Back in 2005, the Mrs and I had new gutters installed at our home. We have some trees and the gutters often get clogged. We settled on Leaf Guard, a patented system that has the gutter and the top piece connected as one. The total for the house was $2000.
The system works so-so, although there are leaves that have clogged the system. During the initial selling phase the salesman assured us of they would immediately be out to clean out gutters once they clogged. It was part of their no clog guarantee.
Recently, we had an addition build. Essentially, I need two 10 foot strands of gutters. This is approximately 1/4 of my existing house with the gutters. While I think the product works only so-so, I wanted consistency with the gutters.
The salesman came out two weeks ago and gave an estimate. We also told him about the current debris in the gutter. He responded "we'll take care of that for you". He spends about 1 hour (no kidding) writing an estimate and comes back with $1300. Keep in mind this is for two 10 foot strands.
I know costs have gone up but this is only about 1/4 of of initial job that cost $2000. Even with rising costs, 1/4 of $2000 is $500. Likewise add an additional $150 to account for rising costs and $650 should be the max I pay. I made no bones about it. I told the joker I wasn't paying $1300.
Two days later, he calls my house and says he'll come "down" to $1100. My wife says no thanks, but asks about cleaning the existing gutters. He comes up with a song and dance about how their not clogged "enough" to be covered under warranty.
The next day (about a week ago), I called their office. At this time, they agreed to come out and clean them, on June 17th. So much for immediately out to fix them. As you can imagine, I am not too enthused about the rain right now.
When I had the person on the phone, I explained my dissatisfaction with the estimate I received. I reminded them I am returning customer who has recommended their product to three people, including two neighbors who had the system installed after me. She assured me the the price would come down if I let another salesman come out. I did and he came tonight.
He was a personable guy. He conceded $1300 was too high. I assured him that I am concerned about the clogs, but I wanted to maintain consistency around the house. I did however remind him that I wouldn't be hosed. I figure I can come up with something in an emergency.
He measures and returns with an estimate. The says his GM approved this "at-cost" deal of $999. I said no deal. By their companies measure, their prices would've gone up 50% in just three years. For a luxury product in these economic times, they're kidding themselves.
I guess I am to plan B. I refuse to pay that kind for money for 20 foot of gutter. I guess I'll have my contractor get creative and make something.
One of their selling points is "you don't want to put another gutter next to ours. It won't look right". Maybe not. But if they think that'll make me pay a grand for two little pieces they are out of their mind. After all, for that kind of money I shouldn't even have to be taking them up on their no clog "guarantee".