Estimation Software Beats the Guesswork

By: Terryfitzroy
Computers are easy to use and can perform the most complicated mathematical processes in a split second. No matter how computer illiterate you are, if you are going to build a house, you had better get estimation software and crunch the numbers before you lose your shirt. This means you need to learn how to use a spreadsheet, and although that might scare you a bit, don't stop reading this until you have thought about the huge amount of time you will certainly save.

Before computers became as popular and accessible as they are today, finding an estimate for equipment or a job meant countless time researching individual prices in a book. The costs associated with getting the new edition of that book every year made the whole process cost even more and meant relearning how to use the book. Such difficulties no longer trouble even the most ill-informed consumers, as long as they use an estimation program.

With estimation software, the investment of time to plan and research is cut down from the hours in books to how long it takes to turn on your computer and click your mouse about 5 or 6 times. In addition, the amount of information available to you through such programs and the internet is infinitely larger than anything in a printed book.

Estimation software comes with a great bunch of resources. The prices of material are often kept up to date via the internet so it will save you the time of digging it up yourself. Even though the rates and fees associated with manual labor can vary greatly, the software will give you a good idea of what is a fair price and allow you to budget accordingly. These rates are usually based per hour per laborer.

So if the rate is twenty dollars per hour and there are three workers on site for four hours, the software will automatically calculate that you will need to spend two hundred and forty dollars for labor that day. The software will save all of this information and compile it in a spreadsheet that is easy to read and correctly connected to the other items in your budget.

These types of programs will also help you calculate quantities that are exclusively related to your project and store it in one organized place for your access. The calculators that are built-in also have the rate included which saves a lot of time and confusion.
Estimation software also reminds you to include permits, inspections, and other bureaucratic expenses into the budget so nothing catches you by surprise at the last second. Do not fall into the trap of thinking you will save money by using a pencil and paper. Major projects involve way too much money to trust your own hand, and paper is much more difficult to recover once lost than it is to retrieve the file you save with your estimation program.

Remember that the more time you spend preparing, the more money the project is costing you. Once you figure in the time you will save by using estimation software and the money you will save by having that time available, using an estimate program becomes a no-brainer.
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