Weekly pay hits £1,000 for many tradespeople

Self-employed tradespeople in three regions of the UK earned more than £1,000 per week on average last month as demand outstripped supply.

Figures from employment services provider Hudson Contract revealed that freelance construction workers in London, the South East and the East Midlands could expect four-figure pay packets every Friday in March.

Average pay was up from February in seven of the 10 regions measured, with weekly earnings across England and Wales increasing by almost 1 per cent to match the previous all-time record of £959.

Hudson Contract managing director Ian Anfield said the evidence promised a “strong year” for tradespeople.

“While there are still huge issues around inflation, fuel and materials, which can only be made worse by the war in Ukraine, the construction industry is still running at full capacity,” he said.

“There is still huge pent-up demand for housing in the UK and there is still a shortage of skilled workers. Our clients are flat-out, with full order books.”

Workers in the East Midlands had the highest average pay, at £1,070 in March, while those in Yorkshire enjoyed the biggest rise, of 4.3 per cent.

Welsh freelance subcontractors suffered the biggest drop in income, with their pay down by 5.1 per cent from February, while those in the North East remained the lowest paid on just £759 per week.

Demolition and wrecking specialists saw the biggest monthly increase, of 8.1 per cent, to £938 per week. Plumbers enjoyed the highest earnings of all trades, taking £1,139 per week.

Turner & Townsend this week increased its 2022 tender price forecasts to a staggering 8.5 per cent rise for buildings and a 6 per cent hike for infrastructure.

The cost consultant said there had been a “significant” impact on inflation from the ongoing war in Ukraine, adding that this was on top of “layers of issues, including pandemic and Brexit disruption”.

Martin Sudweeks, UK managing director of cost management at Turner & Townsend, called for “calm, clear and programmatic thinking”.

He added: “Those that successfully diversify their supply chains and build strong relationships with trusted suppliers will maximise resilience, and benefit most long-term.”

Leave a comment