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going on tile setter rate

3 replies [Last post]
Joined: Jul 8 2003


I got an estimate on tiling entry/kitchen/family room/bedroom hallway area, about 450sf, for labor and setting materials for $7100. The specs are:

• Demolish and disposal of existing tile in entry, vinly in kitchen, and carpet in family room/hallway

• Does not include demo and disposal of original VCT tiles
under carpet

• Move owner’s refrigerator in/out of kitchen

• Provide labor and setting materials for customers tile includes:

• Contractor’s price on customer’s selected tile

• Pick-up and delivery of tile

• Straight set, large tiles (up to 18” x 18”)

• Tight grout joints (one color) - 1/16th - 1/8 th

The contractor is highly recommanded by a reputable tile shop.

I know tile installation is labor-intensive, but I had no idea it would be quite this much (considering I have to pay extra to have the VCT tiles removed and disposed). The tiles I'm considering is ~$4. When adding up, it is over my budget.

What do you think about the estimate? Is it in the ballpark?


Joined: Aug 28 2003

Hi Jiong,
If you haven't already I would get another bid(s) for comparison.
:) Leslie

Joined: Jan 16 2004

Your estimate is not even in the Ballpark.
450 Sq Feet at our last home was about $4000 for nice Stone.
Tiling is not "Hard" work but does take time to Prep,
Snap lines, etc.Sounds like you are going to hire out to remove the
original tiles.
After that you just may want to think about
laying this tile yourself. It really is easy once you learn a few
Get a couple more bids and maybe rip up the Vinyl and Carpet
yourself to save $
Good Luck with the project...

Joined: Apr 2 2003

As a a rule of thumb, you should always get at least 3 quotes before having work of any consequence (money or safety) done. Generally, there is no cost to having an estimate and it allows an apples to apples comparison (as opposed to asking others their costs when their situation might differ from yours in significant ways). I also have found that the discussions with each contractor highlights problems or solutions the other contractors might have missed. So the multiple quotes makes you better informed and provides some validation of costs and methods.

As mentioned by an earlier poster, I would seriously consider doing some of the removal myself or hiring it out to some teenage relatives that I could supervise. Removal is not brain surgery so why pay skilled labor rates for work that requires no skill? Once removed, renting a truck to take it the nearest dump is not expensive. (Do take precautions when removing the original asbestos tile--depending on the amount to removed, that's one place where I might pay because there is some skill/liability involved.)

- I handled tile and rug removal in my 1600 sq Eichler myself, paying a responsible teenage relative to load and take it to the dump periodically.

- I ordered my tile and had it delivered, ready for the installer to start.

- the installer levelled and set the entire house with VCT for about $2500 labor and his materials (my tile cost was about the same). The labor rate reflects the fact he didn't have to do a bunch of stuff to get the point where he could actually start doing what he does best--prep the slab and install the tile.

If you want, you can drop an email to me at eichfan at rawbw dot com and I will send back the contact info for the person I used to do my installation. (It was 3 years ago and hopefully he's still in business--he was recommended for cork, tile, and VCT.)


eichfan at rawbw dot com

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