Fine. Sold. Can you start tomorrow? I have people gladly paying
three times that around here, so lunch is on me.
Do you think you're doing the OP a favor by tossing out a number
without _any_ information other than it's a _house_? The only thing I
can tell you is that you're number is wrong. You might be high or low,
but since I also don't have any information, I can't tell for sure.
Define correct. If his number is the "correct" one, does that mean
that all of the painters in that area, regardless of backlog and
quality use the same exact number for estimating? Of course not.
Giving someone an essentially random number is at best misleading and
at worst harmful. Suppose the OP doesn't know any better and relies on
that random number? Say a highely recommended contractor with a
reputation for quality and good prices gives him a number of 75 cents a
foot. The OP may pass on that contractor thinking that the price is
high. What if it's not? What if 75 cents is the going rate in his
area for an average painter, and in fact the higher quality contractor
is a bargain at 75 cents?
Flip it around. Say a low quality contractor gives him a price of 50
cents, and the going rate _is_ 50 cents. The OP accepts it because it
is the "correct" number. Unfortunately it's not the correct number for
that contractor - his price should be 25 cents because he doesn't
believe in painting prep and cleaning.
The only way to get a reliable number is to pick up the phone, have
someone eyeball the property, make sure their work is to your
satisfaction and not some fly-by-night operation, and that their
schedule works with yours.
Good grief, take a breath and calm down. I hardly think that someone
is going to be seriously harmed by someone giving a wild guess on the
cost of painting a square foot of wall. And I don't disagree that
there isn't enough info about the scope of the work, location, etc.
My only point was you stated:
" The only thing I can tell you is that you're number is wrong. You
might be high or low,
but since I also don't have any information, I can't tell for sure. "
Unless the laws of logic have been repealed, there is also the third
possibility that he isn't high or low, but that the number he gave just
happens to be one that the guy could get the job done for.
Square footage of what? Of the house? Of the walls and ceilings?
Including trim? Not including trim? How much cutting? How many
colours? Who moves furniture? Who repairs walls? How many
Maybe ask someone who can see the house?
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