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Old 15.06.2011, 13:49
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What does a carpenter charge in CH?

I was wondering if any of you guys have had any experience with carpenters and could give me a rough estimation for what they charge. I'm a carpenter myself and someone wants me to insulate and drywall a room for them. I just don't know what to charge for it. I will be setting myself up all legitimately for this, I will be paying my tax like a good expat.

Any feedback at all would be fantastic, whether you've used a carpenter or are one.
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Old 15.06.2011, 14:45
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

The motto in my office is: "Remember, it's not the material that costs a fortune but the hand work!"

The carpenters that I deal with charge all by hour (materials all aside). The cheapest we had was 60CHF per hour but he will never be hired again (he left the saw dust for us to clean). Depending on the company they can charge between 80-120CHF (sometimes more, but is including extra juicy insurance, etc). We usually do big works (like building a whole house and all ) so might be that smaller works are actually cheaper.

If it's a small work for a friend of a friend, might be a good idea to make a "friend of a friend discount", to make sure you get some other commissions

Sorry that I wasn't more specific
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Old 15.06.2011, 14:50
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

I agree with Helm. We just had one in the house to repair a sliding door, and he charged 95F per hour.
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Old 15.06.2011, 14:59
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

charge what you think your worth, not what others are charging

we're having / had a load of work at the moment, lots of the quotes where just jokes, huge differences between them for no apparent reason. We are paying what we think is fair.
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Old 15.06.2011, 15:04
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

What happened to that table of rates of pay that someone posted a few months back?

I guess that'll give the OP what the going rate is for a newly graduated apprentice would earn and he can take it from there.

Anyone remember where it was posted?
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Old 15.06.2011, 15:14
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

Ok, you people are just far too helpful. I didn't expect any replies.

I will charge what I think I am worth and definitely take into account that I am new in Swissland and wont be up to speed with the work.

It's not a friend, otherwise I would be doing it for my friends rate of food and whiskey. I will be keeping the price low, obviously want to attract as much work as possible, but also didn't want to completely screw myself over. If I was to charge UK rate it would be 30CHF an hour, so that seems a tad low.
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Old 15.06.2011, 15:15
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

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What happened to that table of rates of pay that someone posted a few months back?

I guess that'll give the OP what the going rate is for a newly graduated apprentice would earn and he can take it from there.

Anyone remember where it was posted?
I did look for any old posts on pay, but nothing relating to the building industry was to be found.
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Old 15.06.2011, 15:22
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

Ui! 30 CHF is waaaaaaay too low.!

I wouldn't hire a 30 CHF carpenter for fear of being too sloppy. Unfortunately (or not) quality in here is too associated with price, meaning someone more expensive is believed to be better than someone who is cheaper (though this is really not that truthful).

This means that too cheap will be bad for your reputation.
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Old 15.06.2011, 15:32
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

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What happened to that table of rates of pay that someone posted a few months back?

I guess that'll give the OP what the going rate is for a newly graduated apprentice would earn and he can take it from there.

Anyone remember where it was posted?


I can! I can! Call on me, teacher!

is your salary fair ? Consider this:

You could also try using the Swiss Salarium calculator.

In case you don't speak German, you're looking for a Schreiner (column 3) -- indicated pay is 4085- per month or a Zimmermann (also column 3) -- indicated pay is 5096- per month. Someone who speaks better German than me can tell you the difference between a Schreiner and a Zimmermann.

(Have just clarified with a colleague. A Schreiner builds furniture; a Zimmermann builds houses.)

Last edited by Village Idiot; 15.06.2011 at 15:40. Reason: Learning new German words!
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Old 15.06.2011, 15:34
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

A simple calculation for you would be to total up what you would like to earn each month together with your fixed costs, van, insurance, telephone, advertising budget, tools depreciation and repairs, accountants and bank costs etc and divide them by the number of hours you realistically can work (chargeable, not including all the time you will spend looking for work and quoting potential clients) and you will get a figure to work with.

It is usually a lot higher than you might first imagine. The sort of figure that makes punters exclaim "You earn that much an hour!"
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Old 15.06.2011, 15:39
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

But to be fair, these are for salaries, not what a business should charge per hour for a service which should be enough to pay salaries to employees after all other overheads and expenses have been covered and leaving a fair profit for the business owner.

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I can! I can! Call on me, teacher!

is your salary fair ? Consider this:

You could also try using the Swiss Salarium calculator.

In case you don't speak German, you're looking for a Schreiner (column 3) -- indicated pay is 4085- per month
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Old 15.06.2011, 15:42
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

Agreed. But you can use it as a starting point, gross it up to cover costs of doing business, and work back to an hourly rate from there. It's better than starting from scratch, and should give you something in the ballpark.
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Old 15.06.2011, 19:07
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

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I was wondering if any of you guys have had any experience with carpenters and could give me a rough estimation for what they charge. I'm a carpenter myself and someone wants me to insulate and drywall a room for them. I just don't know what to charge for it. I will be setting myself up all legitimately for this, I will be paying my tax like a good expat.

Any feedback at all would be fantastic, whether you've used a carpenter or are one.
If you're living in Neuchatel, you can get a carpenter from France. It would be cheaper, between 1/3 and 1/2 of the swiss price. Besides you would probably get a better quality of work.
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Old 16.06.2011, 01:01
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

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If you're living in Neuchatel, you can get a carpenter from France. It would be cheaper, between 1/3 and 1/2 of the swiss price. Besides you would probably get a better quality of work.
Is the carpenter working black? social charges are very high in France, I guess this is cash in hand & uninsured.
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Old 16.06.2011, 19:22
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

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The carpenters that I deal with charge all by hour (materials all aside). The cheapest we had was 60CHF per hour but he will never be hired again (he left the saw dust for us to clean).
Not sure I'd want to pay 120CHF per hour for someone to clean up. I'd rather not pay for his time cleaning & clean myself or pay the cleaning lady to do it.
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Old 18.06.2011, 17:42
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

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The motto in my office is: "Remember, it's not the material that costs a fortune but the hand work!"

The carpenters that I deal with charge all by hour (materials all aside). The cheapest we had was 60CHF per hour but he will never be hired again (he left the saw dust for us to clean). Depending on the company they can charge between 80-120CHF (sometimes more, but is including extra juicy insurance, etc). We usually do big works (like building a whole house and all ) so might be that smaller works are actually cheaper.

If it's a small work for a friend of a friend, might be a good idea to make a "friend of a friend discount", to make sure you get some other commissions

Sorry that I wasn't more specific
80 to 120CHF per hour in quite a wide range, 80 to 100 would be more typical. The problem is they only work in pairs as a minimum (or take an apprentice but typically charged at the full rate) and depending on the job that may be not so productive.

On a similar topic, what would you be happy or think is fair to pay a carpenter (or similar tradesperson) here?
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Old 18.06.2011, 19:20
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Re: What does a carpenter charge in CH?

Here is a link to what is charged by the employers in kanton Bern for a Schreiner. http://www.bernerschreiner.ch/upload...B6hne_2011.pdf

This is not the wages the worker becomes.
This is wages, plus holidays, plus all the social costs, plus the business costs.
Sorry it's only in German.

On the average, the hourly rate is about Fr.95.00 plus travelling costs and VAT.

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