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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
well i came in second place again. the SCADA project bids today and my bid was 2.963 million, first place was 2.28 million. third place was within one percent of me. it just makes you wonder how these people stay in bussiness. they underbid me a year ago by $300 on a similar project. .. just makes you wonder ohw they stay in bussiness.
 

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Maybe they're masters of the change order? :(
 

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Town Drunk
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well i came in second place again. the SCADA project bids today and my bid was 2.963 million, first place was 2.28 million. third place was within one percent of me. it just makes you wonder how these people stay in bussiness. they underbid me a year ago by $300 on a similar project. .. just makes you wonder ohw they stay in bussiness.
$300? Or $300k?
 

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el abogado del diablo
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maybe they are better business men than you? maybe they control their overhead better? maybe they have better guys working for them? better project management?

maybe it's just you?

or they could be working without any profit....













(note..no offense is meant. the above is satire. some of you will know exactly what the reference is to :) )'
 

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Don't you wonder. I bid a Government job it was a 5 year contract I had the contract for 3-5 year periods. Bids were opened, I was 2nd 3rd, 4th and 5th were very close to me. 1st place was less than my first contract price 15 years ago.

The customer put me on T&M, all I ever heard was the contractor did nothing without a change order and argued every point. Finally the contractor called me and give me a PO to complete some of the work, he asked for a break in my normal price...YEAH RIGHT, I'll do you a favor.

The infrastructure the contractor maintained was a shambles after 5 years.

I feel the contracting officer has some coupability in this. if 4 of 5 guys are in the ball park and 1 guy is low. 4 guys are not trying to screw you, 1 contractor is or does not know what he is bidding.

A
 

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el abogado del diablo
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while i have no statistics, i would bet that a large majority of low bids in context of of what hce or brian are talking about, end up like brian just described. not as the mythical "excellent job at a lower price"
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
i have bid 3 projects all different phases of this job, he beat me on the first one by $300k (not 300 sorry) i won the second by $4,000 (.02% spread) and then he took this project $650k below me and the rest of the pack.

anyone who has estimated very much always knows the low ballers (unless your one of them). sometimes you can attribute the low price contractors to having signifigantly lower overhead. they work out of thier home, thier wife does the books, or they just do cheap shotty work. it makes you scratch your head and wonder how and why it keeps happening. maybe there should be an apprenticship for your contractors license.
 

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Basically: In a given area we all have the same overhead (to a certain extent), offices, warehouses, secretary, trucks, labor on and on, where it may differ, is do you have football tickets, baseball tickets (for HCE front row seats for the Iditarod), take your customers to lunch, fishing, hookers, strip clubs, ect.

I have contractores I work for that have the tops in everything tools, equipment, new trucks, pay their men top wages, have great offices, have golf tournaments, go fishing, host parties and still are low on jobs. While others are the exact opposite and compete in the same market.

As for beating up for extras I HATE THAT, I have attended large construction meeting for projects we are involved in where the EC played that game and I think it was a nightmare IMO.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
maybe if some of these contractors understood the bussiness side of bussiness then then electrical contractors wouldnt have the lowest margins in construction.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
my prime cost on the job was just under 2.5.. the winning bidder was about 150k below my prime, and this was a prevailing wage project.
 
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