Drafting an estimate for potential clients is where most of the contractors get stuck. And if they are unable to create a proper estimate, there are chances that clients may have a shake of the head. Ultimately, it will be the contractors who lose their customers.
If it often happens with the contractors, their business might be on the cusp of the hill. Slight here and there in the estimates will push the contractors towards the receiving end.
So, what can be done to strengthen a grip on business? Some of you might say avoid making those recurring mistakes. That’s right, and therefore we are here to discuss how to make estimates for contractors in the right way.
Also, we will cover the main benefits and the cost of professionally-designed estimates in the informative blog.
Contractors should have a proper understanding of the project before making an estimate. If required they should approach the job site to measure the service area. Then, once they are ready with the necessary details, follow these steps to generate professional-looking estimates.
- Select a suitable estimate template
The first step for building an estimate is to get a perfect layout. So based on the specific industry, simply download a suitable template from the online tools. Many online estimate generators will allow downloading the template in different forms such as PDF, MS Excel, and MS Word.
Following the selection of the template, now mention the important details like estimate number, date, customer name, and shipping address. In this process, contractors should be aware of the clients’ expectations. After filling in those details, recheck them to avoid any unintentional errors.
- Include company’s information
The next step is crucial from a business point of view so fill up the company’s information like name, address, along with the business logo. Also, describe the support team’s contact number so that whenever clients are in doubt they can easily contact the service provider.
At the time of estimating, contractors would have an opportunity to promote their company’s name. In case, clients are pleased with services rendered, they will find it easier to recommend the company’s name. Hence, including the company’s information plays a vital role in expanding their business network.
- Prepare customer-friendly budget
During the calculation of overall material costs and labor charges, one should not forget about the client’s budget. Usually, many contractors do not prepare an estimate consisting of pre-decided prices. When they don’t include the discounted cost to the client, it would result in disagreements.
To be on the safer side, contractors need to get budget approval from their clients. After receiving the green signal make sure to include the approved prices in the estimate. After all, professional contractors would never want to fall prey to unnecessary conflicts. Thus, contractors need to have equal footing with their clients.
- Enable unit cost estimating
Those who are working as contractors would agree how generating an estimate can consume more time. Most of them even have incomplete estimates for weeks. This would be a worrying sign for them and at the same time, customers might not wait.
This is exactly where the unit cost estimating method comes in to generate estimates quicker. This cost calculating method complies with local taxes and line items to estimate the net amount. Then, it will be reviewed by a consultant before they send the final estimates to the client.
- Offer attractive discounts & add payment terms
Sending estimates that consist of great discount offers means contractors would receive instant approval. This is an efficient way to lure clients and begin their work. Simultaneously, contractors should mention the terms and conditions for the offered price.
Besides, estimates should include the necessary instructions to avail of the services. Moreover, let the clients know how the service provider will accept the payment. In case, contractors need early payment, they can include the advance payment option in the estimate.
- Expedite estimating process using the right software
As we discussed how time-consuming estimates can bring negative results for contractors. An alternative way to reduce the time is by using the right automated software. Picking the right estimate accounting software will expedite the overall process.
Also, using such online software will make sure there are no human errors in the estimates. Plus, it would be easy to send a proposal that might get approved in minutes. Contractors who are dealing with the daily hassles of creating estimates can save their valuable time.
- Seek advice from industry experts
Whenever contractors are unable to move forward due to the estimate challenges, at that point, they should seek advice from experts. If contractors do not know the actual service cost, they should ask a consultant or discuss with sub-contractors.
Otherwise, having an asking price more or less could result in the termination of the service. Contractors preparing an estimate for major projects can ask for suggestions from the experts. By doing so, contractors can fix the loopholes (if any) and professionally represent the estimates.
Contractors hired for completing major projects like home renovation, or landscape remodeling of the outdoor area can charge up to $150 – $1200. Contractors can demand the extra charges for revised estimates or customized estimates.
For small project works, prices may vary between $50 – $550. Contractors estimating the cost of small projects can also deduct the fees after the completion of work. In short, estimate charges depend on the size and structure of the job site.
An estimate represents the job of the service provider including the estimated budget of the project work. Contractors offering services with the help of professional estimates can have below-mention advantages.
- Knowing the risks factors
Professional contractors will prefer to inspect the job site before making the estimates. This would help them take a closer look at the service area to identify the risk factors. It would be beneficial for contractors as they won’t indulge in the quarrel after completion of their service.
- Getting an instant approval
A carefully generated estimate without errors will boost the chances of getting early approval. Since customers are finding it easier to understand, they will not take long in accepting the work proposal. This would help contractors and sub-contractors to begin their work early.
- Long term collaboration with Clients
When contractors send an estimate matching the discounted price to the customers, they are likely to convert those residents into repeat customers. Also, adapting a professional way to help their client in getting things done will develop long-term collaboration with them.
- Business expansion through word-of-mouth
As soon as the contractor gets a thumbs up for their estimates, it means that customers are impressed with the contractor’s professionalism. In this scenario, clients would recommend services from contractors who helped them. Thus, using word-of-mouth, the contractor’s business may expand the network.
- On-time payment
The significant benefit of a professionally-looking estimate is that it will help contractors get on-time payments. Sometimes clients would be even ready to pay in advance if they are impressed with the way of offering service.
Small contractors or freelancers will need efforts to mark their presence in the industry. To make sure contractors keep moving on the right path, we went through the essential tips to generate the estimates. Professionally-looking estimates would make sure their business accounts never go dry.
These estimate generating steps will reduce most of their workload and help them in creating error-proof estimates. Concluding this edition of the blog, hope we have covered all necessary points related to generating estimates.