I don’t know what they would cost. But I think that it is too much. A friend from the UK has a holiday home in our village. He paid €10,000 to have the outside of his three bed standard house painted white. He wouldn’t listen to me that he was paying too much. It took ten days, but could have been done quicker.
I base what people want to charge me on what I think the job is worth. I’m lucky in that I am fairly good at diy. There are certain things that are a skill, such as bricklaying or plastering, that I can’t do, so will willingly pay someone else. If they are asking too much, they don’t get my business. I used a local French electrician that I knew here for a job on a commercial property that I had. His devis was very fair, compared with others. I asked him why. He said that when people finish their apprenticeship, they are bombarded with offers of finance for signwritten vehicles etc. They get all the fancy accessories and then realise they have to pay for them. So, when they get a job, their quote is high. They do the job, but because they are expensive, they don’t get the word of mouth jobs that others do, so they are caught in a spiral.
When we moved here we had (still have) an oil fired boiler. I had no idea what servicing they required, so we continued with the guy that had been doing it for the previous owner. €220 was the ‘going rate’ for that in 2006-7. He then disappeared. We found another Central Heating Engineer, English as it happened and fully registered here. He charged us €89 in 2008 for a full service of the boiler. He also showed me that it hadn’t been properly serviced for years. We still happily use him because he charges us and many others that use him, a fair price.
Last year a friend wanted 3 or 4 (I can’t remember now) cctv cameras fitted in her stables so she could observe her horses from her house. I know a chap in the UK involved in this type of work and asked what she would require in terms of equipment. He gave me the list and the details of his supplier. I spoke with him and he gave me the prices for cameras, cable, hard drive, monitor etc, plus ancillary bits and pieces. The total was just under £700 plus shipping. He said that it shouldn’t take too long to install and was within the capabilities of most people .
My friend wanted three quotes.
The first chap that came gave a quote of around €3000 for the equipment and installation. He broke the whole devis down completely. Fitting he estimated would take ten hours at approx €40 per hour TVA included.
The second chap quoted over double and didn’t break it down to the same degree.
I got the first two guys from the internet.
The third chap she knew of already. He quoted on a lot of additional electrical work including an additional light in her stables (lighting in situ already with the main fuse board in the stables) for €800! (Just for the single light).
He wasn’t offering to supply or price the cctv equipment, but gave her a number for his ‘supplier’ in the UK. He did however quote for the installation of the equipment. €2650 plus TVA. My friend said ‘I’m going to use him as he is the cheapest’. I had to point out to her that she had no idea how much the equipment was going to cost from his supplier, but she knew the installation time was ten hours, so that made his hourly rate at €265. She said that she hadn’t looked at it like that.
I consider that someone like a carpenter or maybe a tiler is more of a skilled Artisan than a painter. Apologies to any painters who think differently, but that’s my opinion.
We knew of someone here (like so many other P&O tradesmen, so known as they decide their trade on the way over) who set up a building and decorating business. He was charging €240 per day for his services and those that worked for him. I know workers weren’t getting that rate. I asked him what people said when he told them his rate. He did say that some were shocked when he told them (this was four years ago as they’ve gone back to the UK) but his answer was ‘You have to pay the most to get the best’. You don’t and certainly didn’t get the best in his case!
You need to work out what you think is a fair price for the job, which in most cases is only going to come from experience.
I was too busy to do a job in our house, but not only that, can’t plaster, as my plaster dries between hawk and wall! The job was to brick up a doorway in our kitchen and open another from the hall into our utility room. I asked a guy to quote. He turned up with another guy and looked at it. I already had the door to fit. Several days later, I got the quote (ten years ago) for two men for four days. €1600. I got another guy in, a local one. He had an injured leg but did it in two days on his own.
We also have experience in the UK for employing tradesmen and have an idea of how long the job should take.