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How Much Does a Construction Superintendent Make?

by Rick Suttle, studioD

Construction superintendents typically work on large residential, commercial or civil construction projects. Their primary responsibilities include planning and coordinating construction projects, scheduling workers and sub-contractors, managing costs, communicating and enforcing safety standards and completing all construction on time. If you want to become a construction superintendent, you need a bachelor's degree in construction science or management. In return, you can expect to earn an average salary above $60,000 annually.

Salary and Qualifications

The average annual salary for construction superintendents in the United States was $64,000 as of 2013, according to the Indeed.com website. Glassdoor reports an average salary of $68,250, but it's sample size is much lower. Construction superintendents can also earn bonuses that significantly increase their incomes. To become a construction superintendent, you need a minimum of a bachelor's degree in construction science, construction management, architecture or engineering. An associate's degree may fulfill your educational requirements if you have at least a couple years of experience in the construction industry. Many employers also prefer candidates with bachelor's degrees to have at least two or more years of industry experience. Other essential requirements are physical stamina and supervisory, time-management, communication, decision-making, problem-solving and computer skills.

Salary by Region

In 2013, average salaries for construction superintendents varied significantly in most U.S. regions, according to Indeed.com. In the Midwest region, they averaged the highest salaries of $70,000 in Illinois and the lowest of $49,000 in Nebraska. In the West, they averaged $43,000 per year in Hawaii and $70,000 per year in California. Construction superintendents in the Southeast averaged $55,000 a year in Louisiana and $76,000 in Washington, D.C. In the Northeast, average salaries ranged from a high of $78,000 per year in New York to a low of $55,000 in Maine.

Contributing Factors

A construction superintendent can earn more in certain industries. For example, the Bureau of Labor Statistics -- which includes construction superintendents under the broader job category of Construction Managers -- reports that these workers earned relatively high salaries of $115,910 a year in the oil and gas extraction industry as of May 2012. They also earned above average salaries working on highway construction and nonresidential or commercial projects at $93,950 and $92,400 per year, respectively. Experienced construction superintendents may also earn larger bonuses because of their ability to manage more projects simultaneously.

Job Outlook

The BLS expects the number of jobs for all construction managers to grow 17 percent from 2010 to 2020, which is above the projected 14 percent growth rate for all occupations. As a construction supervisor, you may experience a similar increase in jobs because you'll work with construction managers on various projects. Increases in population and the number of businesses should drive demand for construction superintendent jobs. Opportunities should also be strong in the highway and bridge construction industry, as cities expand highway lanes and replace outmoded bridges.

About the Author

Rick Suttle has been writing professionally since 2009, covering health and business for various online and print publications. He has worked in corporate marketing research and as a copywriter. Suttle holds a Bachelor of Science in marketing from Miami University and a Master of Business Administration from California Coast University. He is author of the novels "Hell Year" and "Suicide Peak."

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