Assume five planks of 2X6 wood fascia is to be installed in Florida. What is the process to estimate the labor cost per 12 foot plank?. I am not seeking a quote, rather I want to understand the process of cost estimation: inputs, process (formula?) etc.

If I can put a number to the labor cost, then I can determine if it makes sense to DIY.

Photos show section of boards in place and removed on the right side.

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  • 1
    There's no standard for this and would vary greatly on the contractors who quote you. This is a DIY site and quoting labor costs would be opinion based.
    – JACK
    Aug 26 '20 at 14:16
  • Very hard to say as it's going to depend on how much work needs to be done. How about contacting some local "handyman" types locally and get some quotes? I don't believe you'll find any standard rate or anyone who will bid on a plank-by-plank basis.
    – jwh20
    Aug 26 '20 at 14:17
  • BTW - those are not called "planks" but rather "fascia boards".
    – jwh20
    Aug 26 '20 at 14:17
  • You would also have to take into consideration any rafters that have water damage.
    – JACK
    Aug 26 '20 at 14:22
  • @JACK and scorch marks too !
    – Criggie
    Sep 11 '20 at 4:48

Here's how I do it - call a contractor. Have them quote the job.

Shop around for the materials yourself (account for waste, fasteners, flashing, caulk, paint, trim, etc.!), add whatever tools you'd need to buy (ladder? scaffolding?). Do you need another person to help you? How do you support the board while you move the ladder after you nail one end? Does the other person work for you for free?

Then subtract your tool+material+helper estimate from their quote. The remainder is essentially what you're paying them for their labor.

Their labor rates will probably be lower than you might expect because they've already got the tools, they buy in bulk, they probably have contractor discount/credit cards, etc.


Estimating process (assuming someone is willing to do a small job like this):

  • go look at the job. Spend time talking to the client about the scope of work. (Paint? Etc.) Takes x amount of time that doesn't get billed directly to you, but usually falls under contractor overhead.

  • price 5-2x6x12, assuming that's the quantity, plus a few fasteners. Note that a 60' run of fascia doesn't necessarily translate into 5x12, as the boards have to break on rafters.

  • decide how long the job-specific paperwork processing is (make/deliver bid, contract, answer questions, etc) and assign a charge for that.

  • decide timeframe to shop materials, deliver to site

  • add time to roll out/ put away specialty tools if needed (scaffold, tall ladders)

  • figure time for 2 people (safety and efficiency pretty much demand 2 for a job like this) to do the actual work. Here, height and the ground below matter. 2 stories+, uneven ground, poor access, or distant jobsite cost more. Notwithstanding the thick books that have been written on this subject, there's no reliable formula for estimating the labor of this specific job.

  • add time for cleanup, rollup

  • add time to finalize payment

So that estimate gets you labor + materials. The other two things that get added on are overhead and profit. See this answer for more detail. L+M+O+P

If you get a quote or two, you'll be able to decide whether it makes more sense to DIY or use a pro.

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