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The Importance of Construction Estimating

There is no element in estimating which does not include a touch of judgement. Just as in a court of law --- judgement is based on facts and expert testimony. Estimating should always be placed in the hands of an experienced, objective professional.


In smaller firms, the roles of estimator and field superintendent are usually both done by the owner of a company. In fact, it is the ability of the accomplished tradesman to estimate that allows him to take the step from employee to owner of his own business. His success hinges completely on how good his judgement and objectivity is in estimating.

For the large firm, the estimator may be a partner or an employee -- even, one of several, on a team of estimators. The firm relies on an estimator to provide all the information to determine if a particualar project is suitable to bid on.

Country House

Every estimator should know building methods, materials, costs and sources -- to be able to suggest the best alternative, with the least wastage and therefore, the highest profit margin.

The best estimator must be well versed in "customs of the trades". This is the particular knowledge of what each of the several trades is capable of performing. This knowledge is what a builder needs, to determine whether he uses his own employees or relies on subcontractors. The difference, again, is in cost and profit.

The construction firm that has the best estimate has control of its costs -- going into a project.

Town House

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