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Stop Making These Construction Bidding Blunders!

Stop Making These Construction Bidding Blunders!

Mistakes. They happen to everyone. You’ve made some, and you’re bound to make more in the future. It’s just a part of being human. Some blunders are really unfortunate, and paint you in a negative light, while most others are survivable. In the construction industry, the goal of every construction project is precision at every step, but some mistakes are expected. However, those mistakes can be costly, especially to a contractor.

Sadly, a simple mistake could mean the difference between being awarded a job, or having a bid rejected. Even if a customer misses a small error initially, it might come back to bite you later in the process. Here are some of the most common errors when bidding construction and pre-engineered metal building projects.

Math or Clerical

pre-engineered metal buildingYou don’t have to be a mathematician or a Pulitzer Prize winning writer, but your arithmetic and writing need to be solid. These type of errors will make you lose credibility with your customers and it might force you to lose a bid. Double-check your math with a calculator, look over specific quantities and pricing, and proofread your copy several times. Confirm you’re using the correct unit of measurement. You don’t want to offer a price in inches or meters when your customer wants a bid in square footage! Even small math or clerical mistakes have the potential to turn into major costs down the road.

Proof of Licensure

Most invitations to bids require you to prove you have the correct licenses by your city or state. The bidder must show evidence of builder licenses, and possibly even insurance coverage for the project.

Incomplete Pricing

Vagueness might not be the number one killer of construction bids in the industry, but it has earned a place in the Top Five, in my opinion. If there are unclear prices, or vague stipulations in your bid, it will almost always result in a rejected bid. This is especially true of any type of bid to government projects. Detail every price on your proposal in an itemized list. Include prices on material, labor and applicable discounts. Be sure to pay attention to unit prices or lump sums. Cater your proposal to the customer’s needs.

Missed Deadlines

Many bids have a specific date or time by which all proposals are to be submitted. Obviously, a submission after a deadline is subject to rejection. Hate to say it, but if you want to win the bid, get your bid in on time! Remember that time in school when you tried to turn in late work, and your teacher or professor didn’t accept it? Same concept, but now it costs you more than a letter grade. Now it affects your company budget.


pre-engineered metal buildingLeave out the details of your proposal, and you’ll most likely be looking for more work. The actual cost of a project might be a big expense, but how will the materials get to the job site? What about taxes, or permit fees? A purchaser doesn’t want to see added expenses for necessary work on an invoice down the road just because you forgot about it. Think about waste disposal, plumbing costs if applicable, or even the expense of forklifts or cranes to erect a pre-engineered metal building.

Not Including a Pre-engineered metal building on your RFP

One of the biggest construction bidding blunders is not considering a pre-engineered metal building on your request for proposals. This will be what sets you apart from all the other construction bids. Steel buildings offer several advantages and benefits over wood frame and brick and mortar construction. Usually, a steel building is half the cost of those traditional construction methods, and takes have the time to erect. For a contractor, these buildings can be built quickly and efficiently, saving you time while saving your customer money.

Steel buildings also last longer than buildings of traditional construction. A steel building from a reputable building provider will come with 50-year structural warranties, 40-year paint warranties, and 40-year wall panel warranties. Not only are steel structures built with quality, but also your customer has the ability to secure their steel price and avoid unexpected price increases down the road.

Check out the other advantages to a pre-engineered metal building! Talk to your customer, and turn those mistakes into actionable results!

Photo courtesy: jarmoluk, Tony Alter