Quick question: How do you know you’re charging the right amount for materials? You might think you’ve got a good idea… And maybe you think you’re pretty good at keeping tabs of any shifts in prices, on a general level…?
But do you know for definite, the current price of timber? How about sand? I’m talking about the prices of those things this month! The answer, if you’re being honest, is surely “no”.
HBXL as a company has over 20 years’ experience of monitoring material prices, and in the last 10 years we’ve estimated billions of pounds of projects through the HBXL Estimating Service. That’s why we’re in the position to help you stay on top of prices.
MATERIAL PRICES – THE KEY TAKEAWAYS
- Tracking material prices accurately is difficult and time-consuming.
- It’s crucial to be accurate with your initial quote.
- Usually, 40-45% of a quote is the materials, so you can’t afford to guess.
- There are 100s of products you need on a job
- Who’s got the time to research the latest prices every time you quote?
- The team at HBXL make time every month – we research on your behalf.
One common approach is to be cautious and overcharge the customer for materials. The danger of doing this is that you probably lost work at some point. There’s a chance that your over-priced still won you the job, but can you really afford to leave things to chance? Undercharge and your profit is eroded.
We all know the world’s markets are volatile at the moment. The knock-on effects are that the prices of products and services are changing all the time. This means the current price of materials needs checking regularly, otherwise you could be completely shooting yourself in the foot!
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Material costs creep up every month. We update the price of 6000+ materials every month – this is why your estimates benefit from Price Tracker+. This handy tool is part of EstimatorXpress software which is used by our professional estimators.
The current prices of building materials are typically going up 0.7% every month. For example, materials costing £100,000 when you quoted, will cost £4304.11 more after six months – possibly before you’ve even started the job. And £8731.07 in total a year on from when you originally quoted.
Thanks to HBXL’s Price Tracker+ tool, you know that your estimate will be up-to-date.
If you know the job won’t start for six months or more, then chat to us and we can use our inflation tool to reflect the most likely cost come the start date.
ARE YOU HELPING TO FUND YOUR CUSTOMERS’ PROJECTS?!
HBXL provides a service which prevents this being possible – at no extra cost!
When jobs overlap, materials become difficult to monitor and can end up on the next job. However, if your profits at the end of the financial are lower than you thought, it’s only at that point when you’d start to question it. However, it’s too late!
It’s a tough job tracking the current prices of building materials. The reasons behind materials rising and falling in price can relate to factors such as supply and demand, issues with raw materials, labour shortages, transportation problems, rising energy prices, economic instability – the list goes on…
HOW DO WE RESEARCH THE MATERIAL PRICES?
There’s not a secret source of prices that only we have access to – we just spend the time that we know our software users don’t have. Our price researchers use websites and spreadsheets that anyone can look at, and painstakingly record the numbers. So unless you’re able to scan and record thousands of costs (and make sense of them!) it’s surely too big a job for an individual builder, owner or estimator to do on their own.
Here’s how it works:
- A range of public facing ‘real buy’ prices are sourced
- Multiple builders merchants websites are scanned
- Specialist suppliers are monitored
- Manufacturer’s spreadsheets are downloaded – comparisons are made
- Artificially cheap products (like seasonal sales and random discounts) are ‘sense checked’
- There’s lots of manual checking as well – reviewing unders and overs
- Errors where merchants have used Inc VAT instead of Ex VAT are weeded out
- Timber and steel are priced by the lengths you’ll need – we work out a per cubic price and per tonne price
- Using algorithms we arrive at sensible conclusions and finalise the prices
- And then they’re loaded into our unique Price Tracker+ tool for our professional estimators to access
- Subscribers to EstimatorXpress automatically get the monthly price updates
- EstimatorXpress perpetual licence holders receive an in-date Support & Updates package
If you want the support of experienced professionals on your projects, then HBXL’s Estimating Service is for you!
We can stop you spending hours of your own precious time going through the estimating process. And because, as you’ve just read, we estimate using only the latest prices, you know they’re going to be accurate.
So, call our team today on 0117 916 7894 to talk through your options. If you’re ready to, you can upload your plans to us through our website. There are no commitments to be made by requesting a price for completing the estimate.
So, stop guessing at the current prices, and start letting us do the job properly for you!