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How to Estimate Concrete Costs for Residential and Commercial projects

How to Estimate Concrete Costs for Residential and Commercial projects

Concrete work holds maximum weightage both in terms of quantity and cost for residential and commercial projects. When preparing a project estimate, calculating concrete cost accurately should be your top-most priority. The estimated concrete cost depends on the workforce you have hired, the cost of materials and machinery.

Furthermore, the concrete estimating depends on many other variables like surface preparation, formwork, finish work, reinforcing materials and the approximate cost of the ready-mix concrete. Costs vary from location to location or from project to project. You can learn more about concrete estimation and take-offs on different blogs.

Two facets of concrete cost estimate

  1. The first one is the quantity takeoff.
  2. The second one is the pricing schedule. 

Remember that a quantity takeoff of all concrete items is assumed to be first step in preparing cost estimates.

Factors affecting the Cost of Concrete

Factors that impact the cost of concrete are mentioned below:

Material Costs and shipping charges

Costs of materials directly impacts the total cost of concrete. Moreover, the associated shipping charges affect the cost concrete whether you have been pursuing for residential/commercial construction project.

Labor Rates

The labor rates determine what the final cost of concrete will come out to be. The local labor rates remain specified by the state.

Work Site Conditions

The work site conditions decide the cost of concrete. For example, poor soil quality, wetlands, environmental and traffic issues increase the concrete and overall project cost.

Estimated cost to install concrete slab

It is generally seen that concrete slab installation cost goes a minimum of $7 per square foot for a 4″ thickness. Or it can go as high as $11 per sq. ft. for a 6″ slab that comes with thicker edges and wire mesh. Besides, if you feel like adding radiant heat and grading to the sub-bases, the cost will definitely go further up.

Cost of concrete slab installation can even go higher if you wish to add up extra reinforcement because the soil condition looks extremely poor. Putting structural reinforcing metal into the concrete foundation with rebar or wire mesh increases the cost. 

The final concrete cost installation price is decided depending on the slab thickness and whether you have strengthened the slab rebar or mesh wire.

Concrete retaining wall estimated cost

To install a poured concrete retaining wall, its estimated cost goes in this manner:

concrete-made retaining wall cost in between $60 to $270 per linear foot for 3 inches to 6 inches tall walls. 

Bonus tip: The total cost is determined by considering the wall-finish type, excavation depth, drainage mechanism as well as backfill options. It is commonly seen that retaining walls remain packed with French drains at their bases.

Concrete Pool Estimated Cost

The approximate concrete pool cost lies somewhere between $79 to $180 per sq. ft if you have gone for prefab models. On the other hand, it is $120 to $310 per sq. ft. if you have opted for custom models.  The final price is calculated based on the pool design, whether the design is built off-site or on-site and what type of concrete you have used.

Estimating a Concrete Takeoff

There is a specific way to estimate a concrete takeoff:

Reviewing the whole project plan for two to three times is a must. This way, you can accurately calculate the materials and labor needed for the project. It is in four steps that you can error-freely complete the concrete takeoff task.

Step 1: Estimating Materials Cost

Estimating the cost of concrete materials need a methodical approach! Here you have to precisely analyze measurements and quantities. Calculate one item at a time and then move to the next one. Note every piece of mesh wire, rebar and similar materials.

Step 2:  Estimating Labor Cost

Once you have carefully planned how much materials you need, the next step is to estimate labor that how much long they will take to complete the respective project.

When calculating the labor cost, it is always recommended to take into account both union and non-union wage rates, shift differentials and overtime factor. It is somewhat assumed that an average worker can finish 300 to 320 square feet of concrete work in a single day.

Step 3:  Determining the Overhead Cost

Overhead costs are not related to labor, direct materials and production. These are the costs linked with running office, upkeep and advertising expenses.

Step 4: Calculating Profitability

The last step is calculating profitability! Calculate what the overall margin you will get at the end of the day. It usually like between 2% to 10% in the construction industry.

We hope that this beginner-friendly guide have given you sufficient knowledge on estimating concrete cost without any hassle.

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