Free quotes, and I don’t mean a repeat or copy of a group of words from a text or speech. I mean an estimate for services. These days, everyone is looking for a deal. Whether that is a bogo, coupon or just outright free. While most businesses cannot give out their services for free, there is one thing that people expect to get for free: a quote. But just what exactly does a free quote include? And is it reasonable to assume your engineer will quote you for free?
When an engineer does a site visit, they must take into account the time and cost to cover the fuel and mileage expenses. Many types of service providers might charge for an estimate if you decide not to hire them. Some contractors have a fee for providing a detailed bid that includes a line-by-line breakdown of the work. While these kinds of charges are legitimate, it is always best for any company to address these charges up-front without advertising their estimate as “free”.
At ORB, we do offer free quotes. However, we don’t just hand out free-quotes over the phone after a brief conversation. Structural engineering can at times be a complicated process. It is difficult to assess a project over the phone after a brief conversation. Most times, a project manager must be consulted and additional information gathered before a quote can be provided. We would hate to quote you too much and overcharge you for a project that should have been less. We will gather as much information as possible in order to provide an accurate quote to you within 24 hours. So what is a free quote at ORB Engineering?
Our engineers will happily review your sketch or pictures and provide you with a fee for drawings and a site visit. Or, if you aren’t looking for drawings, we can quote for most inspection services after a description of the concerns and the extent of the damage. Also, ORB does not charge for an appointment at our office to speak with an engineer about your project. The only “quote” we offer that is not directly free is for as-built projects. For example, if you already have an existing structure that now needs drawings for permit, ORB must perform a site visit prior to quoting for full fees. In this circumstance, a flat-rate, nonrefundable site visit fee is assessed. This is to cover the time and cost of the site visit. However, if the estimate for drawings is accepted, the amount paid toward the site visit is deducted from the total.
Now that you understand how the quoting process works, give us a call and get one for FREE today!
More to come soon.