“By a Carpenter mankind was made, and only by that Carpenter can mankind be remade.”
Desiderius Erasmus, Philosopher
Pros and Cons of Working as a Carpenter
You consider becoming a carpenter? Great!
However, before making your final decision, make sure that you check out this article since I show you all the pros and cons of being a carpenter in the following chapters.
Table of Contents
Carpenter Job Profile
|Short Job Description
|Carpenters make nice furniture and do all other sorts of wood manufacturing.
|$45,000 per year on average, ranging from $35,000 – $58,000.
|Decent job security.
|Good if you love making things out of wood.
|Good work-life balance.
|Physically / Mentally Demanding?
|Physically demanding job.
|Good since not many people want to do this job anymore.
|No special educational requirements necessary.
Advantages of Being a Carpenter
- Carpenters see the results of your work
- You can make things for your own
- You can supply your family and friends with fancy furniture
- Carpenters can fix many things at home
- Carpenters are attractive to most women
- You can start your own carpenter company
- Regular working hours
- Carpenters usually don’t work on weekends
- Good work-life balance
- Decent job security
- Carpenters can work in many different fields
- You can earn additional money on weekends
- Carpenters don’t have to sit in an office all day long
- You can work on many different projects
- Low barriers to entry
Carpenters see the results of your work
One important advantage of being a carpenter is that you will actually see the results of your work on a regular basis.
For instance, if you make a door or a window for a client, you will see the end result after a few weeks or even days.
Consequently, you have kind of a goal to work towards.
In fact, it can be quite satisfying seeing the fruits of your labor and when your client is very happy with the end result, it will be even better.
However, in many other jobs, you don’t see the end-results of your work.
For instance, if you work in an office job, you will often make presentations that are only used for a single occasion and will not be used in the long run.
Moreover, you will often also not have tangible results in most office jobs.
Therefore, employee satisfaction is often rather low in those kinds of jobs since people need to see the fruits of their labor to stay motivated and to see a purpose in what they are doing.
Thus, by becoming a carpenter, you will not have this problem since you will see results rather quickly while financial controllers and many other people often struggle to stay motivated in the long run.
You can make things for your own
As a carpenter, you can not only make nice things for clients, you can also make tables, chairs and many other things for your private purposes.
In fact, many carpenters don’t buy furniture from the store, but they just manufacture everything by themselves.
By making their own furniture, they can be sure about the quality and that the things they make last for quite a long time.
Hence, if you love making your own stuff and don’t want to rely on conventional furniture from the store, being a carpenter can also help you out in this regard.
You can supply your family and friends with fancy furniture
Another benefit of being a carpenter is that you can also make furniture for your family and friends.
Custom-made furniture from carpenters is often quite expensive and many people are just not able to afford it.
However, for your family and friends, you can make a really fair price for them since you will be able to buy materials cheaper than the average person and you can also price your working hours at a fair rate.
Thus, you can supply your peers with fancy furniture and you will therefore have a pretty high standing among your friends and family members since they will be really grateful for what you are doing for them.
Carpenters can fix many things at home
Carpenters can not only manufacture fancy furniture, they are usually also able to fix many other things at home.
Since carpenters learn many technical skills during their careers, they can often easily fix leaky faucets or other minor things.
Moreover, carpenters are often also able to make and install their own flooring.
All this can save plenty of money in the long run and even though carpenters will not earn that much money from their job, they can still compensate for this by saving money on various different occasions.
Carpenters are attractive to most women
Many women are also attracted to carpenters.
In fact, it is usually quite attractive to women if a man can create things with his hands and if he can solve problems in the household.
Since carpenters are often quite skilled in those things, they will often have a rather easy time in the dating market.
You can start your own carpenter company
As a carpenter, you can also start your own company after a while.
For instance, you can learn your craft for a few years in a company and after becoming good enough in what you are doing, you can easily switch and starting your own business.
Thus, you don’t have to work as an employee forever.
In fact, many carpenters work self-employed and if you are the type of person who wants to live a free and independent life as I do, becoming a self-employed carpenter may also be the way to go for you.
Regular working hours
Another upside of being a carpenter is that you will usually have regular working hours.
Many carpenters work 40 hours or even less and don’t have to work plenty of extra hours.
Hence, if you have many other hobbies in your life and don’t want to miss out on them for your career, becoming a carpenter can be great since the workload will not be that big most of the time and you will have plenty of leisure to enjoy other things you like more than working in your life.
Carpenters usually don’t work on weekends
While working overtime only happens on rare occasions in carpentry, also working on weekends is rather uncommon.
In fact, most carpenters only work Monday to Friday and enjoy a full weekend off work.
Consequently, you will have plenty of leisure as a carpenter and can enjoy many weekend trips with your family and friends.
Good work-life balance
In general, carpenters also have a pretty good work-life balance.
Since they don’t have to work that much, they often come home rather early.
Hence, especially if you want to have a family or already have children, becoming a carpenter can be great since you will be able to spend plenty of time with your loved ones after work.
You will often also be flexible regarding when to start your workday and if you start rather early, chances are that you will already be home in the late afternoon.
Thus, being a carpenter is a great career choice if you want to spend plenty of time with your family and if you really want to see your kids growing up.
Decent job security
Like in many other artisanal professions, there is currently a lack of qualified employees who can do the job and chances are that the labor shortage in this field will continue in the future.
There are simply rather few young people who are willing to do the job and job prospects will likely also be excellent in the future.
Hence, becoming a carpenter can also be great if job security is really important to you.
Carpenters can work in many different fields
As a carpenter, there are also many different fields in which you can work in.
While some carpenters make windows or doors, other work on construction sites.
Job opportunities are almost endless and as long as you are really good at what you are doing, many doors will open for you during your carpentry career.
Hence, if you feel like it is time for a change after a few years, you can still work in many different areas as a carpenter.
You can earn additional money on weekends
If you need additional money, you can also do so by working on weekends.
While this might not be possible in your job, you can still start a side hustle and work on additional projects.
Since there is a shortage of good carpenters out there, chances are that you will get more orders than you could even finish.
Thus, in case you need some extra money, carpenters often have an easy time to generate this additional income.
Carpenters don’t have to sit in an office all day long
While some people like working in an office, most of us just hate it.
In fact, humans have never been made for working in an office in front of a computer screen all day long.
We had been out there for many thousands of years, hunting, gathering and creating stuff.
As a carpenter, you don’t have to work in such an unnatural environment.
You can go back to the roots and create nice furniture and other things out of natural materials like wood instead.
In turn, chances are that you will be happier than someone who is working in an office, even though this person will likely make more money than you.
You can work on many different projects
If you work as a carpenter, no project will look the same.
In fact, your clients will always have new wishes and preferences.
Consequently, it will not be enough to just do your standard work.
Quite often, you will have to customize things to fully satisfy your clients.
While this can be quite challenging, it can also be nice since you will never get bored and also have to use your brain.
Low barriers to entry
For becoming a carpenter, barriers to entry are also quite low.
You just need a high-school diploma and you will be good to go. Sure, you will need some years of apprenticeship before you are actually considered as real carpenter.
Yet, there will be no need to go to college in most states for becoming a carpenter and therefore, you can save plenty of money compared to a person who urgently needs to go to college.
Therefore, you can also avoid student debt which is quite common in our current state of the world and the serious problems associated with it.
Thus, you can become a carpenter without imposing the financial burden on you that comes along with many other professions.
Disadvantages of Being a Carpenter
- Carpenters don’t earn that much money
- Risk of accidents
- Physically demanding job
- Being a carpenter can be problematic once you get older
- Self-employed carpenters have to do plenty of paperwork
- Job security depends on your physical abilities
- You need some technical understanding and talent
- Being a carpenter can be lonely
- You have to be flexible as a carpenter
- Some clients are just difficult
Carpenters don’t earn that much money
While being a carpenter has many advantages, there are still some downsides to this profession.
For instance, one disadvantage of becoming a carpenter is that you will just not earn that much money.
In fact, most carpenters don’t earn more than 50,000 dollars a year and this is not a lot compared to air traffic controllers and many other people who often make far more money from what they are doing.
While this will often be enough to cover most of your basic expenses, it will not be enough to afford buying a home in a fancy neighborhood.
In some cities, it will even be barely enough to pay your rent at all.
Consequently, carpenters often suffer from financial problems and if you want to become wealthy or even rich, you should look out for other professions instead.
Risk of accidents
Another problem with being a carpenter is that there is a significant risk for accidents.
Carpenters often work with sharp tools and machines and sooner or later, chances are that you will seriously injure yourself.
In some cases, carpenters even have to give up their job since they will no longer be able to do their work after those accidents.
Physically demanding job
As a carpenter, you will also have to carry heavy stuff.
For instance, you will have to move doors and other heavy things on a regular basis.
In turn, this means that you need a certain minimum level of strength in this field and if you don’t have this physical strength and are also not willing to go to the gym and work on yourself, becoming a carpenter will be quite problematic for you in this regard.
Being a carpenter can be problematic once you get older
Since the job as a carpenter can be physically demanding, becoming a carpenter can also be quite problematic, especially in your older years.
Once you reach a certain age, you will just no longer be as fit as you were during your 20s and 30s.
Consequently, you will also no longer be able to deliver the same performance as in your early years and your quality of work and your speed tend to decrease due to that.
Therefore, also the risk of becoming unemployed may increase over time and it is often hard to find a new job after you have passed a certain age.
Self-employed carpenters have to do plenty of paperwork
If you plan a career as self-employed carpenter, be aware of the fact that this implies much more than just carrying out your carpentry work.
In fact, you will have to acquire orders, do the legal work and also take care of proper accounting and tax issues.
Overall, the life of a self-employed person can be much more complex compared to working in a regular job for someone else and you should make sure that you are really an entrepreneurial person before going this path.
Job security depends on your physical abilities
While carpenters often have good job prospects, they are also quite vulnerable in this regard since their job prospects greatly depend on their physical abilities.
Only if you are fit and your motor function works properly, you will be able to continue to work as a carpenter.
If at one point in time, this will no longer be the case due to accidents or diseases, chances are that you will lose your job pretty soon and that you will also have a quite hard time finding another job since the whole carpentry relies on physical work.
In contrast, if you work in an office job, you can also do so if you have minor disabilities as long as your hands work properly and you can type things with a computer.
Thus, there is a significant danger of losing your job in carpentry in case you will no longer be able to carry out any physical work.
You need some technical understanding and talent
As a carpenter, you also need some technical understanding and talent for what you are doing.
While some people are borne with those technical skills, others really struggle with it and if you are not skilled in technical things at all, you should also not become a carpenter since you will just make too many mistakes and will not become happy in the long run.
Being a carpenter can be lonely
Another downside of being a carpenter is that it can also be rather lonely.
In fact, you will work many hours on your own since you have to finish a door or other things.
Many times, orders are that small that they are only suitable to be carried out by one person and this also implies that you will not have too much contact with your colleagues.
Instead, you just have to work on your own and this lack of interaction can really stress people on a mental level.
You have to be flexible as a carpenter
As a carpenter, you also have to stay flexible regarding how you do things.
In fact, your taste will often not match the taste of your clients and your clients will often demand that you change minor things after they see your work.
Consequently, you will always have to adjust to the taste and preferences of your clients and this can be quite annoying, especially if you don’t share your clients’ opinions at all.
Some clients are just difficult
Some people will also never be satisfied with what you are doing.
There are just people out there who can never be happy and always find things to complain about.
Hence, be aware that you will never be able to make everyone happy and that you just ignore the negative vibes of those clients who often just want to bring you down.
Top 10 Being a Carpenter Pros & Cons – Summary List
|Being a Carpenter Pros
|Being a Carpenter Cons
|Carpenters are technically skilled
|Being a carpenter implies physical work
|You can make stuff for yourself
|Problematic once you get older
|Decent job security
|Salaries are rather low in carpentry
|You can see the results of your work
|Accidents are quite common
|Being a carpenter can be fun
|Some clients are difficult
|Good work-life balance
|Being a carpenter can be stressful
|Extra hours are rather uncommon
|You may lose your job due to accidents
|Being a carpenter can be lonely
|You don’t have to sit in an office
|You have to be flexible
|You can start your own company
|You need to learn continuously
Should You Become A Carpenter?
As you can see from the previous discussion, there are numerous advantages and disadvantages of becoming a carpenter.
In the end, you have to decide for yourself whether you really want to be a carpenter or if you want to go for another profession instead.
If you are still interested in a carpenter career, also make sure to have a look at the salary, career prospects, job security, educational requirements, working hours and job satisfaction of carpenters.
Also make sure to check out the following articles:
About the author
My name is Andreas and my mission is to educate people about the different career paths that are possible in our current state of the world. In my opinion, people often make the mistake to choose their profession solely based on how much money they can earn from it instead of doing what makes them really happy.
This is quite sad and I just want to give people a more objective picture of how a fulfilling career could look like. I did the same when I started working in consulting after finishing my Master’s degree in Economics. However, I’ve quit pretty soon after that since I haven’t found true meaning in my job.
Now I can do what I really love to do and I want to enable as many other people as well to go this exciting path towards happiness instead of money.
I conducted various interviews with employees to give you a good impression of what working in different fields will look like and that you can make the best possible decision regarding your future career choice.
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