After B-WISER and before my Chicago trip, I had the first estimate from Re-Bath (through Home Depot). I liked the fellow who came, but his company is, first & foremost, a bath liner company. He said they could also repair the floor and put in a shower and waterproof the window, so I put his company down as a good maybe.
When I was back from Chicago, I got back into the estimation mode. I went to Lowes hoping they'd have someone like Home Depot, but they didn't. The loudest salesman ever recommended a plumber who does free estimates and remodeling, so I wrote it down. But I couldn't find this person in the phone book, so I guess I was a bit leery of the place. In the phonebook, however, I saw two ads which promised free estimates. I like free. I called both places and scheduled the estimates.
First place that I called, Aurhause, booked the estimate later that day. Works for me! Rych Haynes (lots of ys), who owns the company, answered the phone and did the estimate. (I believe the owner of the Re-Bath place in estimate #1 was also the owner.) We talked about what all needed doing (and about cats - he is a cat owner too) and he said he'd be back the next day with an estimate. I liked Rych and hoped that his estimate was reasonable.
The other phone call was to Home Re-Modelers. The person who answered the call was, again, the owner of the company. However, he called me "dear" too often and even asked if I was married. Right away I was on the defensive (not a fan of patronization). But we scheduled an estimate the following day. After we'd talked about the bathroom and he saw its foibles, the first thing he asked was what my budget was. Unlike the first two companies, he didn't write up a formal estimate detailing what they'd do, he just wrote a ballpark figure on the back of a business card. I had pretty much decided before the meeting was over that he wasn't the one.
Thursday, I joined mom & dad at the Lake for an overnighter. We talked about the various estimates and they agreed with me - #2 was the one to try. So Friday, I called Rych and made arrangements. (He didn't answer at first - apparently he was roofing when I called. But he called back shortly afterward.) He says they can start on Jul 28 - yay!
I chose Aurhause for a number of reasons. Yes, it was the lowest bid of the three, but mainly because he just bid the labor and support materials (new subflooring, cement board, etc) and I'll buy my own fixtures and stuff. Yay. I like having that freedom. So does mom - means she gets to help me pick stuff out.
So Friday, on our way home from the Lake, mom came with me and we went to Home Depot. I found pretty much everything I wanted there, recorded the prices, and stuck 'em in my spreadsheet. Yesterday, mom, dad & I went to Lowes where I found a few things for less (or, as in the case of the floor tile, more preferred), and then Menards. At Menards, I found a vanity that I liked more than the pedestal sink we'd seen at Home Depot. So I might get that instead. They also had sconces that I liked.
Tomorrow, I'll pick up the mature CD and deposit it into my savings account. And I might start buying the things. Rych says that I can buy the materials and tell them that Aurhause will pick them up for me. So that will be nice. I'll do that with the Home Depot stuff (since there's more of it) and bring the Lowes & Menards purchases home with me.
I'll get a few "before" photos posted before they begin work, and then I'll be sure to take lots of "during" and "after" photos. I hope I've chosen well with Rych and his company. Mom & Dad hope so too - they'd got a couple of jobs they'd like to put his way. Lucky me, being the guinea pig. Heh. :-)