For all the contract-for-work construction and remodeling professionals out there, few business problems come up like when it’s time to get that estimate out to the customer. Speaking to many of the contractors using the Take Off Creator by Botonde, we have devised the top three problems that contractors have with creating estimates and take offs for customers. We spoke with our subscribers to find out the biggest problems they’ve faced with creating and delivering their estimates and take-offs… here’s what we found out. Anything sound familiar?
Quoting Accurate Estimates & Take-Offs
It’s the big one, right? You’d almost have to be a mind reader to figure out what the customer wants, an acceptable time window, and a dollar amount that both keeps you in business and the client happy. Factor in design and style of the house, type of materials needed and their availability, labor required, permitting, taxes and unforeseen changes and problems, and the whole thing can seem impossible. But it doesn’t end there: the whole thing needs to be communicated to the client in a way they understand, and leave room for flexibility in case they change their minds. Now wrap all of that up into something hastily scrawled on paper or crammed into a spreadsheet, and you have a recipe for disaster for both the client and your business.
Materials & Costs
Who knows when pricing will return to normal (whatever that is)? Common material price hikes, backorders, and other supply chain variables all lead to one thing – estimates that are higher than usual or expected. The choice between passing on those costs to the customer or taking the job for less profit is always a struggle that can be the difference between getting paid something or nothing at all.
Sometimes suggesting alternative materials to customers can be the solution that saves both the sale and the profit margin. The problem is, keeping such a vast catalog of materials at your fingertips is difficult. Keeping it updated is even harder.
Speed of Providing Accurate Estimates & Take-Offs
With the competitive nature of contracting, providing an estimate or take-off that is fair, accurate, and represents your reputation can be all for nothing if you take too long to provide it to the client. Clients demand what can sometimes be unrealistic waiting times for an estimate or take-off to be provided, with some wanting them right on the spot, and others willing to wait only a day or two. Rarely will you find a potential client patient enough to wait two weeks for an estimate or take-off.
Part of the problem with providing a speedy estimate or take-off is that if it is created too fast or without all the necessary information, mistakes can be made. As we all know, mistakes quickly translate to lost income in the contracting world.
Solutions – Botonde Take Off Creators
TheBotonde Take Off Creator app solves all the problems related to quoting accurately, managing materials, and related costs. And accuracy? With a system that not only generates your estimates but also your take offs, and breaks them out by your distributors, you can confirm the accuracy of all the related aspects of your proposal at a glance. Need to make changes? Do them on the fly whenever you need to and watch Botonde automatically update all the related parts of the estimate and take-off.