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© 2018 Copyright Key Media and Research All rights reserved. 
No reproduction of any type without expressed written permission.

Dealer
News
FOCUS ON DEALERS
36
MATERIAL COSTS
A Look at Cost Estimating and
Construction Cost Trends
E
stimating the cost of a project
takes more than just experience.
In-depth construction cost data
can give the industry the tools needed
to predict how much a project will cost.
Construction data company Gordian
recently held a seminar about construc
-
tion cost trends in 2018, and how the
data is configured.
According to director of engineering
Bob Mewis, material, labor equipment
and productivity all factor into the
company’s creation of a unit price line
item, or the cost of construction-relat
-
ed materials and services. Reasons for
material cost change include availabil
-
ity, location and time of year.
Natural disasters, such as hurricanes,
can also have an impact on pricing.
“Katrina taught us several lessons
about the impact of material prices
and wage rates paid. It takes time for
impacts to show. It could be six months
or more before we see some impact. I
would expect to see some impact from
last years major hurricanes in the next
couple of months, but the extent and
what materials or trades, thats hard to
predict,” says Mewis.
Natural disasters could affect con
-
struction labor costs as well. According
to Geni Medeiros, manager of cost
research, there could be a higher
open shop labor shortage, leading
to more overtime and higher labor
costs. Journeymen are under contract
through their respective unions and
will not be affected as much.
As far as changes in construction
cost by location, Richmond, Va., saw
the highest change in construction
costs year-over-year from the 2017 to
2018 data collection periods. West Palm
Beach, Fla., saw the lowest change.
From 2017 to 2018, 71 percent of
cost lines had a price change between
-5 and 5 percent. Twenty-nine percent
of cost lines had a price change of
more than 5 percent.
Wood, doors and windows and fire
suppression are all showing larger cost
increases. However, the price of exteri
-
or doors is the main factor driving the
doors and windows price increase.
y
Door & Window Market www.dwmmag.com
Price Changes
in Construction
Materials
71 percent
of materials and services had a
price increase ranging from -5 percent
to 5 percent from 2017 to 2018.
29 percent
of materials and services
saw price increases of
greater than 5 percent.
Source: RSMeans database of unit price line items.
Many factors can affect costs for construction-related materials and services, says construction data company Gordian.

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© 2018 Copyright Key Media and Research All rights reserved. 
No reproduction of any type without expressed written permission.