Bidding Cost Data

What is the best source of bid item cost?

Good to Know...

Cost Update

Why We Do Not Update Pricebook Data Each Year?

Other estimating software companies may update Craftsman data each year and for a few estimators that may be what you think or believe you need. However over the years the majority of our EasyEst Estimating Software users, this is NOT the case (see reasoning below).

The main and only reason we do not update our Craftsman PriceBooks is because of EasyEst flexibility and feature rich design. This fact makes it unnecessary.

When you purchase any of our Craftsman data sets we supply you with a PDF version of the current years pricing books. So if you want or need to add newly added sections or improved types of materials you can simply add those items to our data.

Data for all types of work

Why one of our free pricebooks should work for you

We do update labor rates with the current years rates (most production rates are unchanged). Material costs are linked to our Cost and Adjustment tables. Using your own actual material cost are much more accurate than someones opinion of your areas average cost.

For your reference and in case you may occasionally need a cost for an item, we include along with your purchase of  any of our NCE costing data, a current year copy of the Craftsman cost data in PDF format.


Estimating Any Size Construction Project…

Estimating any size construction project may seem very straight forward. Material, labor, and subcontractor cost and maybe some equipment and miscellaneous items such as plans permits etc. Most of us pretty much have the above or a similar concept of the estimating process.

Lets look at each one of the factors above. How about the cost of your material? How much time should it take for labor to perform each task to complete a job. You may even add some money for warranties if something gets broken or some subs work is defective. Not to mention your own cost to keep the doors open. But unless you are fortunate enough to do mostly negotiated jobs you have a big problem and it has very little to do with the accuracy of your estimates.


A few more thoughts…

  • If you are relying on RS Means , Craftsman, or any other pricing and labor productive rate you also have a problem and that is the only cost that has any bearing on ending with a profit, is what your actual cost were.
  • You pay all your job relating bills and that is your cost not some prices you get from estimating software. I think you will agree that is self evident to most of us.
  • So what really is this big problem you ask (some of you may have guessed what it is) Here it is, you make a huge assumption that all the competitive bids for the work you are bidding on are interpreting the job requirements exactly the same as you are, really? So since this is highly unlikely this is your problem.
  • Now back to the cost you are using for your estimate. Since the only costs that are important for making a profit are your cost. So what’s the answer….? Having the estimating system that has the functions you need to maintain and adjust the total bid dollars. We think EasyEst is the right system for that.

Other Facts To Consider…

Oh I have not shared with you a most important fact that needs to be understood by every company. Unless you sub everything out and most important you hold all subs bids for the job you will have to absorb the hundreds of variables that exist on any job site (Keep in mind) job sites are not factory controlled environments so there will be (not might) time and waste factors even if you do the exact same structure two or more times on different job sites, conditions and material delivered shortages or defects not to mention your labor efficiency variations from day to day.

Some activities or cost centers will be over budget and some hopefully under budget so in the real world most of the time things have a mysterious way of averaging out so your bottom line will be OK. Some jobs will be more profitable or less of a loss to balance out over a period of time.


Requires EasyEst installed to use.

FREE sets of Price Book data for most contractors, you will need to update all cost and you can customize any or all items to fit your needs.

Prime Contractors

For information you can preview - if you have EasyEst, download to install.



GC Commercial


Home Builder


Tenant Improvement


Pricebook template

No Preview





Requires EasyEst installed to use.

FREE sets of Price Book data for most contractors, you will need to update all cost and you can customize any or all items to fit your needs.

Subcontractor trade

Important! - All the pricebooks below are set up for the specific trades - All areas and activities in these pricebooks are included in the Contractor pricebooks in the section above.

Drywall-Metal Frame


Low Voltage




Framing Lumber Takeoff


Craftsman National Cost Book data

NCE PriceBooks – $74 ea.

(click the Preview links below to view included items)

Craftsman NCE Commercial Contractor

Craftsman NCE Home Improvement

Craftsman NCE Residential Contractor

Craftsman NCE Renovation & Insurance Repair

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