Plumber in uniform at showcase with boilers in plumbering store. Man with notebook buying sanitary engineering in shop, water taps and faucets choice

What is a tradie? How to Become a Tradie? How Much Do Tradies Earn?

What is a tradie? How to become? How much do they earn? Aussie tradies are known for making decent money, so here our guide for tradies in 2024

Thinking about becoming a tradie? Well, we’ve got some good news for you!

Our guide is here to give you the lowdown on the top-paying trades in Australia and what you can anticipate in terms of earnings. Aussie tradies are known for making decent money, so dive into our tradie salary guide for 2024 to get the details.

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What is a tradie?

A tradie or a trade person is someone who specializes in practical skills like construction, plumbing, electronics, and gardening in Australia.

Traditionally, trade jobs were often underestimated, with some viewing manual labour as undesirable. However, attitudes are changing as more people recognize the true value and benefits of these skills. As a result, there’s a growing interest in becoming a tradie.

A male worker contribution to the construction industry. Tools of the Trade for a Skilled Craftsman

How long does it take to become a tradie?

The time it takes to become a certified tradie varies depending on the specific trade. On average, it ranges from 5 to 7 years, encompassing formal training, apprenticeship, and passing required exams.

3 Tips for Starting a Tradie Business Once a tradie has acquired the necessary skills and knowledge, starting their own business is a great option. Here are three tips for success:

  1. Develop a detailed business plan outlining goals, contingency plans for errors, and financial aspects.
  2. Understand legal requirements, including taxes, licenses, and permits. The Australian Business Licence and Information Service (ABLIS) can help identify necessary licenses and permits.
  3. Prioritize insurance, such as liability, tool, and public liability insurance, to ensure protection for both the tradie and the client in case of accidents.

How to Become a Tradie: A Step-by-Step Guide

Once you understand what being a tradie involves, the next question is often, “How do I become a tradie?” Like any other profession, it requires proper education, training, certification, and possibly licenses, depending on the specific field.

Step 1: Education

Begin by obtaining a high school diploma or equivalency certificate, which is a basic requirement for tradies.

Step 2: Formal Training

After acquiring the necessary certification, undergo formal training by enrolling in vocational education at a technical school, community college, or a registered training organization. This training provides comprehensive knowledge about the chosen career. Although formal training isn’t mandatory, it’s highly recommended for better apprenticeship opportunities and a competitive edge.

Fact: While formal training isn’t required, it is advisable by unions and companies for enhanced apprenticeship prospects.

Step 3: Apprenticeship

Participate in an apprenticeship, a formal training program where you gain hands-on experience in your chosen trade under the guidance of a master tradie. Apprentices usually get paid during this program. Apply by submitting a written application and passing the required exam. Apprenticeships are open to Australian citizens aged 15 to 65 and are offered by various companies and local union contractors.

Step 4: Journeyman

Progress to the journeyman position, a prerequisite before becoming a master tradie. This step involves obtaining additional certifications and classroom training. The training covers advanced skills such as designing blueprints and securing permits.

Step 5: Continuous Mastery

The final step is ongoing professional development. Even as a master tradie, it’s essential to continuously update your knowledge to stay at the forefront of your chosen career. This commitment ensures you remain competitive and adapt to changes in your field over time.

How Much Do Tradies Earn?

Tradie jobs have become increasingly attractive to many, prompting the question: How much do tradies make? On a national scale, the average wage for tradies ranges from $81,000 to $85,000. This figure represents the average taxable earnings across various business types and occupations in Australia.

The exact earnings for tradies can vary based on factors such as the type of job they do, their level of experience, and the location they reside in.

Types of Tradie Jobs

In Australia, there are numerous tradie jobs, but as of 2024, the most popular and highest-earning role is that of Boiler Makers, with an impressive income exceeding $132,000, according to This top-five list is as follows:

  1. Boiler Makers: $132,000+
  2. Electricians: $100,019+
  3. Plumbers: $90,219+
  4. Plasterers: $90,339+
  5. Bricklayers: $85,404+

These figures may still see adjustments as 2024 concludes, reflecting the dynamic nature of tradie job earnings.


What is the Average Tradie Income in Each State and Territory?

Tradie jobs vary in demand across different States and Territories in Australia, influencing the income potential for tradies. Understanding these regional differences is crucial when determining a tradie’s exact earnings.

To ensure tradies have a financially rewarding experience in their specific location, it’s important to check the estimated average income range for tradies in each State and Territory:

  • Capital Territory: $74,000 to $94,500
  • New South Wales: $78,700 to $83,600
  • Queensland: $80,300 to $84,400
  • South Australia: $75,000 to $75,400
  • Tasmania: $71,700 to $83,100
  • Victoria: $79,886 to $80,650
  • Western Australia: $89,000 to $90,500

For stability and consistently high earnings, it’s advisable to examine and comprehend the figures mentioned above and compare them to the cost of living in each location across Australia. This will help tradies make informed decisions about where to pursue their careers for optimal financial success.

In conclusion

In Australia, tradies receive varying hourly and yearly salaries determined by factors like their trade, experience, and location.

The top-earning tradies can make over $100,000, whereas those in lower-paid trades typically average between $70,000 and $80,000 per year.

Learning trades like electrical work, plumbing, and refrigeration mechanics is considered complex and challenging. However, with commitment and hard work, tradies across different specialities can take advantage of the strong demand and lucrative earning opportunities within skilled trades in Australia.

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