New York ranks 34th for in wages/cost of living rankings for construction-related occupations

Crane operators are among the workers enjoying the overall best jobs nationally. )Image from International Union of Operating Engineers Local 158)

How does New York rank in comparison to other states when you balance construction occupations’ wages with living costs? If you are a crane operator, you’ll do okay, but not so well if you are a building inspector, construction manager or insulation worker, according to data compiled by

The website says New York ranks 34th in the nation when wage levels for 25 construction occupations are correlated with actual living costs.

Wage data is gathered from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. This data is correlated with information about the cost of groceries, housing, utilities, transportation, health, and other miscellaneous living expenses. All cost of living adjustment data came from Missouri Economic Research and Information Center (MERIC).

The data indicates that, despite having the fourth highest cost of living, at 31.6 percent higher than the national average (according to MERIC), New York still managed to include few construction professions in the top 10 nationally, like crane operators, roofers, and concrete finishers, even after adjusting the numbers. Before adjusting for cost of living, the vast majority of construction professions in the state were ranked in the top 10, much like Hawaii.

If you’d like to see the breakdown of a specific profession, click the link the spreadsheet here.

Best construction jobs in New York

This list is determined by selecting the jobs that were ranked the highest:

1. Crane operators

2. Concrete finishers

T 3. Roofers

T 3. Iron and steel worker

T 3. Reinforcing iron and rebar worker

Worst construction jobs in New York

This list is determined by selecting the jobs ranked the lowest:

1. Security and fire systems installers

2. Welders

T 3. Construction supervisor

T 3. Construction building inspector

T 5. Construction manager

T 5. Insulation worker


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