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Self-employed tradespeople have something to celebrate

Self-employed tradespeople are earning more than ever/ Photo by Ksenia Chernaya via Pexels
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Earnings of self-employed tradespeople bucked the annual trend of an August slow-down. Hudon Contract, a payroll business catering to sub-contractors in the trade, puts this nice boost down to more infrastructure projects coming online and the longer-term impacts of the workforce post-Brexit. See which regions and trade skills of the UK are boasting the most earning power.

The earnings of self-employed tradespeople have hit an all-time high with average weekly pay above £1,000 in London, the South East and East of England, according to the latest pay trends research from Hudson Contract.

Analysis of Hudson’s payroll data shows that labour rates on building sites rose by 2 per cent to £972 during August, driven by high levels of activity in the construction industry and a shortage of skilled people.

August’s earnings were 4.6 per cent higher than the same period in 2021.

Where are self-employed tradespeople seeing spike in earnings?

Earnings were up across all regions in England and Wales, except for the West Midlands, and reached record highs in the East of England, the South West and the North West.

Plasterers saw the biggest increase in pay, which rose by 10.5 per cent to £927.

Ian Anfield, managing director of Hudson Contract, said their latest data bucked the annual trend of a slow-down in August earnings.

“Earnings usually fall in August as people take well-earned holidays but this year we have seen incredibly strong demand for highly skilled self-employed tradespeople whose pay continues to outperform their employed counterparts,” said Anfield.

Demand is being driven by the huge amount of infrastructure work on the go and the big housebuilders, which are reporting strong forward order sales, although recent volatility in financial markets has clouded the outlook with the shares of housebuilders, landlords and building suppliers under pressure as fears grow over increases in the cost of borrowing.

Ian Anfield

“In the labour market, we are starting to see a longer-term impact of Brexit. Those subbies who returned to Europe, retired or switched industries are no longer being replaced by newcomers from the EU as the tap has been turned off,” said Anfield.

He continued: “As highlighted recently by the CITB training body, there is a disconnect between further education colleges in the UK and the industry with only one third of people who do construction-related courses ending up in construction jobs.”

Location matters when it comes to self-employed earning power

RegionAugust 2022 AverageMonth on Month % ChangeYear on Year % Change
North East£7694.6%-4.5% 
North West£9462.7%10.1% 
Yorkshire & Humber£9341.3%11.3% 
East Midlands£9984.6%-2.3% 
West Midlands£956-1.8%-0.8% 
Wales£9432.5%1.5% 
East of England£1,0540.9%6.1% 
London£1,0170.7%10.4% 
South East£1,0061.7%3.7% 
South West£9676.4%7.8% 
Hudson Contract

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