Estimating in Construction – Part V (Cost Drivers and Application Principles)

Minimum Bottom Line Profit Should Average 9.4%!
For Trades & Subcontractors, at Least 11%
After Income Taxes Are Paid!

The core tenet of an estimate is that each is unique. This uniqueness is driven by hard costs of construction. There are five distinct hard cost drivers in every estimate. Each cost driver has different application principles (introduced in this lesson), different sources of value and final markup formulas to determine the final estimated hard cost. The five distinct cost drivers are 1) materials, 2) subcontracted services, 3) equipment application, 4) labor and 5) intangible expenditures. Parts VI through X explain each of these cost drivers in-depth and how to properly source the value, determine final markup amounts and derive a final hard cost of construction.

Each type of cost (driver) has principles of application, i.e. thought processes an estimator must consider. Some of the principles are common among all five types of costs. Others may be unique to just that particular cost driver. This lesson introduces these five cost drivers and the various application principles involved with each driver.

Estimating – Materials

Probably the most common cost with all estimates are materials. It is rare for any project to not have materials as one

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