How to Estimate Commercial Construction Costs

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Creating a total bid for a commercial site requires thorough review of the drawings and specification, and careful calculation of costs and profit to make sure that your bid is the most competitive. There are a number of steps to creating an accurate bid, and maximizing your chances of winning the project.

Carefully review all drawings sent to you by the client in conjunction with the specification, which will tell you exactly what the building will be constructed from, from the type of brick to the brand of light switch. You should be thoroughly acquainted with all aspects of the site so you can produce an accurate quote.

Visit the site. This will tell you if there are any restrictions, such as limited access or overhead power cables, that will have an effect on your price.

Contact subcontractors to obtain prices for specialist work such as intercom systems, and suppliers to ascertain prices for materials.

Do a detailed takeoff of the drawings, calculating the man-hours and materials you require to complete the project.

Add a percentage for overheads and profit. This will vary, dependent upon factors such as the economic climate and the size of the project.

Write a covering letter detailing the inclusion and exclusions within your total bid, and submit your price to the client within the specified deadline.


About the Author

Ben Wakeling graduated from Coventry University in 2009 with an upper second class honours B.Sc. degree in construction management. Wakeling is also a freelance writer, and works for a number of businesses, such as Demand Studios, Suite 101 and Academic Knowledge.

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