Tag Archives: quote comparison

Competitor’s Quote: A Paul Harvey

Client to Hansen Pole Buildings Designer, Jim;I talked to a local lumber yard and received a quote from them for a similar 40×60 with attic truss at 40#/sq and they were about 20K lower than your quote.  The 54K that you quoted seemed a little high when I received it.  The other quote did not have as many doors but the difference made me wonder.  Did you include concrete or installation on our last go around?

Since we do not construct buildings, we provide building kits, the Hansen Pole Buildings price did not include labor to install, or concrete. So the answer to the question was – nope.

Jim;Something is definitely different as our price is always competitive.  Would you mind sharing this lower quote with me so that I can figure out what is off here?”

Jim;Hi, I haven’t heard back from you on this email sent yesterday.  I do not need the companies name and feel free to block that out as I only need the material specifications to compare the two quotes.  As I said something is definitely different for there to be this kind of difference and we do have a price match guarantee for like materials.”

Comparing Apples & Oranges

Comparing Apples & Oranges

The client actually did share the competitor’s quote with Jim. The quotes were Hansen Pole Buildings $52,972 delivered, Brand X $34,647 plus delivery. As our gross profit is nowhere near the $18,325 difference, I am thinking to myself – Wow, we can just have them provide all of our building kits, make more money and life would be so much easier!

There is, however, a Paul Harvey to this story.

It turns out the other guys left a few items off of their quote. OK, a lot of things.

This building has a gambrel roofline and the client was expecting a full second floor. The other folks made no provisions for the 2400 square foot second floor, nor did they have the four foot width stairs to get to it.

They quoted green lumber, not kiln dried. 2×4 wall girts and roof purlins, while we provide a minimum of 2×6. We provide closed cell closure strips at the top and bottom of all roof panels (keeping out flying critters and debris), not the other guys.

The list went on, and on, and on…..

Jim prepared a quote for the client which, as close as possible, including the items as the competitor had them (as we refuse to use green lumber, screws which are not powder coated, etc., it was not an exact match).

Surprise!! The “dumbed down” Hansen Buildings quote was now over $2,000 less AND it still included better features and delivery.

Jim stated; “Over the past 3-years I have done this comparison difference many times now with different competitor quotes and never once has a competitor offered the client a better price or product than HPB offers them. The bottom-line here is this client will be placing his building order ……  and, like the Guru says, when there is a price difference between HPB and the competition – then there are always product differences causing the price difference.”

As my mother used to say, “Enough said.”

Pole Building Detailed Quote

I’m a member of several discussion groups on LinkedIn. One of them involves lumber dealers and one of the other group members posed the question, “What do other dealers do when a customer demands a detailed quote, then price-shops the quote to competing lumber dealers?”

The best response I read was from Pat Smith, “I learned this a long time ago when doing cabinetry design – if you don’t put a value on your time neither will the customer. Now regardless of what I am supplying nobody gets a detailed list without a signed contract or a signed letter of intent. I will give detailed descriptions of products & options because I want the customer to know that I understand the specifications as written but never individual prices or quantities. Total is always given “per design”. This has a value – my customer does not have to spend their time going line item by line item seeing if each detailed quote they get is apples to apples or doesn’t leave something out. It takes a lot of time for them to go over each quote to make sure they are equal & time is money. My quote is “per design”. If I miss a door or tempered glass somewhere that is my problem & comes out of my profit – not my customers & I take a minute to explain that to them. The key word I see here is the word “demand”. Is your time better spent with another customer that will value your services? Or would you be better off spending time marketing your business at a Chamber meeting, etc., then printing this one customer out a detailed list of your hard work. Don’t do it. All you have to say is “A detailed list will be provided to you free of charge as part of the signed contract – we appreciate your business & value your time. Have a safe day – goodbye.”

I agree totally with those who quote an entire project and guarantee what is provided will indeed meet the stated objectives. Anything else is merely a list of pieces.

In our particular case, there are tens of thousands of person-hours and over 25 years of development in the production of our proprietary software. This software is so sophisticated, it does a code conforming verification of every component which will be included in your new building. Certainly, it could spew out a list which could be handed to a client for them to “go shop”. The list would be worthless, without the building specific blueprints, which spell out where every piece is utilized, as well as the Construction Guide, to lead through proper installation techniques.

For astute consumers, the best path to satisfaction, when investing in a new pole building kit package, is to make certain the design solution is clearly spelled out. What are the dimensions – width, length and eave height? What features are included? Doors, windows, enclosed or open overhangs, etc. And most importantly (and least often listed) – what Building Code is the proposed building designed to meet, and what loads will it be designed to withstand.

And if you really want to compare a Hansen Pole Building kit to other quotes, let us do the comparison.  We know how to compare size, features and will honestly tell you which one is the better “value”.  When customers try to do a comparison, too often they miss important things, like several doors which the other quote failed to include in their quote. Or that the two buildings they are “comparing” aren’t even the same size! But that’s a subject for another blog.

I agree wholeheartedly with Pat Smith.  We will do the work to create a custom design…with a fair price, but then give us the credit…and consideration, for having done it.

Pole Barns: Blazing Pole Building Prices…Honestly

Blazing Building Prices…Honestly

Pole Barn Garage

Imagine this beautiful building on your property

You’ve been talking with someone about a new pole barn. You like the salesperson, and feel like you have built a good relationship with them. You feel they offer a good design solution, can deliver within your time frame….just one question remains.

Is their price right?

Here is the secret to honestly finding out for certain….

Make sure all of the following information is on the quote you have been provided – width, length, dimensions and roof slope. Ground and roof snow loads, design wind speed and wind exposure are also essential. If you are considering the purchase of a pole building kit from a lumber yard, or “big box” store, make certain they guarantee to supply all of the materials necessary to construct the building. Many suppliers will attempt to foist off on you, the unsuspecting buyer, an itemized list of materials they propose to supply, and does not necessarily mean a building can be constructed from it!

Read all of the fine print – including those statements which may actually abstain them from any responsibility should they fail to provide enough materials to finish your building.  Does the quote include any guarantee or warranty?  How about building plans, are they included?  Are the plans complete instructions or are you expected to take a list of materials and just “wing it”?  If you have questions during construction, is there tech support available?

Now armed with a complete quote, scan and email, or FAX it to Hansen Buildings. One of our Building Designers will review it for you, at absolutely no charge. If items of concern are seen, they will let you know what they might be. If you are getting a fabulous deal, we will be the first ones to let you know. More important than us providing your new pole building is making certain you are getting a building which best solves your problems, meets your needs and is a great value.

To submit a quote and get some fabulous pole building prices checkout our free building quote page.

To receive more pole building tips and advice subscribe to the pole barn guru blog!