Cost estimate templates show the cost of each sub-task for the work you are bidding on. You include your current charge-out rates for each line of the template, so the estimator just needs to put in the man-hours and the cost of the work will calculate automatically. If you also include the hourly rates you pay your workers, then Abio will be able to populate the budget amounts for each cost centre, if you convert this quote to a job.

To create a cost estimate template, navigate to [b] Receivables, then [u] Set Up, then [g] Estimate Type.

You can define any number of cost estimate templates.

If you want to base a new cost estimate template on an existing estimate template, you can use the Save As… button on the Details tab.

You’ll be asked to provide a new cost estimate template type.

The new estimate template will have all the same categories as the original.

If you want to start from scratch, select the Add action on the Details tab.

Estimate Detail Fields
Estimate Type

Unique 10 character identifier


Only active estimate types will display in popups.


This will display in popups when users are selecting which estimate template to use for the quote.

Job Type

One feature of the quote system is that you can convert a quote to a job. The job type tells Abio which cost centres to include on the job.

Hours per Day

When using this template, the hours per day column will default to this value.


You can set this template as the default estimate template. Then, when you add a new quote, the estimate type for the quote will initially be set to this cost estimate template.

Default Preamble

When the user is filling in an estimate, the preamble will initially be set to this value.

Bid Overview

Each time you create a new estimate component for a quote, you can add an overview for the component, which can then be incorporated into the MS Word template you create. The overview will default to the text you enter here.


This is a reference field for your own use.


Each estimate template has categories and items under each category. A category might be something like ‘plumbing’, and the items are the different fixtures and plumbing materials that you might use for the plumbing portion of the job. Enter the category heading in the top part of the window, and any number of items in the lower half.

Both the category and the items have display order fields. This controls how the checklist is ordered. 

Item Fields
  • ‘C’ Consumables – these items represent materials and don’t have an hourly calculation.
  • ‘H’ Hourly Rates – Labour and Equipment rentals are calculated based on hours
Bid Rate

Enter the rate this type of work is typically charged out at. You’ll be able to override the bid rate on the actual quote.

Allow Comment?

If this is Yes, then the estimate will include a field where the estimator can include more detail.

Budget Rate

Enter the hourly rate you pay your workers for this type of work. Abio will use this to create a budget amount for the cost centres when you convert this quote into a job.

Budget Centre

This is the cost centre where the budget this work will be recorded, when you create a job from the quote.

Cost Type

Each cost centre tracks budget amounts for each cost type. Enter the cost type to budget this work under.