New powerful estimating service from Ecomerchant

*NEW Learn about our Free 'Price the Plan' consultations at the end of this article*

Recently we compiled a list of the top 5 things that keep self-builders awake at night? We did this by asking our customers to list their most pressing concerns from which we created the top 5. Unsurprisingly almost all those asked came up with the same concerns…..they were

  1. How do I know if a quote is realistic
  2. How do I know if I can trust what a contractor is telling me
  3. I worry the project will go over-budget
  4. I am worried that I am being overcharged
  5. I have no idea how long this should take

ConfusedThese concerns and anxieties are based around control, or lack of it. For most, self-build is a unique experience, and the learning curve started steeply and could become as steep as you wanted. Many apprehensions relate to trust, trusting yourself, trusting what you read or research on the internet, trusting a so called expert and so it goes on. The end result for some was a type of paralysis where the whole project just sits there seemingly waiting for something to happen. The simplest things like working out a budget for some become a tangled mess; ask yourself, could you work out your budget now, and would you trust the answer? After all you are the one paying.

Trying to work out the cost and time of any home improvement is a huge challenge. The final amount will depend on many factors that you may not even have thought about. The size of the project, the amount of work you intend to do yourself if (if any?) the method of construction and the type and availability of materials are all factors. Did you know that it is also more expensive to build in some areas of the UK than others?

building_performanceAlso, the final build quality has to be taken into account, you will no doubt wish to get more than one quote so how do you compare?  – Who do you trust to give you an accurate price for the work and, of course, deliver the quality you want?

What if knew EXACTLY how much each part of the build should cost; both labour and materials, and HOW LONG it should actually take?

Wouldn’t it be good if you had all this information to hand in an easy to use straightforward way? Well now you can so when you speak to a builder, tradesman, contractor, or receive an estimate you now have a comprehensive detailed estimate for all aspects of your build cost calculated by industry leading experts with many years’ experience of getting it right. With this report, detailing the costs and timings based on your architect’s drawings, everything becomes much less stressful…. Now you will know

  • exactly how much is a realistic price
  • all the variable costs to hand if you want to up-grade any of the materials
  • You have a document you can trust that tells you how long each part of the build should take AND how much it should cost in both materials and labour!
  • AND a schedule of payments!


Our estimators offer an invaluable cost-effective service that answers all the issues for home-owners accurately and quickly but more importantly one that they can trust! Then the benefits are immense from saving time and in some cases THOUSANDS OF POUNDS which can come from not understanding how much you should realistically be paying!


Why are we so confident in our estimating?

We at Ecomerchant have been supplying self builders since 1998 and we have all been self builders ourselves, but the real strength comes with our partnership with HBXL market leader in developing estimating and building project software. The estimates produced by the HBXL Estimating Service use tried and trusted Estimator Xpress software to create an independent estimate of exactly how much your new home will cost to build; it gives a detailed breakdown using live building materials prices (including our complete range of materials) and average labour rates for any type of residential construction including non-standard details.

The difference over pretty much all other services is our attention to detail and time spent on your project. Our estimators allow days per estimate (not hours) ensuring that nothing is rushed or missed, you even have the opportunity to chat to them over the phone. The result - a much more thorough and accurate estimate.

Begin to give yourself peace of mind now, call us to book a free one-to-one “Price the Plan” consultation, it takes around 30 minutes, it can be done over the phone or face to face at our office at the National Self Build and Renovation Centre in Swindon. The consultation will help you create your own outline project plan; identify the types, indicative performance and quantities of materials you will need and the times you will need them.  There is no obligation to buy from Ecomerchant but you must have planning permission and supply scale plans to book your place.  This is a great chance to make sure you sleep soundly during your project so email your plans to and let us know when you would like your consultation.

If you would like to view a sample report please email  to request a copy.


We have up to 30 slots for Price the Plan consultations at the upcoming Big Green Home Show at the National Self Build and Renovation Centre this October.  Places book up fast so if you would like to meet with us to discuss your project call now to reserve your place.

BGHS 2015

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