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Construction wages on the rise

Median wages in construction outpaced the national median wages.

BY HBSDealer Staff

About half of payroll workers in construction earned more than $47,290 with the top 25% making at least $66,290, according to 2018 Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey data and analysis from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).

In comparison, the U.S. median wage is $38,640, while the top quartile (top 25%) makes at least $62,510.

Year over year, median wages in construction outpaced the national median wages, 3.2% vs 2.5%. Wages of various construction laborers and helpers rose even faster, ranging from 6.7% for roofers’ helpers to 3.6% for construction laborers.

Median wages of plasterers, stucco masons, floor layers, and tapers working in construction increased about 7%. Stonemasons saw their wages rise by over 6%. Their helpers and terrazzo workers got wage increases over 5%.

Historically, subcontractor bids increase faster than construction wages, adding more inflationary fuel to housing prices.

The NAHB said the findings are consistent with record high labor shortages reported by NAHB causing builders to pay higher wages and subcontractor bids and forcing them to increase home prices.

The OES publishes wages for close to 380 occupations in construction. Out of these, only 54 are construction trades. The other industry workers are in finance, sales, administration and other off-site activities.

 

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