Estimating – The Foundation of Your Profit Map

Every job you do starts with an estimate.  The more accurate that estimate, the more likely you are to hit your profit goal.

BradleyFoundationOkay, that’s nothing new.  Builders and contractors have been doing estimates since the Stone Age.  The problem is that the methods for creating estimates haven’t changed much since then – too often they are either ‘ballpark’ guesses or are based on outdated formulas, such as square footage.  If you’re experienced, these might get you close, but no matter how good you are at guessing, you won’t get predictable results, i.e. consistent profit on every job.

Of course, the better (and more profitable) method is to take the time to create detailed estimates based on exact takeoffs and labor bids from trusted vendors and contractors.  But if you’re like many builders today, you’re covered up with work and don’t have as much time as you’d like to spend on detailed estimates.  In either case, job costing and estimating software can help.

Job Costing Software

Estimating software (and there are a plethora of them on the market) lets you enter your unit costs for all materials and labor, and then prompts you to input data about each project – sizes, lengths, materials to be quoted, labor, etc.  Part of their value is that it’s hard to miss or forget an item since you’re working from a detailed list.  And the software does the math, so if you enter the right data, you’ll get the right number.  You can add your markup or target profit, and all the calculations are done for you.

Next-generation estimating systems, such as CASHFLO™, take this to the next level by allowing you to create pricing templates that are easily updated as costs change and that speed up the estimating process.

They also help you monitor and manage your jobs based on the firm quotes you get from contractors, vendors and suppliers.  And, they can alert you when invoices come in that are higher than what you expected.  This lets you examine any exceptions and take appropriate actions before payments are made.  One remodeler that recently began using CASHFLO™ reported savings of over $5, 000 in discovered over-charges in just the first month of using the program.

All-in-One Estimating, Job Management and Accounting System

Have you ever had to build a home or addition on a poor foundation, one that someone rushed through or guessed at?  What a nightmare!  You’re constantly having to make adjustments through the rest of the project to try to compensate.  On the other hand, when the foundation is accurate, plumb and level the rest of the house goes up without a hitch.

Pricing

That’s what the CASHFLO™ system does for your Profit Map – it gives you an accurate foundation based on solid numbers that you can monitor throughout the rest of the job to ensure you reach your profit goal.  And since our system integrates the estimating and scheduling with management and accounting, you’re always on top of your numbers and can quickly see and act when issues appear.  And CASHFLO™ can completely replace all the other estimating, scheduling, CRM and accounting programs you might currently be using, or it can sync with QuickBooks if you’d prefer.

To get a tour of the CASHFLO™ Job Costing System for contractors, remodelers and builders, call 303-221-0823, or click here to schedule a product tour.

 

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