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Prorated Items in the Estimator

Updated: Jun 6, 2023

Entering Prorates

This window allows you to create an additional "fictitious" bid item that can be used to proportionately spread the item price back to the actual bid items, take multiple items and bid them as one, and then spread the total back to the individual bid items. This can be done to take the cost of multiple bid items and spread them out over one item, or to spread the cost of a crew across many similar items for that crew.

For example, if you have five items that include paving as a part of each item, you will combine the quantity from all five, bid it as one item, then have the system spread the prorate cost back into the individual items, using a percentage of the total cost or quantity.

This window is set up exactly like the top-level Bid Items window and you will enter your prorate costs and bid them in the same manner. You will add multiple levels (sub-items where appropriate) and detail just as you would with your regular bid items. As with the Bid Items window, the cost for your prorates comes from the detail level.

The system allows you to use items from your Item Masters table, or copy items from previous jobs directly into the job bid. Copying existing items is a quick way to cut your data entry time, especially once you have built up a library of job bids and item masters.

Spreading Prorates

The prorate total can be spread according to the original bid item quantity or by a percentage of the bid item cost. You can also enter individual amounts directly into the window.

When you enter this window, the table at the top will display all prorate items previously entered into the job. Click on the prorate you want to work with. The last column will display the amount that is not currently spread. This value will be highlighted in red to act as a visual cue.

  • The highlighting color can be changed using the Defaults menu > Preferences > Personalization Tab.

Next you will select the various bid items that make up the Prorate you have highlighted in the top panel. Click Insert and the Select Bid Items window will open. In that window, click the node icons to expand the bid item tree to reveal the item levels. To mark an item for copy, click on an item you want, then press the keyboard space bar. Continue marking items in this manner until you have all the bid items you want. Press Enter and the marked items will be copied into the bid items panel.

Once all bid items that belong to the prorate have been selected, they will be displayed in the panel at the bottom of the window. The prorate highlighted at the top of the window will spread its dollars among the bid items listed there.

Automatically spread prorate cost

In this window you will select how the total amount for the prorate should be spread to the bid items you selected. Click on the spread method you want; either by percentage of bid-item cost (the window default), or by bid-item quantity. Click the Spread button to automatically spread the prorate costs to the bid items in the manner selected.

Alternatively, you can enter individual spreads directly into the window by clicking in the ‘Spread per Unit,’ ‘Prorate Qty,’ ‘Amount Spread,’ or ‘% of Prorate’ columns and entering the desired values.


The SharpeSoft Estimator is a simple tool that can help you organize and adjust your spreadsheets to give you the best user experience possible.

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