Contractor markup rate

I’m about to contract out some of the wiring on a job for the first time. What does everyone use as a markup for their contractors? The stuff I’ve been able to find has been about general construction, and they’re talking around 50% markup. That seems a little high to me.

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There is not really any simple answer, you mark up with what the market will tolerate. Keep in mind with some large construction projects part of the reason for a high markup is because payments can take 90+ days.


50% seems right. Consider this - the risk is still all on you for less profit (generally) - if the client is unhappy you will hear about it, not the contractor.

Also, how much time does this save you to focus on other work? Good comm w/the contractor is VITAL, IE a walk through of the facility, specs, documentation & pix as they go along,etc.

Might be good to meet with them at the end of each day while still onsite, or at the very least touch base telephonically.


50% is general rule but other factors should be considered such as the amount of business done with a client the total cost of job, project etc. One offs get the higher mark unless your firm is the project manager in which case you are already make a substantial fee.

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Thanks for the input everyone. Some good food for thought.

I would be more concerned with how much your client is willing to pay. From there how much margin makes it worthwhile for you, from there negotiate with contractors.

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The nice thing is I can markup the contractor rate by 33% and make it the same as mine. The client still hasn’t approved the project. So we’ll see.