Do you enjoy working with your hands? Have you always had a knack for fixing things around your house? If so, you might be suited to work in home improvement and repair.
Home improvement workers can be found in many different construction-related industries. Some common home improvement and repair jobs are floor and tile installation, drywall installation, painting and appliance repairing. Skills in using hand and power tools and the ability to read blueprints are useful for home improvement workers. You should be comfortable working with your hands and doing mathematic calculations. Most home repair employees work at least 40 hours a week. You may have to work irregular hours in some home improvement jobs, because appliances can break and leaks can happen at any time of day.
Overall, employment of construction workers was projected to increase by 19% from 2008-2018, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov). Demand for home improvement and repair workers was expected to continue to be high though not as many homes are being built. Earnings for workers in the home improvement sector vary depending on the job; for example, painters made a median annual income of $34,280 in 2010, and drywall installers made $37,320. You can eventually become a supervisor or manager for a construction company or start your own business with enough experience.
Most home improvement employers prefer you to have at least high school diploma. Training requirements vary between occupations. You might be able to take part in an apprenticeship to learn the skills for some jobs. Another way to achieve the training you'll need to be successful is through postsecondary courses and degree programs. On-the-job training is common, and some employers may provide instruction seminars for new employees.
If you wish to become a manager in the home improvement industry, you will probably need a college degree. A few occupations may also have licensing requirements. It can be beneficial for you to explore licensing requirements in the states where you wish to work before pursuing formal education or training. You might also want to explore certification options in your chosen area of home improvement. Certifications can lead to advancement opportunities and increased job prospects.
If you want to pursue postsecondary education, an associate's degree in construction management technology might be a good option. You can learn a variety of home improvement skills from courses such as woodworking, roof systems, construction regulations and interior finishing. A bachelor's degree in residential construction can lead to supervisory positions in home improvement and repair. Most bachelor's degree programs in construction management include additional courses in math and more advanced courses in construction trades than associate's degree programs do.
If you don't want to pursue a degree, you can still learn skills for home improvement and repair through a certificate program. A certificate program in minor home repairs usually offers courses in blueprint reading and basic mathematics for construction.