Brick masons work in the construction industry building and repairing walls, floors, partitions and other structures. They work with materials including brick, cement, concrete and masonry panels and may be required to perform tasks on residential, municipal and commercial buildings, as well as bridges, roads and sewers. Salary levels for the role vary dependent upon factors such as geography and employer type.
For the purposes of its 2009 national employment survey, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics classified brick masons alongside their close colleagues block masons. It calculated that across the profession, the average yearly salary was $49,250, equivalent to $4,104 a month or $23.68 an hour. This is a slight decrease from the figure reported by the Economic Research Institute in 2008, which put the average annual wage for a brick mason at $50,441.
Salary by Industry
As detailed in the BLS survey, the vast majority of brick masons work for foundation, structure and building exterior contractors. The average salary within this sector of the construction industry was given as $48,160. Within non-residential building construction, the rate was $52,990, while those brick masons working in residential building construction could expect an average of $46,250. Positions within other specialty trade contractors paid an average of $53,630, while within building finishing contractors, the rate was $66,040.
Salary by Location
The BLS survey revealed the impact that location has on brick mason salaries. It reported that, across all industry sectors, Massachusetts, Alaska and Illinois were the states in which wage levels were highest, averaging $78,580, $70,040 and $67,410, respectively. In contrast, Maryland was listed at $48,360 and North Carolina at just $35,150. At the level of metropolitan districts, St. Joseph in Missouri topped the table with an average wage of $85,300, followed by the Boston, Cambridge, Quincy at $83,110. Palm Coast in Florida was listed at just $34,140.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that employment opportunities for brick masons, and their close colleagues block masons and stonemasons, will increase by around 12 percent over the period from 2008 to 2018. This is roughly in line with predictions for the country as a whole, expected to grow by between 7 and 13 percent over the same time. The growth of the construction industry in response to an increasing U.S. population will be the primary reason for this jump in demand; therefore, salary levels should remain competitive.