Stone Masons: Salary Overview
Stonemasons build stone walls and stone exteriors and floors.
They may use marble, granite, limestone but also artificial stones, made from concrete or other materials.
Stonemasons cut stone into various shapes and sizes using a special hammer or a diamond-blade saw.
A stone mason’s job description typically includes reading blueprints or calculating the materials needed for the project, laying out patterns and forms according to plans, aligning structures, using levels and plumbs, cleaning, and polishing surfaces using hand tools or power tools, and laying out and installing rainscreen water systems.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for masonry workers was $46,500 as of May 2019.
This means that half the workers in this profession earned less than this amount while half earned more.
Annual wages vary based on the worker’s specialty.
The report shows that stonemasons made a median annual wage of $43,280 a year while the median wage for brick masons and block masons was $53,100.
The best-paid 10 percent of masonry workers made more than $78,250 per year while the lowest 10 percent earned less than $30,250.
In conclusion, depending on the level of experience, skills, and education but also the industry and the region of employment, stonemasons can make anywhere between less than $30,000 and more than $80,000 a year.
This trade is typically learned through apprenticeships and on-the-job training.
Apprenticeships are usually sponsored by unions and contractor associations.
As an apprentice or entry-level employee, you will typically earn a salary that is close to the minimum for this profession.
After finishing the apprenticeship you will become a journey worker and you will be able to work on your own and, as you gain experience your salary will also increase.
Stone Mason Salary by Industry
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, masonry workers held about 298,000 jobs in the United States in 2018 but only 17,100 of them were stonemasons.
The largest employers for masonry workers, in general, were poured concrete foundation and structure contractors, masonry contractors, and building constructors.
The same report shows that 11% of all masonry workers were self-employed.
Poured concrete foundation and structure contractors hired 26 percent of all masonry workers and offered them a median annual wage of $44,610.
About 21 percent of all masonry workers were employed by masonry contractors, a field that offered them a median annual wage of $51,100.
In the building construction industry, the median annual wage for masonry workers was $49,840.
Masonry workers who were employed in the field of heavy and civil engineering construction were paid a median annual wage of $44,590.
Bonuses, Commissions and Other Benefits
Stonemasons are paid either an hourly rate or a fixed salary paid weekly or monthly.
In order to motivate their employees, some employers also offer bonuses and profit sharing to stonemasons.
According to payscale.com, as of April 2020, stonemasons earned, on average $900 a year in bonuses and $2,000 in profit sharing.
The same report shows that only a few stone masons received health benefits: 22% of them had medical insurance and 10% had dental insurance.
Employment for stonemasons is projected to grow 9 percent from 2018 to 2028, faster than the average for all occupations.
Stonemasons will be needed to build new exteriors, walls, and floors that are made of stone but their expertise will also be needed on restoration projects.
However, job opportunities vary depending on the region, the time of the year, and the local economy.
As a stonemason, you will have more projects during the warm months and you may face unemployment during cold months when there are fewer construction projects.
Having a few years of experience and good technical and communication skills will give you an advantage over your competitors on the job market.
* Based on information from the May 2019 salary report from the BLS. The figures represent accumulated data for all states of employment for Stone Masons. BLS data represents averages and medians for workers at all levels of education and experience. This data doesn't represent starting salaries.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.