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Freelance Builder Pay Trends: November 2015

News and Views | 10th November 2015

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. 

Onwards and upwards!  That’s the story of this month’s pay statistics, with every region back to positive growth – with the South-East leading the way on 5.2%, followed by the North-East on 4.7%. This month’s poor relation is the North-West with freelance builders seeing an average increase of only half a percent on the three months previous, and the lowest average earnings of £680 a week.

“It’s a particularly positive picture in the South-East this month, with sixteen of the seventeen individual trades that are monitored by Hudson Contract up on three months ago,” observes Hudson Contract Managing Director Ian Anfield.  “Looking longer-term, the numbers seem to reflect the general tide of optimism among our clients.  These higher earnings also reflect the number one complaint at present, which is that capability is being hampered by a national shortage of truly skilled tradesmen who are able to work fast whilst maintaining quality.  This, in turn, is a legacy of the recession, and it’s certainly not something we as an industry can solve overnight.” 

This month’s winners and losers…

Winners:

Mechanical in the Midlands: +19.2%

Plumbers in the North-East: +17.5%

Scaffolders in the South-West: +16.9%

Losers

Electricians in the North-West: -11.9%

Surfacing Contractors in the North-West: -8.9%

Plumbers in the South-West: -7.4%

Hudson Contract’s earning data is echoed by the latest monthly report on Britain’s construction industry from Markit, which points to a sustained – and strong – period of growth, with plenty of new orders and strong demand for skilled labour. 

“The current period of falling sub-contractor availability is the longest seen in over a decade,” their spokesman says.  “The sector remains in rude health and is firmly in expansion mode.”

NORTH EAST

  Last Month 3 months ago % change
Bricklaying  £     675.07  £      679.06 -0.59%
Civil Engineering  £     709.31  £      688.07 3.09%
Demolition  £     532.88  £      493.09 8.07%
Electrical  £     773.71  £      683.34 13.22%
Equipment & Operator hire  £     830.91  £      825.97 0.60%
Fit out by specialist trades  £     791.51  £      767.43 3.14%
General Construction  £     788.78  £      741.72 6.34%
Insulation  £     665.21  £      654.27 1.67%
Joinery  £     779.22  £      749.28 4.00%
Mechanical  £     713.72  £      760.48 -6.15%
Plastering  £     697.63  £      697.48 0.02%
Plumbing  £     671.18  £      571.47 17.45%
Roofing  £     708.77  £      625.33 13.34%
Scaffolding  £     523.43  £      528.52 -0.96%
Shopfitting  £     875.33  £      758.33 15.43%
Steel & Timber frame erect  £     743.70  £      760.92 -2.26%
Surfacing contractors  £     794.67  £      741.68 7.14%
Average  £     722.06  £      689.79 4.68%

 NORTH WEST

  Last Month 3 months ago % change
Bricklaying  £      656.22  £       663.16 -1.05%
Civil Engineering  £      651.02  £       643.59 1.15%
Demolition  £      771.07  £       786.64 -1.98%
Electrical  £      750.64  £       852.37 -11.93%
Equipment & Operator hire  £      727.05  £       713.55 1.89%
Fit out by specialist trades  £      750.38  £       721.11 4.06%
General Construction  £      708.22  £       707.97 0.04%
Insulation  £      752.60  £       710.16 5.98%
Joinery  £      724.10  £       768.32 -5.76%
Mechanical  £      583.79  £       547.80 6.57%
Plastering  £      448.97  £       455.14 -1.36%
Plumbing  £      625.05  £       543.03 15.10%
Roofing  £      807.14  £       838.37 -3.73%
Scaffolding  £      520.49  £       446.02 16.70%
Shopfitting  £      844.75  £       836.79 0.95%
Steel & Timber frame erect  £      678.19  £       652.03 4.01%
Surfacing contractors  £      567.63  £       623.17 -8.91%
Average  £      680.43  £       677.01 0.50%

MIDLANDS

  Last Month 3 months ago % change
Bricklaying  £     693.49  £      738.59 -6.11%
Civil Engineering  £     787.91  £      765.31 2.95%
Demolition  £     835.52  £      781.07 6.97%
Electrical  £     774.04  £      723.94 6.92%
Equipment & Operator hire  £     711.79  £      724.09 -1.70%
Fit out by specialist trades  £     882.15  £      855.83 3.08%
General Construction  £     750.96  £      727.09 3.28%
Insulation  £     692.04  £      696.03 -0.57%
Joinery  £     820.28  £      762.07 7.64%
Mechanical  £     866.86  £      727.03 19.23%
Plastering  £     727.20  £      703.42 3.38%
Plumbing  £     774.63  £      729.43 6.20%
Roofing  £     601.00  £      619.47 -2.98%
Scaffolding  £     660.52  £      645.22 2.37%
Shopfitting  £     897.81  £      901.32 -0.39%
Steel & Timber frame erect  £     598.71  £      568.34 5.34%
Surfacing contractors  £     862.96  £      863.28 -0.04%
Average  £     761.05  £      737.15 3.24%

SOUTH EAST

  Last Month 3 months ago % change
Bricklaying  £      687.52  £       681.34 0.91%
Civil Engineering  £      739.37  £       736.81 0.35%
Demolition  £      692.70  £       651.28 6.36%
Electrical  £      976.47  £       895.07 9.09%
Equipment & Operator hire  £      839.10  £       818.49 2.52%
Fit out by specialist trades  £      725.60  £       653.98 10.95%
General Construction  £      741.57  £       718.22 3.25%
Insulation  £      882.04  £       826.68 6.70%
Joinery  £      877.58  £       843.33 4.06%
Mechanical  £      878.93  £       831.63 5.69%
Plastering  £      711.71  £       676.41 5.22%
Plumbing  £      930.02  £       891.88 4.28%
Roofing  £      686.22  £       695.78 -1.37%
Scaffolding  £      765.26  £       753.11 1.61%
Shopfitting  £      955.00  £       826.22 15.59%
Steel & Timber frame erect  £      690.96  £       651.31 6.09%
Surfacing contractors  £      688.01  £       650.30 5.80%
Average  £      792.24  £       753.05 5.20%

SOUTH WEST

  Last Month 3 months ago % change
Bricklaying  £      442.89  £       478.00 -7.35%
Civil Engineering  £      673.66  £       656.75 2.57%
Demolition  £      686.15  £       631.11 8.72%
Electrical  £      662.62  £       664.21 -0.24%
Equipment & Operator hire  £      602.73  £       595.08 1.29%
Fit out by specialist trades  £      685.46  £       678.54 1.02%
General Construction  £      655.05  £       617.13 6.14%
Insulation  £      674.29  £       652.91 3.27%
Joinery  £      863.72  £       806.85 7.05%
Mechanical  £      849.80  £       735.01 15.62%
Plastering  £      710.69  £       733.78 -3.15%
Plumbing  £      646.67  £       698.22 -7.38%
Roofing  £      691.22  £       696.80 -0.80%
Scaffolding  £      698.39  £       597.37 16.91%
Shopfitting  £      749.18  £       760.34 -1.47%
Steel & Timber frame erect  £      691.42  £       692.56 -0.16%
Surfacing contractors  £      613.77  £       599.51 2.38%
Average  £      682.22  £       664.36 2.69%

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 31st October 2015.

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