Construction Market Data

Mon March 04 2024

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Sub-contractor Pay Trends February 2021

Strong demand for labour drives growth in earnings

Demand for skilled labour on building sites rebounded strongly last month, according to the construction industry’s biggest payer of subcontractors.

Hudson Contract said average weekly earnings for freelance tradespeople increased by 6.1 per cent during February after the annual fall in January.

Hudson supplies professional services to more than 2,500 construction SMEs and has a turnover of £1.6bn.

Ian Anfield, managing director, said: “We are seeing growing demand for skilled labour on building sites across England and Wales.

“Many of our clients are in the housebuilding sector and are reporting full order books.

“Interest rates are at a near record low, latest Bank of England data show the mortgage market is strong and the government is committed to new infrastructure spending.”

February earnings were down by 4 per cent compared to the same month last year but as always, significantly up on the January figures as the industry hits its stride after slowing down for Christmas and the New year

Mr Anfield added: “Considering the UK economy shrank by nearly 10 per cent during 2020, this shows the powerful underlying demand for skilled labour.

“The construction industry continues to offer great earning potential for people who want to start or switch careers.

“We are playing our part in promoting the sector through our 10-year-old apprentice sponsorship scheme, which is creating meaningful training opportunities for young people in our home county of Yorkshire.”

Steel and timber frame contractors had the best month with weekly earnings growing by 17.1 per cent to £934 in February, followed by joiners (up 13.4 per cent to £1,038) and electricians (up 12.7 per cent to £1,088).

The best-performing regions for earnings growth were the North East (up 10.6 per cent), the East of England (up 10.4 per cent) and the South East (up 8.2 per cent).

NATIONAL WEEKLY AVERAGE EARNINGS FEBRUARY 2021: £887

Region February 2021 Average Month on Month % Change Year on Year % Change
North East £770 10.6% 0.5%
North West £876 6.2% -0.5%
Yorkshire and the Humber £799 6.3% -3.6%
East Midlands £934 4.1% -1.7%
West Midlands £884 5.1% -10.8%
Wales £851 -1.8% 6.1%
East of England £968 10.4% 0.2%
London £880 3.0% -3.7%
South East £941 8.2% 1.0%
South West £861 5.8% 0.3%

Hudson delivers the most accurate indication of subcontractor pay trends across the construction industry, publishing the average pay for a spectrum of 17 different trades split across 10 regions in England and Wales.

It supplies statistics to the Bank of England to keep policymakers updated with real-time insights on demand for skilled labour.

North East

NORTH EAST Nov-20 Dec-20 Jan-21 Feb-21
CIVIL ENGINEERING £949 £1,042 £882 £922
ELECTRICAL £1,296 £928 £682 £687
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £631 £615 £562 £853
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £716 £766 £556 £645
INSULATION £809 £847 - -
JOINERY £684 £733 £687 £758
PLASTERING £783 £687 £689 £765
ROOFING £901 £1,152 £858 £1,038
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £304 £425 £511 £535
SHOP FITTING £670 £783 £604 £560
SPECIALIST TRADES £648 £724 £656 £704

North West

NORTH WEST Nov-20 Dec-20 Jan-21 Feb-21
BRICKLAYING £711 £788 £610 £685
CIVIL ENGINEERING £783 £805 £738 £779
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £761 £790 £792 £805
ELECTRICAL £814 £844 £727 £926
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £767 £842 £920 £716
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £949 £980 £826 £967
INSULATION £721 £965 £478 £822
JOINERY £1,183 £1,302 £1,194 £1,203
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £840 £1,124 £1,071 £1,140
PLASTERING £585 £431 £458 £564
PLUMBING £823 £1,122 £842 £941
ROOFING £872 £965 £840 £915
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £739 £656 £637 £712
SHOP FITTING £1,018 £998 £1,205 £1,051
SPECIALIST TRADES £808 £941 £794 £709
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £638 £599 £530 £545
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £940 £1,002 £801 £962

Yorkshire & Humber

YORKSHIRE & HUMBER Nov-20 Dec-20 Jan-21 Feb-21
BRICKLAYING £712 £726 £547 £692
CIVIL ENGINEERING £811 £817 £725 £787
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £752 £696 £730 £734
ELECTRICAL £1,280 £1,228 £1,139 £1,104
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £767 £792 £771 £763
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £819 £858 £732 £800
INSULATION £833 £742 £636 £725
JOINERY £730 £772 £707 £794
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £1,024 £987 £898 £1,062
PLASTERING £724 £879 £707 £729
PLUMBING £799 £712 £687 £718
ROOFING £663 £707 £563 £580
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £615 £562 £511 £566
SHOP FITTING £1,018 £1,083 £1,118 £894
SPECIALIST TRADES £961 £773 £648 £730
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £1,040 £1,264 £1,086 £1,285
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £925 £902 £746 £730

East Midlands

EAST MIDLANDS Nov-20 Dec-20 Jan-21 Feb-21
CIVIL ENGINEERING £918 £860 £842 £873
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £672 £714
ELECTRICAL £879 £890 £891 £1,081
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £1,023 £1,290 £1,287 £844
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £1,032 £968 £849 £934
INSULATION £786 £820 £690 £785
JOINERY £768 £766 £745 £847
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £1,397 £1,445 £1,542 £1,820
PLASTERING £785 £789 £722 £763
PLUMBING £1,311 £1,211 £1,116 £1,082
ROOFING £700 £778 £692 £722
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £831 £804 £666 £734
SHOP FITTING £1,226 £1,250 £941 £1,059
SPECIALIST TRADES £811 £842 £801 £797
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £518 £619 £954 £1,069
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £907 £942 £819 £846

West Midlands

WEST MIDLANDS Nov-20 Dec-20 Jan-21 Feb-21
BRICKLAYING £844 £811 £655 £731
CIVIL ENGINEERING £1,019 £994 £918 £965
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £652 £651 £569 £548
ELECTRICAL £1,225 £1,219 £1,121 £1,222
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £863 £846 £827 £853
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £917 £883 £841 £914
INSULATION £891 £847 £838 £812
JOINERY £1,204 £1,010 £1,178 £1,184
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £1,626 £1,101 £1,369 £1,260
PLASTERING £668 £659 £600 £681
PLUMBING £939 £876 £821 £964
ROOFING £617 £638 £556 £600
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £743 £638 £586 £642
SHOP FITTING £1,321 £1,285 £1,488 £1,348
SPECIALIST TRADES £949 £852 £823 £826
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £816 £792 £651 £689

Wales

WALES Nov-20 Dec-20 Jan-21 Feb-21
BRICKLAYING £1,199 £1,278 £1,397 £1,125
CIVIL ENGINEERING £755 £728 £789 £756
ELECTRICAL £812 £874 £897 £830
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £1,562 £1,423 £1,257 £1,266
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £750 £723 £745 £862
JOINERY - - - -
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £589 £830 £752 £914
PLASTERING £968 £915 £800 £881
PLUMBING £823 £830 £885 £711
ROOFING £1,427 £1,282 £392 £609
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £713 £718 £768 £664
SPECIALIST TRADES £760 £789 £846 £774
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £738 £647 £842 £1,022
SURFACING CONTRACTORS - - - -

East of England

EAST OF ENGLAND Nov-20 Dec-20 Jan-21 Feb-21
BRICKLAYING £773 £779 £661 £719
CIVIL ENGINEERING £1,011 £991 £903 £955
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £789 £730 £698 £758
ELECTRICAL £1,510 £1,515 £1,207 £1,544
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £921 £1,010 £925 £874
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £941 £924 £849 £894
INSULATION £947 £941 £805 £854
JOINERY £1,138 £1,210 £986 £1,151
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £1,162 £1,228 £1,162 £1,214
PLASTERING £1,084 £967 £1,017 £1,032
PLUMBING £1,131 £1,060 £1,063 £1,106
ROOFING £803 £792 £658 £794
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £775 £820 £778 £723
SHOP FITTING £1,465 £1,550 £1,213 £1,539
SPECIALIST TRADES £761 £755 £693 £829
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £745 £730 £601 £750
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £696 £710 £636 £697

London

LONDON Nov-20 Dec-20 Jan-21 Feb-21
BRICKLAYING £813 £772 £685 £749
CIVIL ENGINEERING £874 £886 £788 £860
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £856 - - -
ELECTRICAL £1,117 £911 £954 £985
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £788 £727 £709 £758
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £1,007 £993 £987 £974
INSULATION - - £2,040 -
JOINERY £916 £1,019 £823 £932
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £654 £768 £735 £757
PLASTERING - - - -
PLUMBING £1,156 £1,099 £1,092 £1,155
ROOFING £782 £789 £719 £726
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £903 £921 £872 £915
SHOP FITTING £864 £1,023 £630 £703
SPECIALIST TRADES £1,055 £1,113 £980 £1,059
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £644 £640 £661 £733
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £475 £480 £550 £400

South East

SOUTH EAST Nov-20 Dec-20 Jan-21 Feb-21
BRICKLAYING £932 £922 £590 £757
CIVIL ENGINEERING £768 £789 £783 £798
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £1,357 £1,313 £1,130 £1,292
ELECTRICAL £1,142 £1,286 £1,137 £1,261
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £858 £860 £860 £837
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £926 £890 £889 £868
INSULATION £719 £716 £797 £801
JOINERY £1,045 £1,067 £950 £1,176
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £1,246 £1,402 £1,336 £1,100
PLASTERING £742 £814 £704 £785
PLUMBING £965 £1,102 £827 £974
ROOFING £747 £848 £661 £687
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £862 £861 £792 £792
SHOP FITTING £1,297 £1,097 £1,176 £1,276
SPECIALIST TRADES £786 £806 £676 £753
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £639 £671 £760 £871
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £834 £876 £732 £866

South West

SOUTH WEST Nov-20 Dec-20 Jan-21 Feb-21
BRICKLAYING £600 £600 - £540
CIVIL ENGINEERING £806 £831 £800 £809
ELECTRICAL £793 £867 £669 £772
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE - - - -
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £921 £927 £795 £908
INSULATION £1,368 £1,284 £1,378 £1,358
JOINERY £941 £1,144 £828 £1,099
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £753 £756 £647 £714
PLASTERING £1,118 £754 £582 £695
PLUMBING £871 £916 £1,172 £1,275
ROOFING £833 £803 £738 £815
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £811 £865 £688 £709
SPECIALIST TRADES £965 £1,161 £1,168 £964
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £634 £666 £599 £622