While the construction and contracting industries saw some hard times following the housing collapse of 2008, the outlook is much better today. Steadily rising demand for both new construction and remodels means that construction and contracting businesses are enjoying more opportunities than they've seen in years. Here's a look at the kinds of insurance that can keep your business protected as it grows, along with some of the key indicators of the industry's recovery.
Construction spending continues to rise.
As of October 2014, Americans were on pace to spend $971 billion on new construction in 2014, an increase of 8.0 percent from 2013. Residential construction saw a jump of 8.6 percent, but the real star was nonresidential construction, where spending leapt up by 106%. In addition to the positive indicator of spending on new construction, there’s been continued interest and growing profits available in flipping homes, meaning investors are once again pouring money to housing construction and remodeling.
Construction remains a very dangerous industry.
Unfortunately, with increased work opportunities comes increased risk for injury and death among workers. Construction professionals face some of the riskiest workplace conditions of all Americans, and in 2013 accounted for one in five workplace deaths. Of the 796 construction professionals killed in 2013, more than half (58.8 percent) were victims of the “big four” onsite risks: falling, getting struck by objects, being electrocuted, and getting caught in or between objects. At 3.8 injuries per 100 full-time workers, the injury rate for the construction industry was 8.6 percent higher than the average for all industries. Even more troubling, smaller firms had a much higher injury rate than larger ones, with more than three times the rate of workplace incidents than big construction companies.
Up to 25% job growth is expected for construction professionals.
In part because of demand that fell off dramatically during the recession, the current job growth outlook for construction businesses is much better than the average for all industries. While the average expected growth for US industries is 11 percent between 2012 and 2022, general contractors can expect 16 percent growth. Electricians are projected to enjoy 20 percent growth, carpenters 24 percent, and general construction businesses a whopping 25 percent growth. For small businesses, this means big opportunity.