Tree fell on my house during a storm in mid-July, but insurance is paying for repairs so that's cool. I met with four contractors. #1 and #2 came out on 7/16, #3 on 7/17 and #4 on 7/20. Please note that repairs will include a new roof and fixing three substantial holes that go all the way through my living and bedroom ceilings. Contractor 1 came highly recommended from some friends, 2 and 3 were found on the BBB website and 4 is the father of a coworker at my PT job. I made it very clear to each of them that I was looking at 3 other options.
Contractors 1, 2, and 3 each took about an hour to look at the damage to the house and answer my list of "contractor interview questions." They all said that, because this is an insurance claim, they would simply work from the insurance company bid for the repair estimate. For various reasons, I opted not to use Contractors 2 or 3, and sent them the following email within 3 days of their visit:
Thank you very much for taking the time to visit my home on [date] to evaluate the storm damage and discuss the repairs needed.
I would like to thank you for offering your services and bidding for the repairs needed; however, I regret to inform you that I have chosen another contractor to perform the work needed.
Should I require any work done on my home in the future, I will certainly be considering your company. Thank you once again for your proposal.
Contractor 4 spent less than a half looking at the damage, though he did take quite a few pictures. He told me that he hoped to have his estimate completed within "one to one and a half weeks." At 1.5 weeks, which was a Monday, I emailed him the following:
I just wanted to check in and see when you think the bid for my roof repairs would be ready for review. I'm hoping to be able to select a contractor by the end of this week.
Two days later, I received this reply:
Waiting to finish my “roofing” number. Hope to have to you by the end of the week.
So I waited.
I received nothing on Friday or Saturday, and so on Monday morning I emailed Contractor #1 to arrange for him to begin work. I promptly sent #4 the same "thanks but no thanks" email referenced above.
Within an hour, I received this response:
Have you received my telephone messages I have left for you trying to schedule a time to get together to get this pricing information to you? I only received the single email Monday morning, after I had accepted Contractor #1's offer I have not heard back from you. Waiting to hear from you so we can get together. End BG
It is disappointing to me that you say you have chosen a contractor without seeing “all of the pieces of the puzzle”. I would think that you would like to see all of your options before making a decision of this magnitude.
After expensing the time and effort to price this work you need, I would think you would want to sit down with me and see what I have put together for you.
What I want to say but know I shouldn't is, "You spent the least amount of time looking and the most amount of time putting together an estimate for what everyone else said was a cut-and-dry insurance job. I accepted your intial 1-1.5 week time frame, had to ask after it at 1.5 and then still didn't get it, or an update. I'm not comfortable with that in someone who will be working in my home for a few weeks. You said end of the week, I waited until after the end of the week and then selected someone else."
I understand that he took time to put together the bid and wants to discuss it with me; however, because I have already decided that I prefer Contractor #1 for a multitude of reasons, I don't want to waste #4's time.
I'll take my eHell lashings for turning him down before seeing what he offers, but I'm hoping that the eHellions can help me politely respond to his email.