How Much Do Carpenter Apprentices Earn?

What Do Qualified Carpenters Do?

A carpenter is someone who installs, builds and repairs structures that are generally made from wood, along with other materials like plastic, fibreglass and drywall. A standard week consists of 40 hours of work. However, depending on the employer and project, the total number of hours worked can vary due to overtime and start times. In saying this, the carpenter work environment can be quite laborious - prolonged standing, bending, kneeling, pulling and heavy lifting are all expected on the job.


Other general duties include but are not limited to:

  • Reading, inspecting and interpreting blueprints; follow plans when building.
  • Determining materials for installation procedures, as well as frameworks for selected structures.
  • Measuring, cutting and assembling of parts, along with operating tools, machines and equipment.
  • Conduct repair work and installation of doors, window frames, drywall, wall cladding, cabinets, stairs and other fixtures.
  • Helping other carpenters and construction helpers with structural design, planning, layout, installation and other construction processes.

Carpenters tend to specialise in 1 or 2 areas depending on their interests or employers. Some specialities include rough carpenters, joisters, trim carpenters, cabinet makers, ship carpenters, framers and roofers. Depending on work demands, requirements and sites, it is often beneficial for the carpenter to be knowledgeable in a multitude of carpentry areas.


How Do You Become a Carpenter Apprentice?

When learning to become a carpenter, it takes a 4 year long apprenticeship to become fully qualified. A carpentry apprenticeship can start as early as high school. Subject classes such as English, algebra, geometry, mechanical drawing and blueprint reading are typical in preparing carpentry apprentices for work. When starting, apprentice carpenters can acquire experience through trade or vocational schools or community colleges. To gain a more formal apprenticeship, you must be at least 18 years old and meet the local requirements. This is normally offered by employers where the work involves a mixture of on-site training and classroom instruction. Depending on your situation, location and experience, there are a range of public schools, private schools or academies when starting as a carpenter apprentice.

How Much Do Carpenter Apprentices Earn?

On average, carpenter apprentices earn $18.22 per hour. According to PayScale, the carpenter apprentice wage can range from $15.07 to $24.32 per hour with an annual income of $30,772 to $51,165. Carpenter apprenticeship wage incomes have been quite stable since about 2017. Once an apprentice progresses to a qualified carpenter, the wage increases between $20.75 and $45.42 per hour.


What Factors Affect Carpenter Apprentice Wages?

Getting an increase in your apprentice pay depends on time and competency. You can either obtain a wage increase after you have worked a certain amount of time (i.e. hour based, year based), or when you have reached a set amount of skills or training requirements. To keep up to date with all the latest industry and project news - subscribe to iseekplant’s Constructionsht blog below!