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Question DetailsAsked on 12/7/2017

We are working with an architect/project mgr on some home repairs and he misquoted a price. How do we settle this?

We hired an architect to design our backyard and also act as the project manager for this and a large renovation project in our house. In putting together the design for the back, he recommended that we do a masonry wall in one area to hang a TV. It is a relatively small area so I told him I thought this was overkill. I said he could get a quote for it but if it came back too expensive that I just wanted to do a wood wall. I found a picture of what I was thinking and sent this to him. He came back with a quote for $920 for the masonry so we decided the price wasn't bad and we'd move forward. Now I got the bill from the landscaper and it is $9,200! The architect said it was his mistake but we need to pay it. I would have never even considered the masonry wall if I knew it was this expensive . We have also had several other issues with him (he made a previous quote mistake for $3k) and the overall project is way over budget and 3 months behind schedule. How should we handle this?

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1 Answer


FIrst, check with the architect to have him double-check the quote and the landscaper to make wure it wasnot actually $910 and the billing accidentally got an extra zero added.

Otherwise, and especially since you say you have had other issues with him plus another $3000 quote mistake, sounds like his internal quality control is bad or non-existent. I would be looking at the TOTAL overruns which are his fault (the $3K plus whatever the other instances were) plus the difference between $9100 and $910 (what you would have willingly paid for the masonry wall), and tell him (in writing, as a claim) you are going itemizing the mistakes he has made, and expect him to make good on that amount - by cutting his fees to the extent that cover it plus cash to the total amount, and if he does not make good on it then you will be filinbg a claim with his insurance company. As an architect and/or construction manager he should be carrying at least $1 million in E&O insurance - Errors and Omissions professional liability insurance, which is intended for just this sort of error by a design or construction management professional.

Course, working conditions will be difficult after that, but legally and contractually and professional ethics-wise he cannot abandon the job just because you file a claim against him for his errors - without your willing consent he has to continue to provide his best services to you to the completion of the work (or his contract terms, whichever applies).

Answered 2 years ago by LCD

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