Construction/Remodeling Estimate Software

Hi Everyone,

I hope everybody enjoys the holidays and getting ready for the New Year.

Does enyone know of a good software which can help estimate remodeling and construction costs? It doesn’t have to be really advanced. What I’m looking for is average costs for various projects. Thanks!

We tried to build one last year but the problem was the huge differences in costs depending on area. Compare NYC with Toledo and you could see a difference by a factor of 5.

If you OVER quote the price of repairs, the realtor and seller can file a complaint that you killed the deal and thus caused them damage If you UNDER quote, the client may come back at you for letting them buy the house under the pretence that the repairs would not cost that much. How do you figure the cost for all the unknown factors that may be discovered once the invasive process is underway? We are doing inspections and not doing cost analysis. Be careful.

You are right McKenna…we are doing inspections and not cost analysis but I wonder about this every time I do an inspection. I have called local contractors to ask what their estimates would be on certain repairs but I hope to start getting busy enough to not have time for that. I too was wondering what everyone else does???

James Duehning
OSCPA Lic #663

Actually, the reason why I’m looking for some sort of general cost analysis software is to help my commercial investors do capital planning for their multi-unit buildings and other commercial properties. We ARE allowed to do that under ASTM standards. Also, the standards seem to protect an inspector too, as long as you disclose that actual costs can deviate from the analysis.

This is pretty much the standard:

The most I do is provide names & #s of contractors, & not even much of that anymore. I want to be completely out of the liability chain.

They are forking over thousands to an RE agent, let them “help” the clients!!

That site provides estimates @ $30/day.

So you don’t even give ranges? I would love to not have the worry of them coming back at me about an incorrect estimate. Did it take your realtors a while to get used to the idea? Seems like mine are always looking at the repair estimate amount to see if it is “over or under” the repair allowance amount in the purchase contract?

You got your own realtors???:stuck_out_tongue: :stuck_out_tongue:

Oh man do I wish!!!

Some states (PA comes to mind) prohibit (by law) home inspectors from giving estimates (even if they are not doing the work themselves). In PA I think you can give a range for repair costs (whatever that means). I guess you could say that “correcting this defect would cost between $2,643.13 and $2,643.15” and you would be legal in PA :roll: . Like I’ve said before, we should never allow legislators to author laws.


It seem strange to me a Realtor would even ask you to provide your clients with a range of repair-replacement estimates.

I don’t remember any Realtor ever asking, clients have of course, but I just give the names of three reputable contractors to the client for the particular issue that needs correcting if asked.

I have been in the building business most of my life and I still would not give anyone a price, there are way to many factors to get involved in when doing so.

Like the roof covering needs to be replaced, but the area has a vaulted ceiling without an attic and you cannot see the roof sheathing, so naturally you would not have any idea how much sheathing might be needed besides replacing the shingles, etc, until the shingles are removed, as one example.

So it would be a real gamble to give any repair estimates even in a ballpark range, the difference in reality could be significant.

Just my opinion anyway.

Alright… you’ve talked me into building an online estimator so that members can simply point their agents and clients to the site. I think that would be legal in all 50 states but I’m checking now.

Dale - I always look for your opinions and I always learn…mushy, mushy, I know but everyone has an opinion on how to do things and sometimes it is hard to weed out the bad ones!

I find these to be useful.

Of course it is an extra charge to supply a cost estimate for a commercial project.

That would be a good idea Nick … To keep us out of the issue-questions anyway…simply say here…look at this if you want, but don’t take it as gospel regarding the exact costs that’s for sure.

Say in your report I’m simply offering this site to look at and I have nothing to do with it personally…sue Nick if things don’t pan-out…:smiley: :smiley: :smiley:

Hmmm, great idea! That would be a great tool that I would use on every inspection and take a load off my mind.

OK then, I’ll build one. Staff is going to hang me when I tell about this project.

Actually, you can sign up for yearly packages from $150-$400. Well worth it for some folks, especially those doing commercial work.