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Freelance Builder Pay Trends: November 2017

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 a spectrum of 17 different trades now split across ten regions.

October’s jump in earnings has been sustained as we head into winter.  “The national average is up by four pounds a week,” says Hudson Contract Managing Director Ian Anfield.  “Given the negativity that’s been running through the industry at national level, I think it’s significant because it demonstrates there’s been no retreat from the gains that have been made this autumn.  Our clients have also reported a big jump in the volume of business towards the end of November.” 

Freelance builders in all regions except the South-West earned more this month than in October.  Stand-out performance was in the North-East, where pay rates rose by a 2.4% – on top of a 6.7% pay jump in October.

National Weekly Average Earnings November 2017: £870

Region November 2017 Average Change from October 2017
North East £780.00 +2.44%
North West £762.00 +0.52%
Yorkshire & Humber £830.00 +0.84%
East Midlands £905.00 +1.88%
West Midlands £898.00 +0.00%
Wales £787.00 +0.76%
East of England £942.00 +0.53%
London £874.00 +0.69%
South East £886.00 +0.68%
South West £779.00 -2.18%

To view our interactive pay trends map click here

Looking at the trends on a trade-by-trade basis, this month’s winners are:

  • Steel & Timber Frame Erection:  +6.6%
    Bouncing back from last month’s losses
  • Mechanical & Engineering:  +5.4%
    Strong gains in the North West
  • Demolition & Wrecking+3.0%
    Paving the way for new projects

And the losers – but not by much:

  • Joinery:  -1.8%
    Losses in London
  • Scaffolding & Lifting:  -0.8%
    Down £7 on October
  • Shopfitting:  -0.7%
    Down . . . but still over £1,100 on average

The national picture reflects Hudson Contract’s continued faith in the sector and its prospects, with the latest IHS Markit/CIPS data recording increased momentum and an unexpected growth surge, driven mostly by house building.

“Civil engineering remains very slow, but the budget held some good news for the construction industry, along with some well-deserved cash and investment injections, so hopefully that will help turn the corner back into growth,”  Ian Anfield says. 

“As we head towards 2018 with progress in the Brexit negotiations, it’s seems more likely that private sector investment in the UK will take off again and deliver a shot in the arm for the commercial sector.

“More immediately, and despite the threat of snow in some areas, our clients are making a real push towards completing projects by the end of the year, and I expect this to be reflected in next month’s trends.”

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 during November 2017.

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