that I might screw something up. But it would certainly save us money if we DON'T use a general contractor. According to this guy, he charges 12% of total cost of building as his fee. This could me small or quite large depending on what the total comes out.

I guess I'll call this guy later and I fully expect another excuse as to why he hasn't come up with the estimate and will be totally shocked if I actually hear a number from him.


  1. my uncle was my GC...even he could be hard to pin's a job requirement or something...


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