Estimator (Contracting Company)

Who am I?

An Estimator works for an HVACR Contracting company that is involved in residential, institutional, industrial or commercial installation and service work. Estimators prepare quotes (‘bids”) for contracting projects, accurately estimating the costs associated with a specific job including variables such as labour, equipment, supplies and purchasing materials.

Other Titles

Cost Estimator
Job Estimator
Project Estimator


Essential Skills

Essential Skills are not the technical skills required by particular occupations but rather the skills applied in all occupations. These skills provide the foundation for learning all other skills and apply to careers in HVACR. See Employment and Social Development Canada for more details.

The most important Essential Skills for an Estimator (as determined through industry consultation) are:

  • Numeracy - Estimating and cost analysis to determine a project budget/estimate involves strong mathematical skills including use of formulas and calculations
  • Document Use - Ability to understand construction drawings and blueprints to obtain information. Understanding of documents pertaining to codes, regulations
  • Oral Communication Skills – Work and communicate effectively with team members and customers, coordinate scheduling.

What do I do?

As an Estimator you may do some of the following:

  • Prepare bids/quotes for tender by assessing projects and analyzing costs with goal of profitability
  • Estimates equipment, manpower, cost of project, and materials required to accomplish each project
  • Read all sketches blueprints associated with the job and develops sketches or drawings for each job as required
  • Establish a work plan for job priorities and develops the execution plan for proposals
  • Communicate effectively with customers, contractors and other team members throughout the project process
  • Manage project administration, accounts, scheduling and permit application and maintain ongoing project estimating database
  • Work effectively to deadlines and profitability.


  • Usually a Licensed Refrigeration Mechanic, Mechanical Technician, Gas Fitter or equivalent
  • Knowledge of building codes, gas,  mechanical and related codes, safety requirements
  • Usually several years experience in a planning or estimating role in HVAC or other related trades.