How to Estimate Home Renovation Jobs


Renovating your home can be a big step towards selling the home or continuing to live in the home. As a renovation company or contractor it is important to have a solid approach in providing an estimate to a homeowner for what time and cost it will take to complete a home renovation. Factors that come into play are climate, age of the home, manpower available and work desired. It may take you two trips to a property to fully assess a project's value. Estimate the effort it will take to properly assess a home renovation project.

Things You'll Need

  • Word processing software
  • Make notes of everything the homeowner wants done to the property, including the things she is just thinking about doing or those "nice-to-haves." You can factor them into your estimate.

  • Break up the project by room or task. When considering the estimate, it will be easier to assess cost per room. If a client wants to focus on certain rooms, or if there is a specific budget, it will be better to present the estimate sectioned by room. A client may be willing to compromise in certain areas in certain rooms.

  • Consider any extra work that needs to be done to meet building code standards. When doing any building project, consider codes you must adhere to. Add these extra costs to your estimate per room.

  • Factor in costs for demolition that must be done before renovation. Sometimes to build you must tear down. Add these costs to your estimate for each room. Additional costs may be required if demolition in one room requires upgrades to another room.

  • Factor in costs for climate. Roofing work, for example, is dependent on weather conditions. Landscaping as well is dependent on the season. Bad weather conditions can push back timelines and interfere with other projects.

  • Factor in costs for "being green." Some work can be done especially to create a healthier living environment and/or save costs on natural resources. Add these items to your estimate as a side item or potential upgrade.

  • Add 5 to 10 percent error estimate for unexpected costs. Material costs can change over time, and estimates should cover the company or an individual in case of unexpected expenses.

  • Prepare the estimate using word processing software. Add a one-paragraph summary of overall work to be done to the house. Include the work and costs per room.

Tips & Warnings

  • It will be more professional to use company letterhead if you are a company preparing an estimate. Download a free template for home estimates if you are a freelancer or independent contractor.

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