Anyone who’s worked in the construction industry has learned to expect the unexpected during a construction project. Few renovation projects go without a hitch.
Previous work might be inadequate, there could be building code violations, structural complications, and even the odd surprise behind a wall. All of which can seriously impact costs, your ability to estimate accurately, and your bottom line.
So how do we get around these challenges?
Construction estimating software is a powerful tool that improves the accuracy and efficiency of the estimating process. By utilizing these advanced software solutions, contractors can save time and reduce errors when creating construction project quotes and construction estimates.
Another thing to consider when creating an estimate for a new project is to complete a risk assessment on the job. This helps to identify potential issues based on experiences from previous construction projects. If for example, you’re replacing an old tile floor, factor in the extra time it might take to remove the thinset or the cost to replace the subfloor.
As another example; If you’re doing electrical work in a house built before 1990, there’s a good chance the electrical panel and wiring may need an upgrade. It’s important to stress that these are KNOWN issues that might arise. So create a contingency budget within the estimate, say 5% to 10% of the total project, that allocates extra resources like time, money, and materials, to address these risks if and when they occur.
If you’re worried that this might lose you the job, then don’t include the costs. But by being transparent and realistic upfront and clearly communicating the potential issues and associated costs to a customer, you’re more likely to earn their trust and land the job. This is also a good approach to protect yourself from financial implications down the line. Given the unpredictability of a construction project, you’ll never be able to prevent and capture all the unforeseen issues, but failing to implement a plan to protect yourself when you have the knowledge could really cost you in the long run.