Contractor issue:  Is this too much?

My / our father is 81 years old and barely gets around these days.  He is mobile with the aid of a walker but he's becoming a bit much for my mom to lift out of his chair and get him up and down the stairs for doctor's visits and things like that.  The 7 siblings have decided we need to put a ramp on the back door so he can now start using a wheelchair.  One of our cousins is a mason by trade and our oldest sister reached out to him to see what it would cost to build a ramp.  Assuming this would be a wooden ramp and not brick or concrete he came back with a quote of around $2300.00.  We've never had to quote this so I'm not sure if that's a fair price.  Looking online I've seen similar metal ramps for less than $1000.  It probably only needs to be about 20 feet or so, if that long.  For those with general contracting experience, or anyone who has ever had to build a handicap ramp, is $2300 reasonable?  Assuming we're probably getting the "family" discount too.  Help.  OR should we shop around for a few more estimates before we go with our cousin?

21 Answers

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  • 1 month ago

    visit a home depot where they post business cards,get a couple of the guys to write up a bid,,they ought to be licensed,bonded insured,and experienced,, do not go with a cousins friend of a friend,etcetc,this often ends up in a freeforall,unfinished work,you end up paying twice

  • 1 month ago

    It's a fair price because HIS price also includes labor and him buying all the materials. If you BUY a portable metal ramp, it's going to be much less expensive. When you have a contractor do one, it's going to be more costly. At your father's age, I would buy the metal ramp--it can be sold after he's gone, if you want.  If the metal one isn't suitable, then have your contractor do one. 

  • Mr. P
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Far too much. Most people could build one for less than $500. 

    Price up the timber yourself and reccon on 3 days labour max for 1 guy.

    I would put the job out to tender and see if any quotes come in before you go out phoning people up. Try and find others who have had decking done in your area  - it's basically a very small sloping deck structure.

  • drip
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Always get three estimates on a building project. And be sure you know the details of the first quote. 

    I would look at a handyman or someone more into construction/wood. 

    My mother had a railing put in around her back porch and down the stairs.  Wood alone cost $700 and labor was $300. I thought labor cost was low.  

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  • 1 month ago

    sounds like he needs a nursing home , but it will cost you money.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    Price for decking is about $25-$30 a square foot, so that sounds about right. 

    By all means, get at least two more estimates to see how they compare. If it was me I would just build up the ground and lay paving or bonded gravel and then deck the flat 'landing' area outside the door so that you are not bridging the damp course (assuming you have one).

  • 1 month ago

    shop around.  The issue with a ramp for a wheelchair is that the ground pressure under the wheels is enormous ... possibly hundreds of pounds per square inch.  that cries out for either a concrete or steel deck surface, not wood.  And if steel, the supports underneath would have to be sized to support a minimum of 500 to 600 pounds [the person in the chair plus a helper to push it up the ramp].  --Grampa  [my wife had a wheelchair]

  • 1 month ago

    The problem with building a wood ramp is that it must meet permanent structure building codes, foundation and all. So the price seems about right.

  • 1 month ago

    We don't know where you are so we can't guess at labour or lumber prices there, we don't know much about the ramp, don't know if you need a permit or its cost if you do, don't know what legal requirements there are about the physical qualities of a ramp where you are, don't know what this quote includes, and you are getting a quote on carpentry work from someone who is a mason. I don't know how anyone can possibly say if that's a reasonable price or not. If you want to know, then I think you'll need to get quotes from some carpenters who do this kind of work.

  • Tavy
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Shop around, you could buy a second hand car for that money, you might be able to get a second hand one.  Try the Age charities, they could have them.

    He obviously thinks you are very wealthy.

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