Estimating Fundamentals

If you are interested in residential construction estimating to create bids for your own business, or as a full-time career, this course provides a practical overview of the most important skills you will need to develop.  

Knowledge & Skill Building Areas

  • Appreciate the critical role estimation plays in keeping construction companies financially viable.
  • Interpret construction plans for the purpose of costing
  • Use price lists and electronic spreadsheets to help estimate the costs of major tasks during a residential build
  • Estimate the cost of all work and materials required to construct a specific residence on a specific city lot
  • Incorporate general costs into the overall price of a new build
  • Outline how subcontracts are managed in order to obtain expected performance

Ideal candidates for taking this course are:   Designers, Drafts persons, Estimators, Trades, Suppliers, Support Staff, Purchasing Agents and Management. 

This course is required for the following certifications:  Residential Management,  Master Home Builder and Master Home Renovator.

Delivery methods:

Virtual  classroom

We have carefully constructed this course to provide real time virtual classroom sessions, detailed instructional videos, comprehensive course notes, working examples, case studies, practice tasks, knowledge checks and various discussion topics.

The virtual classroom will involve participation in the online classroom sessions and completing the related individual activities found in the online companion site.  If participants are unable to make one of the virtual classroom sessions, a recording of the session will be made available to review so that you don't fall behind.

Virtual classroom times:  8 sessions held on Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm followed by an online proctored exam booked at the student's convenience.  Participants will have approximately 2 hours of exercises to work on between each classroom session as part of the training.  We strongly recommend booking the proctored exam within one week of completion of the last virtual classroom session.

Traditional classroom course

This instructor-led course involves four days of classroom learning.

Course times:  8:30 am - 4:30 pm

Classroom locations:  This course is delivered by PHBI in Calgary and Edmonton.  Courses can also be held in other centers based on demand.

Exam & passing grade:  The exam for this course is closed book. The passing grade is 70% and 100% attendance is compulsory to qualify for PHBI certification.


For those new to the industry,  Construction Fundamentals or Residential Construction Site Management (RCSM) Level 1 and Plans, Specifications and Drawings must be taken prior to enrolment in this class.  This prior knowledge is necessary as students need to have an understanding of construction terminology and be able to read plans before attending this course.

Participants will also need to have a working knowledge of fundamental math calculations.  We will provide participant with access to a short online math tutorial that will prepare individuals with the math skills they need to know prior to entering the classroom  There is no additional costs associated with the online tutorial.