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Freelance Builder Pay Trends: December 2014

News and Views | 11th December 2014

Hudson Contract delivers the most accurate indications of pay trends across the construction industry, using payroll data for over 2,200 construction companies to publish the average pay for the full spectrum of 17 different trades across five regions.

For the fifth consecutive month, labour-only subbies in all five regions have increased their earnings. And after a ‘levelling off’ last month in the South-East, the region now leads the way with an increase of over 5%.

“Elsewhere, the rises are less dramatic,” comments Hudson Contract Managing Director Ian Anfield. “The North-East and West and South-West are both up by around 1.5%. In the Midlands, the increase is worth only a couple of pounds a month – although having said that, average weekly earnings remain over £700, making the Midlands second in the earnings league, behind the South-East by about £30 a week.”

Hudson Contract’s figures are reflected in the latest data from Markit/CIPS, which again reports an increase in output for November. And in terms of confidence – with an index figure of 50 being the neutral position – the monthly number of 59.4 indicates continuing strong optimism for the sector’s recovery from recession.

This month’s winners:

  • M&E in the South-West: +19 %
  • Scaffolders in the South-West: +15 %
  • Plumbers in the South-East: +15%

And the losers:

  • Shopfitters in the South-West: -18 %
  • Bricklayers in the South-West: -18%
  • Steel & Timber Frame Erectors in the North-West: -17%

And the year as a whole?
Pound-for-pound, freelance builders in the North-East are 2014’s biggest winners, whilst their neighbours in the North-West show only a marginal increase. And – to no surprise – those in the South-East remain the country’s highest earners.

Region This month 12 months ago Difference
North-East £659 £596 +£63
South-West £664 £609 +£55
South-East £734 £693 +£41
Midlands £703 £681 +£18
North-West £650 £646 +£4

Ian Anfield adds: “Confidence remains high as we go into the Christmas break. Construction News has just reported that demand for materials and output is stronger now than at any time since 2008, and that 57% of firms questioned in a recent survey are confident of higher sales in the year ahead.

“Some significant infrastructure projects were announced in the Autumn Statement and the stamp duty reforms likely to give a further general boost to home builders, the year is ending on a high note, although with a general election in May, a certain degree of caution is sensible.

“In the meantime, subbies remain in high demand, and that is always a firm indicator of good times in the construction industry.”

NORTH EAST

  Last Month 3 months ago % change
Bricklaying £580.71 £602.98 -3.69%
Civil Engineering £651.76 £646.63 0.79%
Demolition £424.97 £409.83 3.69%
Electrical £791.56 £748.25 5.79%
Equipment & Operator hire £702.91 £749.61 -6.23%
Fit out by specialist trades £775.44 £730.62 6.13%
General Construction £715.99 £701.20 2.11%
Insulation £641.39 £615.26 4.25%
Joinery £667.47 £694.46 -3.89%
Mechanical £678.08 £705.17 -3.84%
Plastering £717.09 £676.75 5.96%
Plumbing £626.66 £645.45 -2.91%
Roofing £682.68 £669.00 2.04%
Scaffolding £591.65 £556.25 6.36%
Shopfitting £668.07 £606.48 10.16%
Steel & Timber frame erect £703.52 £735.21 -4.31%
Surfacing contractors £586.66 £554.50 5.80%
Average £659.21 £649.86 1.44%

NORTH WEST

  Last Month 3 months ago % change
Bricklaying £588.96 £601.31 -2.05%
Civil Engineering £596.43 £576.79 3.41%
Demolition £755.59 £718.27 5.20%
Electrical £802.64 £787.02 1.98%
Equipment & Operator hire £770.49 £691.92 11.36%
Fit out by specialist trades £622.97 £668.61 -6.83%
General Construction £682.57 £699.71 -2.45%
Insulation £698.86 £721.06 -3.08%
Joinery £680.80 £674.64 0.91%
Mechanical £496.83 £494.88 0.39%
Plastering £491.16 £448.41 9.53%
Plumbing £534.10 £530.26 0.72%
Roofing £762.98 £763.85 -0.11%
Scaffolding £441.55 £432.11 2.18%
Shopfitting £979.59 £899.82 8.87%
Steel & Timber frame erect £547.76 £658.89 -16.87%
Surfacing contractors £598.23 £532.57 12.33%
Average £650.09 £641.18 1.39%

MIDLANDS

  Last Month 3 months ago % change
Bricklaying £643.45 £594.47 8.24%
Civil Engineering £733.23 £721.46 1.63%
Demolition £755.95 £757.61 -0.22%
Electrical £737.98 £685.63 7.64%
Equipment & Operator hire £618.91 £678.13 -8.73%
Fit out by specialist trades £776.83 £783.95 -0.91%
General Construction £702.13 £678.68 3.46%
Insulation £683.03 £660.41 3.43%
Joinery £717.58 £674.95 6.32%
Mechanical £723.44 £816.25 -11.37%
Plastering £627.74 £644.55 -2.61%
Plumbing £715.56 £698.41 2.46%
Roofing £551.43 £568.93 -3.08%
Scaffolding £674.05 £649.56 3.77%
Shopfitting £882.42 £844.33 4.51%
Steel & Timber frame erect £664.21 £724.65 -8.34%
Surfacing contractors £736.55 £730.31 0.85%
Average £702.62 £700.72 0.27%

SOUTH EAST

  Last Month 3 months ago % change
Bricklaying £616.93 £643.40 -4.11%
Civil Engineering £717.75 £696.83 3.00%
Demolition £595.82 £625.37 -4.73%
Electrical £891.99 £826.61 7.91%
Equipment & Operator hire £788.40 £831.61 -5.20%
Fit out by specialist trades £743.95 £715.11 4.03%
General Construction £672.68 £659.17 2.05%
Insulation £776.29 £713.95 8.73%
Joinery £893.62 £805.44 10.95%
Mechanical £755.15 £698.88 8.05%
Plastering £617.47 £613.20 0.70%
Plumbing £898.22 £784.15 14.55%
Roofing £667.70 £621.81 7.38%
Scaffolding £721.50 £675.95 6.74%
Shopfitting £808.82 £725.08 11.55%
Steel & Timber frame erect £622.35 £614.83 1.22%
Surfacing contractors £694.62 £632.54 9.81%
Average £734.31 £699.05 5.04%

SOUTH WEST

  Last Month 3 months ago % change
Bricklaying £487.33 £593.51 -17.89%
Civil Engineering £682.36 £599.78 13.77%
Demolition £651.78 £630.31 3.41%
Electrical £682.19 £616.31 10.69%
Equipment & Operator hire £575.86 £560.77 2.69%
Fit out by specialist trades £849.20 £812.99 4.45%
General Construction £663.37 £643.95 3.02%
Insulation £631.98 £628.65 0.53%
Joinery £648.29 £583.19 11.16%
Mechanical £749.82 £632.47 18.55%
Plastering £653.30 £724.93 -9.88%
Plumbing £611.47 £663.64 -7.86%
Roofing £700.00 £614.64 13.89%
Scaffolding £629.29 £545.50 15.36%
Shopfitting £715.63 £875.66 -18.28%
Steel & Timber frame erect £716.84 £797.63 -10.13%
Surfacing contractors £583.76 £550.10 6.12%
Average £660.73 £651.41 1.43%

 

Hudson Contract’s ‘window on the construction industry’ gives you hard figures and data that is not available from any other source, with pay averages that reflect the amounts paid by a sample number of businesses – large and small – to specific trades over the twelve weeks to 30th November 2014.

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