Kilt

Invoice higher than quotation

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Just had some work finished, and received the invoice for the work. However its 35% higher than quotation! I'm looking for advice on the best way to approach builder on this.

 

I appreciate materials have gone through the roof, but quote was accepted in late 2020 and deposit paid in Jan 2021, in my mind materials should be charged at that price (they could have been ordered then and delivered to site).

Whilst on site I was told materials have increased, and quote may increase, but not by the final 35%.

 

I don't want things to get heated/legal, I'm happy with the work.. but a 35% increase seems a great deal and I feel I'm paying for misjudgments in material/labour.

 

Any advice appreciated.

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Did they not explain why the increase, I would simply ask them to explain why!

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They need to give you a breakdown of the figures for materials on their estimate v the actual purchase costs.  When was the quote produced?

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, joe90 said:

Did they not explain why the increase, I would simply ask them to explain why!

price of materials was reason, but when increased mentioned, it was around a 10% increase. When invoice has arrived, that's jumped to 35%.

 

1 hour ago, Mr Punter said:

They need to give you a breakdown of the figures for materials on their estimate v the actual purchase costs.  When was the quote produced?

It has been broken down, quote was from end of 2020, deposit paid Jan 2021, as mentioned if material had been ordered in Jan, surely price would have been accurate?

I think materials have only been order a few weeks ago (as they've been so busy, I've had a 8 month wait for work), hence price increase. Materials could have been ordered in Jan and easily stored on site. I was under impression this was plan, but was only discussed verbally.

 

Just feels like I'm paying for them being so busy and not factoring in material increases and having to use more labour, to ensure job happened quickly so they can move onto next job.

Edited by Kilt

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They may not have foreseen the price increases.  Contactors typically do not want materials hanging around on site for too long as they tend to get damaged, stolen or get in the way of works.  They also typically have supplier terms of 30 days so this would also impact their cashflow.

 

If you post up the itemised quote and the invoice we will have a bit more to go on.  Best if they are anonymised.

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Posted (edited)
24 minutes ago, Mr Punter said:

They may not have foreseen the price increases.  Contactors typically do not want materials hanging around on site for too long as they tend to get damaged, stolen or get in the way of works.  They also typically have supplier terms of 30 days so this would also impact their cashflow.

 

If you post up the itemised quote and the invoice we will have a bit more to go on.  Best if they are anonymised.

not really anything to pop up, as only the extras were itemised. Original job/price is just one line. 

 

original price was £4000 for work ( end of 2020)

50% deposit in Jan 2021

 

then Invoice has extra £300 for material increases and £420 for some extra equipment/labour required to lift a piece of steel.

Edited by Kilt

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28 minutes ago, Kilt said:

Materials could have been ordered in Jan and easily stored on site. I was under impression this was plan, but was only discussed verbally.

As @Mr Punter says above materials can get in the way and rarely ordered much in advance. Hindsight is a wonderful thing as I don’t think this was anticipated by anyone. Personally (when I was working) if materials had risen that much I would run it past the customer at the time to make sure they understood the situation.

 

2 minutes ago, Kilt said:

and £420 for some extra equipment/labour required to lift a piece of steel.

So his quote was inaccurate, he should have factored that in his original quote!!!!

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1 minute ago, joe90 said:

As @Mr Punter says above materials can get in the way and rarely ordered much in advance. Hindsight is a wonderful thing as I don’t think this was anticipated by anyone. Personally (when I was working) if materials had risen that much I would run it past the customer at the time to make sure they understood the situation.

that's kinda my point. It was discussed, briefly on site, but was only a 10% increase which I was more than willing to accept. I totally get that materials have gone up massively.

 

3 minutes ago, joe90 said:

So his quote was inaccurate, he should have factored that in his original quote!!!!

 

Yeah that's what I meant by I feel I'm paying for poor planning/errors on their part, which should have been included from the start. 

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Why has so much time past between quote, deposit and works being done? Was it their delays? Or something out of their control? If the client delays the works then it’s not really down to poor planning. 

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19 minutes ago, Kilt said:

Yeah that's what I meant by I feel I'm paying for poor planning/errors on their part, which should have been included from the start. 

Yes I think you have accepted the 10% rise in prices (which I think I would) but I would not be accepting his £420 for items he did not figure into his original quote. An estimate is different from a quote.

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16 minutes ago, markc said:

Why has so much time past between quote, deposit and works being done? Was it their delays? Or something out of their control? If the client delays the works then it’s not really down to poor planning. 

Their delay.. too busy.

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2 hours ago, Kilt said:

Their delay.. too busy.

In that case accept the 10% and tell them the difference is cancelled out by the delays

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so material increase is what they said it was £300 on  4k bill.

 

The part you are having an issue with is the £420 for lifting a steel ?

 

Without knowing the breakdown its not possible to say if its reasonable for them to store materials on your site at their cost to save you £300.

 

You could pay the bill and exclude that, good luck with ever getting them back to site though should anything need sorting in the future.

 

Some poeple are never pleased mind.

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1 hour ago, Dave Jones said:

The part you are having an issue with is the £420 for lifting a steel ?

That’s what I said above, if he left it out of his quote that’s his mistake, not a mark up In prices!

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1 hour ago, Dave Jones said:

so material increase is what they said it was £300 on  4k bill.

 

The part you are having an issue with is the £420 for lifting a steel ?

 

Without knowing the breakdown its not possible to say if its reasonable for them to store materials on your site at their cost to save you £300.

 

You could pay the bill and exclude that, good luck with ever getting them back to site though should anything need sorting in the future.

 

Some poeple are never pleased mind.

The verbally discussed increase was a just price increase. Then when invoice has arrived that verbal discussed increase has doubled, with increases itemised. 

bit like a restaurant saying there’s going to be a £5 surcharge.. then when bill arrives is £10. 
 

 

and regarding some people are never pleased.. I take people at their word. I just don’t have bottomless pockets. 

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20 minutes ago, Kilt said:

and regarding some people are never pleased.. I take people at their word.


Too right, a quote is a quote, lifting the steel costs was a mistake on the builders part so frankly I don’t see how he can charge you for it, if he had given you a “ball park figure” or “estimate” that is different. Whenever I used to give quotes I always included a sentence that said any unforeseen changes will be discussed before carrying out that work. If I cocked up the quote that was my fault and I had to swallow the costs.

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I almost never give quotes.  If I had to quote a fixed price for every job, I would have to take account of every difficulty that I might encounter and factor in the job taking that long, and the quote would be higher and I probably would not get the job.

 

Usually I estimate jobs and most times things go well and the final bill is lower or no higher than the estimate.

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21 hours ago, Kilt said:

not really anything to pop up, as only the extras were itemised. Original job/price is just one line. 

 

original price was £4000 for work ( end of 2020)

50% deposit in Jan 2021

 

then Invoice has extra £300 for material increases and £420 for some extra equipment/labour required to lift a piece of steel.

Firstly how very trusting of you to pay 50% upfront 6+ months before your work was done and I would argue that he could have bought the materials at that point as he had your deposit at his disposal, however he didn’t and it is what it is, materials have gone through the roof. As for the equipment he needed to do the job he should have known he would need this and charged accordingly at the time of the quote. I drew our builders up about a piece of machinery they tried to add onto their bill, something they couldn’t do the job without and they backed down and took that charge off.

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23 hours ago, Kilt said:

not really anything to pop up, as only the extras were itemised. Original job/price is just one line. 

 

original price was £4000 for work ( end of 2020)

50% deposit in Jan 2021

 

then Invoice has extra £300 for material increases and £420 for some extra equipment/labour required to lift a piece of steel.

 

It sounds like your invoice is coming out at 18% over the original quotation - worth clarifying before you present your figures so it's clear from the offset.

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Isn't the word  'quote' a legally definable term ?  Other wise its an estimate.

If you quote me a price for something then it means ' you can quote me on it in a court of law'.

So if your builder did not revise his prices due to the time elapsed, which would have been reasonable, then the original price must stand, surely ?

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Posted (edited)

I'm struggling to see where the 35% increase is.

 

Quote: £4K, 50% (£2K) paid in Januayy

 

Final invoice: £2K + £300 (materials increase) + £420 (equipment/labour), so £4720 in total, 18% more than original £4K quote 

 

(I wonder if the OP is doing 720/2000 and getting 36% as the increase)

 

Customer was told materials had gone up 10%, which was accepted, and the £300 covers that.


As others have said, I'd be paying the £300 but challenging the £420 for extra equipment/labour

Edited by AliMcLeod

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Less interest on the deposit from Jan til work started.?  That deposit was surely for buying the materials: Your materials not someone else's.

 

Unless the steel was an addition or a change, or they specifically excluded the equipment, then the method is their choice, and their cost.

 

ask why they took your deposit and didn't use it for your project.

and that was a huge show of trust on your part

argue that the delay has been a nuisance/problem/cost to you.

agree that material prices have gone up 10%   +£300

deduct 5% interest of £2,000.   -£100

disagree the rest.

In summary agree to pay £200.

then have the argument and eventually agree £300.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, saveasteading said:

Less interest on the deposit from Jan til work started.?  That deposit was surely for buying the materials: Your materials not someone else's.

 

I'd say this is only valid if the job was meant to start sooner but was delayed 6 months. If it was started when it was due to start, then the OP was very trusting in handing over 50% 6 months early, but its what was agreed.

 

But if the job was due to start in the first quarter of this year, then, yes the increase in materials was a consequence of the job being delayed  by the builder, so I'd be looking to pay a lower amount on the £300 too. However, the fact the builder mentioned the 10% increase, and this was accepted, might make that point harder to argue.

Edited by AliMcLeod

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