Now that contractors are getting back to work after weeks or months of quarantine, business-related difficulties become apparent once again. For instance, how do contactors, especially newer contractors, deal with materials in relation to material overages and waste?
How much material?
Many a contractor–especially newer or more inexperienced contractors–learn this lesson the hard way. The questions of “how much material do I buy to complete the job? How do I compensate for waste? How do I adjust for complications or unforeseeable issues? And most importantly, how do I still turn a profit while remaining competitive for the client? These questions are usually answered with experience and a great deal of mistakes that can cost hundreds of dollars per job.. Many contractors have gone out of business simply because they were unable to maintain a fix on cost management It seems easy on paper with the right mathematical formula, but there are factors to consider when making these calculations.
Every time you cut a board, score and snap a tile, apply an adhesive, open a can of paint or clean up a jobsite, you’re going to have some degree of wasted materials. Waste material is any portion of purchased material that cannot be used for any other part of the job. All the “garbage” that is created on a project started out as raw materials that you, the contractor, had to pay for. There is no way to avoid waste to some degree, but the key is to have enough materials on hand to do the job without wasting any more than a tiny percentage of it. In other words, the more of a specific material you can make use of, the more efficient your waste management is.
Underorder vs. Overorder
That fine line of material orders that can determine profit on a job or one step closer to potential loss. Is it fifty boards with ten more to account for waste? Or five additional and just hope for the best? Have you factored in how weather is going to affect the job and potentially the materials used? Is your crew experienced enough to know how to use materials efficiently, or are they breaking things left and right and chucking them in the dumpster? The decision to overorder and account for waste versus the tactic of under-ordering and buying more as the project goes on and hope for the best is a classic contractor problem.
It’s All In The Calculations
“If the numbers are right, there’s no need to second guess.” And that’s the whole thing, isn’t it? Getting those numbers correct so that profits can be maximised, waste minimized, labor under control, and a little padding built into the pricing just in case of emergency or unexpected circumstances. Part of the beauty of Botonde is that our take-off creators do all this for you. The premium Take-Off creators (we call them “modules“) do every single calculation for you, as well as let you build in a percentage markup for waste. The modules also create your estimates to be sent to the customers and break out your materials orders to each of your suppliers.
Botonde does not require any long term contractors and has no obligations. First 30-days are free and from then on, be part of the Botonde Family for as little as $9.95 per month. Check out our Get Started page. You have nothing to lose.