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Ford-vs-FerarriWhen you get estimates for your branch build or a remodel project, do you really know what you're looking at?

Just because you receive a lower-priced estimate from one company, does that really mean it's a better deal?

For many financial institutions, comparing bids and estimates is a very confusing process. Just remember one thing—not all estimates are created equal.

That’s why comparing is important. It’s how you figure out what’s going to work best for your branch. So, how do you compare? By benefits? By price? By reviews? By the word of your cousin, the magician?

Well, when some financial institutions compare branch design and construction estimates, they forget, or just don't know how to compare them apples to apples. This could be a very costly lesson to learn, one that a DBSI client almost learned the hard way during their latest branch transformation project.

It started when the client received DBSI’s branch design bid. It was very comprehensive, but the client wanted to cover their bases and sought another bid from a competitor. The competitor’s estimate came back almost $30,000 cheaper, so the client contacted DBSI and informed them they had lost the contract.

Being curious, DBSI asked to see the competitor’s bid and compared the two side by side. What DBSI found was astonishing. Even though the estimates were for the same job, the details couldn’t have been more different.


After reviewing both branch transformation estimates, it was very clear that the client wasn’t comparing apples to apples—more like apples to avocados. The cheaper bid was cheaper for a reason. 

DBSI went over both bids with the client, breaking down the upfront and future costs differences. The once $30,000 in savings quickly become a soon-to-be deficit in the thousands. Within 30 minutes, DBSI was hired—again.  It’s all part of DBSI’s philosophy that being transparent is best, and only way, to do business.

So the next time you receive estimates, do yourself a favor and make sure to compare them apples to apples. Otherwise, you may be in for a big surprise—and not the fun birthday kind.