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Standard Deposit for Deck/fence work

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  • Jul 14th, 2018 9:03 am
[OP]
Jr. Member
Feb 27, 2010
114 posts
8 upvotes

Standard Deposit for Deck/fence work

I am looking to building a deck and fence for my backyard and I am looking for a contractor...what is the standard deposit percentage if booking with one?
And do I get it on a written contract/estimate?
29 replies
Deal Fanatic
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Sep 8, 2007
5948 posts
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Way Out of GTA
I'm not a fan of pre construction deposits on this front. Too many deposit and dash stories out there.

For larger size companies I'd expect no deposit. Paid in full when done.

For smaller...the earliest I'd consider it is materials arriving in my backyard and conmensurate with the value of material delivered.

The contractors have power to control things by putting a lien on your house for non paying customers. The attached gives some good rules of thumb to follow to protect yourself.

To protect myself as the customer I want the most amount owing at the end to ensure they come back and finish off 100% no loose ends. If it's 95% done but they have 100% paid, good luck getting some of these guys back.
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Sr. Member
Feb 13, 2017
938 posts
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No deposit.

Did mine a year ago using a small company. He wanted one and told him I will pay for materials and have it delivered to my backyard.....what do you need a deposit for?

He accepted and did a great job.
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Oct 19, 2008
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Whitby
crocp8 wrote:
Jul 12th, 2018 10:55 am
He wanted one and told him I will pay for materials and have it delivered to my backyard.....what do you need a deposit for?
Deposit ensures client won't cancel the day before work is scheduled to begin.
You paying for materials doesn't mean you won't decide to change to a contractor willing to work cheaper last minute.
Deal Fanatic
May 1, 2012
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Markham
Fencers did my entire block, no one put a deposit down. After the work was done, the dude came and collected. Everyone had to sign a contract though.
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Jan 25, 2007
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Paris
cartfan123 wrote:
Jul 12th, 2018 9:10 am

For larger size companies I'd expect no deposit. Paid in full when done.
No deposit, no deal. If someone won’t give me anything (even just 10%) Id move on.

In fact, under contract law, unless you give them at least a dollar, there is no contract.
Gbill2004: Thanks but I'll just smell the couch before/if I buy it.

jonnyb: I go in there like PICASSO and toss the glue everywhere, I don't care what house I'm on.
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Mar 23, 2008
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Edmonton
Jerico wrote:
Jul 12th, 2018 1:41 pm
No deposit, no deal. If someone won’t give me anything (even just 10%) Id move on.

In fact, under contract law, unless you give them at least a dollar, there is no contract.
Under what contract law is that covered? Contracts take effect before money exchanges hands on a regular basis.

I can understand both sides of the equation... Contractor wants to make sure that he doesn't turn down business to do the client's job only to have the client cancel at the last minute, and client wants to make sure that the contractor doesn't take the money and run. All I can say is that I wouldn't hand over a dime before a contract was written up, spelling out what deposits were going to be given and when (in the case of staged deposits). No contract or receipt, no deposit.

C
[OP]
Jr. Member
Feb 27, 2010
114 posts
8 upvotes
Can I pay with credit card for the deposit? If the guy says no should I move on to someone else?
And yea I am gonna need a written contract and receipt
Member
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Nov 14, 2013
468 posts
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Brampton, Ontario
I paid 100 in deposit where mine was asking 30% with a written contract etc. I told him i was not going to run away and he will get his full amount when he is done/I am satisfied.

This is what i offered when fence companies were coming around or when i contacted them.

Small company took the job and did great work.

Remember unless it is a fine line in the document or contract you are signing you can negotiate.
Deal Addict
Apr 24, 2007
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juve4lfe wrote:
Jul 12th, 2018 4:32 pm
Can I pay with credit card for the deposit?
Sure, why not?......if he accepts credit cards. He might not, or the quote might go up a few points if not paying by cash or cheque. That being said I wouldn't want to pay a deposit.
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Jan 25, 2007
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Paris
juve4lfe wrote:
Jul 12th, 2018 4:32 pm
Can I pay with credit card for the deposit? If the guy says no should I move on to someone else?
And yea I am gonna need a written contract and receipt
Credit cards cost contractors money and most wont take them. Why should they lose 2% of the transaction when they know you will pay another way.

The other thing is... good fence contractors are booked up. This is a contractors market right now for rooves, windows, insulation, siding, decks and probably other stuff I cant think of. If you can find someone to do this work within 45 days they arent busy and thats not good. Even the guys you can find are going to move on if you arent willing to buy on their terms. Which is not weird... Walmart wont let you buy on your terms, only on theirs.

The best stone landscaping guy in our town is usually booked out for the summer by March 31 every year.

One last thing I am guilty of sometimes... To you $4,500 for a new fence is a lot of money but to me thats 3x on a Tuesday. Sometimes I need to step back and remind myself we are talking about a lot of money to the customer, while to us its nothing (I dont sell fences/decks but windows and same deal). $2k for a patio door is a lot to you or I as a customer, but to me as a contractor its peanuts, way below the average contract size.
Gbill2004: Thanks but I'll just smell the couch before/if I buy it.

jonnyb: I go in there like PICASSO and toss the glue everywhere, I don't care what house I'm on.
Sr. Member
Mar 3, 2018
517 posts
296 upvotes
GTA
juve4lfe wrote:
Jul 12th, 2018 4:32 pm
Can I pay with credit card for the deposit?
Credit cards leave an audit trail for CRA that most small fence guys avoid. All the quotes I got for my fence wanted to be paid in cash.
Deal Addict
Jan 25, 2007
4954 posts
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Paris
CNeufeld wrote:
Jul 12th, 2018 2:02 pm
Under what contract law is that covered? Contracts take effect before money exchanges hands on a regular basis.
Contracts are in essence an exchange of value. With no value exchanged on either side, there is no contract.
Gbill2004: Thanks but I'll just smell the couch before/if I buy it.

jonnyb: I go in there like PICASSO and toss the glue everywhere, I don't care what house I'm on.
Member
Jan 12, 2017
281 posts
85 upvotes
Sounds like quite a few successful projects. Any recommendations on a good fence contractor?
Deal Addict
Jan 25, 2007
4954 posts
1674 upvotes
Paris
DaveTheDude wrote:
Jul 12th, 2018 9:16 pm
Credit cards leave an audit trail for CRA that most small fence guys avoid. All the quotes I got for my fence wanted to be paid in cash.
They cost money. Not about CRA.
Gbill2004: Thanks but I'll just smell the couch before/if I buy it.

jonnyb: I go in there like PICASSO and toss the glue everywhere, I don't care what house I'm on.

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