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Worker Shortage Hammers Builders

The Wall Street Journal’s Jeffrey Sparshott looks at the labor crisis in the home building industry, which has forced many firms to amp up their pay, and boost recruitment–sometimes even stealing subs from a rival builder’s jobsite.

“Finding experienced people is difficult,” said Tim McNew, a senior vice president at TD Industries, a Dallas-based builder and facilities-management company. “When the economy shrank and the construction industry shrank, there were a lot of people who left and they haven’t returned.”

Payrolls have been expanding in the commercial construction industry faster than the economy-at-large, Sparshott notes–earnings were up 3% in April year-over-year, vs. 2.2% for all of the private sector. And at non-union shops, workers are seeing their biggest raises since 2008, according to the article.

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