The Construction Education Foundation reports that average age of a skilled craftsman is 49, and the average age for stonemasons is 69. In the next ten years, an estimated 20% of the skilled laborers in the construction industry will be retiring. Opportunities abound in the construction industry—and are only going to get better. Those looking for home building permit information and residential construction job leads in Florida, Texas, Oklahoma, Alabama, and Georgia need look no further than HBW. It’s a great time for independent contractors to gain a foothold in the building business.
Between January of 2007 and today, over 2.2 million construction jobs disappeared. But since 2011, residential building permit applications have increased 31% nationwide, and construction spending across all sectors has increased 14%. Yet as the economy improves and the construction industry grows stronger, those 2.2 million out-of-work tradesmen are nowhere to be found.
During the bust, many workers retrained in other fields like truck driving, or took jobs in manufacturing. When America’s energy industry began to heat up, even more of them migrated to work in the oil fields and coal mines. Those job sectors remain strong and stable, and few workers will be lured back into the building business. The jobs that are currently open will remain open until filled by new workers, and many other jobs are being added every day. The issue has gotten so serious that some outfits are poaching workers directly from other job sites.
The more prominent labor shortages are in framing, roofing, plumbing, carpentry, general labor, and equipment operator positions. It’s generally agreed that the most serious labor deficit is in journeyman-level professionals, but even entry-level drywall installers are back up to earning the pre-bust rate-per-sheet of $5.
To meet the need for workers with both skill and experience, many firms are partnering up with state and local agencies to provide specialized training, apprenticeships, and internships. Many states are implementing construction education initiatives to meet the demand for skilled labor. States like Florida and Texas are actively recruiting skilled and experienced professionals who are willing to relocate. If you’re a trades professional looking to move to those areas, make HBW your first stop for building permit information and residential construction job leads in those markets.