How much money do electricians make? It all depends on the field that the electrician goes into and whether it is a union job. Also, there is a difference in pay when comparing the private, small business jobs to civil service jobs. Nonunion jobs with very large construction companies will also have their own pay scale, different job levels in electrical work and varying pay scales.
The Salary of an Electrician
The annual salary of an electrician will depend on his or her experience, level of skill and where the person works. Working in civil service tends to pay a little more than the national average for an electrician, but sometimes a union position in the private sector will pay even more and will come with additional benefits.
Overall in 2011, electricians averaged about 53,000 per year. This averaged out to about $25.00 per hour. The annual salary that electricians received was between $37,570 and $65,260 per year.
Where the electrician works will have a dramatic effect on wages. If you are looking for work in Alaska then you can expect to be paid well above the average national annual wage and receive about $72,000 per year. The wages in New York, Illinois and Hawaii are relatively close to those wages so they’d be a good choice for high earnings, but you have to keep in mind that the cost of living is far higher in those places also. On the lower end of the wage scale is the annual income of electricians in North Carolina. You can expect to earn only about $40,000 per year in that state. Nevada and Oregon have more middle of the road living expenses but the pay for electricians tend to be closer to the higher end of the pay scale.
The outlook for electricians is estimated to be very good in the coming years. It is estimated that this industry will grow at 23% in the next five years. This is almost double the average rate of growth for all other industries. If you are considering going into this construction related field then you will probably never have to worry about finding work. The growth for the next five years is likely to continue beyond that. Electricity is very important in our society and it is going to continue to affect all levels of our lives for many years to come. The only way this particular industry will get into a decline is if there is a sudden upsurge in people who are doing electrical work.
Types of Electrical Jobs
There are a lot of different types of electrician positions and some pay quite well. For instance, a person who teaches electrical vocations at private business schools tend to earn the higher end of the pay scale average, about $79,000 per year. So, if crawling around in tight spaces repairing electrical wiring doesn’t sound very exciting for a day job to you, there is a lot more money to be made teaching the subject.
Those electricians working for building contractors and building new homes earned only about $52,000 per year as an average across the nation. Construction is work that is available when the contractor has a project to do, so work can be on and off. Large projects can keep people working for a couple of years and then it will be time to look for work again. In Las Vegas, NV, electricians and other construction workers tend to make high union wages when there is construction going on remodeling or building new casinos. When that work is done, the workers will work for private residents doing electrical work until another big union job comes along again.
Of course, union jobs will pay the best wages and have the best benefits. If you are an apprentice electrician then you can expect to make anywhere from $40 to $55 per hour depending on which union is involved and in which area of the country you live and work. This wage is far higher than the national average for this type of work in the public sector or nonunion work. In addition to the great wages, you will also have great benefits like generous overtime wages, health insurance, paid time off and more. The union works hard to make sure employees are very well paid for their work. On the downside, you could be out of work a lot because you are usually allowed to accept only union work. When all the union jobs are complete, there could be months or years before another job starts up again.
The Different Types of Electricians
There are many types of electricians, so when you are shopping for a new career in the construction field keep in mind there are many choices with electrical work. You can be residential, commercial, electrical teacher or master electrician.
A Residential Electrician works on people’s homes installing ceiling fans, repairing furnace thermostats or maybe rewiring the entire house. They also might be doing installation of outdoor electrical wiring so that you can have a backyard shed with power or repairing the wiring to make that well pump work again.
Commercial Electricians work on construction sites installing wiring. They might install the wiring of the building, install a water heater or wire a security system. Some of these types of electricians will work for power companies and will troubleshoot electrical problems that affect public safety.
The Master Electrician usually owns his or her own contracting company and has a very high set of skills. This type of work usually requires a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and a state license.
Jobs in the Construction Field
There are a lot of different types of well-paying jobs in the construction field. If you are wondering how much electricians make then you might want to explore more jobs in the construction business to see if another job might pay better.