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Ontario Construction Bids: Tips and Need-to-Knows

construction bids
construction bids

Ontario Construction Bids: Tips and Need-to-Knows

Advice for contractorOntario Construction Bids: Tips and Need-to-Knows

Navigating Ontario's booming construction industry requires savvy bidding strategies. From understanding bid packages to mastering the bidding process, contractors must equip themselves with essential knowledge.

Here's a quick guide to securing construction bids in Ontario.

What Are Construction Bids?

two construction worker talking in front of a house 

A construction bid is like a price tag for a building project. It's a document that contractors give to clients, showing how much they'll charge to do the job. It includes things like the cost, how long it will take, and what work will be done. It's how contractors compete to win construction projects.

What's a Bid Package?

Put simply, the bid package contains project details compiled by the project owner to enable contractors to understand the scope of the work and produce an accurate bid. Typically, it includes all necessary information like construction specifications.

The Bidding Process

two construction worker talking in front of a computer 

The bidding and construction tendering processes can be split into five parts: (1) bid invitation, (2) pre-screening, (3) bid proposal, (4) bid evaluation & selection, and (5) contract formation.

  1. Bid invitation: Often, property owners or their representative will issue an Invitation for Bid (IFB) to solicit contractors. Other times, projects may be shared through networks, posted to invitation-only platforms, or advertised through, for example, a government portal.

  2. Pre-screening: In certain instances, especially for larger and more expensive projects, a contractor may need to demonstrate things like their company's qualifications, stable finances, and a successful track record.

  3. Bid proposal: Once a construction project has been chosen, it's time to bid. This involves creating and submitting cost estimates, including labour, materials, equipment, and more, as well as a project timeline.

  4. Bid evaluation & selection: Once the deadline to submit bids has passed, property owners or their representative will evaluate the proposals. They will look at the cost estimates, timeline, and qualifications. Upon making their decision, they'll award the project to the winning contractor.

  5. Contract formation: The last step is to form a contract which appeases both parties. This is the time to negotiate the terms of the contract.

How to Get Bids for Construction Works in Ontario

two person talking in front of a computer 


One of the best ways to get construction contracts in Ontario is to foster strong relationships in order to build a professional network.

Strong relationships are the cornerstone of the industry. Engage with architects, engineers, suppliers, and other industry stakeholders to gain valuable insights and access to, for example, a specific bid opportunity that would otherwise be unavailable. Actively participate in industry events, associations, and online forums to expand your network, enhancing your visibility and credibility. 

By cultivating strong relationships, you increase your chances of winning contracts and forming valuable partnerships within the construction industry, which heavily relies on networking for success.

Bid Competitively

To succeed in bidding for construction projects, your bid must strike a balance between competitiveness and accuracy. Being competitive ensures you remain in the running, while accuracy demonstrates your attention to detail and ability to deliver.

Overbidding can lead to financial setbacks, so it's crucial to offer value-added services or innovative solutions instead. Understanding the competitive landscape is key, whether you're a general contractor or subcontractor, as it informs your bidding strategy and increases your chances of securing lucrative projects.

Stay in the Loop

Access to project listings from platforms empowers contractors with valuable information on both public and private construction projects. By staying informed about upcoming opportunities, even those in their early stages of design, contractors can effectively navigate the competitive landscape and allocate resources more efficiently towards preparing competitive bids.

Showcase Your Expertise

Do you have a history of completing projects on-time, on-budget, and while maintaining high standards? Don't keep it to yourself; build a portfolio to showcase your expertise.

Be Intentional

While it may be tempting to bid on every potential project that comes your way, playing a game of odds, so to speak, it'll only do you more harm than good. Being excessive in your bids will only serve to compromise their quality and hurt your integrity. It'll also worsen your bid-hit ratio!

Instead, focus on projects you're more likely to win. By doing so, you can better focus your time and energy into bids that are tailored to the project's requirements. This not only helps make you stand out, but it'll instill confidence into the project manager as well.

How to Get Government Contract Opportunities in Canada?

To successfully navigate the Canadian public sector market, including in Ontario, businesses should first understand its dynamics by answering key questions such as which governments procure goods and services relevant to their offerings, historical purchasing trends, future procurement plans, and suitable regions for expansion.

Secondly, registering the business is essential, requiring compliance with federal procedures such as obtaining a Business Number (BN) from the Canada Revenue Agency and signing up with procurement databases.

Thirdly, finding government contracts involves familiarity with platforms like CanadaBuys for federal opportunities and other regional tendering platforms.

Lastly, understanding the scope of the Canadian government market for one's offerings is crucial, as various procurement opportunities exist across federal, provincial, territorial, and municipal sectors.

Get new contracts for your construction or renovation company can help you get new contracts. We get new project proposals from clients seeking top-rated and trustworthy renovation professionals like yourself. To get started, simply fill in the form on our homepage (it only takes a few minutes) and receive information regarding potential clients by way of our services.

Dial 1-844 828-1588 to speak with one of our customer service representatives.

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Last modified 2024-05-22

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