How long does it take to prepare an estimate?

At SUA Construction we have the capability of turning around an in-house historical ballpark estimate within five days. Typically, our approach is to analyze the bid documents; determine the most appropriate and qualified subcontractors for the project; send the documents to them with a two week deadline for bid submissions; review their pricing and scope of work; then tabulate a final estimate for our client. This process typically takes a total of three weeks to complete.

What is “value engineering”?

Value engineering(VE) is a contractor’s effort to provide cost savings, possible time savings, to a project by suggesting alternate, but equal, methods, building materials, and scheduling procedures, while maintaining the original design intent.

At SUA Construction the five phases of VE  investigation, speculation, evaluation, development, and presentation are used to guide us through the process. Value engineering formulates the solutions into recommendations and those valid recommendations are then implemented into the construction design.

How can SUA Construction help with the preconstruction process and what is involved with that process?

The preconstruction process generally involves:

Plan Evaluation – SUA Construction will work with the architect and engineers to coordinate the system and methods being proposed by the design team. We will use our expertise and experience, and those of our subcontractors, to recommend the systems and methods used to meet the overall requirements of the Owner for initial cost and life expectancy.

Site Evaluation – SUA Construction will work with the engineer to coordinate the site development plans to ensure the most economical methods, materials, and systems are used for the site preparation, utilities, and landscaping for the project. This evaluation includes analysis to determine if the project can start sooner by the proper coordination of the site development and the vertical buildings.

Preliminary Budgets – SUA Construction will supply the Owner with budget pricing, based on conceptual estimates, using square footage and historical unit costs. Preliminary estimates are usually accurate to +/- 10% after conceptual plans are complete and allow the Owner to make intelligent decisions on how to proceed and the level of quality he can expect for the budgeted price with the design drawings.

Preliminary Schedules – SUA Construction will work with the architect, engineers, proposed subcontractors, and will use its own experience to create a preliminary schedule for the entire project. These schedules would include the time involved in preparing working drawings, necessary approvals, and the actual construction process.

General Conditions – SUA Construction will submit a cost breakout of on-site general conditions The general conditions are billed as a direct job expense. These costs include: on-site supervision, temporary facilities, communication expenses, equipment rentals, and miscellaneous costs associated with on-site management.

Final Budgets – SUA Construction will submit to the owner a final budget in which it is willing to contract for on a fixed contract amount. These budgets will include prices on individual line items and will include prices from three to five subcontractors, when available.

Final Schedule – SUA Construction will fumish the Owner with a set of construction schedules. These schedules will define all the activities necessary for the building of the project and the sequence in which they will occur This is the schedule which details all the activities from the start of the project to the final punch list.

Subcontractor Evaluation and Recommendations – SUA Construction will submit to the Owner recommendations on the three lowest bid and qualified subcontractors on each budget line item. Although it is the intention of SUA Construction to use the lowest priced subcontractor, we will research and identify whether subcontractors have financial, manpower, or quality problems and would be unable to complete the project in a timely manner. If this is the case, the next highest subcontractor will be recommended.

These, as well as some other services, are some of the Preconstruction Services provided by SUA Construction. Upon successful completion of the Preconstruction Phase, your project is on its way to a successful Construction Phase, as well.

What is a negotiated bid?

A negotiated construction project occurs when an owner selects a contractor prior to the completion of the working drawings. The contractor, architect and owner work together as a team to create a set of drawings to be submitted for permitting. The contractors fee is typically established in advance of the contractor and owner finalizing the contract. The general contractor then solicits competitive subcontractor bids and provides a complete estimate with backup, including the subcontractor bids combined with cost-of-work (general conditions) provided directly by the general contractor. The contractor then adds the agreed upon fee and the total of all these costs become the contract amount.

What is a competitive bid?

Competitive bidding occurs when an Owner contracts with an architect to produce a full set of working drawings (permit ready) then solicits two or more to provide bids. The general contractors review the plans and submit a lump-sum proposal to build the project in accordance to the plans and specifications provided by the architect.

What is the difference between a negotiated bid and a competitive bid?

Within the negotiated bid process, the relationship between the owner, architect and contractor is one of cooperation and trust. The contractor is part of the team and works with the architect to identify any errors or omissions which may occur with the development of the working drawings. These include items such as: making sure the structural plans match the architectural plans; assisting the architect in making the most economical decisions for product selections/specifications based on the owners intended use and life-cycle costs; providing actual conceptual estimates before the entire set of working drawings are complete. Within a competitive bid process, the contractor is under no obligation to provide any information other than a price on the plans and specifications as drawn by the architect. The experience and knowledge of the contractor are not utilized to the advantage of the Owner.

What is included in the contractors fee?

Contractors fee consists of overhead-type items such as, contractors main office, telephones, utility expenses, computers, staff employed at the main office, project accounting, salary of company officers/owners, etc. and contractors profit.

What is a payment and performance bond?

A payment and performance bond is a guarantee from a third-party  usually an insurance company  that the contractor will complete the project and pay all the bills pertaining to and procured during (and under) the contractors contract. If an Owner requires or desires a payment and performance bond, they will pay the premium for the guarantee.

What do I need to do to become a subcontractor for SUA Construction?

You can register by referring to our Subcontractors page. Just supply all the requested information and click the Submit button. Once we determine you meet the requirements, we will forward bid documents to your company as appropriate. SUA Construction subcontractor performance is rated by our project managers after project completion.