Is Your Tradesperson Giving You a Good Deal? An Analysis of Prices Across the UK

With so many of us spending the last couple of months indoors, many of us have noticed a thing or two that could be improved inside our home. So much so, that 19% of Brits have admitted to spending more money than ever before on furnishings and home improvements, with many choosing to hire a tradesperson to carry out these tasks. 

So, to help ensure you get a good deal, we have uncovered the hourly rate of numerous tradespeople* across the UK to reveal which areas are paying the most (and least) for the upkeep of their homes. You could even use this as a reference as to what is a fair price should you decide to go ahead and arrange some work with a tradesperson yourself.

How Much the Average Tradesperson Costs Per Hour in These Cities

We’ve analysed the average cost per hour of seven different trades to reveal the average price of contracting a tradesperson in 15 cities.

The Average Cost of Hiring a Tradesperson Across the UK

UK City

Average Cost Per Hour

Belfast

£22

Sheffield 

£24

Leicester / Coventry

£25

Cardiff / Nottingham

£26

Stoke-on-Trent / Liverpool

£27

Edinburgh / Bristol

£28

Glasgow

£29

Manchester 

£30

Leeds

£31

London

£40

Birmingham

£41

Hiring a Tradesperson in Belfast is (Almost) Half as Cheap as Birmingham

Not only are house prices in Northern Ireland 40% cheaper than the rest of the UK, but homeowners in Belfast pay the least for maintenance and repairs of the cities analysed. Here, the average tradesperson will set you back £22 per hour, which is then followed by Sheffield in second place at £24 per hour. 

Surprisingly, it’s not London who is the most expensive, although they came second last at £40 per hour. Instead, the most expensive tradesperson can be found in Birmingham at £41 per hour - which is almost double that of the cheapest city, Belfast, at £22 per hour. 

Jump to a city down below to uncover the average cost of a plumber, electrician, painter & decorator, plasterer, carpenter & joiner, gardener and builder, in more detail…

Belfast

Sheffield

Leicester

Coventry

Cardiff

Nottingham

Stoke-on-Trent

Liverpool

Edinburgh

Bristol

Glasgow

Manchester

Leeds

London

Birmingham

Belfast

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £22 per hour, which is the cheapest UK city.

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Belfast

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£32

£40

-£8

Electrician

£23

£34

-£11

Painter & Decorator

£19

£23

-£4

Plasterer

£20

£25

-£5

Carpenter & Joiner

£18

£30

-£12

Gardener

£20

£50

-£30

Builder

£20

£31

-£11

Sheffield

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £24 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire:

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Sheffield

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£32

£40

-£8

Electrician

£25

£34

-£9

Painter & Decorator

£18

£23

-£5

Plasterer

£18

£25

-£7

Carpenter & Joiner

£22

£30

-£8

Gardener

£22

£50

-£28

Builder

£30

£31

-£1

Leicester

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £25 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Leicester

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£35

£40

-£5

Electrician

£37

£34

+£3

Painter & Decorator

£18

£23

-£5

Plasterer

£18

£25

-£7

Carpenter & Joiner

£24

£30

-£6

Gardener

£17

£50

-£33

Builder

£23

£31

-£8

Coventry

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £25 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Coventry

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£37

£40

-£3

Electrician

£32

£34

-£2

Painter & Decorator

£21

£23

-£2

Plasterer

£20

£25

-£5

Carpenter & Joiner

£26

£30

-£4

Gardener

£17

£50

-£33

Builder

£23

£31

-£8

Cardiff

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £26 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Cardiff

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£45

£40

+£5

Electrician

£28

£34

-£6

Painter & Decorator

£22

£23

-£1

Plasterer

£23

£25

-£2

Carpenter & Joiner

£22

£30

-£8

Gardener

£17

£50

-£33

Builder

£25

£31

-£6

Nottingham

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £26 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Nottingham

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£38

£40

-£2

Electrician

£29

£34

-£5

Painter & Decorator

£23

£23

£0

Plasterer

£24

£25

-£1

Carpenter & Joiner

£28

£30

-£2

Gardener

£21

£50

-£29

Builder

£23

£31

-£8

Stoke-on-Trent

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £27 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Stoke-on-Trent

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£35

£40

-£5

Electrician

£27

£34

-£7

Painter & Decorator

£19

£23

-£4

Plasterer

£21

£25

-£4

Carpenter & Joiner

£24

£30

-£6

Gardener

£32

£50

-£18

Builder

£31

£31

£0

Liverpool

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £27 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Liverpool

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£35

£40

-£5

Electrician

£28

£34

-£6

Painter & Decorator

£23

£23

£0

Plasterer

£24

£25

-£1

Carpenter & Joiner

£24

£30

-£6

Gardener

£32

£50

-£18

Builder

£26

£31

-£5

Edinburgh

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £28 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire.

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Edinburgh

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£38

£40

-£2

Electrician

£33

£34

-£1

Painter & Decorator

£20

£23

-£3

Plasterer

£22

£25

-£3

Carpenter & Joiner

£26

£30

-£4

Gardener

£23

£50

-£27

Builder

£33

£31

£2

Bristol

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £28 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Bristol

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£37

£40

-£3

Electrician

£31

£34

-£3

Painter & Decorator

£24

£23

+£1

Plasterer

£24

£25

-£1

Carpenter & Joiner

£24

£30

-£6

Gardener

£30

£50

-£20

Builder

£26

£31

-£5

Glasgow

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £29 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Glasgow

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£37

£40

-£3

Electrician

£30

£34

-£4

Painter & Decorator

£20

£23

-£3

Plasterer

£21

£25

-£4

Carpenter & Joiner

£34

£30

+£4

Gardener

£26

£50

-£24

Builder

£34

£31

+£3

Manchester

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £30 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Manchester

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£42

£40

+£2

Electrician

£31

£34

-£3

Painter & Decorator

£23

£23

£0

Plasterer

£24

£25

-£1

Carpenter & Joiner

£31

£30

+£1

Gardener

£27

£50

-£23

Builder

£30

£31

-£1

Leeds

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £31 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Leeds

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£34

£40

-£6

Electrician

£32

£34

-£2

Painter & Decorator

£22

£23

-£1

Plasterer

£28

£25

+£3

Carpenter & Joiner

£23

£30

-£7

Gardener

£55

£50

+£5

Builder

£25

£31

-£6

London

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £40 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in London

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£53

£40

+£13

Electrician

£47

£34

+£13

Painter & Decorator

£29

£23

+£6

Plasterer

£34

£25

+£9

Carpenter & Joiner

£36

£30

+£6

Gardener

£38

£50

-£12

Builder

£45

£31

+£14

Birmingham

The average cost of hiring a tradesperson here is £40 per hour, which is based on the following:

What You Can Expect to Pay Per Hour for Tradesperson Hire

Tradesperson

Avg. Cost p/h in Birmingham

National Avg. Cost p/h 

Difference in Price

Plumber

£38

£40

-£2

Electrician

£30

£34

-£4

Painter & Decorator

£20

£23

-£3

Plasterer

£21

£25

-£4

Carpenter & Joiner

£29

£30

-£1

Gardener

£124

£50

+£74

Builder

£26

£31

-£5

Uncovered: The Cheapest Cities for Each Type of Labour 

If you plan on undertaking DIY projects yourself, you may want to check if you live in any of these cities with the cheapest labour first to see if it’s worth splashing out on an expert instead.  Thankfully, hiring a trade in these cities (except a plumber) costs less than the average price of a three course meal (£28.59). 

This is a short price to pay considering research has revealed that a botched DIY job could cost you up to £10,000 to repair.

  • Gardener: Leicester, Coventry & Cardiff (£17). £37 cheaper than national average p/h.
  • Carpenter & Joiner: Belfast (£18). £12 cheaper than national average p/h.
  • Builder: Belfast (£20). £11 cheaper than national average p/h. 
  • Electrician: Belfast (£23). £11 cheaper than national average p/h.
  • Plumber: Belfast and Sheffield (£32). £8 cheaper than national average p/h.
  • Plasterer: Sheffield & Leicester (£18). £7 cheaper than national average p/h.
  • Painter & Decorator: Sheffield & Leicester (£18). £5 cheaper than national average p/h.

The Most Popular Home Repairs & Renovations Revealed by Experts

Unexpected home repairs can be a shock to you and your finances. In order for Brits to be a bit more prepared, we asked trade professionals to reveal the most common household job they undertake, and how long it takes to complete. 

The Average Time and Cost it Takes to Complete the Most Popular Renovations and Repairs

Trade

Most Common Tasks

Average Cost p/h 

Time to Complete

Total UK Labour Cost (Excluding Materials)

Plumber

Taps & Toilet Repairs  

£40 

1 Hour

£40 

Plumber

Boiler Fixes

£40 

4 Hours

£160 

Electrician

Replace Lights/ Light Fitting

£34 

2 Hours

£68 

Painter & Decorator 

Paint a Bedroom 

£23 

7 Hours

£161 

Plasterer

Plaster a Ceiling 

£25 

7 Hours

£175 

Carpenter & Joiner

Fitting a Kitchen

£30 

70 Hours

£2,100 

Gardener

Garden Maintenance

£50 

3.5 Hours

£175 

Builder

Garage Conversion

£31 

35 Hours

£1,085 

The True Cost of the Most Common Repairs

So, what can you expect to go wrong in your house? Plumbers cited that they have two common household jobs, this includes tap & toilet cistern fixes, as well as repairing the boiler. The average cost of a plumber in the UK is £40 per hour and with it taking an average of five hours to complete both, you could be paying £200 to get these common plumber repairs fixed. 

However, in cities where plumbers are the most expensive, such as London, Cardiff and Manchester homeowners in these cities could be paying £265, £225 and £210 respectively. 

The next most common repair you may need to fix in your home is replacing the lights. You can expect to pay on average £34 per hour for an electrician across the UK so, you’ll be looking at paying £68 with this job taking 2 hours to tackle. 

However, in London, the city with the most expensive electricians, you would be paying £94, a huge £26 more than the UK average.  

The Real Cost of the Carrying Out the Most Popular Renovations 

Surprisingly, if you’re looking to renovate your home you might be paying more for a new kitchen than for a garage to be converted. Our research has found that the most popular job carpenters & joiners undertake is fitting a new kitchen. This task could take two weeks, with the average carpenter & joiner costing £30 per hour, homeowners could be paying £2,100 (and that’s before you even take into account the materials). 

However, the most popular building renovation, a garage conversion, takes just one week to complete. With this, homeowners are looking to pay £1,085 in labour prices.

Our research also unveiled the other most popular renovations are; painting a bedroom (painter & decorator), plastering a ceiling (plasterer) and garden maintenance (gardener), these cost £161, £175 and £175 comparatively. 

How to Maintain Your Home: The Homeowner’s Checklist

Your house is your home, and probably one of your biggest investments. Seemingly, you’ll probably want to take the best care of your home to keep the house afloat and make it desirable to buyers when the time comes to sell. So, to help take care of your property, we’ve devised a seasonal home maintenance checklist:

Spring

  • Move furniture to clean behind them, as well as check the walls for damp.
  • Clean guttering by removing debris, as this will help prevent any drainage issues. 
  • Check windows and frames for any damage, you can patch repair the frame if there’s any rot.
  • Ensure your roof has no damage and replace any cracked or loose tiles.

Summer

  • Check the grout in your bathroom and kitchen, re-grout where needed.
  • Examine plumbing for leaks on taps and toilets. 
  • Repair and paint any external woodwork including fencing, fascias, window frames and doors. 
  • Repointing is best done in summer, as it’s warm and dry. This involves removing the old mortar from the exterior brick walls, to apply fresh mortar that’s more weatherproof.
  • This season is also a great time to get your boiler serviced in time for the cold months ahead. 

Autumn

  • Get your chimney swept if you have one.
  • Check your radiators are working efficiently by bleeding them. 
  • Insulate external pipes and taps to avoid them freezing over winter.
  • Clear your gutters once all the leaves have dropped.

Winter

  • Remove showerheads and clean sediment for better water flow and pressure.
  • This is a good time to do any internal DIY jobs, such as repainting or replacing skirting boards, as these will easily vamp up a room.
  • Inspect your fences and trees for any weather damage, repair quickly to avoid falls. 
  • Avoid damp by occasionally opening windows.
  • Although there are seasonal checklists, there are things you can do every month, such as:
  • Test smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.
  • Inspect boiler pressure.
  • Check bath and sink drains for debris; unclog.
  • Clear any fluff from tumble dryer.
  • Add rinse aid to the dishwasher.

Doing these tasks every season or monthly where required, will prevent you running into any unexpected costs down the line from calling in professionals. Although, not everything can be done yourself and sometimes it’s best to call in a tradesperson. 

Methodology*

We calculated the average cost of a plumber, electrician, painter & decorator, carpenter & joiner, gardener and builder in 15 cities, which revealed the overall average in that city and nationally.

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