Xactware to Release Structural Pricing Research on a New, Monthly Schedule
Xactware’s pricing research division recently announced a significant change to the regularly scheduled publication of its pricing information database. Beginning in January, 2009, Xactware’s published pricing information will be released monthly instead of quarterly.
“We had always considered the quarterly release of the pricing information to be the maximum length of time between releases,” said Mike Fulton, Xactware’s General Manager of Pricing Data Services. “When needed, publications occurred more frequently. This most often occurred after major catastrophes when surveys showed supply-and-demand pressures were moving prices more rapidly than what could be appropriately reported in a quarterly time frame. In other words, we needed to immediately inform our customers of the changes being reported to us.”
Fulton points to a number of factors that led to the decision to release pricing research each month. Very volatile fuel prices have had a big impact on construction prices as has the downturn in construction activity that has followed the current crisis in the financial market. New trends toward green materials and techniques and increasing regulation are also important factors that impact construction costs. “The costs associated with building or repairing a structure have rarely been more difficult for a busy field estimator to track,” said Fulton. “We felt it was important for our customers to move to a schedule that would be more responsive to the potentially rapidly changing market.”
Xactware’s Pricing Information Databases
Xactware currently publishes 467 local pricing information databases that cover every region of the United States and Canada. Each region is individually researched and tracked. Xactware’s pricing team regularly surveys thousands of material suppliers and service providers across the U.S. and Canada and receives thousands of actual repair estimates each day, each of which are analyzed prior to publication. As a result, users of Xactware’s pricing information can have confidence in knowing that the prices they see are based on both statistical pricing research as well as actual work that has been performed recently in their area. And as any estimator knows, having this information in hand is a critical piece of creating an appropriate cost estimate.
Detail and Flexibility
Each price in an Xactware pricing research database contains a high level of detail. For example, the cost to replace 1/2” drywall includes far more than just the cost per square foot. Users have the option to drill down and see exactly how much gypsum board, nails, screws, tape, joint compound, corner bead and so forth is included in the price. They can also see the amount of waste. In addition, the user can see the cost of labor including the wage rate, productivity, and cost of overhead and burden such as FICA, unemployment insurance, workers comp, and much more. Each regional price list contains sales tax information that applies local taxes. Unit prices also come with a written description and typically include a photo or illustration that identifies the item. The level of detail in Xactware’s pricing information is an important part of Xactware’s unique approach to research. When users can see the complete detail behind the prices, they can accurately determine if the assumptions made apply to actual field conditions. For example, a user replacing drywall in a typical room can quickly see that the drywall unit price applies to that repair. However, when estimating drywall in an attic with a series of dormers and an array of slopes and angles, the user can see that some modifications are needed to adjust the price to match the additional waste, materials, and labor required. Updating the price for these conditions using Xactware tools is fast and easy and users can quickly note the reasons behind the changes for price researchers, property owners, and claims managers.
Building on Excellence
The new release schedule for Xactware’s pricing information is the latest effort by Xactware’s pricing team to build on the excellence it has established over the past several decades. New items are regularly added to the database to reflect the changing construction market. The pricing team also maintains the popular contents pricing database, which is updated weekly, and provides an array of pricing information for Xactware’s Price Indices, Industry Trend Reports, and yearly property report.
For more information about Xactware’s new monthly releases of structural pricing research or to learn more about Xactware’s other pricing research products, visit Xactware at www.Xactware.com or call 1-800-424-9228.
Xactware Solutions, Inc. ("Xactware") is a wholly owned subsidiary of ISO specializing in the property insurance, remodeling and restoration industries. Xactware's technology tools include software estimating programs for PCs and tablet PCs, as well as powerful online systems for replacement-cost calculations, estimate tracking and data trending in real time.
For more information about Xactware's products and services, contact Xactware at 1-800-424-9228 or contact us online.
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