How to calculate building squares

A building square is a term used to describe the amount of material for a building that covers an area of ​​100 square feet. Builders can also change the term to certain types of specific projects, such as “roof squares,” which indicates 100 square feet (0.1 square meters) of roofing material. You can determine the amount of building squares you will need for a specific project through a series of simple calculations. This process is important in terms of estimating your supplies and expenses.


  1. Measure the square meters of the area in which you want to use your building materials. The area of ​​a rectangular or square shape is equal to the base by height. If you have a triangular section, the area is calculated as a base by height, then divided by two.
  2. Divide the answer from the previous step by one hundred. For example, if you have a roof of 140 square meters, divide 140 over 100 to get 1.4. This is the number of square meters you will need.
  3. Plan to get additional material to take into account the material that is lost. A good rule of thumb is to plan an additional 10 or 15 percent of material to be wasted. In this example, you would multiply 0.1 by 1.4 to get 0.14 square meters of additional material. This is 10 percent of 1.4. If you add 15 percent of 1.4, you should estimate 1.61 square meters for the project.

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