How Do You Do A Material Takeoff In Construction

In a construction project, many important tasks are done before executing it. Material takeoff is one of them. You might have heard about different types of estimations like electrical, mechanical and so on, similarly, material takeoff is also as important as estimation.

Moreover, material takeoff estimator is also known as quantity takeoff estimator, construction takeoff, and sometimes just takeoff.

Material takeoff is referred to the details and quantities of the materials required for the completion of a particular project. This helps to know the cost estimation for the materials required during construction.

Therefore, in this article, we will discuss construction material takeoff in detail. So, stay connected till the end to know all the details regarding material takeoff.

What does a material takeoff contain?

It may sound simple, but preparing material takeoffs can be complex.  The construction material takeoff plays a vital role in the cost estimation of a project, so it is not neglected. As mentioned above, the construction material takeoff comprises two steps; quantities of all the materials required in a construction scheme, and the cost of those materials.

Quantification of materials:

in a material takeoff project, the quantity of the material required is recorded. For instance, in an electrical takeoff, all the electrical power items and appliances are taken into consideration as to what all items will be required. Wires, bulbs, sockets, buttons, and many more things are noted. Similarly, in a plumbing estimate, the items related to this category are prepared.

The information is prepared in the form of drawings, blueprints, agricultural drawings, etc.

The quantification of the materials is done according to the size of the project. A larger project will require more items and a smaller one will need fewer.   

These are the four types of materials that are taken into consideration while a construction takeoff:

  • There are these items that are just ordered depending on their count and model, like doors, hinges, windows, etc.
  • Some materials are quantified keeping into consideration their length, these materials are lumber, piping, wires, ducts, etc. These types of materials are ordered carefully by providing accurate lengths and widths.
  • Then some important materials are specified using volume. Asphalt, concrete, and liquids used during construction are examples.
  • Lastly, some of the materials required for a certain project are quantified using the area. Tiles, marble, flooring, and roofing are finalized using the area.

Point to be noted:

When someone asks about how to do the material takeoff, he must keep in mind that apart from the quantification and the details mentioned above the weight must also be considered. This is because, during the shipping of certain materials, shipping cost fluctuates due to the weight of the cargo.

Next, you must pay attention to the description of the materials. It must be added to material takeoff so that the shipment received is accurate according to the requirement of the contractor.

Cost of materials:

This is the next aspect of material takeoff after its quantification. This part is more time-consuming as the person responsible for takeoff will calculate the cost of each type of material and then prepare the total cost estimation.

Preparing the aggregate material cost requires excellent judgment and critical thinking. An ideal estimator knows when and where to markup the material cost, as it is beneficial in case of an increase in the material costs, and the project remains profitable.

 These are a few ways that are adopted by different estimators to determine the cost for material takeoff:

  • Firstly, some estimators get bids from different material suppliers. This method is adopted usually during large projects.
  • Secondly, some estimators determine the material cost by drawing a database filled with the cost of some common materials. This technique is adopted by those contractors who are aware of the prices as they work usually with the same material suppliers due to their work with the same materials. Therefore, they are well aware that their rates match the real-world market.
  • Lastly, a construction material cost database like RS Means is used to determine the cost. It consists of nationwide averages.

Material takeoff plays a vital role in the detailed construction cost estimation, therefore, it requires accuracy and precision. Hence, digital takeoffs are more beneficial in terms of accuracy than manual material takeoffs. So, if someone asks you how to calculate a material takeoff, let them know that a digital takeoff is a better idea.

Most Popular

To Top