SkipHire UK has revealed which UK region is the best to live and work in for construction workers. By comparing each region based on a points-based system that reflected working conditions, pay, and aspects of home life, the waste management company’s index placed London in the top spot, while the North West fell last. The West Midlands placed fifth overall, placing well in some key categories relating to construction work and life.
The West Midlands may have missed out on a top spot, but the index found that the region was an attractive place for construction workers to live and be employed. With an average daily rate for a tradesman at £217.44 per day, the cost of living in this region was among the lowest. Living costs were 23 per cent lower than that in London. The average price of a pint was only £3.35, again 35 per cent lower than in London. This means that construction workers in the West Midlands can get more for their money.
London was crowned as the best place for tradespeople to live and work in the UK. The index score was influenced by the region’s leading average tradesperson wage of £253.27 per day, and the current high job availability of 3,497 roles in the area. Comparatively, the West Midlands has 843 available jobs. As a weighted score, London achieved ten out of ten on the index, narrowly beating Scotland with a score of nine. Scotland beat London in terms of the cost of living and the average price of a pint. However, both high scores represent construction investments being made in both the capital and in Scotland. The West Midlands scored 7.9 out of ten.
The index compared UK regions based on several key factors that affected the work and life of construction workers. Work-related indexes included the average day rate of a tradesperson, the excess day rate, job availability, on-site fatal injuries, and the price of a skip. Meanwhile, living-related indexes such as cost of living and the average cost of a pint were taken into account. Together, the indexes calculated a score out of ten to rank the best places to live and work in the UK as a construction worker.
Tom Swinbourne at SkipHire UK, said: “Construction work is vital to our country and the economy. From the homes we live in, the places we work, and the infrastructure we use, we experience the work of the construction sector every day. For construction workers, there are increasing benefits for being part of this lucrative sector. Public and private body investments have increased in recent years, particularly in terms of housing and infrastructure. In turn, this means that workers can receive better wages and more working opportunities.
“The index shows where this investment is directed. The construction of new houses and infrastructure in London and Scotland shows a desire to develop these regions, while the low living costs of Northern regions prove why these areas are desirable for construction workers to live in. Continuing the growth in the construction sector and lowering the cost of living through affordable housing and quality infrastructure should be a priority.”
The Office for National Statistics also points to the West Midlands having a growing job availability within the construction sector. The latest figures show that 7.5 per cent of all construction workers in the UK during 2019 were employed by firms registered in the region. Comparatively, only 6.6 per cent of construction workers were registered in the East Midlands. The index affirms that the West Midlands is a better region to live and work as a tradesperson compared to its Eastern counterpart. This is thanks to job availability, higher wages, and having the second-lowest cost of skip hire in the UK. The West Midlands had an index score of 7.9, while the East Midlands had a score of 7.1 on the index.
Tom continued: “Investment in the construction sector must continue to grow. It is essential for boosting the quality of life in every region of the UK, where better jobs, better homes and infrastructure, and a better quality of life can be created. This can be achieved through cheaper construction services such as skip hire Birmingham and encouraging more young people to enter into this important sector, particularly in the West Midlands.”