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Can You Tell Me Whether this is a Competitive Estimate for Electrical Work.
Old 11-28-2012, 04:23 AM   #1
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Can You Tell Me Whether this is a Competitive Estimate for Electrical Work.

Hi:

I need to get some electrical work done in order to obtain a mortgage. The work is beyond my abilities so I have obtained the following estimate. The mortgage company identified the upgraded electrical service and the relocation of the meter to the exterior of the home as required repairs. The other work I believe is a good idea, especially since Hurricane Sandy and since the house was impacted by an electrical surge in the past. I live in central New Jersey. I would like to know whether you think this is a competitive estimate for the work that is scheduled to be done. I plan on getting at least one other estimate, but I would like your thoughts on this one in the interim. Thank you for your insight.

Upgrade electrical service to 200 amp
Install new meter pan, wire and new 200 amp panel (homeowner to provide panel)
Upgrade all existing grounding up to code
$2,700.00

Install outside twistlock outlet for generator
Prepare twistlock cord for generator
Install interlock kit in 200 amp panel
Install surge protection system
$1,200

Total= $2,700 + $1,200 + permit fees.
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Old 11-28-2012, 04:27 AM   #2
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This is only an unsupported guess, but I think for New Jersey that's probably reasonable. The only way to know is by comparing it with estimates you get from other electricians.
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Old 11-28-2012, 07:13 AM   #3
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Agreed with braumeister. While I'm not familiar with NJ rates that does not sound unreasonable. Best to get another estimate or two though.
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Old 11-28-2012, 07:34 AM   #4
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I can't speak for NJ rates, but the $1200 for the generator hookup seems outrageous. You can buy a new service box with the interlock already installed, though the interlock is a simple device to install. Installing the generator inlet box normally just means drilling a hole in the wall and mounting the box under the meter with a short wire back to the service box. Similarly, the surge protector is just a small box mounted near the new service box with a couple of wires that need to be added when all of the other wires are switched out, anyway.

In short, I think you are being double dipped, especially since you are providing the new service box.
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Old 11-28-2012, 08:08 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by travelover View Post
I can't speak for NJ rates, but the $1200 for the generator hookup sees outrageous. You can buy a new service box with the interlock already installed, though the interlock is a simple device to install. Installing the generator inlet box normally just means drilling a hole in the wall and mounting the box under the meter with a short wire back to the box. Similarly, the surge protector is just a small box mounted near the new service box with a couple of wires that need to be added when all of the other wires are switched out, anyway.

In short, I think you are being double dipped, especially since you are providing the new service box.
Thank you for the input. I really have no idea of what of reasonable cost is, so that is why I put this issue into the forum. The electrician who gave me this estimate seems responsible and professional. He had a positive unbiased review on a website for work that had been done locally. He said that he would rather do things right, even if that means it will take him more time or if it will lead to a higher estimate. I should be getting one or two more estimates tomorrow, so that should help. I just want to make sure that I compare apples to apples when I get these other estimates.
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Old 11-28-2012, 08:14 AM   #6
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Competitive bidding is the best test of whether the price is reasonable. Get two other bids using the same specs and then you will know.
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Old 11-28-2012, 09:13 AM   #7
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Agree with getting at least 2 more estimates. IMO, for this (ballpark) amount, signing up for Angie's List (NAYY) is worth the cost (~$25).

Last few times we've had work done, we got estimates from contractors we found there, and have had much better results than before. YMMV.
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Old 11-28-2012, 09:44 AM   #8
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Quote:
Upgrade all existing grounding up to code
You may want to define this a little better. If it means running a new ground wire to every outlet in the house, it is a lot of work. If it means tightening the clamp in the ground rod by the meter, it is an easy task.
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Old 11-28-2012, 05:38 PM   #9
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I paid $1800 for 200 amp service upgrade with new panel 3 years ago.

Last month I paid $750 for the Interlock Generator hook up.

My friends said the price was high for the generator hook up but I like this electrician.

I'm in CT by the way.
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