Ten projects constructed in Ghana between 2003 and 2010 are examined and analysed to ascertain the reliability of estimated costs provided for the projects. Cost estimates for five of the projects were calculated by consultants and cost estimates for the five remaining projects were calculated by contractors. Cost estimates prepared by contractors seemed to be closer to actual costs than estimates calculated by consultants. Projects estimated by consultants experienced an average cost overrun of 40% and time overrun of 62% whereas projects priced by contractors experienced an average cost overrun of 6% and time overrun of 41%. It seemed that contractors had a better understanding of the actual construction processes and a clearer expectation of the needs of the client hence an ability to calculate estimates that were closer to reality. Construction clients in Ghana should rely on contractors for more realistic cost estimates as estimates by consultants may be inaccurate. Where consultants are employed, an allowance of up 40% should be added to the estimated costs as a margin for inaccuracy
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