A plumber gave me a quote to bring natural gas to a standby generator, which I accepted. He began work today. This evening he sent me an email saying that to install a larger gas meter would cost at least an additional $2,500. (An increase of over 50%.) He used the words "a class 500 meter bar". He says he is willing to negotiate.
It should have been clear to the plumber that the 250 meter would not run the stove, oven, house heat, clothes dryer, and hot water heater, as well as the new whole house generator. So he low balled me with his proposal.
What options do you suggest?
Update One: I have decided to tell the plumber to pick up his tools (which I have relocated to the driveway), and to give me an accounting for the supplies he purchased, and a refund for the money I gave him that he has not spent.
I guess I also need to tell the city building dept to take his name off the building permit.
Does this sound reasonable?
Is there anything else I should be thinking about or doing?
Update Two: The plumber should have disclosed the cost of everything up front that was a necessary part of the project. A couple of hours after I complained to the electrician who recommended the plumber, the electrician sent me an email saying the plumber only intended to charge $400 additional for the meter bar, not the $2500. The $400 is about what it costs. I have sent an email to the plumber to call me if this is true. (I do not have his tele number and it is not on his prop.) Would you recommend rehiring this plumber?
Update Three: On the advice of the city plumbing inspector, I called the county official in charge of consumer protection in such matters. It seems that official is also the person in charge of issuing plumbing and electrical licenses. That official got some documentation from me and then called the plumber. He negotiated a $1,000 refund from the plumber. The check is to be made out to me but sent to the official. Then it will be forwarded to me. I am optimistic. (This is not an ideal solution because the original plumber did no professionally competent work, so I am still out $1,000 of the $2,000 I gave the plumber up front.)