The importance of project scoping and getting it right...
Scoping a project properly will often dictate the success of a project, and how that success is perceived by your client. In this article we'll look at what you should consider when scoping a web design project.
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Ramsez Stamper's profile photo
 
It's a good set of advice piece on approaching a project.

The calculators are useless because if you get the hours wrong, you're screwed anyway and really the end calculations are the easy parts.

The brutal and honest truth is that even when you get good at scoping a project, you will only get it dead on maybe once in every ten or so projects. The other 9 projects, 8 of them will go over budget or experience some kind of scope creep because of the client and/or your own developers/designers screwing up or just not being good enough to get the work done.
And 1 in ten will actually get done within scope and be profitable in a way you actually predicted.

So, for the most part, come up with a number. Be honest with that number, so you know you can deliver and be profitable with that number. Tack on 20-30% (for all the shit you are bound to miss in your scope and to account for some scope creep) and send that to the client. If they accept it, hope you can get it done within your scoped timeframe :) If they don't accept it, walk away, do not negotiate unless there's a longterm benefit to doing so, or you will definitely end up losing your profit, and we're all doing business to make money, so no one can blame you for that. 
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