Originally Posted by MoDa65
Nothing much has changed since 7 years ago when OP made this thread. I'm building a tract (spec) home and the quote above has it down. There are separate parts of the contract clearly indicating not allowing any work to be done while the house is being built, and big example is the wiring. They have a section specifically on the subject and how potential owners/buyers are not to do such things. Only after you close and have the keys can you do your own thing.
With any tract / spec home builder, my advice is to have that conversation with the project manager, not the salesman. The project manager can make lots of "impossible" things happen - like letting you run your own LV wires. It's in your best interest to get to know the PM well and show your competence - that you're not going to screw anything up, stay out of their way, and not cause any problems with the trades or their scheduling.
The builder wants $130 PER LINE, whether it be RG6 or cat5e/cat6.
Very typical rate. If it comes down to paying for the runs as the only option, then you prioritize: 1) stuff you absolutely need day 1. 2) locations that are inaccessible after drywall without major surgery, 3) exterior walls where access or insulation will make it a pain to retrofit.
The other option is to talk to the PM and/or the LV subcontractor to work out a better deal. For example, running three wires to the same location is much less expensive (labor) than three individual runs- so ask for a discount when you do that. Terminating takes time and money - see if they'll cut you a deal if they don't have to terminate (and test), and just leave bare wires for you - that will only be for the "above and beyond" the basic set, though...
My house was a custom builder, and I fully expected to do most of the LV myself. But having a conversation with their subcontractor - and coming in with a full plan - diagrams, wire estimates, no terminations on the extra stuff, and spools of wire for them to use - they quoted me a labor price that was, in hindsight, a bargain. I had them do all the hard work, and I terminate a few more wires every year.
But I've had the same conversation with spec builders' project managers, and while YMMV, I've had good luck with them...