Theindependent construction and freelance estimating are emerging as preferred career paths for people who would like to have better control over their workflow and schedules. Such business opportunities as freelance estimating or independent estimating consulting may be very attractive because of the following reasons: In this paper, some of the best advantages of taking this route will be discussed.
This is worth considering for those who want to start a full-time freelance estimating consulting business or simply need some side jobs to help boost other sources of income. This article will provide the top five benefits of engaging in freelance construction and independent estimating ventures.
- Freedom over Schedule and Location
One of the biggest benefits of freelance estimating is that you get to make your own schedule and work from anywhere. However, as an independent estimator, you are not bound by the 9–5 office routine. You can work standard business hours, or you can also do your own thing and make it fit into your lifestyle. In turn, many independent estimators love the possibility of working flexible hours each and every day.
Freelance construction estimating services can be offered even in remote areas with a good Internet connection. It implies that you can work remotely or even travel while working. This great flexibility and freedom as regards the schedule and location is very priceless for many. It results in higher job satisfaction, lower stress, and a much better work-to-life ratio.
- Choose Your Own Projects
Another benefit of independent estimating is the ability to selectively choose which projects to take on. When working for an estimating firm or construction company, you have to estimate the projects you are assigned. As an independent consultant, you can handpick which jobs align with your interests, expertise, pricing needs, and timing preferences.
Carefully screening potential clients and projects allows independent estimators to only work with preferred types of construction. Specializing also helps independent estimators master niche markets to command higher project fees. With the autonomy to build your own client roster, you can pursue only the estimating work you want.
- Higher Earning Potential
Pursuing independent construction and freelance estimating also opens up more lucrative earning potential than traditional employment arrangements. As the sole provider of estimates, independent estimators keep 100% of what they earn per project rather than receiving just a salary or portion of fees. Your income potential is uncapped and directly correlated to your productivity and rates.
Additionally, overheads are much lower without a large company infrastructure to support them. By running a lean remote operation, independent estimators have fewer expenses than a typical estimating firm. You also gain access to the tax write-offs and deductions available to freelancers and independent consultants to boost take-home pay. The combination of higher revenue and lower costs amplifies your profit margins greatly over a salaried estimating position.
- Recession Resilient
Another advantage of independent estimating is that demand remains strong even during economic recessions. Construction projects don’t halt altogether when markets contract. Both private and public sector organizations still need independent estimators to price out project costs and assess feasibility. Many construction companies also turn to freelance or independent consultants to minimize overhead costs internally during tougher times.
- Easy Entry
Finally, getting started as an independent construction estimator or freelance consultant is relatively easy compared to launching other types of businesses. Costs are minimal, mostly limited to professional liability insurance, software and tools, marketing materials, and office equipment. No inventory, retail space, manufacturing equipment, etc. is necessary. The barrier to entry is low.
Additionally, existing experience and contacts in the construction industry can provide a running start. Leveraging past employers, networks, supply partners, and more can help you build an initial client roster faster when going independent. Hands-on estimating expertise also prepares you to immediately deliver professional services of enterprise-grade quality.
- Be your own boss.
One of the best perks of independent estimating is becoming your own boss. You get the freedom to run your freelance business as you see fit without having to answer to a manager or follow orders. As a business owner, you have control over important decisions like your services, prices, workflows, quality standards, etc. You don’t need permission to take time off or have autonomy over daily tasks. This authority, flexibility, and accountability appeal to many independent-minded estimators.
- Build expertise faster.
A benefit for newer estimators is the potential to advance expertise faster as an independent consultant. Salaried estimating roles often relegate you to certain project types and sizes. However, independently choosing a diversity of jobs allows faster exposure to different construction methods, plans, challenges, etc. Taking on small jobs pro bono when starting out also builds a portfolio of experience quickly. The mix of freedom, responsibility, and variety accelerates skill development.
- Be a specialist.
Independent estimating also provides the option to niche down and become a specialist in a certain construction vertical. Specializing allows you to tailor your knowledge, templates, takeoffs, pricing resources, etc. to a specific niche like MEP, civil, structural steel fabrication, etc. You can brand yourself as an expert in a discipline that you’re most passionate about. Many independent estimators find choosing a focus area helps attract the right clientele and command higher project fees.
- Scaling your business
For those that excel as independent estimators, retaining all the profits enables investing back in the business to scale up. You may choose to bring on subcontractor estimators to take on more clients or administrative staff to run operations. This enables taking on bigger, higher-value projects with an elevated brand and reputation. Scaling up as a boutique firm provides income growth potential well beyond just personal estimating efforts. The upside to growing a studio of estimators under your leadership is substantial.
- Work Experience Advantage
Lastly, successful experience as a freelance estimator or construction consulting business owner conveys valuable credentials. The demonstrated business operations expertise and independent accountability make these candidates highly attractive for leadership roles at enterprises. When ready to transition back to traditional employment, independent estimators stand apart.
Independent estimating provides the perfect outlet to monetize construction industry skills with maximum flexibility, earnings, and resilience. As demand grows for freelance and consulting estimating services, now is an opportune time to consider launching your own practice. Companies like Remote Estimation equip independent estimators with state-of-the-art tools, training, support, networks, and resources to ensure success. By aligning with the right partners, independent construction and freelance estimating offer an appealing and lucrative career path worth pursuing.