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Much of the printed estimate is customizable  

Estimates can be customized as a system setting, making all estimates look alike. Individual estimates can be tailored to accommodate a client’s particular needs, without affecting other estimates. Of course, you’ve got complete control over the estimate’s content (i.e., job description, tasks, task notes). The job’s information, such as the description, is entirely customizable based on the text you enter. You choose the job’s tasks and their notes as well. Tasks can be grouped using a group number, which calculates sub-totals on the printed estimate.

Estimates are designed to print on your letterhead using a laser printer. The estimate’s top, left, and bottom margins can be modified to better fit around your stationery’s artwork (the right-hand margin varies and can’t be set). The estimate’s font can be changed from Helvetica, the standard font, to any font in your system. All reports have the same font. So the font you choose for the estimate will be used on all reports. The Customize Reports page contains step-by-step instructions for modifying fonts on estimates or other Clients & Profits reports.

Changing an estimate’s options

Each job has distinct options that change the way the estimate looks and behaves. These estimate options can be set as system defaults, simplifying estimating. Estimate options give you substantial control over the estimate’s details. The standard estimate options are set in Preferences, where you can enter a standard heading, disclaimer, approval names, and a contingency amount. The estimate’s margins and company logo, which prints at the top of the printed estimate, are set there too. These settings are copied to any new job when it is opened but can be customized on a particular job.

1 From the Job Tickets window, choose Edit > Edit Job > Estimate Options.

2 Make your changes, then click Save.

The changes you make affect the estimate immediately. These options can be changed any number of times to fine-tune the printed estimate.

Customizing contingencies

Contingency amounts can be applied to all or some estimates. They are optional, but can be useful -- when the client signs the estimate, the client is also authorizing the contingency amount. Contingencies can be set as percentage amounts or flat dollar amounts, depending on the kind of job you’re working on. A short note can also be included to explain the contingency.

1 Choose Edit > Edit Job > Contingency.

Use contingencies for safety. Contingencies are optional, but provide extra breathing room for over-budget jobs. They’re user-defined, so can be any percentage or flat dollar amount. The contingency memo appears on the printed estimate, explaining why it was included.

2 Make your changes, then click Save.

Customizing disclaimers

Disclaimers can be applied to all or some estimates. They are optional but, like contingencies, can be useful -- when the client signs the estimate, the client is also acknowledging the disclaimer. Every job gets a standard disclaimer, which is set in Preferences (see Setup > Preferences > Estimate Options). The standard, or default, disclaimer is copied to new jobs only when they are opened. The disclaimer prints in small type at the bottom of the printed estimate.

Even though the disclaimer is copied to a new job, it can be changed anytime in the job’s Estimate Options window. Changing one job’s disclaimer doesn’t affect the standard disclaimer or the spec sheet. The changes you make only affect the job itself.

Customizing the estimate’s margins

The estimate’s top, left, and bottom margins can be changed to better fit the estimate on your letterhead.

1 Choose Setup > Preferences.

2 Choose Estimate Options from the pop-up menu.

3 Enter the margins in inches (ex: 1.75") then click Save.

Margins cannot be set below a half inch (.5”). These settings are copied to all users, so that all estimates are printed in the same way. The estimate margins may vary with the kind of estimate you’re printing. A wide left-hand margin (for example, over two inches) may cause the estimate amounts to be pushed off the right-side of the page. Experiment with different margin settings to make sure your estimates print properly.

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