I am having to get into pricing out residential homes and I haven't a clue on how too do it. Is it better to charge 2.2 per linear square foot or by the piece. I am going to try to trim for myself and If anyone could help me with this or point me in the right direction I would greatly appreciate it and thanks for looking at my thread
There are a few ways to figure out the cost. You'll have to be within a range of estimates that other bidders give, or have a good justification for why you are higher. Likewise, some projects you may not get because your price may seem too low in relation to other bidders, which may be taken as your work could be inferior...and you certainly don't want that.
I like getting jobs when my price is on the high side. I believe a full explanation of what is involved will impress a client as to your experience and honesty. Lets face it, you've got to sound believable.
If you were using 2.2 as a constant multiplier, that seems to me to be on the low side. I figure costs based on my actual materials costs. Those can be from my making all the trim from solid stock, or just buying it. I figure amounts with a plus factor of at least 25% or more. You don't want to run out in the middle of a wall.
Finished wood moulding I carry out finished. So, the cost of that would be figured from the start. I also charge for what gets carried out, which includes the overage.
Other factors affecting costs are any difficulties, like high work, or a lot of angle sections. Some jobs require two men, so figure the cost of a helper if it applies. So, think about what tools and equipment you may need.
Along with your costs on the material, a factor of 3x may not always cover your time. I doubt you can get T&M, and if you did, you could lose money even if you stood around whistling for a while.
You have to balance out how to figure. No matter what your materials costs are figure that initially. If you make it and finish it, or just buy it. Take the lineal footage of the installation and divide it out to see what the $/LN Ft are. Do the multiplication of the constant factor. If it's 3, see if the amount for the job will cover you for the materials and whatever time you will put in. The time is the other factor as it can take longer than you think.
If the total seems like it's profitable, use that factor. Or, you could itemize like a line item billing, for labor, materials, overhead, and profit. Those figures could come right from your constant factoring amount (but broken down). Some clients are a bit leery about a linear foot price, so explaining how you derived the cost may make them comfortable in writing you a check.