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post #1 of (permalink) Old 12-14-2007, 06:28 PM Thread Starter
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OT shop build

I have out grown my 24x30 and am wanting to start on a new bigger shop. Eventually I want the entire thing to be 80x40 however that building cost more than my house so I am thinking of doing it in 30x40 sections. I have a local builder that will put it up without concrete for 7000. I built the 24x40 and have no desire to do it again.

For those of you who have used an outside builder, how do you keep them honest and get the agreed upon product.

Lastly for the residental electritians out there, what kind of cost would I be looking at to get a pro to wire the building from the pole throught the building?

I have always done it my self but just do not have the time anymore.

Ya only go around once, best to enjoy it the first trip.
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 12-14-2007, 10:12 PM
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Jeff, if a builder is inclined to screw you, you're going to get screwed. Unless you watch him every minute and keep notes. Maybe. But if you do that to an honest man he'll get fed up and blow out on you. Best thing to do is find a guy you can trust, and then trust him. With your contacts, that shouldn't be impossible.

EVERYTHING's easy for the guy who doesn't have to do it.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 12-15-2007, 09:20 AM
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Keep in mind, I don't practice what I preach...

The most expensive thing that I "farmed out" around the house was a fence. I got recommendations, spoke with the guy, we agreed upon key "design" parameters, walked it, then shook hands. It was a positive experience.

One of my many job functions is writing scopes of work and executing contracts. I primarily deal with software and electrical contracts.

The best advise that I can give you is this write it down, be specific, then talk with multiple contractors.

Think about exactly what you want and write it down. Include details about stud spacing and materials, siding materials, roof, etc. If you want them to erect a pre-fab building, then state the exact model that you want them to erect. Be as specific as you can. If you know that you want something, write it down. Don't forget to put something in about following all building codes and zoning. If you don't want the guy to do something then state it as an exclusion.

Once you have what you want on paper then start talking to contractors. When you decide upon a contractor make sure that you put a contract together and reference the document which you generated.

There is nothing wrong with having a contractor walk through with you and updating your document or even helping you write it. In the end, if you have a piece of paper that you and the contractor accept and agree upon, then you have a legal basis to keep the contractor honest.

I obsess over my contracts at work. It is not uncommon for me to walk the job multiple times and just think about what I would do, what questions I would have, and how the contractor could short cut. Then I incorporate it into my scope. I think this is why I don't spend any more time on them at home...

Hope this helps.

-- mike
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 12-15-2007, 12:24 PM Thread Starter
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It all helps,

I am going to be picky on it from the grade to rafter spacing. I am notoriously hard on my equiptment. Typical pole building spacing on sheet matal roofs around here is 3 feet. Mine will be 2 foot and I want "kick rails" around the base. Alot of building here only run the kick rails up 12 inches, I want them 3 feet.

Sliding doors, it is a shop not a garage, and 1 entry door.

The contractor already wants me to have it built to a 8 foot ceiling and "notch the trusses" It ain't happening. I want the ceiling min of 12 foot as we will eventually put a lift in this building.

I also need stackable storage. I am not sure how I am going to do it but I want to wearhouse things up insted of out.

Ya only go around once, best to enjoy it the first trip.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 12-15-2007, 12:55 PM
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Don't forget to check into the type of heat you want. It's easier to do up front than afterwards.
JD
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 12-15-2007, 01:42 PM
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Get references. A good contractor will have a long list of people that he does not mind you calling. Also, drive around town....see who is doing work. The good contractors stay busy....and don't mind someone watching them work.

NEVER pay for the full job up front....a common deposit is 25-40% and is intended to cover his up front material expenses. Agree on payment schedule up front and always hold back about 10% until you are totally satisfied on the final job.

As for the electrical....that is the one area where you can save the most money by doing it yourself.....I personally find that part to be the most fun and easiest.

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post #7 of (permalink) Old 12-15-2007, 03:33 PM
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Quote:
I want the entire thing to be 80x40 however that building cost more than my house so I am thinking of doing it in 30x40 sections.
So how many 30 X 40 sections will it take to get it to 80 X 40? I can't quite figure it out.

EVERYTHING's easy for the guy who doesn't have to do it.
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 12-15-2007, 05:14 PM Thread Starter
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2 3/4,,,,,,,

I am figuring on 2 30x40's and a 20x40 on the end....

I agree on the money savings but I just don't have the time. I was sick today and that was the first time I had seen the kids awake in a week.

Ya only go around once, best to enjoy it the first trip.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 12-16-2007, 07:45 AM
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I'll probably get blasted for this but, yep you're right time is money and you can't beat a man at his own game, no matter how good you think you are. Throughout my life I have lived in approx. 10 different houses. The previous owners probably thought doing there own work and electrical wiring would save them money and be "fun" but in 3 of those houses after I had seen what had been done and how it was done I wouldn't stay there, shabby work in my book. I watched one of these houses burn almost to the ground because these people I guess "knew" what they were doing while they were having "fun" saving themselves money doing it all by themselves. I don't farm out all my work to "others". When I went to school I took the Vocational classes in the building trades. One of the conditions of keeping my Master license is to have an 8 hour refresher course to keep up with current events involving electricity and the "proper" installation of such. I have no business cards and still do a small booming business, I don't advertize either all my work is from referrals and people seeking me out to do their work because they know I'm particular. I once read a story about a man in N.C. that cut corners on an elderly womans house when he remodeled it, he was only a handyman and I guess he thought it was "fun" to do the electrical part himself, but anyway the place burnt and killed the old woman and now he's in prison on manslaughter, I guess he's having "fun" with Big Bubba now. Anyway this is only my .10 worth and I do only what works, for me.

BOOGER

"Sometimes Insanity and Genius walk the same side of the street"
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 12-16-2007, 06:26 PM
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Bbb

I use the Better Business Bureauas a gauge. I don't trust them 100 percent. They were wrong once and it cost me over 6 grand . I have a seamless gutter business. If someone does real crappy work it usually shows up there. I do a lot of contractor type business I would only let 3 out of 40 work on or in my home. If you go pre fab alot of company's usually have a list of sub-contractors that do installs. I sometimes go to a couple of farmers who are friends and ask them they are some of the most trustworty people I know
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