Conversions - General Question

An elderly lady friend asked 3 builders to quote for a conversion of a small building. one who quoted but didn't get the job subsequently billed her for £450+vat. is this right?

I think she is fine to pay something towards his costs, but having looked at other posts on this site, £30-50 seems fair. To put it another way this guy could go round pricing jobs and earn over £120,000 pa without actually doing any of them!!! Who do we approach - Trading Standards?

8 Answers

Best Answer

most builders now charge for conversion extension quotes because of the time they take up ,smaller jobs up to 5k are still free quotes but over that are charged ,i charge 150 pounds all in ,which to be honest doesnt cover my costs for these jobs ,diesel on initial visit ,time taken at visit ,travelling to premises ect 2-3 hours ,then time doing quotation 1 day for small to medium conversions /extensions ,if we win the job this payment does not apply ,i must admit 450 seems overly excessive ,think hes trying it on ,for us to charge that we would be pricing a 250.000 to 400.000 build.i for 1 think as do my customers 150 is acceptable for a fully detailed quotation ,not a guestimate like some cowboys give for free ,i could guess a job in 2min ,good luck

Answered 17th Feb 2012


Member since 7 Jun 2008

No, there are no charges for providing quotes, or visiting property

Answered 17th Feb 2012

GFI Services Ltd

Member since 20 Nov 2010

i don"t charge for quotes, and i agree with roc builders £450.00 seem a little steep.

Answered 18th Feb 2012

saturn enterprize

Member since 18 Oct 2011

Absolutely shocking!!

I have no problem with anybody asking ANY amount for a quote (although I certainly wouldn't) , or indeed any other service, but this charge needs to be made clear, and agreed up front. She should refuse to pay this.

As far as I understand it if a service is provided (in this case the quotation) and a fee is not agreed beforehand, then the client is still NOT liable to pay any more than would be reasonable for the service. IF it went to court and the lady could show that other suppliers normally provide that service at a much lower price (ie free) then that is what she'd be expected to pay.

The nugget who asked for £450 + vat would have to prove that this was agreed prior to providing the service...............getting almost to a situation where you have to quote for the chance to quote!!!! lol

Answered 14th Mar 2012

Urban Space

Member since 14 Mar 2012

We don't charge for quotes no matter what size the job is, I'm wondering how many company's do charge for quotes and get paid? I know money's tight every time were short listed it costs us money,on this site I regularly pay anything up to £25 and am now wondering if this should be passed on to potential customers,

Answered 24th Jun 2012


Member since 28 Mar 2012

I dont charge for quotes regardless of size of job.Maybe im stupid because i do waste a lot of working time on them.Whilst in fairness it is not unreasonable to charge something,£450 is taking the piss.I would say that a reasonable wage for a good tradesman is £200 a day.If he spent over 2 days to do the quote he should either get another job or stop quoting for olympic stadiums lol.

Answered 17th Feb 2012

Roc builders

Member since 25 Aug 2011

Many companies provide free quotations, but if it was agreed prior to the site visit then it needs to be paid. It is a ridiculous price and unheard of, but it all boils down to the the agreement made.

If there was no mention of this charge then it should not be paid and it should be ignored. if the builder insists then trading standards will help.

Answered 19th Feb 2012

Ambux Ltd

Member since 24 Oct 2011

I agree with Urbanspace - if they are going to CHARGE for Quoting/Estimating then they should inform you before hand - so that you don't get CONNED in this way.

The days are gone with charging a fee to price jobs - I remember in the old days my dad charging for looking and "estimating" jobs - then for whatever reason the "free estimates" came into play for all builders etc.

In this day and age - especially with the recession - it would be good to Charge for the amount of time, fuel and paper that is taken up to provide a Quote .... but no one wants to pay out for jobs let alone charges - and they tend to go for the cheapest and quite often they then pay out more!

It amazes me watching Cowboy Builders or Builders from Hell etc ... as these have been on telly for years and people still do the wrong things when choosing a builder or any workman!

Answered 30th Apr 2013

Castile Construction Limited

Member since 1 Jul 2008

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