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The Home Depot

5 Tips for Hiring a Carpenter

Pro Referral > Home Guides > Carpentry > 5 Tips for Hiring a Carpenter
5 Tips for Hiring a Carpenter

First, we’ll start with a question: How many carpenters does it take to screw in a light bulb? Before we go any further, let’s get you off the hook. How many carpenters does it take to screw in a light bulb? None, that’s the electrician’s job.

  1. 1.Identifying a Carpenter

    Talent occasionally comes along that’s never been in a dog show. Conversely, just because they have a bunch of medals, doesn’t mean they’re a war hero.

    The workplace is always a good starting point for your research. Use the “referral method.” It’s good for this situation and most other times you require help but don’t know where to turn.

  2. 2.Other Sources

    The “referral method” can also be employed on friends. Ask those doing the referral questions like: Did they have any work done? If so, ask if you can you come see what kind of work their carpenter performed? Carpenters, like all contractors know that the best thing to leave behind is a good reputation.

  3. 3.Ask a Homebuilder

    Sometimes people who need carpentry work done may know another type of contractor. Perhaps you are friends with a person who is in charge of building a house. That would be another good contact. Who would they recommend?


    They have actual experience in hiring sub-contractors. Ask if you can visit one of their almost-finished homes. The contractor might personally introduce you to the craftsperson. Make a date with the potential carpenter.

  4. 4.Meet With At Least 3-Carpenters

    You want to interview at least a couple interior carpenters during this stage of the process. Find out how long they’ve been doing the type of work you require. Ask for a list of completed jobs. Explain your needs for the project. After the individual meeting, jot down the pros and cons of that particular person. Distill the list to one. Make a call to the carpenter you want to hire.


    Factor this into your decision: If you schedule the get-together for 3 pm and the talent doesn’t show up until 3:30 pm, 2-days later; you might want to cancel and go with your second choice. Being on-time is pretty important. Stretch that example out to the future. If they can’t even show up punctually to meet with you about terms, a renovation may take 4-years instead of 4-weeks.

  5. 5.Contract the Work

    You’ve got a mental picture of your project. It’s time to commit it to paper. When the carpenter meets with you, talk (in detail) about the project. Are you running into a “No Can Do” worker, it’s easier to part ways early. It’s cheaper, too. You want a person that can handle making your dream come true. They, likewise, should be expected to follow the schedule that all parties have agreed upon.

  6. 6.More Considerations

    The contract is not the only iron-clad document in your new relationship. Other big considerations can be a veritable cornucopia of stuff. Things like insurance, bonding and experience. All legal documents should be on the table. Are they members of any professional organizations like the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) or the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America?


    If they’re not, that may not be the reason alone to set them free. Talent occasionally comes along that’s never been in a dog show. Conversely, just because they have a bunch of medals, doesn’t mean they’re a war hero. They may just have a friend who owns a Surplus Military Store.

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