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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How many of ya'll have been estimating construction work. Me.. I've been estimating for over 20 years in the construction trades everything from small clean-outs to the $125 million Deutsche Bank demo in NYC.

I'm getting very short tempered when National desk jockey's deny my bid saying...that is not within our "Standard Pricing" or "Are you sure... I don't see that in the photo's". I get to thinking...Am I losing my mind here. :blink:

When they shoot back their denial of my bid... an tell me where I should be... I find myself going over the particulars again...wasting time, and coming up with the same figures. Then I get hacked-off an email them back an request a price breakdown of their price...of course I never get it... an it's beginning to drive me mad.

Any words of wisdom from the learned ones.
 
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Give up is my best advise. I know your frustration and decided to move "on down the road". It doesn't matter what estimating software you use (Xactimate, Simsol, Craftsman Blue Book) since they will not hear anything that doesn't fit "their pricing parameters".

If you are "GOOD" at estimating than you can "write your own" ticket in the real world. I know guys that are begging for good estimators that can use any of the above named software programs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
FremontREO said:
Give up is my best advise. I know your frustration and decided to move "on down the road". It doesn't matter what estimating software you use (Xactimate, Simsol, Craftsman Blue Book) since they will not hear anything that doesn't fit "their pricing parameters".

If you are "GOOD" at estimating than you can "write your own" ticket in the real world. I know guys that are begging for good estimators that can use any of the above named software programs.
In Enviro & demo I always' used my own created Excel spreadsheets an customize'em to the Spec's of the work. I've done the full-time estimating/project mgmt gig, Although it is a lot less stress-full, you do lose the independence of working for yourself... decisions...decisions...
Thanks a bunch...
 
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Yeah I can understand the independence thing BUT if I told you a career field that is always looking for good/great estimaters and you are independent to come/go as you please and charge a great pay rate would you be interested? LOL its out there. You are in a field that has a big need for good estimators.
 

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Most of my estimating experience is Septic systems and municipal sewer and water as well as dirt work. Biggest project i have bid was 120K. That said, I'm the take it or leave it type person. If they don't like my bid, i don't give a damn. I can go broke sitting at home. It just takes longer.......
 

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FremontREO said:
OH Jeez my buddy MtMtnMn.... We all know you love those sewers :)
Smells like money!!!! Actually i like designing residential septics. Interesting work and when people can flush they are VERY grateful.......:clap:
 

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Estimating

I get a kick out of the "price is excessive please reduce". What is excessive to one if fine with another. Had one bid where I told them 4 or 5 times that I was not reducing the bid. Kept getting emails, "price is excessive, reduce".
I finally said NO I WILL NOT. I think they got the hint.
 

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brm1109 said:
I get a kick out of the "price is excessive please reduce". What is excessive to one if fine with another. Had one bid where I told them 4 or 5 times that I was not reducing the bid. Kept getting emails, "price is excessive, reduce".
I finally said NO I WILL NOT. I think they got the hint.



Fremont told me to cut it a penny.
After the third or fourth time they usually leave you alone.
 

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JFMURPHY, you said you had 20 years of estimating experience. Don't you think that it probably more than most of those people have been alive?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
GTX63 said:
JFMURPHY, you said you had 20 years of estimating experience. Don't you think that it probably more than most of those people have been alive?
I think that's the point... They have their "cue cards" an if it doesn't fall within the parameters on the cards... decline the bid an insistant manner that I'm trying to gouge someone. .
I know what I want to make on a job, an if my bids not the lowest, just tell me I'm not the lowest an move on. I've lost many a bid in my time, it's almost like "O/H & Profit" are a dirty words.
 

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The gouging is usually on the end of the National my friend.
I had one that wanted us to bid a garage repaint. Paint scrape, prime, prep and paint. Seems like it was around 1K. They came back with the old, "Your bid is above industry standards and has been reduced to $400" baloney. I quit getting mad over that stuff it happened so much. We always just re'd back and said the bid is no longer ours and is invalid. Anyway, the broker calls us a few days later wanting a bid to do the same work at the same property. Guess what? We got the bid approved thru him. Who do you think was gouging?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
GTX63 said:
The gouging is usually on the end of the National my friend.
I had one that wanted us to bid a garage repaint. Paint scrape, prime, prep and paint. Seems like it was around 1K. They came back with the old, "Your bid is above industry standards and has been reduced to $400" baloney. I quit getting mad over that stuff it happened so much. We always just re'd back and said the bid is no longer ours and is invalid. Anyway, the broker calls us a few days later wanting a bid to do the same work at the same property. Guess what? We got the bid approved thru him. Who do you think was gouging?
LOL.. good for you. But the words "above the Industry standard", Who the hell are they to tell you that... That is what gets my goat.
For me the industry standard is what the market will bear.
They dam sure don't tell ahh "your a little low on this"
 

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Some Nationals, like FAS, would call us and try and coach us on our bids. What to write, how to write it, what specific language or wording, etc. That was irritating. Others, like Safeguard...why even bother me with a bid request? They would rewrite and price it to suit them. I emailed the woman (phone is no good) the first time it happened over a large estimate and told them that no one outside of myself had any authority to alter a bid made on our company letterhead. If they submitted that bid in my name, it would be considered fraud and I would be referring the matter to my attorney. The rep called me right away stuttering and stammering and claiming it wasn't her; she was just doing what Safeguard was telling her to do.
Yes, stick to your guns and move on if they don't like it. They may cut the price but they never cut the expectations.
 

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GTX63 said:
Some Nationals, like FAS, would call us and try and coach us on our bids. What to write, how to write it, what specific language or wording, etc. That was irritating. Others, like Safeguard...why even bother me with a bid request? They would rewrite and price it to suit them. I emailed the woman (phone is no good) the first time it happened over a large estimate and told them that no one outside of myself had any authority to alter a bid made on our company letterhead. If they submitted that bid in my name, it would be considered fraud and I would be referring the matter to my attorney. The rep called me right away stuttering and stammering and claiming it wasn't her; she was just doing what Safeguard was telling her to do.
Yes, stick to your guns and move on if they don't like it. They may cut the price but they never cut the expectations.




Actually for them to coach your bids is breaking the sub contractor veil if you will.
Then you become an employee.


Ask Fremont.
 
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Don't ask Fremont! I'm still fuming.

Wait till HUD or Fannie calls you direct over "confusing bids" and you state that "my bid is copywrited and cannot be changed"..... Funny how the language is all twisted and the prices increased 2-3X in some cases AFTER you submit your bid.

In the end its called FRAUD on us TAXPAYERS!

Every Service Company should be sued from the Govt for this fraud but never seems to happen. Wonder how the lobbying groups are doing?
 

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We still have the emails from Five Brothers requesting that we submit a 2nd bid, slight larger or smaller, to compete against the bid we already submitted. I couldn't believe they were willing do put something like that in writing. I guess I should have set up a dummy company to be prepared for shenanigans like that. :no:
 

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GTX63 said:
We still have the emails from Five Brothers requesting that we submit a 2nd bid, slight larger or smaller, to compete against the bid we already submitted. I couldn't believe they were willing do put something like that in writing. I guess I should have set up a dummy company to be prepared for shenanigans like that. :no:
What do they call it? A "True Second Bid"? I get those requests too.......
 
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