I have 1927 two-story dutch colonial. While replacing the gutters, the contractor said I need to replace much of the fascia boards and suggested I wrap all in aluminum. Cost $3800. My house is approximately 25 feet wide and 45 deep or 1850 sq ft. Does that sound reasonable?
Samuel ~ Arlington, Virginia
Hi Samuel, I don't like to ever say an estimated cost is high if I haven't actually been at the job site. A price that sounds high may seem very fair once a job site visit is done as there could be conditions there that justify the price. I learned that lesson many years ago, but that is why it is an excellent idea to always get at least three qualified bids for projects of any size.
When you get three reputable contractors looking at your fascia board they are all going to see the same job site conditions and what will be involved in removing your old fascia board, installing new fascia board, wrapping it in aluminum, and installing your gutters. If all three bids are within several hundred dollars of each other, then you know the $3,800 price was pretty fair, but if you get two bids that are about $2,000, then you know there is a problem with the $3,800 cost.
You should know what the first contractor priced before getting your other two prices. Make sure you know in detail what they plan to do so you can ensure your other two contractors are pricing exactly the same work. Do not share pricing information though, as that isn't fair or ethical. I am familiar with the Arlington, Virginia area and you shouldn't have a problem finding two more contractors to take a look at the project.
I will say that if I was doing an estimate on paper for the work on a two story house on a level lot with a simple gable roof, I would probably figure about $2,000 for removing the old gutters and fascia board and disposing of them and then installing new wrapped fascia and guttering. So it will be interesting to see what your other two bids come in at. If they come in close to the $3,800 figure, it will mean that there is something difficult about the job or that rates are somewhat higher in your area because it is so close to DC. It could also mean that the contractor has figured installing new soffit while doing the fascia which is why it is a good idea to understand completely what the bid includes.
I will also say that if it were my house and all the bids came in about the same price, I would probably give the job to the first contractor as he was professional enough to recommend replacing your facia rather than just installing the guttering over the rotten boards.