Tired of your 9-5 office job? Interested in switching careers? Why not try giving your brain and body the exercise they need by becoming a carpenter in Ohio?
This trade is one of the oldest and most in-demand fields in the construction industry.
The demand and growth for this job are steadily rising as contractors continuously hire workers to cope with their manpower requirements.
With that being said, there are so many vacancies in this industry that led to more opportunities in construction trades years ago up until now that work to your advantage.
Enjoy the privilege of working according to your schedule and in a variety of fields in carpentry.
If you made up your mind that being a carpenter is the occupation you want to pursue, we have this article prepared to help you start your journey.
Steps to Take on How to Become a Carpenter
Having zero experience does not mean you are not a qualified carpenter. With the right character, skills, and education, you can pass and qualify as an excellent carpenter.
Step 1. Decide on what kind of carpentry you would like to specialize in.
Yes, carpentry does a lot of work with wood-based materials, but it's not as simple as that. There's a wide opportunity in carpentry- it could vary from building a roof to working on custom cabinets, and more.
These are the common types of a carpenter:
- Rough Carpenter
- Finish carpenter
- Trim carpenter
- Cabinet maker
- Ship’s Carpenter
You don't have to stick to one specialization in carpentry throughout your career. However, it might take you a while to switch to another field in carpentry when you already specialize in one.
To explore other areas in carpentry, try to apply as an assistant or a helper in another carpentry work. You may try doing this part-time. This way, you can already get an idea and knowledge of that certain kind of carpentry.
Once you get familiarized and knowledgeable with multiple kinds of carpentry, you can choose to focus on the carpentry work that you excel at and enjoy.
Step 2. Educate yourself
There are different ways of taking training for carpentry. There are vocational classes you can take on and local colleges may also have carpentry courses. See below for the list of training schools in Ohio. Applying for an apprenticeship also requires you to submit a high school diploma or a General Educational Development Test.
Math is also vital in carpentry. You should be knowledgeable in it because geometry, percentages, square footage, and more mathematical skills are applicable in carpentry. You can also study finance and business classes.
Consider enrolling in technical schools, usually, it comes with a two-year program. Some programs teach you to how to study blueprints, making estimates, and how to order materials. Woodworking classes will also work in your favor- you'll get to learn the most required skill in carpentry as you begin applying for an apprenticeship.
Step 3. Apply for an apprenticeship
You might take a step back on completing the apprenticeship program. Yes, taking this will carve some of your time but believe me, it's worth taking. From your basic education in carpentry, apprenticeship is your second pathway to becoming a carpenter. Working in a company as an apprentice takes three to five years of training. Generally, you will learn on-the-job skills, and classroom topics like basic carpentry, and workplace safety in the program.
Carpentry requires complex skills and dedication, that's why apprenticeship is truly beneficial for aspiring carpenters. The good thing about an apprenticeship program is you gain hands-on experience in carpentry and instead of paying them for the program, you will receive a steady income during the training.
By the end of the training, you will be a certified journey-level carpenter. You will gain relevant carpentry skills and experience. You will also be connected with contractors and experienced carpenters and you will be confident in starting to earn money in the industry.
If you would like to take the apprenticeship path, there are unions and organizations that offer this, see below the list of schools.
Step 4. Establish your profession as a carpenter
A carpenter's assistant or an apprentice with little experience may earn $15 per hour, while an average journey-level carpenter makes around $25 per hour. What about the top carpenters? In some states, the top carpenters get to earn under $40 per hour. This is just the average; therefore, many top carpenters are earning above that. In Ohio, wages vary by state.
Pretty good, right? However, despite the high demand for carpentry jobs, so is the competition among carpenters. With that, you have to make ways to stand out in your specialization. The most effective way to do this is to establish a solid professional reputation. To achieve this, follow these steps:
- Demonstrate yourself with an excellent work ethic. Show your best qualities and other professionals will notice you. Prove yourself as someone reliable, punctual, approachable, and someone who can work with urgency and safety.
- Continuously educate yourself. At this point, you are aware that is beyond nails and hammer. Be updated on the trends, codes, and techniques in carpentry. Be mindful of the regulations as well. Take the opportunity to learn new skills in carpentry when the opportunity knocks.
- Join the community of carpenters. Build network and connections with carpenters and construction pro and keep on growing your network in the community. These networks can help you land projects by word of mouth referrals. And who knows, as you establish your career, you might also consider mentoring aspiring carpenters.
It will take plenty of your time and effort to be a carpenter. But note that to achieve it, take it one step at a time.
Carpenter Training Schools in Ohio Where You Can Enroll
- Ohio Carpenters Joint Apprenticeship and Training Trust Fund
1899 Arlingate Ln, Columbus, OH - Phone: (614) 236-4205, Fax: (614) 236-6022
361 Breaden Drive, Monroe, OH - Phone: (513) 539-7849, Fax: (513) 539-7870
4100 Maple Dr, Richfield, OH, 44286 - Phone: (330) 659-9495, Fax: (330) 659-6278
9270 Bass Pro Blvd., Rossford, OH - Phone: (419) 872-4651, Fax: (419) 872-4753
(If you like to apply to become an apprentice)
- Cleveland Construction, Inc.
8620 Tyler Boulevard, Mentor - tel: 440-255-8000, fax: 440-205-1138
5390 Courseview Drive, Mason, Ohio - Tel: 513-398-8900, fax: 513-398-8418
6399 Broughton Ave., Columbus, Ohio - Tel: 614-759-8500, fax: 614-759-8502
(They’re accepting applicants for their apprenticeship program)
- Joint Apprentice Training Center (JATC)
South Central Ohio District Council of Carpenters - 614-236-4205
Northeast Ohio Carpenters' - 330-659-9495
Southwest Ohio District Council of Carpenters - 513-539-7849
Northwest Ohio District Council of Carpenters - 330-659-9495
(for apprenticeship training)
- Miami Valley Apprenticeship Coordinators Group
PO Box 341508, 3541 Dayton-Xenia Road, Beavercreek, OH 45434
(For apprenticeship training)
- Cuyahoga Community College
700 Carnegie Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44115
- Columbus State Community College
550 East Spring St., Columbus, OH 43215
- Warren County Career Center
3525 North State Route 48, Lebanon, OH 45036
Phone: 513-932-5677, Phone: 513-932-8145
Rudolph Libbe Group
Northwest Ohio Headquarters - 6494 Latcha Rd., Walbridge, OH
- Contact Hocking College
3301 Hocking Pkwy., Nelsonville, Ohio 45764
- Ashtabula County Technical & Career Campus
1565 State Route 167, Jefferson, OH 44047
- Vantage Career Center High School
818 N Franklin St. Van Wert, OH 45891
Phone: (419) 238-5411
Aside from these four steps, work experience is also beneficial if you want to be employed in the industry. Employers will prefer it if you have work experience in the construction industry, which you may obtain from part-time work. You can apply for work every weekend or holiday and it will be helpful if you know someone working in construction.
Additionally, having the following skills will make it easier for you on your as you endeavor to become a carpenter:
- Keen to details
- Computer and basic software knowledge
- Has initiative
- Familiarity with construction and building
- Can work with others
- Knowledge of designing, repairing, and using machines
How Much Salary You Would Get If You Work in Ohio
The most basic sense of why we are changing or shifting to this career as a carpenter is the salary. But how much really is the salary of carpenters working in the state of Ohio?
According to the July 25, 2023 report of Salary.com, the average salary of carpenters is $60,542. And depending on the experience and qualifications you have, you might get between $52,319 and $70,103. If you will work in the state of Kentucky, the salary is lower.
The job outlook for carpenters can be influenced by various factors including economic conditions, housing and construction trends, technological advancements, and shifts in consumer preferences. As of my last training data which extends up to September 2021, here is a general outlook for the carpentry profession:
- Construction Link: Demand for carpenters rises with increased construction activities.
- Infrastructure: Ongoing or planned projects can boost the need for carpenters.
- Remodeling: Aging infrastructure and homes require updates, ensuring continuous demand.
- Green Building: Carpenters skilled in sustainable practices may have more opportunities.
- Technology: Carpenters who integrate tech with traditional skills can be more marketable.
- COVID-19 Impact: The pandemic influenced construction trends, with some areas like home renovations seeing a surge.
- Skill Shortage: A potential shortage of trained tradespeople can mean more job opportunities.
- Specialization: The field offers diverse specialties, from rough work to finishes.
- Regional Variation: Job outlook can differ based on local economic conditions.
Keeping an eye on local trends and networking can provide more specific insights into the profession.
To Make a Finalization
It's not at all impossible to be a carpenter with zero experience. It will be difficult at the beginning to dive into it without proper background and education. That is why it's important to carve out time for carpentry training and education if you want to succeed in this industry.
There are many different paths you can take to become a carpenter. But eventually, it leads to an economically secure and artistic career. Grasp the four steps mentioned to properly guide you in becoming a carpenter, but also note that it will also highly dependent on the experience that you already have.