Balance to Complete – Definition

Cite this article as:"Balance to Complete – Definition," in The Business Professor, updated June 8, 2019, last accessed September 20, 2020,


Balance to Complete (BDC) Definition

Balance to Complete (BDC) is the approximation of all costs and expenses spent on a job. The costs estimated in balance to complete are direct and indirect costs. BCD is often used in the construction industry, it evaluates the costs involved in the realization of a project or execution of a job from the point of initiation to completion. Direct costs such as costs of materials, wages for labor are attributed to the production of goods and services. Indirect costs in the other hand include, facility cost, administrative cost, among others.

A Little More on Balance to Complete in Construction Contracts

In construction contracts, Balance to Complete (BDC) is the totality of the money spent on the execution of a project. BDC estimates direct and indirect costs spent on a project since the time it was initiated to when it was completed. Also, the deficiency holdback that an owner releases after receiving required certificates from the payment certifier. This term is mostly used in construction contracts.

The total costs of amounts spent on the execution of project is estimated as BDC by the consultant of payment certifier. However, the estimation is in agreement to the terms of the construction contract. The amount required to finish an incomplete project can also be approximated.

References for Balance to Complete

Academic Research on Balance to Complete

Cost of quality versus cost of non‐quality in construction: the crucial balance, Rosenfeld, Y. (2009). Construction Management and Economics, 27(2), 107-117.

The causes and costs of defects in construction: A study of seven building projects, Josephson, P. E., & Hammarlund, Y. (1999). Automation in construction, 8(6), 681-687.

Performance management in construction: a conceptual framework, Kagioglou, M., Cooper, R., & Aouad, G. (2001). Construction management and economics, 19(1), 85-95.

The application of balanced scorecard in the performance evaluation of higher education, Chen, S. H., Yang, C. C., & Shiau, J. Y. (2006). The TQM magazine, 18(2), 190-205.

Developing Balanced Scorecard: Case of three construction firms of small size, Phadtare, M. T. (2010). Journal of Asia-Pacific Business, 11(2), 135-157.

Using the balanced scorecard on supply chain integration performance—a case study of service businesses, Chang, H. H., Hung, C. J., Wong, K. H., & Lee, C. H. (2013). Service Business, 7(4), 539-561.

Balanced Scorecard implementation in Jordan: An initial analysis, Al Sawalqa, F., Holloway, D., & Alam, M. (2011). International Journal of Electronic Business Management, 9(3), 196.

The rise of the balanced scorecard! Relevance regained?, Nørreklit, H., Nørreklit, L., Mitchell, F., & Bjørnenak, T. (2012). Journal of Accounting & Organizational Change, 8(4), 490-510.

Constructing and evaluating balanced portfolios of R&D projects with interactions: A DEA based methodology, Eilat, H., Golany, B., & Shtub, A. (2006). European journal of operational research, 172(3), 1018-1039.

The management of construction company overhead costs, Assaf, S. A., Bubshait, A. A., Atiyah, S., & Al-Shahri, M. (2001). International Journal of Project Management, 19(5), 295-303.

Motives, diffusion and utilisation of the balanced scorecard in Denmark, Nielsen, S., & Sorensen, R. (2004). International Journal of Accounting, Auditing and Performance Evaluation, 1(1), 103-124.


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