Whether you’re designing a new home or remodeling an existing one, you should definitely consider using a spreadsheet when working on your plans. You may be surprised by how simple it is to get a general idea of the costs and time involved in constructing a home.
This article will introduce the concept of estimating and discuss some of the advantages of doing so through spreadsheets. An estimator can work with you in a very constructive way that will help ensure your project stays within budget.
One of the biggest advantages of working on a spreadsheet is that you don’t have to spend hours on the phone trying to find a cost estimator who can accommodate your estimate. You can enter data as required and create a budget based on the data entered. From there, you can receive your final estimate in a matter of minutes.
If you are already utilizing an estimating service, then you’ll have a starting point to work from. The model works very similarly to a spreadsheet but gives you total costs at the end of the project. Rather than using a spreadsheet to create a budget, it uses an estimated expenditure for the project and then adjusts it based on cost estimates from the other contractors involved. Working from this model is easier because it gives you an overall total figure as opposed to just a budget.
You may find that the estimates provided by your estimator will be lower than the actual costs, so you can reduce the number of bids you accept. But you must note that the total cost will be adjusted accordingly in order to keep the estimate within budget. Remember that the budget and the final cost will be different. The only difference will be in the adjustments that need to be made based on the amount of money you spent on the project.
An estimator is not capable of doing the research that is necessary to know exactly what the final cost of a project will be. A spreadsheet makes it easy to see the work that needs to be done in the project. In this way, you can determine exactly what you want to do and if it’s within your budget. It allows you to make adjustments quickly so that you can stay within budget.
There is another advantage of working with a spreadsheet to create the final estimate. The final total will show you every dollar that you spent on the project and each dollar that you were able to save as a result of your project. This is important information that can allow you to ask for the savings to be passed on to you in a variety of ways.
Using an estimating spreadsheet allows you to have a clearer picture of what your budget will be and you can adjust it accordingly. For those who don’t have an estimator, a spreadsheet is the easiest way to get an overall estimate of the project.