Tradie rates: The ultimate guide on what to expect

The question for the average DIYer or renovator remains: What should I really be paying my tradesmen?

The guide below is an approx. cost for Australian tradies.
*Please note all rates are excluding GST*

Brickies always work in pairs – one mixes the mud while the other lays the bricks or blocks.
A brickie typically charges $60+ per hour and $50+ for their lackey.

You can expect to pay anywhere from $70 to $120 per hour for an appropriately qualified builder.
It’s also becoming more common for builders to charge for quotes – so don’t fall over from shock if this gets raised.
A concreter will generally charge you around $50-$65 per hour.

Someone told me this week they’re paying their chippies $80 an hour. My jaw hit the floor.
A good chippy is worth their weight in gold, though, and you’ll pay anywhere between $50-$80 for their services.

Demolition contractor
You can find unskilled labour for around $35 an hour, and that in itself should ring alarm bells. Always make sure you used skilled labour when undertaking a demolition, and expect to pay at least $40 an hour.

Dry wall plasterer
I was recently told that only two apprentices went through the drywall plaster/Gyprock 1st year apprenticeship in NSW last year. So, if you think $50 an hour for a plasterer is expensive now, talk to me in 10 years.
This is a really important trade for all homes, but with the lack of apprentices getting skilled in this trade, it’s going to become increasingly expensive to engage a gyprocker/drywall plasterer.

Expect to pay north of $85 per hour for a sparkie’s services.

Hard-wall plasterer
This process is messier than a teenager’s bedroom, so make sure you provide proper floor protection when these guys are at work.
It will cost at least $50 per hour.

Joiner/Cabinet maker
Getting a good joiner to come out for a house call will cost you at least $55 per hour, and there will likely be a minimum charge applied.

Looking at creating or planning your dream outdoor space? Landscapers will charge a minimum of $55 per hour.

Credit where credit is due, you couldn’t pay me enough to do this job! It’s much harder than it looks and far from therapeutic.
There are different sheen levels and paints for different purposes. Plus, you need to roll or spray the walls, cut in the corners and still make sure it’s neat, looks consistent and the paint doesn’t run. All of this while you’re trying to keep the paint on the brush!
Painters will charge upwards of $45 per hour, and in my opinion they’re totally worth it.

Plumbers’ rates are typically $80+ an hour.

Roof plumber/Tiler
These tradies will cost a minimum of $65 per hour.

Rarer than hens’ teeth! If you can find a tiler charging $65 an hour working on a single dwelling or a smaller job, please take a photo and tag me – they are the construction equivalent of a unicorn!
Why? A lot of tilers prefer to work with larger, square rooms and can shy away from the more intricate details in smaller spaces as it presents a bigger challenge. So if you can get a tiler to work on a small job and not charge astronomical rates, you have done well.
Some may sound pricey, but it’s worth keeping in mind that a tradie has to also take into account traffic, tolls, petrol and parking fees each time they’re uprooted from a site to come out for a service call.
Home visits often incur a minimum three-hour charge at a certain rate, and then a reduced hourly rate every hour after that.