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OK, this is probably going to be a debated topic but… what trade do you think is the most profitable? Assuming this is a small to medium size business and not a huge commercial business.
 

· General Contractor
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Very difficult question. Overall I think most trades are pretty close to the same profit - which is typically around 10-15%.
Maybe if we look at volume versus profit - directly relating to amount of profit per annum. Then I would probably say mechanical or electrical.
But if we look at schedule versus profit then I would say roofing or framing. In and out quick - on to the next one.
 

· Flooring Guru
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I remember when I was landscaping many years ago, and when we were finished with a job, we would go to a recycling plant, and pay them to dump our stuff. Then they would turn around and use that to make barkdust and such, then sell it. Money from coming in, and money from going out, not bad I thought.
 

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I know roofers with million dollar homes, farms in neighboring states, boats and condos in florida... You name it. I call them Macro Roofers. They install at least 10 roofs a day. They have a few gutter crews and various other areas of work like chimney rebuilding.

They have zero field employees. All laborers are subs. I know their profit margin, and know it is pretty much in line for the industry. They just have a huge marketing budget and nearly 20 sales men. Now multiply their profit per job times ten and thats what they make in a day.
 

· General Contractor
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You might think that custom home building is highly profitable - but not really. Look at DR Horton (#1 on top 100 home builders) - 7 billion in gross revenue with only 443 million net = 6%. In a competitive market the larger multi-million dollar homes have a smaller profit margin (percentage wise) compared to a $200,000 home. I see the same thing in large commercial projects - 1million projects gets around 6-7% while 130million gets around 3%. Yes DR Horton is not really a true custom home builder but the revenue cycles closely relate.
 

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unregistered said custom home builder and I will disagree because builders who do semi custom homes and sell them make more money with less headache. Custom home builders have to do everything to the customers detail and it's the customers home, not theirs!

I know guys that build homes, do 2-3 per year. Slap the thing together but don't finish paint or install any fixtures. Whent hey sell the home they sell it with a 20k allowance for finishings and they profit about 50k per home on average. On time the builder did 150k on a home but he get really lucky that time. They don't have to deal with any customers until the very end and the only shcedule they are on is the schedule they can afford. One of these guys doesn't even need construction loans anymore. He buys the trear down house with a conventional mortgage then tears it down and pays out of pocket to put up the new house. This is how he gets around the incredily high construction loan interest rates.
 
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