The Right Way to Prepare A Quotation for A Plumbing Project
If you have got sufficient work experience, then you will very well be able to determine how much time you will need for a residential plumbing project and what materials you will require for the same. Industry standards can also tell you a lot about such requirements. But these two are not the only ways to find out the time and material requirements for a project, there are several other factors that you can consider.
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Remember, quoting Residential Plumbing Projects is no child’s play. And if you have always found it hard to put together an estimate, then the following tips will immensely help you. Before you start writing the estimate, these are the most important things that you must consider:
Table of Contents
1. Finance and Profit
Before setting a rate for your services, there are two things that you must keep in mind:
- How much you are going to spend from your own pocket?
- How do you wish to remain competitive in the market?
Remember, these two things are not the same. If you choose to focus entirely on how much cash you will eventually shell out for the project, you will probably quote a high price. But then if you want to stay relevant and in the game beating the market competition, then you will also have to think about offering price economy to your customers.
Time can also be a good criterion on the basis of which to make your quotations. You can do some research and find out how much time each variety of plumbing project requires and then set a standard for it. For example, you can tell your client that you will need 5 hours for installing a new tub in their bathroom and that it’s a standard. But for that, you will have to have a calculated per-hour rate in place, which will make it easy for you as well as your client to calculate the cost of their project.
Now, this rate can be calculated backwards. Wondering how? Well, first find out how much money you need to make in a week in order to meet all your business expenses and also to have profits. Once you are done with that, calculate how much time to complete your projects (after subtracting hours you spend doing administrative work and interacting with clients and your staff). Once you have both figures at hand, you will be able to find out how much price you need to charge for an hour of work that you do.
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3. Site Visit
Never make the mistake of offering a plumbing quotation before actually visiting the site of the project and examining the general condition of the site, the state of the pipes and any other nitty-gritty involved. That means, even if it is a simple project wherein you need to install a bathtub, there might be issues at the client’s site that need to be addressed first. In fact, without doing this work, you won’t even be able to start your project. This might simply increase your load, and in turn, the cost of the project.
4. Nature of the Job
The nature of the project can also be a determining factor. For instance, for a scheduled job where you have got access to pipes and other materials, you might just do fine with an hourly rate. But in case it’s an emergency call to you to an aged building with probably its basement filled with water and pipes galvanized, you will have to estimate the cost of this project a little more elaborately, as it is certainly going to be a higher expense.
It is extremely important to have a clear-cut conversation with your clients about all expenses. Tell them what’s not included in your quotation. And also tell them that any unforeseen work that arises at the site of the project might add to the original quotation. Yes, you might choose to do such additional work free of cost if that’s part of some business strategy. But in case such extra work is not under any free offering by your company, you will have to be quite clear about it to your client. You will have to let them know that it is they who pay all the expenses for such unforeseen tasks arising at the site of their project.
In a lot of cases, when such things are not clearly communicated to the client, they make a fuss later about not being informed about any unprojected additional cost. Although you might get your money post arguments and pester, the reputation of your company might slowly dip owing to such bitter experiences witnessed by your clients. This is definitely not healthy for your business.
So, never hesitate to talk about things. And the best time to do so is before setting about a project. This is the point when you as well as your client can decide to deny working with the other following price disagreements. When price issues arise after the completion of a project, things almost always go horribly wrong.
We are not talking about simple fixtures and installations; we are talking about factors that a lot of plumbers forget to take into account while framing a quotation. The expenses being talked about here are actually the ones that require the hardest of labor and most of your time. If you ignore to factor them in, you will lose a lot of money unnecessarily.
Correcting plumbing code violations that are existing at the site, removing debris, and removing or replacing piping that is deteriorating could all hamper the progress of your current project. Also, these are expenses that are often overlooked by plumbers while preparing a quotation.
Further, don’t forget to count the expenses that arise when you accidentally damage the owner’s property. The bottom line is that preparing a quotation for a plumbing project is not as easy as it appears from the surface. It involves a detailed examination of the site and some obvious and not-so-obvious factors.
Only when you have thoroughly checked all expenditure possibilities, you are able to come up with a quotation which will not just be reasonable for your client but will also be profitable to your small plumbing business. If you find estimating costs difficult, you can also use a Plumbing Job Cost Estimator for convenience.
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