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Common Construction Estimating Mistakes

Construction estimating

Doing your job with sincerity requires diligence. Not doing it correctly may lead to problems and consequences. This is not an unusual phenomenon. It is prevalent in every job. Construction estimating is one of the most complex jobs in the construction industry. Profit margins are won or lost depending on how excellent and accurate your construction estimates are. You also have to ensure that your calculation must align with your final project costs. No issue will arise if everything goes as planned, even with the contingencies. But if it happens, chances are your construction project will lose money.

It won’t put you out of business, but the losses may cause reprehensible damage. If this trend continues, then you are out for good. Nothing goes as planned. That is for sure. This uncertainty is standard nowadays. Market fluctuations are a crucial factor. However, the main reason is the human element.

Of course, there is always a recourse to artificial technologies to help create construction estimates, but that option might work against us. The truth is that common mistakes lead to issues with construction estimation. By not doing these things, you can finish the job on time and within your financial constraints.

Failure To Visit The Site For Construction Estimating Services

Overlooking the importance of visiting the site is a common indicator that the accurate estimate you promise will probably be wrong. Senior estimators in your team may suggest otherwise. But take it from experience. Unless you visit the site, you have no clue apart from the blueprint and specs you have what the construction project will be. By not visiting the site, you tend to develop a dangerous practice that may cause issues regarding construction estimating. Conducting a site visit allows you to understand the nuances. These include access, proximity, existing structures requiring demolition, and site topography.

Overlooking Costs When Calculating Construction Estimating Services

This is one of the critical factors for accurate construction estimations. You can take a real hit regarding profitability by omitting costs from your estimation. Furthermore, your accuracy is useless since you have yet to do the deed the client paid you to do. You can’t even recoup the losses once the construction begins. That is why it is vital to double-check the work. Luckily, CSI construction estimators do this in abundance. With the help of the senior project manager, all work is double-checked for issues before being handed over to clients. We feel that you deserve what you paid for. Moreover, we communicate everything happening in the construction estimation. This keeps you informed at all times.

Confusing Construction Estimates

Confusing Construction Estimates

This is the most common issue that many clients face. That is why construction estimators need to take their time when calculating costs for the project. By doing this quickly, you paint a dire picture for the client. They are innocent in all of this. You are the experienced one. Commitment to clients should be based on estimates rather than on what the outcome will be. That is why auditing your construction estimates is critical.

Inaccurate Takeoffs For Construction Estimates

Takeoffs are a vital tool for the construction industry. When the construction estimates are in process. The scope of the construction project is determined. This will list all the trades that will be fulfilled to complete the construction project on time. These trades are fulfilled when the client decides to perform a material takeoff of their construction project. These are detailed information on materials, labor, and other elements required.

All this information helps calculate the total costs of the construction project. The best time to take a material takeoff is during the pre-construction phase. You are underestimating the project’s overall costs by having an inaccurate takeoff. This means you are way, of course, with the accurate estimates you have promised. The outcome will be either overestimated or underestimated. You will not be able to recoup the time you have lost.

Failure To Use A Construction Estimating Checklist

The most prominent issue many clients face is that construction estimators must bifurcate their estimates. This issue is common when estimators don’t use an estimating checklist. It gives you an idea of what needs to be estimated first and what needs to be estimated last. Using the checklist gives you an idea of what is left to be done. CSI’s detailed construction estimates include a checklist. Your team should have the direction of what has to be done first. By doing this, you can expect less than zero delays in your construction project.

Ignoring Risks For Construction Estimating

Without risk, there is no challenge. This is, without a shadow of a doubt, the most common mistake that construction estimators make. Risk assessment plays an essential role in the construction industry. Professional estimators who forego this during estimation should not offer services to clients.

It is written on the wall that no adhering risks may cause accidents, delays, fines, emotional trauma, and worse financial hardships. Why would you want to put the client through all this? But the worst is that your reputation as a construction estimating company never recovers. CSI Estimation has contingencies when creating detailed estimates for our clients. We leave nothing to chance and make sure everything runs smoothly.

Ignoring The Impact Of Inflation

Inflation plays an important aspect when it comes to construction estimations. The price of materials and labor is always in flux. That is all dependent on where the construction project is. If the location is cheaper to buy, then the cost of materials and labor will be high as demand is high. However, if the location is expensive to build, then the cost of labor and materials will be adequate.

It is simple mathematics or economics. It would be best if you fully account for construction estimates’ inflation to avoid cost overruns. These will play havoc on your construction estimators. Their work will not be able to paint the correct picture.

Incomplete Requirements For Construction Estimates

Construction Estimates

The construction estimator’s role is to review or assess the blueprint before starting the project. If the estimator doesn’t fulfill the requirement, then the estimation they create will be less accurate. It is wise for construction estimators to fully understand the project’s scope by reviewing blueprints and spec sheets.

Not doing what you are supposed to do can make your life miserable. CSI construction estimating services have a distinct advantage over others. Before taking on the project, we thoroughly assess every document the client provides. So, when the estimates are complete, we have left no stone unturned.


By having zero communication with the client and the team, you risk increasing your chances that your estimation will not hit the market. You also risk bringing your trust score down to zero. It is wise to keep the client in the loop regarding construction estimations. Because, in reality, it is the client’s project, and they are footing the bill for the construction estimation.

For this sole purpose, CSI construction estimators keep the client appraised. Clients should have all the available information to make well-informed decisions. Remember that the construction estimator’s knowledge of specific trades does fall short. Collaboration is critical to completing the construction project without any hitch.

Assumption And Guesswork

Construction estimating is all about assessing factual data to make an informed decision. Construction estimating has no room for assumption, prediction, or guesswork. Any person who intends to do so will not only bring their company’s rep down, but the accurate estimates they promised will not pass.

CSI Estimation believes that this culture is why clients are so unhappy with the results. There is no shortcut to hard work. By using this method, you risk alienating the whole industry. Homeowners will lose faith in construction estimation. If we fail to do the job we are paid for, then we lose focus.

Audits For Construction Estimating Services

By not checking your construction estimates, you risk losing the client. Auditing your construction estimates is one of the main things that CSI Estimation does routinely. We believe that pinpoint precision in estimates is accounted for. Our senior project managers double-check all the work by construction estimators to ensure everything is in tip-top shape.

For us, customer satisfaction and peace of mind go a long way. Construction estimators who do not audit their work will likely lose more than the work. Liability is something you have no resistance to. If you keep making the same mistake, thinking of the same outcome is pure insanity.


The primary purpose of this article is to give you a clear idea of the common mistakes you may encounter when going for construction estimating services. These are serious issues that many forgo to make a quick buck. But not us. CSI Estimation is a market leader in construction estimating services for a reason. Our process is built on success and experience. With a team of highly skilled construction estimators, we can make a difference. Why don’t you reach out to see how good we are at what we do? Currently, we are offering free quotes to our clients. This will soften your stance, and you will want to work with a competent company.


CSI Estimation is a market leader when it comes to construction estimating services. That is why we employ one of the best content managers to curate content that is relevant to the construction industry. Our authors have years of hands on experience and content published on our website is regularly updated. We believe that readers should get the full picture not half glass full.


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