Why Per Foot Pricing is a Bad Fit for Pipe Lining Jobs

There are often too many variables at play for a per foot method to be a reliable way to price jobs

Why Per Foot Pricing is a Bad Fit for Pipe Lining Jobs

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“How much per foot should I charge for a lining or coating job? I have a restaurant that wants me to coat 20 feet of pipe and then coat a grease trap. I’m just not sure what to add for the grease trap. Should I just add it to the footage price?”

While we’ve used per foot pricing as a rule of thumb for many jobs, I’ve always been a believer in determining costs to arrive at a price for a job.

For years, builders used a per square foot price for constructing a house when the furnishings and trims were all pretty much the same. As trim options started to come into play, the per square foot price didn’t work so well anymore.

It’s the same with lining and coating jobs. We’re seeing more diverse applications and elements of risk and access. With these factors the per foot pricing doesn’t fit anymore.

Let’s price the job this way:

  • Estimate the amount of time you will need to travel to and from the job site.
  • How many people will you need for the job?
  • How long will the actual work take?
  • Will you need specialized equipment to execute the work? If yes, what does it cost?
  • Figure the cost of consumable materials including cleaning equipment, liner, resin, and any other items you may use for this job and not reuse for other work.
  • Add in overhead costs like insurance, office expenses, etc. that are part of the cost of doing business.
  • Finally, what amount do you need for profit from the job?

The first few times this exercise can be cumbersome, but if you go through it, you will find it lets you sleep at night knowing you have covered all of your costs.

About the Author

John Heisler is the owner of Pipe Lining Supply and Quik-Lining Systems. He has more than 20 years of experience in the CIPP lining industry and 40-plus years in the underground construction industry.


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