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The construction industry has a dire need for new laborers thanks to mass layoffs and resignations stemming from economic instability. On the bright side, there are many new job opportunities available for new hires. If you’re looking for a fresh start in construction, these are the top ten easiest construction jobs for new and inexperienced workers.
How Much Do the Easiest Construction Jobs Make?
It depends on the location, contractor and specific job responsibilities, but most entry-level construction jobs make between $12 and $44 per hour. Most of these positions are closer to the $12 mark when you first start. However, the wage can quickly increase over time if you prove to be a hard worker and team player.
Let’s start out the list with the job you’re most likely to have at your first construction gig.
- General Laborer
Most new construction workers start out as general laborers. It requires no experience, but you do need a strong work ethic.. This position involves a bunch of miscellaneous tasks. You can expect to handle power tools, operate simple equipment and do the dirty work that the veterans of the industry know to avoid.
There’s often an informal hierarchy among construction crews, and general laborers are at the bottom. You basically have to do whatever your supervisor says. It involves a lot of on-the-fly learning, so you need to be able to think on your feet. General laborers naturally advance to another position once they find a specialty that they excel in.
- Traffic Control
One of the most common jobs assigned to general laborers is traffic control. These are the people you see holding stop signs and guiding vehicles through road construction sites. This job is straightforward enough, and it’s much less labor intensive than most other construction jobs. However, it requires constant communication and attentiveness.
Traffic control workers are more important than they get credit for. They’re the eyes and ears of road construction sites, tasked with safely guiding traffic and identifying dangerous activity. It might be one of the easiest construction jobs in terms of labor, but you still need great interpersonal skills and can’t let your guard down.
- Cleaning Crew
Construction sites get messy, so someone has to clean them up. That job falls on the cleaning crew’s shoulders. They wipe down windows, vacuum floors, pick up trash and do other small cleaning tasks around the site. Many construction contractors also hire independent cleaning crews for the more laborious work, such as removing heavy debris.
The cleaning crew is one of the easiest construction jobs because you’re likely already familiar with most of the tasks. Sometimes the job responsibilities go beyond typical housekeeping, but cleaning workers generally have it easier than other laborers on the site.
Landscaping is one of the most unpredictable construction jobs. It mostly involves lawn mowing, weed whacking and other common yard chores, but some days the job throws you a huge curveball. You might have to remove or install all kinds of things, from tree seedlings to patio pavers to underground drainage pipes.
However, landscaping still belongs among the easiest construction jobs because of the other 90% of the work. There’s something peaceful about yard work that every experienced laborer can attest to. The hours are long and the hardest jobs will assuredly test your mental strength, but you will find great satisfaction in landscaping overall.
Now we’re getting into the niche apprenticeships. Painting is the easiest of the bunch. You have to paint walls, ceilings, furniture and other decorative objects. The contractor will probably start you off with something simple, such as mixing paints and applying the initial layer. Once you get the technique down, you’ll move on to painting on ladders and using special types of paint.
Another relatively easy construction apprenticeship is carpentry. Wood comes in many shapes and sizes on a construction site, so you’re bound to develop some rudimentary carpentry skills. Once you build those fundamentals, you can dive into framing, jousting, furniture making and other unique types of carpentry.
Masonry is somewhat of an extension of landscaping, including tasks like installing patios and walls made of stone and brick. You will learn the proper installation techniques as a general laborer, then move on to more complex jobs as you gain experience. The work is tough, but this job makes for a great creative outlet.
Roofing is notoriously difficult, but it’s also one of the highest-paying construction jobs – at least $15 an hour – for that reason. You have to work at great heights, completely exposed to the elements and the hazards that lie below. It takes courage to be a roofer, but it still belongs on this list because it requires no prerequisite skills or experience.
- Sheet Metal Worker
The sheet metal worker profession has seen a shakeup in recent years thanks to the growth of prefabricated building. The work is harder, but the pay is better too, with a minimum of $16 an hour. You will use power tools and other equipment to install and repair sheet metal for roofing and ventilation systems.
- Floor Installation
This job involves all kinds of materials, including carpets, vinyl, tiles, stones and hardwood floors. Each installation procedure is a little different, so you will probably start off with basic tasks like sawing and stapling. Once you develop a basic understanding of each type of flooring, you will get to develop a specialty.
Get a Fresh Start in Construction
There’s no point in denying that construction is a labor-intensive industry, but someone has to do hard labor to keep society going. Even the easiest construction jobs are crucial for maintaining our infrastructure. Get a fresh start and make a real difference in your community by joining the construction workforce.