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Find product department from SKU

Hi all,

I'm currently finishing my basement and now have a spreadsheet of receipts/SKUs/product names. I would like to be able to have a breakdown of how much each part of the basement really cost (framing, electrical, plumbing, drywall, flooring, etc). This way I can compare with some quotes I received to see how much I saved for each area by doing the work myself.

Is there anyway to take a SKU and automatically determine the product's category/department without looking up each product myself and determining that manually?

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Posted 2018-07-09T12:58:25+0000  by chadt3 chadt3
One of the Home Depot folks may be able to answer that question but I'm guessing they aren't going to give you a database of their SKU's.

Obviously I can't tell you what to do but I might suggest that trying to figure out what you "saved" by doing the work yourself, isn't going to accomplish much other than, perhaps, some self satisfaction.  Let's say you decreased the cost of the project by $10,000 in professional labor?  What are you going to do with that information?

Now if you are trying to compare what you did to a professional quote, that's an entirely different animal.  Many contractors mark up materials but when I was doing such things, we didn't mark up materials because state law then required us to collect sales tax.  That created more administrative work, so we simply up charged labor (which wasn't subject to sales tax) to offset the cost of acquiring those materials.

When it came to bidding something like a basement, everything was based on linear or square footage or per item.  For example, if a basement required y feet of walls, then it was x dollars per linear foot which including materials (top plate, bottom plate, stud, nails, construction adhesive, etc.) plus labor.  For something like a receptacle, pricing was per device.  So that included the receptacle itself, a junction box, wall plate, 10 feet of wire, couple of wire nuts, and labor.  For thing like a tile floor, where the cost of the materials can vary widely we included an allowance of x dollars per square foot for tile.  If the customer, wanted something more expensive they just paid the difference.

While we were asked a few times, what we refused to do is break down the labor cost.  Frankly, how much I value my time at or pay my employees really isn't any of your business.  People who haven't run a small business have absolutely no idea how much time it takes to run one or the costs a small business incurs. 

Hope this helps!
Posted 2018-07-09T15:10:23+0000  by Adam444
Thanks for the info. I think the majority of why I want this breakdown is simply self interest to see where we spent most of our money. However, I already have friends asking me if I think it's worth doing the electrical themselves or some other part of their basement or would I recommend just hiring that out. If I had a better idea how much each part of the project cost me I would be able to provide better recommendations on savings compared to amount of work for general DIYers.
Posted 2018-07-17T20:13:19+0000  by chadt3
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