What Is the Purpose of a Quote Sheet?


Quick Answer

A quote sheet's purpose is to provide a potential customer with detailed, fixed cost information for the products or services being requested by the customer. Quote sheets include a cost breakdown by component, the total cost of all goods and services, a schedule for completion and delivery and an expiration date. If accepted formally by the customer within the stated period, the vendor is legally bound to quoted prices; however, if the quote expires prior to acceptance, prices may increase.

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Full Answer

Rather than accept a quote, a customer may also choose to change their request, asking for a new quote sheet, or to negotiate the costs as presented. Customers often seek quotes from three or more vendors in order to ensure the best deal and fulfill procurement requirements.

In order to prepare an accurate quote sheet, a vendor needs to factor in fixed and variable costs, including personnel, production and material costs, sales taxes, shipping costs and other overhead costs, such as space and utilities. For services available at an hourly rate, the going market rate and the level of experience of those providing the service are also key to determining costs.

A quote sheet is different than an estimate, which is not legally binding. Estimates include information similar to that on a quote sheet, but estimates are cost projections that are subject to change. Acceptance of an estimate by a customer does not bind the vendor to the estimated costs.

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