For most Property Owners planning a major remodel or building that “Dream Home”, it’s almost impossible to know what has (or what has not) been included in competing General Contractor bids.
We know what should be included, and we know the right questions to ask. We prepare takeoffs of your plans, then build a detailed estimate showing you what your project should cost. This unique approach gives you the edge to know when your competing bidders are too high (or even too low, which can be worse) per trade & per line item. And believe us, there’s a lot of power & savings in that.
Our goal is to help you feel confident about choosing a General Contractor. We visit their past projects and current worksites and see what the real story is, and we’re happy to sit in on your project meetings.
Want to know more? Click on the “Services” tab above for answers to the most frequent questions from Owners needing our services.
So you’ve chosen your Contractor. Now what?
Well, like the best committed relationships, there still may be some ups and downs ahead.
Because we’ve already estimated your project & know it inside out, we can stay on as your Owner’s Representative to find the fair cost for the upgrades & change orders you’ve asked for.
And if you’re like the majority of Owners, you’ve put off decisions like whether you should go with tankless water heaters, radiant floor heating, real hardwood flooring versus engineered, or even that cascading waterfall in the master bedroom.
We’re here to help you assess the cost and impact of those delayed choices and options -- well before they slow construction and result in higher General Condition costs.
And who wouldn’t want a waterfall in their bedroom?
We also make weekly site visits to approve payment requests (based on the percentage of completed work), and provide you an updated Project Cost Chart which compares our Project Estimate against the Contractor’s budget and their actual billing. Frankly, a great tool to stay on top of your project’s cost in real time.
Contact us today for a Sample Budget.
Question: How much do you charge to create a project estimate?
Answer: If you send us PDF’s of the project, we can give you a general estimating cost. Costs can increase if the architect’s plans are not developed, meaning lots of time with subs explaining the scope, or the Architect issues revised plans after we have begun our work, or if there are really unusual materials or trades which require research on our part, or as in the case of a major remodel of an existing home, we need to host more than one job-walk for sub-contractors.
Question: How do you create the budget?
Answer: We perform square foot, linear foot, cubic foot, cubic yard and unit “take-offs” of your plans, then build a detailed budget using costs drawn both from our data base and our experience.
Question: Do you involve subcontractors in your budget building?
Answer: Yes, for specialized trades, we sometimes pay subcontractors to bid. (Please note: It’s only fair to pay subs for their time, because when you do chose a GC, the chances of our bidding sub getting the job is remote to none, because the GC will have their favorites. That said, should our bidding sub’s bid be accepted by the GC, we ask the subcontractor to return the bid fee to you.)
Question: If I hire you as my Owner’s Representative, how do I know you won’t be too easy on the cost of change orders? After all, you probably have worked, or are already working with many of the General Contractors and sub-contractors in the Greater LA area?
Answer: And, like most service companies, we want a great reference from you, so the more money you can save using us, the better our recommendation.
Once hired, we are your advocate, not theirs. We investigate both the “need” for any change orders (meaning we make sure the change order scope shouldn’t already be covered as part of the agreed main scope of work budget, and analyze the change order’s cost to make sure it’s fair and without fluff.
Makes sense, yes?