One of the most critical components of any construction project is estimating the costs. Accurate estimates ensure that all stakeholders have a clear understanding of the financial requirements from the outset, minimizing the risk of budget overruns and ensuring that projects remain financially viable. To help estimators produce accurate and reliable cost estimates, construction takeoff estimating service providers offer a systematic approach to measuring and quantifying work items for a project. The accuracy of these estimates is intrinsically tied to the cost estimation process, making construction takeoff a key step in project estimating.
There are a few different types of construction takeoff services, including manual and digital. Contractors who perform a manual takeoff typically use physical blueprints and measure each item in the plan using a scale ruler. For example, if you are preparing to paint a room in the building, you would measure the square footage of the walls, subtract the space you won’t need to paint due to doors, windows and entryways and record this number. You would then calculate how many gallons of paint you will need by dividing the total square footage by the coverage a gallon of paint will provide.
Unlike a traditional manual takeoff, a digital construction takeoff service uses advanced technology to measure and quantify the scope of work in plans and designs. This allows estimators to quickly and accurately capture the data required to create an estimate for each work item. Digital takeoff tools eliminate the need for rework by eliminating human errors and reducing the time estimators spend on the task. Additionally, a digital takeoff solution allows estimators to review and modify counts instantly, further streamlining the estimating process and improving overall accuracy.
In addition to the quantity takeoff, a construction takeoff estimating service may also provide a material takeoff. This is a detailed breakdown of all the materials required to complete a construction project. It includes everything from concrete and steel to fixtures and finishes. The information included in a material takeoff can then be used to build an estimate by determining current material pricing and calculating labor hours, tax, waste percentage and other costs.
While a material takeoff is often associated with the cost of materials, it’s actually a part of the process of estimating all other costs on a project. This is why a material takeoff is important to any project. If you don’t know how much material you will need, you can’t determine what your bid should be or whether or not it is competitive.
As such, it’s imperative that contractors and subcontractors understand the importance of a quality takeoff estimating service. An expert team of estimators can help you avoid costly errors by utilizing an automated digital takeoff tool. This enables you to perform the takeoff in less time and with greater accuracy than manual methods, while enhancing your ability to bid competitively and on-time. In addition, a professional estimating service will help you stay compliant with local and state regulations regarding the bidding process.