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Discussion Starter #1
I’ve been on the site for a few weeks and appreciate the wealth of knowledge and experience here. As I stated in my intro I would like to get into the “paint for pay” business soon. Obviously I have a lot of interest and questions regarding estimating. I’m a little confused when I see estimates based on FLOOR sq. footage? To me this doesn’t take into account any variables such as linear feet of moldings, quantity and types of windows and doors. height of walls, number of individual rooms etc,……. Seems like one could lose his shirt! Shouldn’t a painting estimate be based on just that – painted surface? Why do it except to get a wild ballpark figure quickly? I guess such an estimate could be close if based on a whole lot of experience with a certain type of job but it seems scary to me.

Dave
 

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Scary isn't the word for it, some of us are always trying to re invent the wheel, a SF floor price saves some time, and if your shooting basic construction, you can round out a good number with minimal damages at the least. It's the old saying "whats your time worth?"

Bob
 

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well i can explain the advantages of it from the builders perspective. personally I dont deal anymore with painters that want to try and line item everything out. its not that they arent worth every penny or good at what they do. Its about service and ease of use. i can get quotes from 4 guys and instantly see what the cost is going to be. It makes it easier to estimate jobs for new home when all i have to do is look up the square foot cost and bam i am done. granted the cost per square foot may increase depending on # of walls complexity height etc. so the painters always see the drawings. but even then i have found it does not fluxuate by more than 10 cents oer square foot for the average home. Most of my subs now bid in a cost per square foor framers are 2.50 a covered foot. painters are 1.45 a liveable foot. hvac is 2.50 a square foot. in the end i can crank out an estimate for a standard house in about 20 minutes which makes my customers happy as they can quickly see the cost and its almost instant gratification.
 

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roadgrime said:
well i can explain the advantages of it from the builders perspective. personally I dont deal anymore with painters that want to try and line item everything out. its not that they arent worth every penny or good at what they do. Its about service and ease of use. i can get quotes from 4 guys and instantly see what the cost is going to be. It makes it easier to estimate jobs for new home when all i have to do is look up the square foot cost and bam i am done. granted the cost per square foot may increase depending on # of walls complexity height etc. so the painters always see the drawings. but even then i have found it does not fluxuate by more than 10 cents oer square foot for the average home. Most of my subs now bid in a cost per square foor framers are 2.50 a covered foot. painters are 1.45 a liveable foot. hvac is 2.50 a square foot. in the end i can crank out an estimate for a standard house in about 20 minutes which makes my customers happy as they can quickly see the cost and its almost instant gratification.


So what does it cost to build a home per square foot?

Jim Bunton
 

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painters are 1.45 a liveable foot.
Liveable foot meaning floor feet? 3000 sq ft @ 1.45 So a painter is expected to paint a new home int/ext for $4350.00??!! Average crew size lets say 4 painters. Lets say the crew can complete the home in 160 man hours (doubtful). Assume the guys are getting $10.00 hrly. That's $1600.00 payroll. Matierials...$1000. Taxes...$300 (or more)...not to mention non specific job cost/overhead. We're down to $1450, and that isn't including matching SS,or any overhead averaged into this job. No wonder I don't want to do new work. You need to hang on to painters that are willing to give away their time. :Thumbs:
 

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Floor square foot estimating should be no different than any other estimate. You figure your time, materials, burdens, O&P, etc.. If the builder wants a square foot price then divide it by the sf of the house. A job should never be estimated at a floor square foot price - if it's painting, roofing, or the whole house. Divide it out later if someone really wants it.

paintr56 - between $45 and the sky's the limit. I figure too much below 45 and it's a garage. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
OK, I can see a contractor getting a price from a painting sub and dividing it by the square ft and coming up with a per sq. figure but thats not really estimating by sq. ft. With the sq. ft. method you would expect to paint a 15 x 10 two story foyer with four entrances, palladian window and a wrap around staircase for the same price as a 10 x 15 bedroom with an 8' ceiling and a 1 door and 1 window. At some point someone had to look at the actual job and crunch the #'S. With familiararity(ie, same model house) there can be some sort of baseline but once you take variables into consideration is it still a sq. ft. price? Would you quote a job per sq. ft. over the phone with no description, sight unseen, firm price?

Dave

( again, I'm talking re-paints, with every job different)
 

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That's what I'm saying
A job should never be estimated at a floor square foot price
there's no such thing as a floor area square foot price for everything.. other than maybe floor sheathing that's anywhere near accurate. I'm saying estimate every job as it's own job... then if somebody wants the sf price for that job divide it out for them. It's just taking a true estimate of all variables and divide by sf.
IMO - unless you have years and years of historic data to come up with your sf price covering jobs with blank walls and no trim to your 2 story foyer with 4 entrances.. you won't get an accurate estimate. But I would still say it's the wrong way to go about it.
 

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I don't agree Hatch, there a lot projects that I use a SF price on, however from time to time, or when I feel a pinch, I break them down to check my roll.

Point counter point, "roll" of pennys at times.

Bob
 

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I agreed with your first post Glass - "shooting basic construction, you can round out a good number with minimal damages". And for the occassional small job - I might throw a rough estimate out at a square foot price - but nothing that I was relying on for making money, or more than likely losing money.
 
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