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Carpet fitter and floor layer Flooring fitter

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Carpet fitters and floor layers fit carpets and vinyl tiles, and lay laminate and solid timber floors.

Salary, a pound sign Salary: £14,000 to £30,000 average per year
Hours, a clock face Hours: 38 to 40 per week

1. Entry requirements

Most carpet fitters and floor layers start out by joining a company and training on the job.

You could do a course like a Level 1, 2 or 3 NVQ in Floor Covering. These are run by colleges and training providers.

You’ll need to be good with numbers and have practical skills.

You could get into this job through an apprenticeship.

On construction sites, you may need to have a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card. 

The Flooring Industry Training Association (FITA) and UK Flooring Academy (UKFA) run short intensive courses for beginners.

Go Construct has more details about careers in floor laying.

2. Skills required

You'll need:

  • practical skills
  • the ability to follow plans and instructions
  • maths skills to measure floor areas and work out costs
  • the ability to work quickly and accurately
  • customer service skills

3. What you'll do

You'll work in people's homes and on commercial premises. Depending on where you're working, your day-to-day tasks may include:

  • measuring floor space and estimating the amount of materials needed
  • clearing away furniture and taking off doors
  • removing old flooring
  • cleaning, levelling and sealing the work area
  • gluing or nailing underlay and floor coverings into place
  • stretching carpet over spiked gripper rods and taping
  • heat-sealing joins and edges on vinyl flooring
  • spraying or waxing floor coverings to give them a protective coating
  • using fast-track flooring systems
  • putting furniture back and trimming and re-hanging doors

You may work in a team of 2 or 3 people.

In commercial premises, you'll liaise with the contracts manager and other trades on site.

4. Salary

Starter: £14,000 to £17,000

Experienced: £18,000 to £25,000

Highly Experienced: £30,000

Some companies may offer a vehicle as part of your package.

You may be paid an hourly or daily rate.

These figures are a guide.

5. Working hours, patterns and environment

You'll usually work 38 to 40 hours a week. As a commercial fitter you may have to work evenings and weekends.

The job is physically demanding and you'll spend much of your time kneeling to fit flooring. You'll also be lifting and carrying heavy flooring materials, and moving furniture.

You may work with chemical adhesives and sprays, and need to wear or use Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

You'll usually need a driving licence to travel between sites.

6. Career path and progression

With experience, you could become a team supervisor, estimator or contracts manager.

You could move into areas like buying and product sales.

You could also set up your own business in laying carpets and flooring.

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Last updated: 11 September 2018