We surveyed recommended carpenters and joiners to find out how much you should spend on 11 common jobs and how long they should take to complete.
We asked Which? Local-recommended carpenters and joiners to complete a survey about the price and completion time for 11 standard carpentry and joinery jobs.
Armed with this information, you'll know what questions to ask, roughly what price you can expect to pay and how long jobs should take when hiring a carpenter and joiner.
Carpentry and joinery prices and completion times
All of our prices include labour and materials but exclude VAT.
|Job||Details||Typical price quoted||Price range||Typical time to complete job|
|Survey conducted in July 2012.|
|Build a garden shed||Build an 8m x 6m shiplap shed (with preassembled panels). Assuming that customer is providing own shed and concrete base is in place.||n/a||£96-£100||1 day|
|Build a garden fence||To construct a garden fence with 10 6m x 5m panels including posts and capping. Price includes labour plus all materials.||£850||£665-£1,113||1–2 days|
|Make a wooden sash window frame||Make timber replacement frame (double glazed) for a sash window measuring 1.2m x 1.8m. Includes labour and materials, excludes glass.||n/a||£370-£770||1–2 days|
|Construct a built-in wardrobe (double size) ||Build one double sized built-in wardrobe with: two doors; one top shelf; one clothes rail; one shoe shelf running the length of the wardrobe.||£550||£395-£775||2-3 days|
|Build book shelves in lounge||Build eight MDF shelves in alcove between chimney breast and side wall. Width approx 2m. No painting required. ||n/a||£180-£382||1–1.5 days|
|Hang new doors – two-bed terraced house||Hang eight new doors and plane to fit as required. Customer to provide doors.||£310||£240-£480||1–2 days|
|Hang new doors – three-bed semi-detached house||Hang 10 new doors and plane to fit as required. Customer to provide doors.||£400||£300-£600||2–3 days|
|Hang new doors – four-bed detached house||Hang 12 new doors and plane to fit as required. Customer to provide doors.||£465||£360-£720||2-4 days|
|Lay oak flooring||Lay solid oak flooring in a hallway 1.5m x 3m. Assume floor is flat and prepared. Customer to supply flooring.||£170||£123-£231||1 day|
|Board loft in a standard three-bed semi||-||£476||£313-£557||1–2 days|
|Supply and fit skirting board in one room||Supply and fit skirting board. Softwood. Approx 120mm high and 15mm thick in a room 14'10”.||£200||£163-£273||0.5-1 day|
Trader tips: carpentry and joinery
In addition to the pricing and completion time information, the recommended carpenters and joiners who participated in our survey also shared some helpful advice.
Job: build a garden shed
The job completion time could be reduced if two men were on the job or if the customer was willing to assist.
Job: Hang new doors
- If your house is old, this job might take longer as frames may have subsided or moved.
- Don’t forget about hinges, locks and door handles ('door furniture'). You might be able to re-use old door furniture but, if not, remember to add this to the price. Fitting door furniture may increase the time taken.
Job: Board loft
- It will make life easier for the trader (and cheaper for you) if the loft is empty before they start. If traders have to clear the loft first this will take longer. And time is money!
- Chat to your trader about insulation. While they're up there, it makes sense to put insulation under the boards (if needed). Combining jobs is cheaper in the long run.
- If you don’t have a loft ladder already, think about getting one installed at the same time. A few traders told us that their price included installing a loft ladder. Others will charge extra.
In July 2012, we sent a survey to all Which? Local traders in the Carpenters and joiners category with a rating of three stars or more and an email address.
22 carpentry and joinery professionals responded to the survey. Using their experience and expertise, they answered questions about the cost of popular carpentry and joinery jobs, and how long they should take to complete.
Read more about the methodology