Have you ever thought about becoming a carpenter?
Carpenters build frameworks and structures by cutting and shaping wood and other construction materials. One of construction’s most iconic roles, carpenters are involved throughout the building process, from basic layout to the finishing touches on a home, school or office.
With skilled trades careers having a high job satisfaction rating, a career as a carpenter is a great option for people who are creative, detail-oriented and looking for exciting opportunities.
Here are the top 5 reasons to become a carpenter.
One of the top reasons careers in the skilled trades like carpentry have high job satisfaction is the opportunity to do hands-on work.
For many people, the idea of sitting at a desk in a cubicle staring at a computer screen or doing paperwork isn’t an ideal way to earn a living.
Carpenters and other craft professionals, however, get to build and create something with their own hands. Every project and every day is unique, so the work is less monotonous than in other career paths.
Working with their hands and being able to see the real-time progress and fruits of their labor makes construction an enjoyable and fulfilling job for carpenters.
Construction is a massive industry. The construction industry creates about $1.4 trillion worth of structures every year.
New homes, offices, hospitals, schools, factories, roads and other important structures are constantly needing to be built, renovated or replaced. That means there are a lot of jobs in the construction trades that need to be filled. There is a demand for more than 1.3 million carpenters in the United States through December 2024.
Due to a number of different factors, the construction industry is facing a workforce shortage, including carpenters. There aren’t enough professional carpenters currently working to meet the needs of all the different projects going on around the country.
Because of the high demand for skilled carpenters and other craft professionals, these careers offer ample opportunities, more job security and enhanced benefits. Good carpenters should always be able to find good work in the current market.
Construction is a very merit-based industry, so professional carpenters who are able to prove their skill and value in the field will earn opportunities to advance their careers to more prominent positions.
Adding to this opportunity is the status of the aging workforce. The median age of a skilled trades professional is 43, which is higher than most industries. This number has been growing because the bulk of the construction workforce is nearing retirement age, and fewer young people have joined the industry behind them.
As the seasoned veterans of the construction industry retire or change roles, the leadership positions they are leaving will become available. Important jobs like foreman, site superintendent or project manager will need someone to step up and fill those shoes.
People who start training to be a carpenter now will be in a great position to take advantage of these opportunities a few years down the road.
Like with any job, how much it pays is an important factor.
Craft skills are unique and high in demand, meaning that wages can be very good in the construction industry. Carpenters have an average base salary of $56,877, or about $26.92/hour.
On top of these strong base salaries, additional incentives for travel and overtime can increase take-home pay, in some cases reaching six figures.
An additional benefit of pursuing a career in carpentry is the absence of college debt. Many other popular careers require a four-year university degree, which can cost a significant amount of money. There is an estimated $1.7 trillion in total student debt in the United States. However, education and training for careers in carpentry are mostly conducted through much cheaper methods. Some of these training options, such as apprenticeships, actually pay the apprentice wages for their work completed during on-the-job training, allowing trainees to earn while they learn.
By factoring in the good pay, the lack of student debt, and the opportunity to start earning money sooner, careers in carpentry and other trades offer a great head start compared to their peers attending a university.
Everyone wants to leave their impact on the world. A career in carpentry offers a chance to make a difference in the lives of other people.
Working in construction, the things you build will leave a lasting benefit to that community. Families will grow in those homes. Students will learn in those schools. Lives will be changed because of those gyms, churches, and businesses.
The projects you might work on for only a few months could stand for the next 100 years or more. You could have a small but significant part to play in people’s happiest memories or most important events. Talk about leaving a legacy!
For these reasons and more, carpentry is a great job and a worthy career option.
Check out our carpentry career page for more information and resources about careers in carpentry.