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How Does A Quantity Takeoff Work in Construction?

The quantity takeoff process is used when estimating construction costs and pricing data. Managers of complex construction projects have to organize all the information about the physical materials on the project so they can estimate and manage the team. In order to successfully manage a project from concept to completion, you need accurate Quantity Takeoff Services.

Quantity Takeoff Services: What is it?

A Quantity Takeoff process makes it easier for manufacturers to make large quantities of products quickly and efficiently. The QTS process can speed up the market launch of a new product and improve its quality. In addition to saving cash on labor and materials, Quantity Takeoff can also save you cash on overhead.

A clear understanding between manufacturers and suppliers is needed for QTS to work. It’s important that the supplier knows what the manufacturer needs to produce the product, and the manufacturer can meet those requirements. In order to keep up with the rapid production demand, QTS needs a good logistical network.

Modern manufacturing relies on QTS, which often works alongside other production strategies like just-in-time delivery and component manufacturing. When you want to improve your manufacturing process or increase production, consider quantity takeoff.

Why Quantity Takeoff Services Are Important:

Takeoffs are one of your most important services. You don’t just want to fill orders; you also want to keep your customers happy and make sure they get their work on time. 

That’s why you need a Quality Takeoff Service that can meet your needs. We’ll talk about what makes a good quantity takeoff service in this blog post. 

A Quantity Takeoff Types

Quantity takeoffs are sometimes called cost-estimating takeoffs, material takeoffs, material quantities, material surveys, or construction takeoffs. Basically, it’s estimating the cost based on the materials. Concrete, steel, stone, and drywall are all examples of materials.

Large businesses can draft more complicated projects thanks to advanced computer software. Material estimates also need to be more accurate because of this capacity. There’s been a fundamental problem with the building industry for a long time.

The use of computers and database analytics has changed the way construction is done. The late 1980s was the beginning of the CAD modeling revolution. With the rapid development of these systems, they got more sophisticated and complex. Computerized models of buildings were being integrated with digital takeoffs in a relatively short time.

Takeoffs: How to Do It

Detailed estimates begin with a quantity takeoff, as we’ve already mentioned. It is part of the takeoff preparation process for the estimator to break down the design shown on drawings into work items or activities that correspond to the tasks that the contractor will need to complete. 

Takeoff starts with these steps:

Defining the scope of the takeoff:

When an estimator works on something, he should thoroughly answer the question “What needs to be removed or measured?” by study plans and specs. Rather than guessing or making assumptions, the estimator should ask the architect or owner if any details are unclear.

You need to measure each item:

In the next step, the estimator should measure each item without scaling drawings unless necessary, using the dimensions from the plans and specifications. Scaled dimensions shouldn’t be relied upon by estimators since sizes change during design phases, resulting in out-of-scale drawings.

Quantities to record:

After finding the items, an estimator makes detailed notes as to what sheet they are on and where they are located in the building. So, the final step is to record quantities by including drawing numbers, detail numbers, and grid references. 

Larger projects require a more comprehensive strategy to manage the sheer volume of items to count and measure. A good estimator divides a big project into smaller, easier-to-manage parts, and then considers each part in turn. Estimators break up big projects into manageable pieces depending on their type. You can categorize high-rise projects by floor or group of floors. There are some projects that can be broken up into zones, phases, or even different buildings.

A Quantity Takeoff Includes What?

The process of performing a quantity or manual takeoff takes sharp observation skills, patience, and practice. So, using surveying skills, you can make accurate project cost estimates based on actual material quantities and pricing estimates. For the best construction project within budget restrictions, material data needs to be estimated perfectly. Moreover, there are some companies that hire highly trained specialists to make sure they’re optimized.

Here’s a handy list of items that go into any good quantity takeoff.

Count of total units

It’s important to have an accurate unit count before the project launches. With this number, you can estimate building costs. Interior items like pipe fittings and light fixtures are examples. Divide the total unit count by the unit price to get the gross total.


Steel, pipes, and lumber have to be measured all the way across. The length works best when it comes to estimating the cost of these materials since they’re almost never priced in units.

Measuring surface area

Another way to estimate material costs is to look at the total surface area. There’s no way to price roof bidding materials and stone surfaces. Multiply the surface area by the width of linear-length drywall to get its value.

Measurements in three dimensions

Using cubic volume, we can measure materials on three-dimensional surfaces. When taking off concrete and insulation materials, you can measure them in cubic volume.

Quantity Takeoffs: Who Needs Them?

Quantity takeoffs are a must for everyone involved with the front end of a build. There’s no tail-end qualifier for material takeoffs. So, a realistic contract is based on accurate material and financial information, and they’re the first step in the bidding process.

No matter how big or small your project is, you have to figure out how much it’s going to cost and how much stuff you’ll need. The same goes for single-family houses and larger subdivisions with complex earthworks, utilities, roads, and integrated above-ground structures. So, taking off materials, figuring out what you can work with, and predicting the price are the first steps.

You don’t just need quantity takeoffs for architects, engineers, and construction managers. Building anything requires material calculations and price estimates, no matter what industry you’re in. Material takeoffs need to be done by these people:

  • Designers of smart cities and urban master plans
  • Architects for tunnels and subways
  • Builders and renovators of residential homes
  • Engineers who work on trains and metros
  • Architects for offshore and marine
  • Landscape architects and landscapers
  • Engineers for highways and roads
  • The general contractor and the construction manager
  • Contractors in energy and utilities
  • Mechanics, structural engineers, and civil engineers
  • Building designers and architects
  • Quantity Takeoff Services


Taking a quantity takeoff service prior to starting a construction project is imperative for understanding its overall scope and budget before beginning it. 


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