STACK Vs. Pen & Paper

How is STACK Different?

STACK, a web-based takeoff and estimating platform, that is helping contractors easily create accurate takeoffs and ensure the profitability of their projects every day.

Pen and paper are used as part of an outdated, manual process for completing takeoffs and estimates. Great for small one-off projects but not sustainable for a growing business in today’s competetive landscape.

STACK's main advantages over Pen & Paper:


STACK’s modern interface that makes using the platform a breeze.


STACK’s tiered pricing makes it easy for you to find the right plan for you.


STACK offers advanced material takeoff & accurate estimating capabilities.


Getting set up is as easy as accessing your favorite web-browser.

"The biggest advantage to STACK is that I save on printing costs that would be necessary without the program. My experience has been overall positive and I like the ease with which you can count different items."

– Tim, Kings Electrical

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Stack Logo
Pen & Paper
Cost Per User
PLUS $999 per user/year
PRO $1,799 per user/year
Printing costs range from $0.38 to $25 per sheet
Maintenance & Support Costs
You’ll have to pay extra to reprint pages that get damaged or torn in the office or on a jobsite
Ease of Use
Low Learning Curve
Modern, Consistent UX/UI
High Learning Curve
Inconsistent, Complex
Time to Onboard
1 to 5 business days
1 to 5 business days
Integrates with Third-party Software
Yes, at no extra cost
No integrations
Advanced Takeoff Features
No, all measuring is done manually
Estimating Features
No, all estimating is done manually or using excel
Free Training
Yes, Unlimited training and support
Languages: English, Spanish
None, but you are still required to be able to accurately read a plan set
Platform Support
Windows, Android, iPhone/iPad, Mac, Web-based
Minimal Software/Hardware requirements
A variety of paper products exist with varying weights and durability
Most plans have a title sheet that typically contains relevant project information
Product Roadmap
Constantly making improvements based on customer feedback
Revisions to paper plans create confusion for project stakeholders and often require reprinting and redistribution of plans
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