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Re: Fees - was Re: Masonry Storage Facilities - fees!

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> Subject: RE: Fees - was Re: Masonry Storage Facilities - fees!
> From: "Polhemus, Bill" <BPolhemus(--nospam--at)>
> To: <seaint(--nospam--at)>

> > agree with that philosophy, but it happens.  If the engineers design was
> > faulty or incomplete, I'd say he should work on a solution, but if not
> > his fault, then shouldn't be expected to work for free. =20

> However, many times problems arise where a "design error" exists in the
> minds of the contractor and the owner-usually the latter induced by the
> former-and everyone's standing around waiting for the "witless" engineer
> to fix it.

> Very often, you "go with the flow" and do the fix without expectation of
> compensation, just to get along. Even when you know your efforts aren't
> to blame.

> It stinks, but there you are.

The contractor isn't going with the flow. Neither do I. My time is my
time. If I can't mount a convincing response to the contractor's
rehetoric I don't deserve to be in that part of the business.

We (Civil Engineers <- big generalization) cut our own throats in
business. Contractors are quite willing to help.

If the owner didn't have the foresight to dot all the i's and cross all
the t's, it's not my responsibility to bear the financial burden of
picking up behind. Usually, they are trying to save the cost of a
knowledgeable project manager. Because of this, I frequently send
owner's on their way with outrageous estimates based on my expectation
of the amount of hand-holding I will have to do during the project.
Someone else can give them the true estimate for the actual work and
suffer the unpaid service problems.

I prefer to work with customers who recognize the cost of service.

Fees: In this area, fees range in the CDN$100 ~ CDN$120/hr. (US$85 ~
US$100) for light industrial/commercial design. Many quote fixed fee
projects at reduced rates (a shame) and use the higher fee for extras.


R. Paul Ransom, P. Eng.
Burlington, Ontario, Canada
<mailto:ado26(--nospam--at)> <>

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