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- Building Construction Software For Mac Windows 7
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- Construction Takeoff Software For Mac
Performing accurate cost estimating is critical to the success of your construction business. Estimate too high and you win fewer jobs, too low and your profits disappear. That’s why it’s so important to get it right the first time.
All-in-one BIM, 2D drafting, and 3D CAD software for Mac and Windows. With more efficient drafting, easier modeling, faster rendering. Designed for building and construction industries, the home designing platform enables architects to create residential plans & more.
Estimating by hand is time-consuming, so at some point, you may consider using software to bid more jobs in less time. Although software can be a big investment, not every tool has to break the bank.
In this guide, we highlight five free and open source estimating and takeoff products to try if you’re considering this type of solution for your construction business. We chose products that offer a stand-alone free or open source version, meet our definition for construction estimating software, and rank highly in search. (Learn more about how we chose featured products here.)
Here’s what we’ll cover:
- Free construction estimating and takeoff software
- Open source construction estimating and takeoff software
Free construction estimating and takeoff software
In most cases (but not all), free construction estimating and takeoff software options earn revenue by offering a basic free version to entice users to download, with premium features available for a price.
As a result, you should note that the free version of the products listed below may not have all the features you need.
Easy-Pro Builders Estimator
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Overview: This is a 100% free tool that is based entirely on the Apache OpenOffice spreadsheet program Calc. It has two dozen worksheets that report back to a summary page in order to provide updated estimates.
Easy-Pro Builders Estimator was created by a construction manager who wanted to serve smaller construction firms looking for an accurate and simple program that was free.
The software also comes with a 20-page manual so you can get up to speed on how the program works and you’re not simply left in the dark to figure it out yourself.
Some features include:
- Adjustable taxation rates depending on which country you are in
- Client unbilled reporting
- Printable project reports
- Compatible with Windows, Linux
- 24 trade worksheets available
Overview: Estimator 2.0 is aimed at architects, builders, engineers, and construction companies that want to create detailed estimates for residential and commercial buildings. Estimator 2.0 allows users to prepare tenders, a cost abstract, purchase orders, and other documents needed for a proper estimation.
The free program lets you create an estimation and then print it out, ideal for those who are pressed for time and want to quickly make an estimation without having to spend a lot of money on premier software.
Estimator lets construction companies create estimates for a host of construction projects, including concrete structures, earth work, masonry, plastering, and more.
Some features include:
- An extensive tutorial for new users
- Quickly generate an estimate and then print it out
- Prepares tenders, cost abstracts, and purchase orders
- Compatibility with Windows
STACK Takeoff & Estimating Software
Overview: STACK offers free construction software aimed at firms looking to streamline the bid process and accurately estimate materials, equipment, and labor. The software also provides access to an “extensive library of prebuilt, industry-specific material libraries,” according to its website. It generates an estimate based on your input of how much of each material will be needed and what labor, equipment, and overhead will be involved.
The software is cloud-based and therefore can be accessed from anywhere there is an internet connection. It is also compatible with all types of platforms, from smartphones to desktop computers.
STACK also includes training with the software for free. A full-featured version is available for purchase.
Some features include:
- Ability to upload digital plans
- Takeoff tools that provide shortcuts for measurements, making it quicker to produce a takeoff
- Prebuilt reports to provide insights to inform your estimates
- Free training
Open source construction estimating and takeoff software
Mac Construction Michigan
Open source construction estimating and takeoff platforms are also free, but they have an additional wrinkle: the original source code is available. There are some benefits and drawbacks to this you should be aware of.
The benefits are that in addition to being free, you will be able to customize and adapt the software to fit your individual business.
The drawback comes up if you don’t have the know-how to mess with original source code. Lack of technical ability could become a problem if the software needs improvement down the road to fit your firm.
2-plan Team Software
Overview: 2-plan Team is a project management platform geared toward construction firms, and among its three PM tools is an open-source desktop system that can be used for multiple projects and teams. It is mostly meant for managing the entirety of a construction project as opposed to just estimating and takeoff, but there are tools available for that purpose as well.
The source code for 2-plan Team has been published at SourceForge, where you can download it for free. It can be installed on any LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL-4 or higher, PHP-5.1) server, and it may work on some Windows servers.
Some features include:
- Manage virtual teams with shared online workspaces
- View the status of multiple projects at the same time with the Project Dashboard
- Tracks time on mobile devices
- Ability to share estimates and budgets with clients, partners, teams, and staff
- Ability to manage teams via mobile devices
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Overview: ESTIMATE is a cloud-based, open-source option that has been released under GNU Affero General Public License. It’s a community-support project, which means the source code is freely available to anyone who wants to customize it for their own construction firm—ideal for construction managers with a little coding know-how.
ESTIMATE aims to be a simple and fast tool that can be adapted to any firm’s size.
Some features include:
- Ability to archive projects and documents for reference
- Can have up to 200 users
- Can create reports in PDF, complete with tables and charts
- A centralized database for backup
Why you must also consider paid solutions
Free and open source estimating software is a great stepping stone for many small construction firms—especially those using software for the first time. But as job volume increases, paid software often becomes the better choice.
Why? Higher job volume and company growth means more people, processes, and training are necessary to estimate and complete projects. Paid software offers more “out-of-the-box” functionality than free software, as well as training, support, and integration with other critical applications, such as accounting and construction management software.
Fortunately, there are affordable estimating and takeoff products that also offer free trials. With a free trial, you can try before you buy and avoid purchasing a product your team won’t like.
You’ll get more functionality
When you opt for free and open source platforms, you get what you pay for a lot of the time. There are a lot of special features that can really take your business to the next level—like customized reports and detailed time tracking—that you may not get with a free option. So while you may save a few bucks on software, you’re spending a lot more in lost savings and opportunities.
The software will be more usable
Free and open source platforms can also be a lot more challenging for an organization to use. You’ll have to do your own troubleshooting and maintenance, and you may have a hard time just learning the software with no help.
To help ensure your software search is sufficiently thorough, download this list of top-rated paid software systems and their offerings:
3 Best Construction Estimating and Takeoff Systems Backed by User Reviews
Download this guide to see top construction estimating and takeoff systems based on real user reviews.
Oct 13, 2017 System Extension was Blocked, no Allow button, back to square #1. Played around with it a bit and it was exactly the same, not only the extension problem, but Time Machine couldn't connect to my Time Capsule and DMGs started making Finder Crash again. Mac system software from developer sophos was blocked from loading.
How we chose featured products
For the purposes of this article, we classified a product as free if it offers a free, stand-alone version of the software, and it is not just a trial version of the software that requires you to purchase it after a period of time.
The products that met the above criteria were then evaluated against our construction estimating software definition: Construction estimating software helps estimators calculate material and labor costs for a job and then produce a detailed, professional bid proposal from those estimates. Specialized estimating tools are often used to handle trade-specific requirements, such as electrical, HVAC, plumbing, or earthworks/excavating estimating.
We determined the most popular products to feature by choosing those highest ranked in Google search results for “free construction estimating software” during the week of Aug. 5, 2019.
Top 5 architecture software: – There can be various reasons for a person to look for architecture and plan designing software. You may a student of architecture looking to enhance your skills by practising virtually- it saves material as well as money. You may be a layman seeking to chalk out a floor plan for a new house, or simply interested in juxtaposing room positions and walls to get an idea as to how they would look in actuality if built.
Architecture software can be really useful in preventing regretful experiences later when the home has been constructed a wrong way, which is costly as well as a huge headache for the persons the house belongs to. If you are clear about how you want your house to be built, it is less likely that there will be mistakes in construction, and this can only be guaranteed by the use of a good architectural software.
Also see: –Top free animation software for windows PC
For whichever purpose you require architecture software, the internet offers a wide range of such software, and a lot of them come free of cost, which is the most desirable to all of us. This article will list the top 5 free architecture software so all you have to do if you are confused is, pick one of these, and just download it online.
5. DesignWorkshop Lite
This free software offers 3D design for home and floor plans as well as any landscape you wish to see a realistic model of. The interface is really user-friendly and allows features such as elevation, projection, lengthening, zoom in and out, adding names to objects and materials and a visual walkthrough experience for the user. Text messages can be added, and the user is free to make drawings with a virtual pencil. Shapes like circles and rectangles are also available, and so are the cut-copy options. Users are free to import backdrop images in JPG, GIF, PICT and a few other common formats.
This software is not ideal for floor plans, though you can attempt to use it to create one. Users have complained of more than necessary mouse control, and lack of sophisticated designing tools. This software is great for you if you mainly want to view 3D images of a given space, and are not looking for advanced architecture tools. The simple UI is ideal for a user who is not very experienced in editing and designing online.
4. My Virtual Home
This is great software specifically for those who want to envision and plan what their home will look like, as it shows the user an actual rendering of the effect certain type of construction of say, walls, doors, bathrooms; will have on the layout and structure of the home. This software offers highly creative and interactive models of objects, surfaces, materials and also determines what the lighting will look like in different parts of the layout. For those who don’t wish to hire an architect, or just want to get an idea of what they want their home to look like so they can instruct the architect likewise; this software is perfect. Moreover its free of cost and it includes details of material and service suppliers alongside- how to contact them, the rates charged etc- so you don’t have to go hunting for a supplier separately once you’ve selected and liked a material. Not only building supplies, also home decoration and garden supplies are provided.
A drawback of this seemingly perfect software, though, is that it was created to target a vastly Australian audience. So unless you’re staying in Australia, the cost of materials offered, as well as the suppliers, won’t be of any good to you. For the designing purpose, this software is wonderful, but it is not designed to adapt and cater worldwide, so that’s a big con for us.
3. AutoCAD Architecture
This is oriented specifically towards all those budding architects, and the already established architects as well. Filled with advanced tools that every architecture student comes to be familiar with, this software offers precision in detail, easy drafting and creation of designs smoothly. AutoCAD Architecture comes in two versions: free trial and paid. The reason this software features at number 3 on this list is because it offers professional architectural tools, and although the free version is only a trial, any architect or aspiring architect who uses this is guaranteed to fall in love with it- the paid version is then totally worth the one-time expense. Fully compatible with Windows ( both 32 bit and 64 bit), this software is unique in the fact that the drawings you create will demonstrate real life behavior- smooth material displayed as smooth, rougher material shown as grainy, and so on. This is extra cool for the architects out there as they would like to see their creation taking form. Sadly, though, if you don’t want to shell out the minimal price for the full version of this software, this may not be the one for you.
Building Construction Software For Mac Windows 7
This software is quickly gaining popularity among users after Google gave its name to SketchUp. SketchUp comes in various versions such as SketchUp Make and SketchUp Pro- users can choose whichever version they feel suitable to their requirements. SketchUp has faced a lot of criticism for its limitations- that it cannot recognize a shape that is not straight cut like rectangles or circles but has a unique shape of its own; that performance issues slow down the speed and functioning of the software and similar complaints.
But it provides many add-ons and a forum where help is provided freely and timely, not to mention some of the really good features it offers- it is very easy to learn, generates clear 3D images, allows you to take charge of flooring, woodworking, creating additional fixtures such as garage, shed, deck, etc. Every object, surface, and material come with its own unique texture, which is definitely a plus. Lack of accuracy is a problem, but with the developers working hard to fix that, SketchUp should soon become even more popular. Its biggest pro remains till date its user-friendly interface.
This one if free for all students and education-related professionals, and Revit also offers a free three-year license to use the software to all other users, which is really great. The free membership makes this software ideal for architecture students. Highly structured and professional, this software will save any changes you make as soon as you make them, and will continue modifying the landscape/plan you’re working on to give you an ideal experience. Accuracy is a major plus point with this software- it guarantees and provides designs neat and free of errors. Users can design any structure and view it in 3D form, draft swiftly, and oversee the building process right from the beginning of construction to demolition of parts the user wants to remove.
Though well defined and clear cut in approach, Revit is not for new learners and laymen planning their homes- only a person with experience in architectural study and design can utilize Revit to create buildings, fixtures, and additional detailing.
If you don’t mind paying, ArchiCAD is also a really good architectural software that provides high-quality designing and efficient performance. Though ArchiCAD provides a free trial just like AutoCAD, users have voted the paid full version to be the only version worth trying or using; the trial does not offer many features to try.
A lot of users don’t want to straight away pay for using software they’re not sure they’ll like, and rely on a trial version to help them decide- but if the trial is not reflective of the features promised in the paid version, customers are not very keen on using such software.
DreamPlan Home Design is another free software that nearly made it to our list, similar to SketchUp in its simplicity and basic rendering, but while DreamPlan offers an extremely limited and unsophisticated range of objects, materials, and tools, SketchUp is far more creative in the options it provides. SketchUp is also extremely user-friendly, which gives it another advantage over DreamPlan.
MicroStation is an architecture software used by many because it provides a stable interface to work with. While that sounds promising, users complain that the software lags a lot and leads to performance issues for the computer. Software that lags frequently and causes disruption in workflow is not at all preferable; hence that’s a no for MicroStation from us.
Building Construction Software For Mac Windows 10
It is tough to choose the suitable software from all the architecture software options offered on the internet, but cost, reliability, performance and suitability to one’s needs are the biggest and most important factors one has to remember. While it may feel great not having to pay for using software, paid software is sometimes better in functioning and service. But if one does not want to spend any money, they can easily use any of the software mentioned in the list above, and bear whatever flaws it comes with as long as they are reasonable.
A word of caution:
Whichever software you choose to download, always make sure that it is a trustworthy website and not some shady lesser known unaffiliated site that looks even remotely as if it may contain malware. Several unknown sites may look innocent enough, but just one click on the download link can infect your system with viruses. Sites such as CNET download, softpedia and official websites are trustworthy.
Saurav is associated with IT industry and computers for more than a decade and is writing on The Geek Page on topics revolving on windows 10 and softwares.