Construction Estimating Secrets – Part 3
Construction Estimating needs accurate costs to create accurate estimates. Without accurate costs you are guesstimating, not estimating. Guessing does not make it in construction.
This secret is HUGE!
We discussed Job Cost in Construction Estimating Secrets – Part 2. I said there was a way to make it as easy as it’s going to get. Well, here it is!
Simplified Budgets Simplify Job Cost
Simplified budgets help you in three ways:
- it’s easier to job cost
- You save time doing job cost
- You can spot problems easier
And, it’s the system you learned to hate. And, maybe you don’t even do job cost, even though you know you should, because it such a pain in the posterior.
Here’s How it Works
It goes something like this. Every bill you receive gets charged to each item in the construction estimate. So, every time you buy studs you charge the expense to the studs. Every time you buy 2X4s you charge the expense to 2X4s. When you buy drywall you charge it to drywall, and so on.
And, by the way, if you have a project with 300 or 400 items you have to go though the entire list to assign each expense. That, in and of itself, eats up a lot of time and is very frustrating.
Like the illustration I used before, a 300 item estimate is 5 of 6 printed pages. That’s a lot of scrolling up and down to find items whether your doing it on a screen or on paper. And, obviously, if it’s more than 300 items it’s more than 5 or 6 pages.
On the other hand, simplified budgets make it much easier and faster to enter job cost information.
Let Me Show You How
We have our bills for studs, 2X4s and drywall. Instead of charging them to individual items, you charge all three to the Framing Section in our construction estimating.
Bam! It’s done.
It’s faster because you’re not trying to find the appropriate items in a list for 300 or 400 items, the list is under 20 items. They’re exactly the same items as your list of sections. You find it much simpler, much easier.
There’s Another Advantage
When you’re comparing costs to your construction estimating budget, it’s much easier to spot challenges when the list is 20 items or less than it is if the list is 300 or 400 items. I don’t know about you, but my eyes glaze over if I see a list over 50 items. It’s very difficult to maintain focus on the details.
You can see the forest for the trees. And, that means you can spot small problems before they become big job threatening ones.
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