How much do plasterers charge?
Being a self-employed plasterer in the UK can be lucrative. After all, this is a highly skilled trade that is often in significant demand. Whether it’s finishing the walls in new builds ready for decoration or working on property renovations, there is no shortage of commercial and domestic projects out there that need talented plasterers.
But exactly how much can you charge as a plasterer? Here, we take a detailed look at the earning potential of this trade, focusing on how much you can expect to charge for specific types of jobs. We also consider the expenses you are likely to incur, as this will impact your profits.
How much can a plasterer charge?
There is no one answer to the question of how much a plasterer can charge. Rates vary depending on factors including your skill level, the types of jobs you take on and where you are based in the country. For example, plasterers working in London and the south-east of England can often charge as much as 20% more than those based elsewhere. You can also charge more if you are highly experienced and have a strong portfolio of work - compared to if you are relatively new to the profession and have just set up a plastering business. Additionally, if you take on complex jobs such as those involving ornate, decorative plastering, again, your rates are likely to be higher.
That said, plasterers typically charge around £6 - £10 or more per square metre, plus a day rate of approximately £100 - £150 plus.
In many cases, rather than charging for an exact square meterage, plasterers will charge set amounts for certain types of rooms and finishes. For example, skim plastering a standard sized front room (roughly 5m x 7m) could be priced at around £375 - £475, or as high as £525 - £600 in the London area. Plastering a similar sized room from scratch, which involves removing existing plaster and plasterboard, fixing new plasterboard in place and skimming with plaster to finish, could cost around £750 - £800, or up to £900 to £1,000 in London.
What costs do plasterers face?
As well as thinking about how much you can charge as a plasterer, you’ll need to consider the costs you will face. Certain expenses can be added directly to the fees you charge customers, such as scaffolding or skip hire, while others are ongoing costs and will affect your profits.
No plasterer can work without the necessary tools. This typically includes everything from a bucket trowel and finishing trowel to a hawk board, power mixer, sandpaper, sponge and joiner’s knife.
You will of course need to purchase the correct amount and type of plaster for each job, and depending on the specific project you’re working on, you might need additional materials such as a plaster undercoat.
Your business may grow to the point where you need to take on additional workers to help you manage your workload. Overall, this can help you to expand your revenue and profits. However, you will also need to factor in the associated expenses, including wages, employers’ National Insurance contributions and so on.
Working in this trade, you’ll require certain types of plasterers’ insurance. For example, public liability cover is generally considered a must in this profession. It protects you from claims made by customers or other members of the public who have suffered property damage or injury because of your work. Tools insurance is another important form of financial protection, and if you employ anyone, you are required by law to have employers’ liability cover.
Certain jobs will involve additional costs. For example, you might need to arrange waste skips to get rid of materials you remove from the site, and if you’re working at height in tall rooms or over staircases, you may require scaffolding. Another potential expense is parking charges, which are common in urban areas.
How to insure plastering tools for work
Your tools are your livelihood. Without them, you wouldn’t be able to do your job. As we outlined briefly in the previous section, this means it’s important to have suitable tools insurance. So, what is the best way to go about arranging cover for your equipment?
At Markel Direct, we offer tools insurance that covers the cost of repairing or replacing your equipment if it is damaged or stolen. Whether your tools are destroyed in a flood or fire, they’re stolen from your van or thieves target your garage or storage unit, you will have peace of mind knowing you won’t be left to cover the costs. With our tools insurance, you can choose to cover your tools during working hours only (8am – 6pm) or on a 24 hour basis for complete protection.
You can include tools insurance as part of a specialist plasterers’ insurance policy, which combines various different types of cover in one convenient, comprehensive product.
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