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Ethical?

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  • Ethical?

    Had a call for a bid on a commercial pool & shower house today. I start making some calls to find out who really is who and what is what.

    Turns out the owner of the General Contracting company is also the owner of a Mechanical/Plumbing company with about 10 trucks.

    Doesn't this seem unethical? To be getting bids from people to submit then having insider knowledge of the bids where your other company can take advantage?

    Seemed that way to me. I think I'm going to refuse bidding stating that it seems unethical and a conflict of interests.

    Thoughts?

    J.C.

  • #2
    Re: Ethical?

    Email I'm going to send the "interested" party.

    "It would seem unethical/and or a conflict of interest for a person (Owners Name) or group that owns a plumbing and general construction business to seek bids from other plumbers.

    Thank you for your interest but I will not bid against someone with inside information & the potential for bid-rigging."

    Good luck.

    J.C.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Ethical?

      Sounds like they are just wanting a second and third bid for the customer. Might give them a call and see what they have to say.

      There are a couple of generals in town I will not bid with because they used my bid as a third price or shopped it out after the bid date.

      G3

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      • #4
        Re: Ethical?

        Originally posted by G3sprinklers View Post
        Sounds like they are just wanting a second and third bid for the customer. Might give them a call and see what they have to say.

        There are a couple of generals in town I will not bid with because they used my bid as a third price or shopped it out after the bid date.

        G3
        The problem I have is that this is the GC is the same person owns a plumbing company.

        How could I possibly get the bid? Or the GC/Plumbing Company will try to whore me as a "non-prime-sub-contractor" which I think they are they saying is illegal in N.C.

        Would you bid something for...let's say.....Bob Smith Construction that also owns Bob Smith Sprinkler Contractors?

        J.C.

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        • #5
          Re: Ethical?

          Maybe I should bid it through the roof x 3.

          J.C.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Ethical?

            If it was a small enough job that did not require a bunch of time to take off, then I would give him a price. It would be high like you said, but still a price. I have actually gotten a couple of these before because nobody else bid on them. You never know, maybe he is so busy he can not get to it with his own guys. Sub out the work from him, he could already have the job, but he would need to make a buck on it also. Even if he made 5% that is more than the banks are paying on a CD right now and all he would have to do is push a little paper.

            G3

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            • #7
              Re: Ethical?

              Dont waste your time with a bid or a reply.

              Thats like taking a police officer test with 250 other guys, for one position. Then finding out the ex-police chiefs son got the job. A waste...

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Ethical?

                Or......bid it way low and let him scratch his head trying to figure out what to do. Be prepared to tell him you are too busy to take the work, or, kick the price up and see if he bites.

                I try to keep as ethical as I can but "turn about is fair play". I recently charged a gentleman $ 200.00 after I laid out the basement bath for him, and chalked out dimensions so that the carpenter ( who was listening) would know where to build the walls. The carpenter had a friend do the plumbing and charged the owner for it. I sent the owner a bill for layout, consultation and advice.He was man enough to pay for it.

                Another one used my write up to negotiate $ 2,200.00 in repairs as part of the deal on a foreclosed home, at no cost to the homeowner. This guy a state legislator, accused me of fraudulently invoicing him because I " hadn't done anything". I explained that I had 2 1/2 - 3 hours of work that he was able to turn into $ 2,200.00. I further explained as a legislator he doesn't really "do" anything and, using the same logic, he should not be paid for his efforts. He of course will never pay.

                People are always fooling around with free quotes from tradesmen. It seems that we have nothing better to do then to figure out how the job should be done, calculate the price and give them all of the free information they want so they can either do it themselves or get a jack leg to do a lousy job because he is cheaper.

                Oops, sorry, there I go hitting the rant button again!!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Ethical?

                  There's a bid rigging case going to trial this week in my area.
                  Northern Kentucky Plumbers Twitter Feed | Plumbing Videos

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                  • #10
                    Re: Ethical?

                    I know that this is an older thread but I wanted to add my 2 cents (whatever its worth) that this is a common occurrence. We typically bid on jobs where the general has its own plumbing company or at least a preferred company. Sometimes we come in lower and they take our bid. Besides most of the time you can "Ballpark" it and come in decent.

                    Rob
                    sigpic
                    Charleston, WV
                    www.BaberPlumbing.com
                    www.BaberServices.com

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