How to Efficiently Estimate Costs for Using Structural Steel

The structural steel price might shift dramatically from one day to the next. Because large construction projects can take months or years to complete, failure to account for unanticipated changes over the specified time frame can throw your budget and the entire project into disarray.

Steel allows architects to be more creative with color, texture, and geometry. Its strength, durability, beauty, accuracy, and malleability provide architects with more freedom to experiment with new ideas and solutions. 

Moreover, steel’s capacity to span vast distances allows for enormous open areas with no intermediary columns or load-bearing walls. It stands out for its capability to bend to a certain radius, allowing it to create segmented curves or free-form combinations for facades, arches, and domes.

Here are some pointers and examples for determining the optimum structural steel estimate and where can you find a steel distributor in Birmingham, AL: 

Some Points to Consider

Steel can be swiftly and efficiently built-in any season. With little on-site labor, components are pre-manufactured off-site. Depending on project size, an entire frame can be assembled in days rather than weeks, resulting in a 20 to 40% savings in construction time than an on-site building. Steel provides fewer points of contact with the soil in single-family houses in more difficult locations, lowering the amount of excavation necessary.

The reduced weight of structural steel compared to other framing materials as concrete allows for a smaller, simpler base. These execution savings result in significant resource efficiencies and economic benefits, such as faster project timelines, lower site management expenses, and a faster return on investment.

How Many Steel Do You Need For A Low-Rise Establishment?

Steel usage for low-rise residential structures (G to G +3) will typically vary between 3.5 and 4 kilograms per square foot of built-up area. We’ve included an infographic that will assist you in determining the building material amounts.

For A Square Foot of 1,000 Square Feet, How Many Steel Rods Are Needed?

Before designing, a thumb rule of 2.5 kg steel per square foot is assumed. You’ll only obtain an estimate of the weight in kilograms, not the number of rods. Only once the structural design is finished will we be able to determine how many rods (and their diameters) are needed.

Steel required per square foot: The amount of steel required in a home is determined by the type of construction, whether residential, commercial, or industrial, and the structure’s support and frame. 

Steel is required 3.5 to 4 kg per square foot of the built-up area of a home for residential buildings and 5 kg to 5.5 kg per square foot for institutional, multistory, commercial, and industrial buildings, according to the thumb rule for RCC structures.

When evaluating with a steel service center in Birmingham, AL, the location of the material acquisition and the amount being acquired are important factors to consider. Small orders are usually charged at warehouse prices, whereas big purchases are charged at mill prices, and pricing for each kind of outlet varies.

The Procedure for Estimation

Because structural steel is often priced by weight, knowing what structural sections will be utilized and what each section’s writing means is critical for creating an accurate estimate. Here is the procedure: 

  • Sort the steel by grade to prepare your takeoff.
  • Sort your materials by section or kind of member.
  • Continue categorizing by the manner of tying the knot.
  • Sort structural steel by where it’s used on the project.
  • Maintain the takeoff sequence by columns and details.
  • For each floor, provide the beams and details.
  • Set aside quantities for bracing and flooring in a different location.
  • Don’t forget to estimate the number of plates, connections, and accessories you’ll need.


Steel’s ultimate output is more predictable and repeatable when factory-finished to the most stringent standards under carefully controlled circumstances, removing the danger of on-site variability. While having a solid and accurate estimate is essential for effectively bidding and winning significant projects, unanticipated steel purchase prices can eat into your bottom line, reducing the value of any win to your bottom line.

Since 1985, KGS Steel Birmingham has served the southeastern United States as a full-service carbon and structural steel service center in Birmingham, AL. We provide a complete line of carbon steel products and processing with the quality, dedication, and services that today’s industrial sector demands. Contact us immediately if you want structural steel in Birmingham, AL.

Bessemer, AL

3725 Pine Ln,
Bessemer, AL 35022


Mon - Fri7:30 AM–4:30 PM
Sat - Sun: Closed 

Nashville, TN

310 Herron Dr,
Nashville, TN 37210


Mon - Fri7:30 AM–4:30 PM
Sat - Sun: Closed 

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