Bid on Remodeling Jobs

As a contractor or carpenter, you often bid on remodeling jobs. There are many factors to consider, but the most important thing to remember is that you want to please your client. Your bid should reflect the changes and additions to his home or office that he hopes to make as a result of your work. Perhaps, even more important, is that your bid be accurate. In order to create the remodel your client desires, he needs to know what the remodeling job will cost and what he can expect for his money.


  1. Get credit references from your client if you have not worked for him before. It's only smart business to ensure that your client has the means to pay you for your work. Asking for bank references is certainly not out of line, especially if the remodeling job is significant. Additionally, if you discover that your potential client has a history of dragging out payments, you may wish to decline bidding.
  2. Analyze the job to see if it will make you a profit. Do a walk-through with the client and review his expectations. Concentrate on the details of the job. If they are considerable or extra demanding, this might not be a job you want to bid on due to the extra time and attention it will take. If access to the area is limited or difficult or your working conditions are not desirable, you might be better off choosing not to bid on the project.
  3. Ask the client for any drawings or plans for the project, if they are available. If they are not, carefully interview the client about the remodeling job and all aspects that she hopes to receive as a result. This will help to clear up any misunderstandings later.
  4. Create a list of all supplies needed for the remodeling job. This would include drywall, lumber, fixtures, wiring, etc. Figure the costs for all supplies.
  5. Calculate the entire cost of the remodeling job by figuring in labor cost, permit application fees and sub-contractors' fees. A sub-contractor might be used for concrete, electrical or plumbing work.
  6. Write your bid proposal with all information including costs, material take-off, expenses and labor. It's always a good idea to increase your labor costs by 5 to 10 percent. This helps to cover any unforeseen problems. Your bid should also include contact information for you, payment requirements, an expiration date for the bid, and any exclusions for the bid. Your proposal functions much like a contract when accepted by the client.
  7. Proof the bid for any errors or omissions. Make two copies. Put one in your files, and give one to the client.
  8. Sit down with the client when you give her the bid and review what it includes. This will help the client understand the bid and will help you find an errors, if there are any. Any errors should be corrected immediately, and the client should be provided with a new bid as soon as possible.

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