The job description of a construction estimator requires cost estimates to be made on construction projects using a variety of factors. The estimates can be made on residential, commercial, industrial or municipal building projects.
A construction estimator uses expertise gleaned from working in the industry along with construction plans to estimate necessary expenditures and devise a budget.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities of a Construction Estimator
•Prepares bids and cost estimates that address every part of a building project.
•Helps keep building projects within the client’s budget limitations.
•Oversees financing on a building project.
•Makes sure that all cost estimates submitted by a contractor are as accurate as possible.
•Examines buildings that are in poor condition to determine the costs of repairs.
•Works with surveyors to estimate the types and amounts of materials needed to complete the construction job.
•Estimates the cost of equipment needed for a job.
•Maintains constant contact with site managers and engineers to estimate the duration of a project.
•Estimates costs of inclement weather and unforeseen events.
•Calculates the total cost of building projects.
•Consults with experts to get advice on difficult cost estimations.
•Estimates labor costs for a project.
•Evaluates the cost effectiveness of a product’s use and makes changes where necessary to improve overall cost effectiveness.
•Develops complete budgets and plans for projects.
•Tracks all costs from the inception of the building project to its conclusion.
•Re-figures cost estimates when necessary.
•Submits customized reports to clients.
•Offers advice to contractors as to whether or not it is cost effective to try different materials or products.
Required Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
•Must have strong math and science skills.
•Must be detail oriented.
•Excellent analytical and critical thinking skills.
•Knowledge of how to read ad comprehend blueprints.
•Knowledge of the complex workings of plumbing, electrical, ventilation, heating and air conditioning systems.
•Good interpersonal skills.
•Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
•Must be able to work effectively as a member of a team.
•Must have strong computer skills, especially knowledge of spread sheets.
•Knowledge of how to use file transfer programs to send large drawing files to contractors.
•Knowledge of how to use complex project management software and construction scheduling software.
Education and Experience
•Bachelor’s degree in Architecture, Engineering or Construction Management.
•Knowledge of construction processes and building science.
•Master’s degree in Architecture or Engineering.
•Certified Cost Consultant or CCC credentials.
•Experience working in the construction industry.
•Certification through the Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering.
•Certification through the Society of Cost Estimating and Analysis.
•Certification from the American Society of Professional Estimators or ASPE.
•Time is spent in an office environment.
•Time is spent at construction job sites.
•Must be able to travel to locations to meet with clients.
•Must be prepared to wear a hard hat, work boots and goggles at potentially dangerous job sites.
•Must be able to work in high pressure situations facing strict deadlines.
•Salaries range from $40,000 to $80,000 depending on the level of experience and years of service.