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How Much Money Do Electrical Contractors Make?

Contractor Tips , Posted by Charlotte Smith on

How Much Money Do Electrical Contractors Make?

Jobs in the technical trades are more popular than ever. That's because they're in demand, as aspiring homeowners flood the market with demand for more housing, and business owners invest capital in expanding and upgrading their facilities. Jobs in construction, plumbing, and electrical work are sought-after.

Going into electrical work is an excellent option if you want to enter the trades. Whether you open your own operation or take a waged position at a large company, you stand to make great earnings. You’ll have a solid roster of benefits and enjoy a post with a considerable amount of security.

Just how much money does the average electrical contractor make? Read through the following guide to find out. 

How Much Money Does an Electrical Contractor Make?

Jobs in the electrical field are booming. According to the latest numbers by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median income for an electrician is around $60,000 per year.

But there's a big difference between a regular journeyman electrician and an electrical contractor. Where electricians work for a business or company that employs other electricians, the contractor is the owner of that firm. The responsibilities are greater, but so is the pay.

More good news for aspiring electrical contractors is that as of 2022, there is a shortage of qualified electrical workers. Wherever there is demand for skilled labor that supply cannot meet adequately, compensation will inflate pay rates. People will pay more for services they need but can't easily get. 

Several factors that go into the day-to-day work of being an electrical contractor also impact how high your salary will be. The four main factors are your level of experience, qualifications, the industry you're working in, and where that industry is.

Experience

The primary component that affects individual workers' salaries is their experience level. If you're coming into a job with 20 years of experience, you can command a higher rate than a trainee. You'll also get more jobs faster, which will net you a greater year-end return.

Qualifications, Education and Training

Your pay will also be contingent on the number of qualifications you have earned, your level of education, and how much professional training you bring to the role.

There are many paths toward becoming an electrician, including apprenticing, the four-year degree route, working your way up through a family business, and more. 

Whatever path you take and how long you stay on will affect your pay.

Industry

Different industries command different rates. If you work at the residential level within clients' homes doing electrical spot work, you'll earn a certain amount. 

But if you're inking six-figure contracts to install electrical systems in high-rise complexes, you'll certainly earn more.

Location

You might think that larger metropolitan areas will give you a better chance at setting down roots as an electrical contractor. More clients, more money, right?

Not necessarily. More people also means more competition. You might cut a more competitive path in a smaller, underserved area.

How Much Profit Do Electrical Contractors Make?

How much profit electrical contractors make is different from how much money they earn. An electrician who works for a firm will keep most of their earnings and save what they have to spend on regular living expenses like rent, utilities, and food. 

Electrical contractors have a whole host of tabs to pick up at the end of each month, quarter, and year. They're paying payroll taxes, income taxes, fronting the cost for supplies, training seminars, and more. The pay is higher, but the profit may not be much after factoring in all expenses, averaging 1.5-2.0%. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can an Electrical Contractor Make 6 Figures?

It's certainly possible to make six figures as an electrical contractor. But you need to strike the right balance between setting your practice down in an area with high demand and being populous enough to merit large quantities of electrical work. 

You should also factor in how much living expenses are in the area where you settle down and how much employee expenses will cut into your bottom line.

Forging a Path of Your Own

It's not overly difficult to become a competent, high-earning electrical contractor. All it takes is a little schooling, some professional experience, and a sense of dedication.

There is always going to be a demand for decent electrical work. Buildings are going up all the time that need new electric grids and old buildings re-wiring.

Understand what you need to set up a robust practice, pick the right location, and then get to work.

Are you getting ready for the journeyman, residential, or master electrician exam? Check out Contractor Training Center’s exam prep courses for the National NASCLA Accredited Electrical Contractor Exams and set yourself up for success.