- Guide to growing your business
- What expenses can you claim?
- Calculate your take home pay
- Completing Your Self Assessment Tax Return for Carpenters
- Free bookkeeping software
- Free invoice template
A carpenter is a craftsperson, skilled to install and build structures made out of wood and/or other strong materials, such as metals or concrete. The trade usually falls into two main categories of carpentry: Construction and Finishing.
A carpenter may typically perform the following tasks:
- Study blueprints, building plans or even sketches so as to organise layouts, dimensions and the materials needed
- Prepare cost estimates for clients or employers
- Keep to safety regulations
- Make sure surroundings are kept clean and safe
- Arrange for subcontractors to deal with other areas, such as wiring
- Build or repair wooden fixtures used in buildings, such as doors
- Put up scaffolding and ladders
- Install fixtures and structures, such as windows
As the construction industry continues to grow, carpenters are in high demand in the UK. Many carpenters choose to go down the self-employment route, in which case it is helpful to have developed a variety of skills. Maintaining good relations with sub-contractors will also be very useful in terms of having more work.
Qualifications needed to become a carpenter
A modern apprenticeship is the most practical way of getting into the carpentry industry and is a good way to get your foot on the ladder. With the ‘earn as you learn’ concept you get the chance to not only gain the on-hand experience, but the college education to back it up. You will then have the opportunity to work alongside professionals in the field and receive on-the-job supervision.
For the majority of apprenticeships, applicants (in England and Wales) should have GCSE grades A-C in Maths, English Language or Literature and a science resistant materials technology or equivalent to GCSE or GNVQ intermediate.
The benefits of freelancing as a carpenter
There are many benefits to freelancing as a carpenter, for example, by freelancing for one or more clients at a time you can often have more income than you would expect from a full time salary. You can use our Freelancer Calculator to work out exactly how much you could potentially take home as a sole trader. There is also the fact that you will be your own boss, meaning flexible hours to suit yourself as well as the freedom to work when you choose, where you choose and for however long you like.
Finding work as a carpenter
A strong client base is fundamental when it comes to both building and sustaining an excellent reputation, particularly when it comes to having a successful freelance career.
Self-promotion is a brilliant way of getting your name out there and attracting new clients. Advertising your business either through a website, business cards and door-to-door flyers will all help towards building a wider range of clients.
Here are some suggestions on how to market yourself:
- Set up a professional website. The website needs to be information rich about the services you offer, a price list, the areas you cover and contact details. Using a website builder such as DIY Site Builder or Namesco Site Maker can make it both simple and quick.
- Social networking sites such as Twitter, Linked In and Facebook are an effective and free way of advertising your business. For example, Linked In is designed specifically for businesses and professionals to create a network of co-workers and other associates.
- Advertise your business through free directory websites such as Yellow Pages or FreeIndex. This ensures many people actively looking for your trade can easily find you.
- Give out business cards to friends and family. This way they can hand them out to their friends; knowing that they know you personally means they will have more trust in you and your business.
- Talk to all the retailers who you buy your products or services from. Leave them your business card so they can consider you for future business.
For more advice on how Easy Accountancy can help you and business, or to find out more about our fixed fee packages, please call 0500 234 111 / 01442 01442 275767 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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