There are three basic steps to estimating a concrete project: the estimate of how much material that you will be using, labor and pricing. There are 21 materials in your basic quantity outline. These include various footings, walls, grades, columns, beams, slabs, stairs, paving, curbs and gutters along with the various forms, concrete and finishes. Once you determine your takeoff, then you can recapitulate and price. Don't forget the miscellaneous items, waste and labor production rates. Overbid and you may lose the job; underbid,and you lose money. It's better to take time to be as precise in your estimates as possible.
Things You'll Need
- Estimate sheet
- Measuring tape
- Pricing sheet
Visit the location of the proposed work. Do not estimate by phone. Take time to measure accurately and talk about the project with the customer, if possible. Don't hand the customer a quick, makeshift bid without doing your homework. Tell him that you will have the bid in a few hours or the next day, or whatever time frame works for both of you.
Do your quantity takeoff. The takeoff means to check all items that will be needed to price the job --- a checklist. This includes the concrete yardage, finishing, manual excavation materials and labor, sand fill and miscellaneous items. Don't forget any mesh or steel reinforcements.
Price your quantity takeoff. If you are not good at pricing, find someone who is. Qualified estimators should show the customer how each estimate was arrived at, how each unit price was calculated, and reasons for any changes in the estimate. Don't forget to calculate waste. Estimate pricing up, not down. Include at least 3 percent ground waste. Ground waste is waste material that is unneeded or cut away from the project outside of any forms. There should be little or no waste within your forms.
Calculate labor costs. Keep in mind that workers cannot keep at maximum effort for very long. Figure in rest time and lunches. If you are using a large work crew and not someone whose work ethic you are familiar with, it's better to figure an average rate of production per worker per square foot.
- Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images
How to Find More Jobs To Bid
Are you always looking for ways to bid more work? Whether you are in painting, roofing, concrete, home building, landscaping, steel erecting...
How to Find Construction Jobs to Bid on
If you're an established company, contractors and other clients familiar with your work will send you bidding invitations. For newer companies, finding...
How to Price Roof Coating Jobs
By now you already know that everyone is "going green." One of the most popular green things homeowners can do is having...
How to Calculate Commercial Rent per Square Foot
Commercial tenants usually pay one of two types of rent: gross or net. Gross rent is a flat rate that includes maintenance,...
How to Figure Concrete Cost
Estimating concrete cost is a relatively straightforward process. If you are mixing your own, you need to calculate the amount of concrete...
How to Bid for Concrete Jobs
A homeowner, business owner or project representative may approach several concrete outfits to bid on a project. To be considered for the...
How to Calculate Concrete for a Job
Whether delivered ready-mixed in a truck from a concrete company or mixed by hand from prepackaged bags, concrete is measured and sold...
How to Write a Bid Proposal for Masonry Work
Masonry work is made up of brickwork and stonework. People building or remodeling their homes hire masonry companies to do this work....
How to Estimate Commercial Concrete Work
Concrete supports our houses, holds up our walls and provides the roadway for our cars. Concrete work is typically performed by a...
How to Estimate Concrete Costs in Texas
Estimating concrete involves including a number of factors, most predominately an understanding of the area to be paved. Understanding the cost of...