I got a call in the other day from a young guy just getting started. It was very apparent that he expected to make “millions” in this business of residential remodeling. He wanted me to teach him how to do estimating “easily”. That, he claimed was the only thing that he didn’t know about this business. He had the rest down pat. “Which works best”, he asked, “Pricing by the square foot or lineal foot?” He also told me that he was going to be a paper contractor and never strap on a tool belt.
Bless his heart, he has a goal and enough interest to get right after it. Howsomeever my friends, if you have read here a while, you probably already know what I told him. What would you have said?
When I told him that his markup should probably be at least 1.55, he almost choked. This was after he told me that he and a former employer had been selling 8 of every 10 leads they went on. He said the reason the former employer quit the business was because of too much stress. No kidding. Stress gets pretty bad when you can’t pay your bills. I’m pretty sure the former employer never told him the financial status of the company before he quit.
There is no free lunch. And it’s not easy. You have to study this business from the ground up. If you want to become an expert estimator, you need to know how to do the work. Getting quotes from subs and suppliers will carry you just so far. Our Profitable Estimating training class will go a long way in teaching you how to building good, accurate estimates for your business, but you need a foundation in knowing how jobs go together.