Published on 2/12/2021
Published by firstname.lastname@example.org
What is the real cost of concrete?
Concrete Broker explores the hidden costs when you buy concrete
Cover Photo courtesy of Tarun Anand Girl Unsplash
When individuals and companies sit down to work out the cost of their concreting project they usually only factor in the cubic metre cost of their concrete. If they need 10 cubic metres at $250 per cubic metre (excluding GST), then $2,500 (excluding GST), is the cost they account for. Yet when their credit card is charged $3,200, or even $4,000 at the completion of their job, they become irate and start jumping up and down before blaming their concrete supplier for overcharging them, as it were. Yet more often than not they failed to take into account the surcharges, or the perceived hidden costs in purchasing concrete. The additional fees and charges over and above their cubic metre rate.
Concrete suppliers face large costs when making concrete. Raw materials, plant and equipment costs are all fixed costs of production that add to the bottom line when it comes to the price of concrete. Yet the costs incurred by you the consumer, often have nothing to do with the cubic metre cost of concrete. They are often dependent upon the labour costs incurred by the concrete supplier, in addition to diesel and other variable costs and expenses.
Photo Courtesy of Beatriz Novaes - Unsplash
Concrete suppliers charge waiting time, or standing time, for every minute the concrete truck you have hired is on site after a certain amount of time has elapsed. Waiting time is usually charged after the concrete truck has been on site for 30 or 45 minutes. The rate is somewhere between $3.00 and $3.50 per minute (excluding GST). It should be noted some concrete suppliers do not charge waiting time for the first hour the concrete truck is on site.
Waiting time ensures the concrete company covers their cost of labour, diesel and running expenses. If their labour overhead is factored in at $50 per hour including hourly rates, superannuation, training, sick and holiday leave, then the $3.00 to $3.50 per minute assists in covering this cost for the additional time your concrete truck is on site. Keeping in mind the concrete truck could have been utilised on other concrete jobs if it were not held up on your job site, a factor often overlooked by customers irate at having to pay waiting time expenses at the end of their job.
Return Concrete Fees
Most concrete plants in urban areas charge a fee to environmentally dispose of concrete returned to their concrete plants at the end of a concrete pour. The cost rages anywhere from $200 to $400 per cubic metre. Therefore if 2 cubic metres were returned, this cost would range from $400 to $800. The costs includes tipping fees and once again the labour, diesel and running costs associated with the time taken to dispose of the concrete.
Extra distance charges
Concrete plants charge extra distance fees for concrete delivered over 10, 15 or 20 kilometres form their location. If your concrete pour is 30 kilometres away from the concrete plant you are going to pay approximately $2 to $5 extra per cubic metre for every kilometre over their geographical limit. As an example if their geographical limit is 15 km, as it is in many towns and cities, and you are located 30 km from them, expect to pay an additional $3.00 per cubic metre multiplied by 15, that being the extra distance they are travelling outside their geographical limit, to reach your site. Therefore instead of paying $255 per cubic metre, you the customer would be paying $300 per cubic metre. Once again this surcharge is there to cover the additional labour, diesel and running costs associated with the extra distance travelled.
Out of hours charges
Concrete companies pay their staff under transport awards that ensure their employees are paid overtime for hours worked over and beyond an eight hour day. Time and a half and double time wages are often paid to the concrete truck delivery drivers, batchers and call centre staff who are assigned the task of delivering concrete to you. Therefore if your concrete is delivered after 4.00 pm, or before 6 am, or on the weekends, you are often charged and additional amount per cubic metre. This surcharge varies anywhere from #10 per cubic metre to over $50, depending on the time of day your concrete is delivered. For example if your concrete is delivered at 5pm on a weekday, chances are the concrete truck driver delivering your concrete is on double time, and therefore expect to pay an additional $30 or $40 per cubic metre, over and above your designated cubic metre rate.
In situations where the concrete plant is opening out of normal trading hours especially for you i.e., on a Sunday or late at night, expect to pay a plant opening fee of anything between $1,000 to $2,500.
Small load fees
When your concrete pour is only one, two, or even three cubic metres, expect to pay an additional $50, $60 or even $70 per cubic metre, for each cubic metre delivered under the 4 cubic metre threshold. In other words if you receive 2.6 cubic metres, your small load fee, as an example, would be 1.4 multiplied by $60, or $84, (i.e., for the undelivered metres under 4 cubes). Once again this is the cost associated with the concrete truck hire including labour, diesel , administrative and running expenses. In essence the concrete supply company is compensating for the fact it could have delivered a full load of concrete, as opposed to your small load.
And keep in mind small load fees are incurred not only on Minimix or small deliveries, they are charged on the small loads delivered toward the end of your concrete pour. The last load or ‘message load’ as concreters refer to it as, incurs the same small load fee. As an example if you receive 12 cubic metres in two 6 metre deliveries, and then call in for 2 cubic metres to finish your job, expect to pay upwards of $120 extra for the last two cubic metres delivered, in addition to your cubic metre rate.
Small aggregate fees
The standard aggregate size is 20 mm. Yet some concreters, builders and even engineers may choose to use smaller aggregates including 10 mm or even 7 mm in their concrete. Smaller aggregates are easier to finish as they are not as heavy as 20 mm to push around with the shovel, bull float or trowel when finishing your concrete driveway or footpath. Yet if you choose 10 mm aggregates in your concrete mix, expect to pay an extra $10 to $20 per cubic metre on top of your cubic metre rate for the privilege.
In addition to these surcharges and additional fees, there are a plethora of other costs charged by concrete supply companies. Therefore it is often a good idea to seek the advice of a professional concrete supply company, such as Concrete Broker or Concrete Shopper Pty Ltd. These companies supply concrete from a wide range of concrete companies near you, such as Hanson, Hymix, Holcim, Boral, Concrete or Metromix. They can assist in working out the most cost effective concrete price in your situation, taking into account your location, load size and mix design. In other words they can mix and match your concrete needs with the most cost effective supply company near you.
For more information contact details are:
Call these numbers for concrete prices near you:
Sydney, Wollongong and South Coast 0478230553
Central Coast, Newcastle, Hunter and North Coast, Northern NSW 0403872437
Melbourne, Geelong, Bendigo, Ballarat, Shepparton and regional Victoria 0403872437
Brisbane, Toowoomba, Cairns, Townsville and the Sunshine Coast 0421990251
Surfers Paradise and the Gold Coast 0492841656
Concrete South Australia
Adelaide and regional South Australia 0492841656
Concrete Western Australia
Perth and regional Western Australia 0421990251
Canberra and the ACT 0492841656
Hobart, Launceston and regional Tasmania 0421990251
Concrete Northern Territory
Darwin and regional Northern Territory 0403872437
Check in with concretebroker?s dozen before your next concrete pour. Before its too late.
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