Unit price books are unit price-based cost databases referenced by a particular JOC or SABER contract. In some cases UPBs can be task-based; however, this method doesn’t provide a level of detail consistent with the practices of most construction cost estimators. RSMeans is used in the majority of JOC contracts in the United States (over 80%) as a baseline, with RSMeans becoming the virtual standard for commercial construction, renovation, and repair cost data across North America. Electronic UPBs are integrated with software to enable faster and more accurate implementation and management of JOC contracts. Unit price books can be localized via city cost indexes (CCI), and also customized for Owner specific requirements. CCI information is available from RSMeans down to a zip code level and is provided quarterly. It is important to have a dynamic UPB, one that accounts for pricing changes due to inflation/deflation, material/labor shortages, and/or local conditions. Over the course of a three (3) to five (5) year JOC contract construction costs can change significantly. If a contract is not structured with dynamic costing in mind, the owner is asking a JOC contractor to take on undue and unforeseeable risk and the owner will pay for this transferred risk in the form of a higher coefficient. Coefficients applied by the contractor to their UPB-based construction estimated account for overhead and profit and/or other variables. Thus, not adjusting a UPB annually can cause negative issues for both Owners and Contractors.

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