12 Most Common Construction Estimating Mistakes

Construction Estimating Mistakes

Construction Estimating Mistakes

In the construction industry, the most challenging activity is estimation. It’s like solving an Advanced Calculus problem. So, it would be best to take it because it decides whether your construction is successful or ruined.

According to research, 40% of contractors are unsatisfied with the construction estimating services delivered by the estimating experts. What are the reasons behind this fact? It is all because of typical construction estimating mistakes.

What are these common mistakes, and how can you avoid them? We’ll discuss both topics in this blog post. Saty, stick to this page!

Mistakes You Can Make During Construction Estimation

1. Taking Shortcuts

Slow and steady actually wins the race. Sometimes, contractors go with generic quotes for all types of construction projects. It mostly happens when they try to win more projects by taking shortcuts. Consequently, they could not even win a single project due to poor estimation and unreliable evaluation.
Solution
Use construction cost estimating and takeoff software and tools. They will help you save time and create quality estimates.

2. Confusing Designs

Are you going to share incomplete construction plans or drawings? Please, take a break. Just think about how you can bake a cake when you do not have flour. Exactly, it is entirely impossible to bake a cake without flour. And if you use something else, your birthday will be ruined.

Similarly, when you do not share precise plans with your contractors, they cannot generate valuable construction work estimates. Besides these, you can even experience significant cost overruns, time mismanagement, and unsuccessful project ending.

Simply put, there is only one way to calculate accurate estimates with proper project plans, designs, and specifications.
Solution
Always create complete and transparent construction plans with the assistance of professionals. They enable estimators to submit precise and accurate estimates.

3. Poor Communication

Have you ever been puzzled by emails? Or have you ever dissatisfied your client with miscommunication? Actually, it is one of the most common construction estimating mistakes practiced by contractors and some estimators in the industry.

Miscommunication can damage your reputation in the market. Furthermore, you can go down the track of professionalism due to miscommunication. Ultimately, you will be known as the untrustworthy contractor in the market and cannot bring your business to the next level. So, proper communication is necessary in the construction industry.
Solution
Use building estimating and takeoff software to ensure everyone is on the same page regarding the construction project.

4. Not Making Site Visit

Do two construction sites require the same estimating processing? No. Soil conditions, weather conditions, and many other factors can impact the construction cost. Some lands need labor to prepare a site for construction. However, some require additions to tackle weather changes during construction.

You can experience cost and time overruns when you do not consider site inspections as a mandatory factor. A contractor can use different strategies for two varying construction sites. Every site needs other processes that significantly impact the construction cost.
Solution
Always start an estimating project with site estimation. It will enable you to monitor and manage each factor according to site conditions.

5. Time Mismanagement

First is always first. People ask many questions from those who stand second and third. Why is it so? Runners always justify the point using the factor of time management. The same is the case in the construction industry.

Contractors always trust those who submit bids first. They have many questions for the second one and so on. Even they can ask, why are you offering expensive services? Or why this figure shows a difference of $500 from the first bid you received from another home building cost estimator?
Solution
Use construction project management software to streamline activities and keep things on track.

6. Ignoring Risk Assessment

Risk assessment plays an essential role in the construction industry. It actually enables workers to pass their working hours safely. However, only some professionals consider it during estimation.

Ignoring risk assessment can lead to accidents, delays, fines, and emotional and financial crackdowns. Furthermore, it can damage your worth in the construction market. The research conducted in 2017 showed that 3% of workers became ill or got severe injuries—furthermore, around 1,000 died during construction.

The safety of labor and workers is the duty of construction management. If they ignore risk assessment for any reason, they will be called to answer the death of a laborer.
Solution
During estimation, you must highlight hazards, analyze and evaluate risk, and make strategies to control them.

7. Wrong Labor Budget Evaluation

What can you do without labor during estimation? From site preparation to finishing, you need their services. Then, how can you calculate accurate labor costs?

It is the most common mistake contractors and fresh estimators make when calculating the project budget. Labor expenses cover around 40-50% of the total construction budget. It means that even a little ignorance in the labor cost estimation can shake your whole project budget. It is the most significant factor that can generate inaccurate estimates.
Solution
Consider all the labor expenses during construction estimation so your budget stays within the limit.

8. Making Uninformed Speculations

Estimation is not a game of guesses. It is a time-consuming task that needs expertise and industry knowledge. Many estimators and contractors make a big mistake regarding this when estimating a construction project. They create estimation sheets based on rough guesses and sometimes baseless conceptions.

The unreliable method of estimation leads to inaccuracy and construction project failure. There should constantly be updated data when estimating a building project. Otherwise, there is no way to make your project successful.
Solution
Consider industry knowledge and use the calculator and estimating software to generate accurate construction estimates.

9. Submission of Low-Quality Bids

The first impression is the last. There are better ways than submitting low-quality bids with inappropriate construction estimate templates. But, many contractors do so while trying to win more projects at once. It always leads to project failure and decreased win-bid ratio.

Everything should be transparent and easy to understand, from templates to accurate estimates. Low-quality bid submission shows you need to be more professional and reliable for construction estimation projects.
Solution
Always start with smart strategies, follow the seamless ways to calculate an estimate, and design high-quality bids to impress your clients.

10. Unreliable Material Takeoffs (MTOs)

Do you know what takeoff is? It is the quantity of material you need to complete your construction project flawlessly. Many contractors and estimators count the material amounts inaccurately. Inaccurate means wrong figures and values. When you need 50 bars of wood, it means it is 50. Whether you order 10 or 90, it will be problematic for you.

No doubt, you must order 3-5 pieces extra, but it does not mean going very high. It will disturb you both mentally and financially. Therefore, it is better to order the precise quantity of a targeted material and optimize your project budget.
Solution
Hire a professional estimator who can hit the precise and accurate material takeoffs. This way, you can calculate accurate estimates for a construction project.

11. Not Updating Data With Market Trends

According to certified construction managers, the team of estimators must consider the old project when estimating a construction project cost. It does not mean you do not need to stay updated with the latest market trends. However, it elaborates that you must know what the previous techniques are and what is trending today.

Labor wages, material rates, contractor charges, etc., change continuously after some intervals. Unfortunately, some constructors do not monitor this fact and submit estimations using old techniques and trends. It cannot lead to anywhere except failure.

So, keeping yourself updated with the latest and modern industry knowledge, techniques, and expertise is essential. It can enable you to boost your business in the construction industry.
Solution
Attend industry meetings, get-togethers, and workshops to update yourself on the latest trends. Furthermore, you can use real-life estimating software to get updated data.

12. Underestimate the Power of Review Once Estimation Done

Teachers always suggest reviewing or proofreading the paper once it is done. It should be the regular practice in the building estimating industry. Many professionals do not check the estimates after assessment and the latest on experience failure due to multiple mistakes.

Whether you make a small or big mistake can significantly impact the project cost. Actually, it decides the successful completion of the construction project. Therefore, it is essential to review the assessment before submission and solve issues to ensure the ultimate success.
Solution
Get the assistance of your seniors to check if you calculate the exact budget. Furthermore, you can use digital software to analyze whether you will submit a quality bid.

How to Avoid Construction Estimating Mistakes

Is there a single solution to avoid all these construction estimating mistakes? Yes! Hire trustworthy construction estimators to evaluate the budget of your project! They can provide you with excellent estimating services without making mistakes.

From site analysis to the final finishing of a house, estimators calculate the cost of each factor and equip contractors with precise and accuarte estimates. Besides, they help you optimize your project and timelines using their industry knowledge and expertise. Thus, getting assistance from reliable estimators is an excellent option to avoid all these mistakes and make your project successful.

Bottom Line

Construction estimation is a tricky and technical task. It requires deep industry knowledge and polished expertise. Otherwise, inaccurate estimates do not hold any worth. Unfortunately, most contractors and estimators in the construction industry make some mistakes. These mistakes lead to inaccuracy and, ultimately, failure of the project.

Furthermore, these mistakes include taking shortcuts, submitting incomplete or confusing drawings, lack of communication among stakeholders and team members, and not making site visits. Besides these, time mismanagement, ignoring risk assessment, inaccurate labor cost calculation, making uneducated guesses, submitting low-quality bids, wrong material takeoffs, and underestimating the potential of review are common mistakes that construction industry workers make during estimation.
These problems have a single solution: Engaging an experienced and trustworthy construction estimating partner. He will help you avoid mistakes and optimize your project timelines and budget. Similarly, he will transform your project drawings into accurate estimations and fabulous structures using his expertise. So, take a deep breath and bring your construction project to the highest level without making mistakes during assessment!