We strive to bring accurate, reliable information to our readers. When providing pricing and cost information for different products and services, our team does in-depth research to provide you with the most up-to-date and reliable information.
The majority of our information comes from a service called RSMeans. RSMeans is an industry-leading construction and contracting cost database. Contractors, remodelers, and other professionals use it to analyze their expenses and generate quotes. It was developed by industry experts and uses real, up-to-date pricing information on materials, labor, equipment, and overhead to provide precise costs for construction services.
RSMeans also uses information gathered from real-world industry professionals, labor analysis, and industrial suppliers. As such, it is one of, if not the most reliable contracting and cost analysis tools on the market. We use RSMeans to find the actual prices a contractor, installer, or material provider would charge. From there, we do secondary research to ensure that the information lines up with reported quotes and the industry average — this accounts for inflation, price hikes, and other factors that may be at play besides baseline material and labor expenses.
Occasionally, a specific product or service is not in the RSMeans database. While rare, this can happen when looking at local, highly specific or custom products. In this event, we research the product or service to estimate the most accurate price. When creating cost estimates like these, we look at the current reported industry standards, obtain direct quotes, read customer reviews, and (when available) use estimation tools offered by the provider.