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Best Practices for Quoting a Project

The Reach of Your Quote

A potential client is reviewing your quote for information that will help them determine which contractor is providing the best value for their hard-earned money. If you are a contractor looking for more work, your response to a project listing in the form of a quote/bid is your best chance to make a lasting first impression and ultimately win more work. A quote is your chance to communicate all the key points that set your business out from the competition. An effective quote requires more than just a low bid.

The Strategic Approach

Project Motives

Project listings often include wording that emphasizes touch points important to the client. Review the listing looking for project criteria that is important to the client.

Hint: it is not always the lowest bid.

Example: I am looking for pricing for a hardwood flooring repair in my kitchen that I need completed as soon as possible.

This sounds like an urgent repair job. The client may award this project to the contractor that can get their first rather than the lowest bidder. Focus your quote on these touch points and provide an answer to the project motives.

Provide Options

Sometimes project listings are missing details that make providing a competitive quote difficult and risky. In these situations, adding contingency dollars to inflate your quote is not going to help you win the project. Think outside the box! A few helpful tips

  • If dimensions are missing – provide a quote based on units (ie. $/m2)
  • If materials aren’t specified – provide pricing options (ie. premium, midgrade, economy)
  • If the scope is not clear – provide an hourly rate for your time
  • And most effective option – provide a few options to save money or reduce the duration of the project


Forward Thinking

Set your quote up for a call back! Include wording that will entice the client to take the next step and give you a call back:

“Please contact us to find out more about additional discounts available”

“We provide free renovation advice before you get started. Contact us today!”

“I have a crew free next week. Call us back today to reserve your spot. “

Less is More

Attaching additional pages of terms and conditions, waivers and disclaimers can be intimidating to clients and give the impression your business is not open to negotiate. Keep your quote simple. Focus on the critical information that will set your business apart from the competition (ie dollar amount, schedule, duration, scope, and assumptions). Leave the contract negotiations for later.

The Big Picture

Taking time to provide a quote tailored to your potential client will pay dividends and get you more work. Review the project listing carefully and provide solutions for the client in your quote. Your quote is a key marketing and communication tool. Make your company stand out amongst the rest! Get started and review our exclusive project listings now!