For the past year, Construction Junkie has been analyzing hourly wage data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics for 25 different construction related professions. The goal was to highlight how workers were compensated in each of the U.S.’ 50 states.
We also counterbalanced the raw hourly wage data with the cost of living index of the states to determine how the pay construction workers in each state was counterbalanced by the cost of groceries, housing, utilities, transportation, health, and other miscellaneous costs. All cost of living adjustment data came from Missouri Economic Research and Information Center (MERIC).
We’ve previously published a list of The 10 Highest Paid Construction Jobs That Only Require High School Diploma, but we thought it would be interesting to examine each state individually to find out where construction workers can live most comfortably.
To follow along with our state-by-state breakdown of best states to work in construction, click here.
For the purpose of this list, each state’s ranking was determined by calculating the average ranking of hourly wages after being adjusted for cost of living for each of the 25 professions we examined. There are, of course, many ways to determine how good a state is to work in, but, at the end of the day, all workers have to be able to provide for them and their families, so wages should play a large role. If you see a state ranked #51 in a certain category, that is because Washington DC was included in the original data set, but was not included in this series.
Michigan, the mitten shaped state consisting of two peninsulas and which also seems to be both south and north of all surrounding states somehow, lands at #5 on our list. The state is already the 6th state from the Midwest Region in the top 10, joining Indiana, Kansas, North Dakota, Ohio, and Wisconsin.
Michigan is helped in the rankings by their relatively low cost of living, which is 9.7% lower than national average, according to MERIC, which helped them jump around 11 spots after adjustment. 15 of the 23 construction professions that we examined for the state were ranked in the top 10 overall. Two professions, solar panel installers and reinforcing iron and rebar workers, had insufficient data to report on, according to the BLS.
If you’d like to see the breakdown of a specific profession, click the link the spreadsheet below:
Best Construction Jobs in Michigan
This list is determined by selecting the jobs that were ranked the highest:
T 2. Carpenter
T 2. Electrician
T 2. Plumber
T 2. Drywaller
T 2. Sheet Metal Worker
Worst Construction Jobs in Michigan
This list is determined by selecting the jobs ranked the lowest:
2. Floor Layer
3. Crane Operator
5. Brick & Block Mason