Originally Posted by ChldsPlay
I have had this exact same experience. I had one guy set to do everything from A to Z, and then I started mentioning some of the equipment I was wanting to get and he started balking. I told him I am find getting some equipment through him if it was stuff I wanted and if his price was in line with others, and he seemed to get back on board, but his communication has been pretty off and on since then. He wants $2800 (7% of the project budget - though the budget should be a lot lower since some of the stuff I wouldn't get from him) up front for the design and specification which is non-refundable and would go to the overall project cost. It'd be great to be able to hire one guy and not have to worry about it, but with his attitude, I'm not sure I'm wanting to work with him. So, with his lackluster communication lately, I've been using my time to get estimates from contractor's for the various parts of work. Unfortunately, most of them haven't given me very much confidence in their understanding of home theaters and what is involved. And so far, their prices haven't been all that great for what they're proposing to do. I'm still not sure it would even be cheaper than hiring the one guy to do it all. Some of the other installers I have reached out to and said I'm looking for construction guys and going to get my equipment on my own, but that I might still ask for their help with some sort of control system, and a couple seem okay with that. It's a pain though having to meet people at the house several times a week and going over the same things to get all these estimates and then having to coordinate everyone. I'd have to get a design probably from Nyal or Dennis, and then coordinate the construction guys, electrical guys, hvac guys, av guys, maybe the carpet guys too depending on how much the construction contractor covers. It's frustrating.
Exactly. I get the feeling that their whole business model is driven by margins on acoustic treatment, expensive equipment, etc.
On the other hand, I'm nervous about going with people without home theater experience and messing things up or wasting money on rookie mistakes.
It would be refreshing for someone to say, I need $x for this to be worth my time, and I'll work with you on the rest to give you good results for a good value. Instead, they just say, "no." I guess they have other clients with deeper pockets.
$2800 for a nice interior design and expert plans would be very reasonable, if it was well done, and in enough detail so that a contractor could do the rest. If you find something like that, let me know.