In this last chapter of my series, it is possible to obtain a total material and labor cost. These should be enough to cover each item of cost, but not any more than is necessary, because every item should be priced as if the contractor wanted the job very much. If the contractor wants of "fatten up" his bid, he should put it in the overhead and profit, where he can tell at a glance, if he can cut his bid, and how much he can cut it.
Next add on state taxes, if they apply. In some states the sales tax is on material only; in other states the tax is on material and labor, and still other states have a direct income tax applied on the gross amount of the work. Insurance and taxes on labor is another item that is sometimes carelessly applied. In some offices, this includes welfare, pension, and other items paid on direct labor, otherwise known as "fringe benefits." Once a total material and labor job cost has been determined, office overhead and profit should be added onto the recap sheet.
The discussion of reinforcing steel and mesh in concrete work has been left until now because reinforcing is generally handled as a sub-contract. As such, it does not belong in the material and labor columns with insurance, taxes, overhead, and profit added to the sub-contract price. The sub-contract cost of reinforcing steel and wire mesh should be added only after a bid price of the concrete work with overhead and profit included has been reached. A percentage of the sub-contract cost should also be added of overhead and profit for handling the sub-contract work.
Finally, it is most important to be extremely careful when submitting a bid proposal. To protect yourself, give not only the name of the job, but the architect's name, the section of the specifications, the drawing numbers for which the estimator worked and their dates and any addenda that may have come through. Always list any exceptions to the specifications by noting these as items that are "included" or "not included." However, the less exceptions made in a bid, the more help it is to the person to whom the bid is submitted.
All concrete estimates should end with a cost check per cubic yard of concrete in place. By dividing the bid price by the cubic yards of concrete needed, the average cost per cubic yard of concrete for a job can be determined. This is the last check that can be made on an estimate, before submitting a bid that will determine the profit or loss on what may be a future job.