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How much does a Carpenter cost?

$40 - $120 per hour

    How Much Does a Carpenter Cost?

    Depending on where you live in Australia, the average carpenter cost per hour is between $40 and $80. Many factors can impact the cost; for example, price work carpentry is where you typically make payments as the job progresses. Additionally, if you hire a professional finish carpenter for custom cabinetry and other high-end finish work, you can expect to pay about $120 for the finish carpenter hourly rate.


    Carpenter Costs Across Australia

    Cities Average Reported Cost Per Hour
    Sydney $40
    Melbourne $45
    Brisbane $45
    Canberra $50
    Perth $45
    Darwin $45
    Hobart $40
    Adelaide $50

    Factors Impacting the Cost of Hiring a Carpenter

    There are certain notions to consider before you start gathering your estimates together. These factors can and do impact the cost of hiring a carpenter. 

    Size of the project

    One of the first things to consider is the size of your project. For example, building a set of wooden stairs for your back door may only take a day or two, but creating an interior staircase could take a finish carpenter one to two weeks or more. Depending on the details, materials, and scope of the project, you can expect to pay a higher price for more extensive plans due to time frames and the cost of materials.


    The cost of materials can vary widely depending on the type of wood, hardware, and finishes used. 

    For instance, using high-quality timber like cedar or oak can be more expensive than using treated pine. Another example is using melamine sheets, which are durable and resistant to scratches and moisture. Melamine sheets are often used in cabinetry and shelving projects, and their cost can vary depending on the sheets’ thickness, size, and quality. Similarly, using luxury hardware and finishes will boost the project costs.

    The skill of the carpenter

    The skill level of the carpenter can impact the cost. A seasoned professional will charge more than someone just entering the field. Where you live in Australia can also affect the price and the hourly carpenter rate. If you reside in locations where the cost of living is high, the cost of carpenter services also increases.

    Additionally, your final consideration should be on the state of the sector. What this means, if the competition is fierce in your area, carpenters will offer more competitive rates. On the other hand, if the competition is lacking, carpenters generally charge more in those sectors because they can.


    The cost of hiring a carpenter can be influenced by the specific carpentry tools they use for the job. High-quality tools such as the Makita LS1017L, Makita LS1017, and other precision saws can result in better craftsmanship but may also come with a higher price tag. Specialized equipment like Krome drawers for organizing tools and joinery aids like the Join-a-Jig, which can be found on eBay, can impact the overall cost. 

    Price Estimates for Different Types of Common Carpentry

    There are many different types of standard carpentry. From projects that require basic skills to those that need an expert. Each project will differ slightly from one job to another because there are certain variables from house to house. One way to keep the carpenter day rate, the same is to hire them by the hour; however, for most carpentry projects, homeowners generally prefer to pay one price for the entire job.

    Below are some common carpentry projects and the average price you can expect to pay for them:

    Built-in Wardrobes – The price for a built-in wardrobe is between $1,000 and $5,000; however, for walk-ins, depending on the fixtures and custom accessories. The price could soar up to $30,000.

    A large walk-in wardrobe with dark carpet, dark cabinetry and desk with chair and mirror.

    A large walk-in wardrobe. | Source: Aspect Cabinetmakers

    Timber Retaining Walls – You can expect to pay between $250m² to $350m² for treated pine timber and $300m² to $450m² for treated hardwood timber sleepers. If you’re thinking about railway sleepers, they can be challenging to find, and they sell for about $75 each.

    Cabinetry, Benchtops, and Shelving – For the standard kitchen cabinetry work, you can expect to pay about $4,000, and it can go up to $20,000 or more for custom cabinetry. Benchtops range widely in price, depending on the material used. Most materials for benchtops range between $200 to $400 per linear metre. For labour and materials for benchtops, the price is between $600m² and $1,300m² installed. Shelving may be included with the cabinetry; however, if you want extra shelving in open space, the cost is usually based on the materials plus the cost of installation.

    Three neon-lit timber shelves with decorative pieces on each next to a landscape painting on a blue wall.

    Simple yet effective timber shelving. | Source: Esteem Building & Renovations

    Timber Stairs and Handrails – The average cost to install one flight of timber stairs and handrails is approximately $4,000; however, the price can increase significantly for more exotic woods or custom designs. 

    Decking Installation and Sanding – The average cost to build a deck with labour and materials is approximately $180 per square metre with most 10m² to 30m² decks costing Aussies between $3,500 and $6,500.The price to sand and refinish a deck ranges between $750 to $1,600, or you can pay the hourly carpenter rate if you prefer.

    A large outdoor decking area with water fountain, table setting and pool behind.

    Large outdoor decking area with pool. | Source: Createscape Construction And Landscaping

    Custom-made – Custom-made carpentry projects such as furniture, shelving, wainscoting, crown moulding, and shadow boxes generally requires an expert in the field. As mentioned above, you can expect to pay about $120 per hour for a finish carpenter plus the cost of materials.

    Flooring Installation – The cost of flooring ranges widely, depending on the materials used. For example, for a floating laminate floor, you can expect to pay between $20 to $100 per square metre.

    Open house with polished concrete floor, timber furnishings and white walls.

    A modern polished concrete floor. | Source: S.F.D Caringbah

    House Framework – The price for a framing carpenter is about $1,500 per square metre.

    Pergolas and Patio – A pergolas and patio can cost most Aussies between $20,000 to $54,000, depending on the size and materials used with an average rate of $2,700 per square metre.

    Modern backyard with pergola leading from the house to a blue pool.

    Modern outdoor pergola. | Source: MADISON

    Timber Fencing – The average price to install standard timber fencing is between $2,500 to $3,000 or $75 per square metre.

    Wooden Doors and Windows Installation – A standard size solid timber door can cost between $300 to $600 with some timber doors such as Meranti costing $1,200 or more. Windows also depend on size and type, but you can expect to pay about $720 for a fixed window, $820m² for a tilt and turn window, and $1,250m² for bifold windows and doors.

    A large wooden pivot door with two plants on either side opens to a bright home.

    A large wooden pivot door. | Source: Atmosphere Renovations

    How to Hire a Carpenter

    When it comes to hiring a carpenter for your home renovation or new construction projects, it’s essential to hire one that has the skills and credentials to finish the job. One of the best ways to find a reputable carpenter is to get multiple quotes and see their past projects. You can get quotes here on Oneflare, to see a list of pre-qualified and vetted carpenters in your local area.

    Below are some questions to consider when you’re interviewing potential carpenters and obtaining quotes for your project:

    1. Do you have a list of references for previous clients?
    2. Do you have photos of your work, or can I see a project?
    3. How many tradies do you have, and how long will the project take you?
    4. What hours do you work, and will you need to work on weekends?
    5. Are you licenced and insured?


    How to Create an Accurate Estimate

    The best method to creating an accurate estimate for the overall cost of the project is to obtain multiple quotes from different carpenters, and the more the better. It’s recommended to get at least three to four quotes in order to create an accurate estimate. Once you have your quotes, you can and contrast your quotes and come up with a precise estimate.


    Licencing and Qualifications

    Not all carpenters are required to be licenced in Australia; however, individual states and territories do require carpenters to hold a Builder’s Licence. Below is a list of states with specific licencing requirements:

    State/Territory Carpenter Licence Details
    NT Builder’s Licence if the project exceeds $12,000
    ACT All carpenters require a Builder’s Licence
    QLD All carpenters require a Builder’s Licence
    NSW All carpenters require a Builder’s Licence
    TAS All carpenters require a Builder’s Licence
    SA All carpenters require a Builder’s Licence
    VIC All carpenters require a Builder’s Licence
    WA Builder’s Licence if the project exceeds $20,000


    How to Save Money Hiring a Carpenter

    The best way to save money is to obtain multiple quotes from carpenters. Then select the carpenter that meets your budget and can work around your schedule. You may find that some carpenters charge more money than others who are just as qualified to do the job.

    Additionally, you can also save money by doing the demolition yourself and looking for deals on materials that you can buy yourself.


    * The cost data is based on Oneflare and third-party sources

    Real Oneflare Customer Quotes

    Anna's Carpenter Job

    Location PinNorthern Beaches Sydney, NSW
    Job type

    Gate installation


    Approximately 5m x 1m pre-primed timber

    Additional notes

    Requires support framework

    $1200inc. gst

    Quoted by Brading Constructions

    Michael's Carpenter Job

    Location PinBrisbane CBD, QLD
    Job type

    Staircase repair


    Step in external timber stair rotting

    Additional information

    Michael supplied the materials

    $200inc. gst

    Quoted by All Hours Handyman

    Tania's Carpenter Job

    Location PinNorth East Melbourne, VIC
    Job type

    Door installation

    Location of house

    Door to connect from living room to garage

    Additional information

    Images with blue outlines for door

    $1250inc. gst

    Quoted by Good Guys Construction And Maintenance

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