ConstructionStudent Guide

Construction Estimate Tips – How To Estimate Construction Costs?

Construction estimate plays a vital role in building construction either for residential or commercial. Estimating process before construction helps to improve the overall success of a project and minimizes the risk factor.

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It is an in-depth process, where easy to overlook small details that can result in cost blowouts and can lead to project failure.

Research indicates that, projects started without preparing construction estimates ,cost 30% more than allocated budget.

Now, construction estimate department becomes vital for every organization. This department is responsible for making cost estimates, bill of quantities, submitting & verify contracts bids and verify billings & lots more.

The sample format of construction estimate may looks like:

Factors to Consider When Determining Construction Estimate Of Cost Per Square Foot

Before starting estimating of any project either commercial or residential there few factors which needs to be considered in order to quote perfect price:

  • Determine Client’s Budget – The first thing you want to know is your client’s budget.
  • Determine Type Of Construction – Secondly, determine the type of construction either is it a renovation work or a new addition. It is quite obvious that, renovation work will cost different as compared to new addition. Many people like to add on an extra room or perhaps a bathroom or a family room. Sometimes that one extra room is all they need. You need to know the square footage of your project in order to help estimate the construction cost per square foot.

Let suppose: You Contractor gives you an estimate to 30,000$ for the construction of new room (size: 20ft x 20ft) than you per square foot cost will be = 75$ per sft. (I.e. 30000/20×20)

  • Grade Of Material Used – It is one of the most important factor for every construction estimate. Due to presence of unlimited material options your price may vary. In order to win the contract or hire a best contractor, always define the exact material that will be used.
  • What’s Included & What not – You should have determine the items what has included and what’s not that helps to estimate the best price.
  • How To Prepare A Construction Estimate – Things to include before making an estimate:
    • Material Cost
    • Labor Cost
    • Machine Cost
    • Electricity / Water Charges
    • Transportation charges
    • Overhead Cost / Contingency amount
    • Profit %
    • Tax %

For Example: To estimate for 1:2:4 concrete, always calculate for 100 cft. and then evaluate for per cft. cost.

  • Don’t Overlook small items – During the preparation of estimates, usually people overlook some small items such as:
    • Debris removal
    • Transportation of materials
    • Electricity for site
    • Water for site
    • Site Office & its running cost
    • Always visit a site to analyze worst case scenario of site to add cost overrun.
    • Always add some contingency budget in your estimates
  • Acquire Multiple Quotations – There are plenty of local contractors that you can go with but always survey the market before hiring a contractor for best possible price. It is important to get a few construction estimates and check reputations as well. Sometimes you can get a better price out of the contractor if you bid him again his competitor. That way you can save a little on the home construction cost per square foot.
  • Inflation Rate: The most important factor for the project success and failure is inflation rate. If the project last for 02 years than you must have consider the inflation rate to avoid the project failure.

Let’s Discuss Construction Estimates & Types

The first requirement before you even consider how to price construction is to have the plans drawn up for the venture. The plan provides the background information for assessing the materials and labor that will need to be determined.

  1. Electrical Estimating

Electrical estimating requires a lot of technical skill to do. The tricky part is that, all you need to do is manual work because there is no such software where you can plug in dimensions of a set of rooms and get a proxy electrical estimate from the site.

  • Competing electrical estimating bids; while electrical installation costs are based on the price of materials, which are reasonably static on a state and regional level. Other factors are:
    • The cost of installation
    • The labor component of the price.
    • This can also depend on current labor and economic market conditions which can upward or downward pressure on labor, material and supply and demand considerations.

Electrical estimating is one of the critical junctures of building your home. Attend to it appropriately, and with insight into future use for the best results. It is better to do a good and through job upfront than having to resort to salvage and repair at a later date.

Paint Estimate For Construction Estimate

Paint estimating can usually be done by performing a handful of calculations and considering some additional points that can contribute to paint requirements.

As a general guideline for estimating paint coverage:

A gallon of paint will cover 350 – 450 square feet. You should base realistic estimates on 400 square feet and if you plan to use several cans of paint, it is a good idea to mix them together to avoid any streaking affect that can manifest.

  • To calculate paint estimates, multiply the height of the wall by its length and then divide by 400.
  • A gallon of paint will cover a 10 x 15 foot room. If you are doing additional coats, you will need to double or triple up your estimates.

There are other factors that you might also want to factor into the calculations for formulating painting cost estimate.

  • Estimating paint coverage is relatively simple once you have considered the condition of the surface you are painting.
  • Calculated the total distance you need to cover, subtracted any areas that do not need to be covered and allowed for the total number of coats the surface will require.
  • Once you have this figure you will be able to ascertain how many cans to purchase. You might also want to keep a little extra in reserve so buying additional quantity is a good idea in this regard.

RCC Roofing Estimate

Roof estimating can seem a bit overwhelming if you are new to the entire project but it doesn’t have to be. If you’re a Greensboro roofing contractor then it’s important that you plan out the costings correctly or the project could go over budget which isn’t good. Take a deep breath, relax, and let’s go over what you can expect. Basic thumb rule for material required in RCC roofing will be as follows:

  • New RCC Roof: If you are preparing the construction estimate for erection of new roof than following things to be considered:
    • Cost of material
    • Cost of labor
    • Cost of machine
    • Cost of scaffolding
    • Cost of transportation
    • Cost of Steel Fixer
    • Cost of water + electricity (if any)
    • Profit %
    • Tax %
    • Overhead or contingency cost

Tiles Estimating

Floor tile patterns are part of many home décor options, and getting the tile laid in correctly is a critical part of the process. Getting a good construction estimate of the amount of tile you need. The pattern it gets laid out in, the type and style of tile and the total dimensions of the room are critical elements of a good tile estimating job.

  • The first thing you do when doing tile estimating is get the exact dimensions – down to about half an inch – of the room that you’re going to tile.
  • Second, look at the pattern of tiles you want to lay. The first rule of laying tile flooring is that you never want to cut a tile in anything other than halves – so take some time with drafting or tile laying software to see how you’d lay out the jigsaw puzzle of tile pieces on your floor to make the most attractive room you can, using the fewest number of pieces.
  • Third, when buying tile, understand that tile, brick and related construction materials come in batches. It is ALWAYS better to buy a little more than you need, say 5 to 10% extra. This helps cover you in the event of a broken tile, or simple expansion of the grouting.
  • Buying tile from different batches means that you’re almost certainly going to get tiles with slightly different shades and hues, which may not be the effect you want.

Setting up a good tile estimate is one of the foundation steps towards improving the value of your home.

Excavation Estimate For Preparing Construction Estimate

There are a number of different scenarios that can create difficulties in accurate excavating estimating. Some sites may have a great deal of debris beneath the dirt’s surface, making the excavation more time consuming and increasing removal costs. Unmarked ravines or wetland areas of the land may interfere with the excavation procedures. A number of other instabilities and natural land characteristics can interfere with excavation cost estimating as well.

Construction estimate is one of the most important factor of construction process and you need to consider for the success of any project.


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