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Trades & Labor House construction Labor vs Material Costs

Discussion in 'Businesses - Services - Products' started by Show Pony, Feb 6, 2020.

  1. Show Pony

    Show Pony DI Forum Patron Highly Rated Poster Showcase Reviewer

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    A friend wants to build a 2 story concrete and hollow block house. The site is near the beach in Dauin.

    The proposed contract by an architect has the cost of materials at 50% and the other 50% of the cost as professional fee, labor and and 5% contingency.
    Are contingency fees kept by the contractor.

    I have reviewed the quotation and all the materials appear to be competitively priced but the labor seemed very high. The quote was very detailed including things like coco lumber and plywood for forming. It even listed 38 rolls of electrical tape.

    Any thoughts on this please.
     
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  2. Sedona

    Sedona DI Forum Adept

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    It sounds about right according my experience with several contracted projects. The contingency amount should not be billed to you unless extra funds end up being required, at which point you would be asked to pay it, usually near the end of the project. You can 100% count on the fact that you will end up paying all of the contingency money so be sure to budget for it. If that is all the additional funds you are asked for you should consider yourself lucky.
     
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  3. shabbynomad70

    shabbynomad70 DI Member

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    we live in an older rent house of concrete block and coconut wood. the wooden part is slowly dissolving due to attack by termites. that is the first thing i would review. make it concrete block and steel.

    second would be to have a competent attorney look over the contract. nathan who is officed at JP's restaurant on the highway as you near Bacong proper would be my choice but there are others.

    i would shudder at the idea of building a house here without a competent and reliable construction manager to protect my interests. someone totally independent from the construction staff and responsible only to me.
     
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  4. OP
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    Show Pony

    Show Pony DI Forum Patron Highly Rated Poster Showcase Reviewer

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    On this job I would be the customers representative. I just emailed the owner after reviewing the drawings and material list. All the civil work looks excellent to but I'm electrical so....?

    The contractor was very detailed in his list of materials right down to 38 rolls of 3M electrical tape. However there are a lot of bits and pieces not specified. They did forget some things like the electric meter and how they would get power to the house. I guess that is why there is a contingency fee.

    Your advise to get a lawyer is appreciated. The owner is a lawyer in Italy, but I'll ask to have a look at the contract before it is let out. A clause saying all fitting required to install........blah, blah should probably be included.

    Thanks for your thoughts. And NO COCO lumber it's termite food.
     
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  5. Sedona

    Sedona DI Forum Adept

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    The coco lumber is usually not used as part of the structure. It is used to build scaffolding and create concrete forms with, and that's always what they use.
     
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  6. Mikal

    Mikal DI Member

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    There should be an equally detailed list of labor costs, right? That's what you want to pick through and if anything seems 'high' than ask for justification.

    The percentage thing can be a bit misleading - using materials that cost 20% more would (typically) drive the percentage allocated for labor lower. It's not hard to use tiles that cost 2, 5 or even 10 times more than low-end tiles, but you're not increasing your labor cost 2, 5 or even 10 times. I hope.
     
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  7. OP
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    Show Pony

    Show Pony DI Forum Patron Highly Rated Poster Showcase Reviewer

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    A price check at some local building shops showed the pricing of things was fair.

    The house is about 120 Sqm. Some of the cost are pretty high and can be split out which is what I will encourage the owner to do. Labour charges for a few thing that will be deleted.
    lay 120 sqm tile 70,000 peso.
    install fixtures in 3 bathrooms 65,000 pesos
    painting 950 sqm 172,000 pesos.

    I have told the owner he really needs to select the paint, light fixtures, plumbing fixtures, tile and windows himself . There will be no savings here but at last he will get what he wants. I'll suggest to the owner that he requires a receipt for all purchases but I doubt that will fly.
     
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  8. Astralweeks

    Astralweeks DI Junior Member

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    This is a job you do. Checking quotes?
     
  9. OP
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    Show Pony

    Show Pony DI Forum Patron Highly Rated Poster Showcase Reviewer

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    I don't normally do any construction work for anyone. I kind of got roped into this job.

    The owner wanted me to review the quote from the architect and help decide if a second quote is required.

    On the job site the owner wants me to be his technical representative.
    That would mean making sure they follow the design. That involves making sure the correct size and quantity of deformation bars (re-bars) are installed. Check that the correct overlap of deformation bar in columns and beams. Ensure they use a concrete mix that is not too sloppy. Sloppy concrete is easy to work with but the strength is very poor.
     
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  10. Roadwitch80

    Roadwitch80 DI Member

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    Labor is usually 30% of material cost. That’s the standard rate. Contingency is 5-10%.

    To get an overall ballpark figure of what you should be spending, do the cost per sqm. Dumaguete cost per square meter is usually around 18k per square. This includes structural, architectural and MEPF. The figure you come up with will go up or down depending on the quality of your materials.
     
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