Last updated: 14th May 2019
- What Is the Cost of Common Carpentry Jobs?
- Carpentry Prices from Real Customers
- What Is the Hourly Rate for a Carpenter in Australia?
- What Kind of Work Does a Carpenter Do?
- How Much Does Timber Decking Cost?
- How Much Does A Timber Fence Cost?
- How Much Does Timber Flooring Cost?
- What Are the Timber Staircase Prices in Australia?
- How Much Does It Cost to Build a Wood Retaining Wall?
- How Much Does A Wooden Door Cost?
- How Much Does It Cost to Have Kitchen Cabinets Installed?
- How Much Does a Built-In Wardrobe Cost?
- What Does Timber House Framing Cost?
- What Affects Carpentry Work Pricing?
- What to Look Out for when Hiring a Carpenter
The average cost of carpentry in Australia stands at $50/hr, but prices change depending on factors such as the size and complexity of the job as well as the cost of materials. In general, prices range from as low as $45/hr to as high as $60 or even $100+ per hour.
Professional carpenters’s rates primarily depend on their qualifications and experience, as well as on their location. So, carpentry work prices may range from $600 for installing a new timber door to $6,000+ for building a wooden patio, for instance.
What Is the Cost of Common Carpentry Jobs?
Carpenters usually charge a fixed price for more complex specialist tasks such as building a new kitchen, pergola or deck. These are the typical fixed prices for the most common carpentry work.
|Carpentry Task||Typical Quoted Prices|
|Custom built furniture||$2,000|
|Timber door installation||$1,400|
Carpentry Prices from Real Customers
Needed to install 100 lineal metres of architraves and skirting
TOTAL COST: $600
Needed to install a timber frame with a track for a sliding fly screen door
TOTAL COST: $660
Needed a custom-built bureau; installation of kitchen storage solutions; bathroom tile regrouting; replacement of bathroom and kitchen sink; other minor jobs
TOTAL COST: $2,000
What Is the Hourly Rate for a Carpenter in Australia?
Many carpenters charge hourly rates for their work, so if you’re wondering how much you should pay a carpenter per hour, know that they typically start charging from $32 an hour for simple smaller work, but that their hourly rates may also exceed even $120 for more complex specialist tasks requiring higher skill set.
On average, expect to pay $50 to $80 per hour depending on your place of living and various other significant factors discussed further in this pricing guide.
For example, you may pay $35/hr for one type of work in Brisbane, $40/hr in Adelaide or $32-$50/hr for the same type of work in Melbourne.
Similarly, a maintenance carpenter can cost from $35/hr, whereas a kitchen cabinet maker and installer will probably cost more, e.g. $38+/hr in the same region.
What Kind of Work Does a Carpenter Do?
Carpenters build, install and repair structural elements typically made of wood, wood substitutes or even steel and some of them may specialise in a particular trade area.
The most common carpentry tasks include:
- installing new and repairing or replacing old windows and doors,
- building, installing or repairing cabinetry, shelving, kitchen benchtops,
- building or repairing timber fences,
- building or repairing a timber deck, pergola, patio, carports (single or double) etc.
- building or repairing timber staircases, balustrades and handrails,
- erecting timber house frames,
- erecting scaffolding,
- installing new or replacing old skirting,
- building or repairing timber retaining walls,
- carrying out timber flooring and roofing work,
- making built-in wardrobes and other fitted/custom inbuilt furniture,
- repairing damaged wooden furniture, as well as
- assembling various other furniture and other similar jobs.
A decent handyman with no specialisation in carpentry can also do some simple basic carpentry work such as repairing your kitchen cabinetry.
However, make sure you carefully choose a licensed, qualified and experienced carpentry specialist for your specific home project especially if it’s more complex like house framing or flooring.
How Much Does Timber Decking Cost?
Timber decking costs calculated per square metre range from $170 to $250 on average although they sometimes may exceed $1,000, whereas $50 per hour is a standard hourly rate for decking in Australia.
The main factors influencing the cost of building your timber deck are its dimensions, the type of timber you want to use, accessories, necessary permits or any other additional services you require.
Based on these criteria, your timber decking costs may be as following:
|How much does a wooden deck cost?|
|Type of timber decking service||Price|
|Building a mid-sized 15-sqm deck||$3,000 – $5,000|
|Building a treated pine deck (20m2)||$3,200|
|Treated pine decking per m2||$100 – $200|
|Merbau hardwood decking per m2||$150 – $250|
|Jarrah decking per m2||$350 – $450|
|Blackbutt hardwood decking per m2||$300 – $400|
|Ironbark hardwood decking per m2||$300 – $450|
|Spotted Gum hardwood decking per m2||$300 – $400|
|Elevated cyclone rated decking per m2||$800 – 1,000+|
|Average hardwood timber decking per m2||$320+|
|Composite timber decking per m2||$350+|
|Average decking with roofing and/or stairs per m2||$800+|
|Building an average pine or merbau deck||$3,600 – $5,200|
|Building an average cedar deck||$3,800 – $5,400|
|Building a mid-range hardwood deck (20m2)||$7,000|
|Building a composite timber deck (20m2)||$15,000|
|Average decking installation costs per m2||$320 – $500|
|Installing a hardwood deck (20m2)||$6400 – $10,000|
|Installing a hardwood deck (30m2)||$9600 – $15,000|
|Installing a hardwood deck (40m2)||$12,800 – $20,000|
|Sealing a small hardwood timber deck||$350 – $450|
|Sealing a medium hardwood timber deck||$700 – $1000|
|Sealing a large hardwood timber deck||$1300 – $2500|
|Timber balustrade per metre||$180|
Obviously, there are many various factors to take into account when calculating the total cost of decking. Treated pine decks seem to be the most affordable, whereas hardwood or composite decking is much more pricey. Special requirements such as stairs or roofing just increase the price.
How Much Does A Timber Fence Cost?
Putting up a new timber fence costs between $700 and $2,000 on average. Timber fencing costs per linear metre range from $63 to $100 usually including labour and installation costs.
However, the total price depends on the fence height and length, kind of timber used and other additional services such as fence painting costs, for instance.
|How much does it cost to build a timber fence?|
|Type of timber fence||Average cost per metre|
|A treated pine paling fence||$75 – $120|
|A hardwood paling fence||$80 – $125|
|A treated pine timber slat fence||$280 – $350|
|A pre-primed treated pine fence (92mm x 18mm)||$320|
|A 1.5m hardwood Merbau fence (42mm x 18mm)||$330|
|A timber picket fence||$60 – $180|
Expectedly, fence repair costs are lower than costs of installation and building a brand new fence and generally sit around $64 and $77 per metre.
If you’re interested in various other types of fencing costs throughout Australia, refer to the linked article.
How Much Does Timber Flooring Cost?
The average cost of a professional timber floor installation is between $25 and $33 per square metre, but it can vary between $25 and $60/m2 depending on the timber type and grades, cost of necessary floor preparation, finishing, labour rates and other relevant factors.
|How much does it cost to install wooden floors?|
|Type and grade of timber flooring||Cost|
|Low-grade hardwood timber with lots of knots, grain and imperfections||$40 – $50 per m2|
|Mid-grade hardwood timber with some imperfections||$50 – $80 per m2|
|Premium hardwood timber with few or no defects||$100 – $150+ per m2|
|Floating timber flooring||$40 – $100 per m2 (depending on the timber type, brand and thickness)|
|Laminated ‘timber-look’ flooring||$25+ per m2|
|Parquetry||$150+ per m2|
|Bamboo||$90 per m2|
|Ironbark||$85+ per m2|
|Jarrah||$72 per m2|
|Blackbutt||$65 per m2 or $5 – $9 per linear metre|
When it comes to the costs of timber floor repairs, they’re a bit lower than installation rates – $25 to $30 per square metre. Similarly, neither does the cost of timber floor sanding services nor the cost of timber floor polishing differ much from the typical floor repairing rates.
What Are the Timber Staircase Prices in Australia?
The cost of building a residential staircase starts from $2,500 on average but could go much higher to ten thousands of dollars.
|Timber staircase cost|
|Type of staircase||Prices|
|A straight flight, using medium-density fibreboard (MDF)||$900|
|An L shape flight, using medium-density fibreboard (MDF)||$1,100|
|A U shaped flight, using medium-density fibreboard (MDF)||$1,220|
How Much Does It Cost to Build a Wood Retaining Wall?
A timber retaining wall is among the most affordable options and the cost ranges from $150 to $450 per square metre. The prices depend on various factors such as type of soil, access to the site, drainage, wall height and length and the like.
|How much does a timber retaining wall cost?|
|Type of material||Cost per m2 (labour and materials included)|
|treated timber (pine)||$250 to $350 per square metre|
|treated timber sleepers (hardwood)||$300 to $450 per square metre|
|Used railway sleepers||$75 each|
The prices in the table above include the timber and installation labour costs, but not any necessary excavation costs you have to take into consideration.
How Much Does A Wooden Door Cost?
Depending on the number of doors, their type, structure, materials, your location and other relevant elements, an average timber door installation cost ranges from $40 to $80 an hour and a carpenter may also charge a call-out fee.
|What is the cost of a timber door installation?|
|Door types||Estimated average cost|
|A standard timber door (interior)||$280 – $580|
|Meranti timber entry doors||$133 – $1,205|
|Timber bifold doors||$1,000 per panel|
|A single timber French door||$400 – $500|
|Double French doors||$850|
|Bifold colonial French doors||$1999|
|A single sectional garage door||$850 – $1900|
|A double sectional garage door||$1400 – $4600|
On the other hand, the cost of door repair is slightly lower and starts from $45 for an easy fix and goes up to $60 per hour for more complicated work.
Also, external doors are more expensive and more difficult to install than internal ones. Similarly, garage door installation costs even more, whereas smaller fixing and repairing jobs such as wardrobe doors cost less based on the job scope.
How Much Does It Cost to Have Kitchen Cabinets Installed?
When renovating a kitchen, making and installing new cabinets goes without saying in most cases because they’re among the most prominent kitchen elements, and the average costs are $4,000 to $5,000 although they vary greatly depending on the quality and materials used.
Custom cabinetry is far from being cheap, so you may expect to pay a cabinet maker at least $100 an hour.
|What is the average cost of kitchen cabinets?|
|Type of kitchen cabinetry||Average cost|
|Stock cabinets||$4,000 – $5,000+|
|Semi-custom cabinets||$8,000 – $10,000|
|Custom-made cabinetry||$16,000 – $20,000+|
|Flatpack cabinetry||$2,800 – $4,000|
|Timber or 2pac cabinets||$15,000+|
|Budget cabinets with melamine fonts||$4,300 – $4,500|
How Much Does a Built-In Wardrobe Cost?
Carpenters’ rates for built-in and walk-in wardrobes are higher because this type of work is considered to be more complex and requires more time.
Thus, typical hourly rates are around $120, whereas the whole job cost is estimated to start from $1,000 for a basic built-in wardrobe made from budget materials and fittings and ranges to $5,000 for a luxury option and top-rated materials and fittings.
Similarly, a fully-featured walk-in wardrobe could cost even up to $30,000.
|How much does a built-in wardrobe cost?|
What Does Timber House Framing Cost?
The cost of a timber house frame depends on the house size, type of timber, and many other factors, but the average cost of timber framing ranges from $1300 – $1500 per square metre.
Now that you know the average cost estimates for the most common carpentry work, take a closer look at the other significant factors that shape the overall costs of every project.
What Affects Carpentry Work Pricing?
A ‘one size fits all’ approach does NOT apply when estimating carpentry costs. There are several major factors at play for you to consider:
- labour costs,
- cost of materials,
- size of the job and
- the type and complexity of the project.
As a rule of thumb, the simpler the job, the less it costs.
For instance, decks and pergolas are among the biggest and most complex types of work, so they’re usually the priciest and can reach up to $7,000 for a large complex construction, especially if made of durable genuine wood.
What to Look Out for when Hiring a Carpenter
Before deciding on the right carpentry business for your project, it’s always prudent to get multiple quotes from a few carpenters, check out their online reviews from previous customers and clearly list and communicate your project goals.
Also, ensure you take the following factors into consideration before choosing the carpenter that perfectly fits your needs.
Is Your Carpenter Licensed?
The qualification for carpenters in Australia is the Certificate III in Carpentry, although:
- Certificate III in Carpentry and Joinery,
- Certificate III in General Construction (Carpentry), and
- Certificate III in Carpentry and Joinery Trade TAFE
are also all legitimate.
However, those with more than four years of experience can gain the qualification through Recognition of Prior Learning.
Do Carpenters Need a Licence?
Not all Australian states or territories require carpenters to have a trade specific licence but some do according to their local licensing authorities. Also, carpenters are required to hold a builders licence in some states.
Here are each Australian state/territory regulations to rely on.
|Does a carpenter in Australia need to be licensed?|
|Australian state/territory||Licensing regulations|
|Australian Capital Territory||Carpenters are required to hold a builders licence with the appropriate endorsement according to ACTPLA regulations.|
|Northern Territory||No need for carpenters to be licensed if the project value does not exceed $12,000, but if it does, then they need a builders licence issued by the Building Practitioners Board.|
|New South Wales||Based on Fair Trading regulations, carpenters are required to be licensed even for non-structural work.|
|Queensland||Carpenters are required to be licensed builders according to QBCC.|
|South Australia||Carpenters are required to be licensed builders according to CBS.|
|Tasmania||Carpenters are required to be licensed builders and can get their trade licence issued by the Department of Justice|
|Victoria||According to the Building Practitioners Board (BPB), carpenters are required to hold a DB-L-C|
registration for general carpentry work.
|Western Australia||No need for carpenters to be licensed if the project value does not exceed $20,000, but if it does, then they need a builders licence.|
So, depending on your state of living, you may want to ask your carpenter to show you his valid licence or at least to provide the ABN (Australian Business Number) so that you can make sure their business is registered.
Is Your Carpenter Insured?
Have an open discussion with your prospective carpenter about their insurance. Ensure that you’re both clear about the process should you not be satisfied with the results.
The best carpenters will be frank about their insurance documents, and their complaints procedure. If the carpenter isn’t willing to discuss this, they should be avoided.
Can Your Carpenter Provide a Contract?
Before handing over any money, check the contract. Ensure everything’s covered – a start and completion date, detailed description of work, and a detailed description of materials. These factors are all really important for getting an accurate quote and ensuring you’re not ripped off.
Can You See a Sample of Your Carpenter’s Work?
Carpentry is often intricate and complicated. If possible, see a sample of their work, so you have an idea of their skill and expertise.
If you’re seeking qualified carpenters for your carpentry work, seek no more whether you live in Perth, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane or anywhere else in Australia!
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Disclaimer: Our cost estimates are based on quotes for carpentry services and are useful as a guide only.
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