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Old 01-20-2009, 09:43 AM   #1
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Default PRICING sq. ft. vs. per opening

What is the going rate per sq. ft. for wiring a house? Also, how much if you charge per opening,(device,box, rec, switch).Which is better to use?

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Old 01-20-2009, 09:53 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by trickyricky View Post
What is the going rate per sq. ft. for wiring a house? Also, how much if you charge per opening,(device,box, rec, switch).Which is better to use?
I do both. 19.99 for the first 500 sq. ft, then 700 for each additional sq. ft. And 137.50 per opening...

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Old 01-20-2009, 05:28 PM   #3
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Square foot pricing just doesn't work unless you're doing cookie-cutter tracts that are all roughly the same size.

A 200a service will cost you the same whether the house is 1,000 ft” or 4,000 ft².

If you take a 2,000 ft² home, and figure your labor, material, and other costs, and divide it by 2000, you'll have a ft” price for a 2000 ft² home.

If you use that same ft² price for a 1200 ft² home, you'll lose your shirt. Use the same ft² price for a 4000 ft² home, and you'll price yourself out of contention.
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Old 01-20-2009, 07:31 PM   #4
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480sparky do you add a fixture and fan allowance?
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Old 01-20-2009, 07:38 PM   #5
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What is the going rate per sq. ft. for wiring a house? Also, how much if you charge per opening,(device,box, rec, switch).Which is better to use?
My advice is to always do a takeoff. This square foot and per hole stuff just doesn't work unless you've done a bunch that were so similar to the plan under review that you have numbers to look back on.

Don't worry about "the going rate". I call it "the going out of business rate". Sorta like following Lemmings over a cliff, it seems to me. Figure your real costs of doing business.
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Old 01-20-2009, 08:16 PM   #6
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Good advice Mark. Find your bottom line then add your mark up.
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Old 01-20-2009, 08:17 PM   #7
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480 is that response just saved on your computer? I swear I've seen it before. Ha. Like a canned forum response
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Old 01-20-2009, 08:33 PM   #8
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I highly recommend working up a price based on actual material and time. You canb present it as a not to exceed or as a cost plus based on actual material costs and time versus the estimate quoted.

I have used $24 an opening, but I've never been happy with the outcome. Plus, material costs are changing so much, such averages are not any good beyond a few weeks.
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Old 01-20-2009, 09:41 PM   #9
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Sorry Sparky, but I think your wrong.
Ive done it both ways, and if if have good parmeters set up on a sq ft bid, you can do it.
Sq ft is just a base price for me though, I have allowances for other things, such as 14 foot ceilings, or services needing SER cable withany kind of distance. Just naming a couple.
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Old 01-20-2009, 10:27 PM   #10
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I like square foot pricing as well but I always cross reference it with a per opening price. And some houses are a lower square foot price because there easier and have less opening. And some are higher for other various reasons. But you can't have a blanket price for everything. Thats just stupid.
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Old 01-20-2009, 10:59 PM   #11
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Sorry Sparky, but I think your wrong.
Ive done it both ways, and if if have good parmeters set up on a sq ft bid, you can do it.
Sq ft is just a base price for me though, I have allowances for other things, such as 14 foot ceilings, or services needing SER cable withany kind of distance. Just naming a couple.
Yes, you can do ft² pricing for the Code minimum, then add all the above-and-beyond stuff. But to simply say "I charge $x per square foot" will make you go under so fast it will make you dizzy. It's just that there's too much well-above-Code-minimum in most houses.

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I like square foot pricing as well but I always cross reference it with a per opening price. And some houses are a lower square foot price because there easier and have less opening. And some are higher for other various reasons. But you can't have a blanket price for everything. Thats just stupid.
I do it the opposite way. I price per item, then divide by the square foot as a check.
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Old 01-20-2009, 11:02 PM   #12
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In fairness, if you're wiring code minimum houses for builders of mostly code minimum type dwellings, you might be able to develop a reasonable square foot price. My customer list happens to have such diverse tastes, that would be a nightmare.
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Old 01-20-2009, 11:13 PM   #13
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Also throw in I have wired hundreads of houses but only four or five since I started my company......I have a lot to learn, amigo's.
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Old 01-21-2009, 06:25 AM   #14
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What is the going rate per sq. ft. for wiring a house? Also, how much if you charge per opening,(device,box, rec, switch).Which is better to use?

I see that no one has answered your questions yet.
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Old 01-21-2009, 07:10 AM   #15
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I gueess we are in agreement. You must take the other factors into consideration.
It works very well if you have less than 5 minutes to work on plans.
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Old 01-21-2009, 07:48 AM   #16
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good point. I was using 5 a sq ft. , service would be extra,no cans and a few other items, but now ive backed down do to the pricing presure from other ec's. About 4.65 now
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Old 01-21-2009, 09:21 AM   #17
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In fairness, if you're wiring code minimum houses for builders of mostly code minimum type dwellings, you might be able to develop a reasonable square foot price. My customer list happens to have such diverse tastes, that would be a nightmare.
I agree, but not many of us have a shot at big developments at this time.

By the way, wearing pajamas in the daytime is waaaay over rated!
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Old 01-21-2009, 11:13 AM   #18
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I see that no one has answered your questions yet.
Its been answered the best way possible several times now, figure out his OWN cost to wire a home. Nobody here can figure out his cost without knowing how long it takes him, or what material he uses or methods to get to the end result. Unless you are specifically based in Atlanta, your costs will be of no use whatsoever to him. I am in Wisconsin, what I charge to do a home will not be close to what contractors in Atlanta charge.

Everytime one of these threads comes up, people state what their rates are, and they are always way, way higher than mine, which just proves you have to figure out YOUR OWN costs. Nobody else here can do it for him.

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Old 01-21-2009, 03:50 PM   #19
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I agree, but not many of us have a shot at big developments at this time.

By the way, wearing pajamas in the daytime is waaaay over rated!

Then again, how many cookie-cutter tracts are burning up land these days?
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Old 01-21-2009, 04:48 PM   #20
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good point. I was using 5 a sq ft. , service would be extra,no cans and a few other items, but now ive backed down do to the pricing presure from other ec's. About 4.65 now
I bid by the opening, but like many others use sq.ft. just to see when I'm done. Average 2 to 2.5K sq.ft. "camp" comes out around that 4.65 mark here.

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