Whether you’ve already been through training and want to get stuck in, or you’re still just dipping your toes into the world of kitchen fitting, knowing where to start can help you set off on the right foot. From getting the right training to ensure you’re ready to conduct the job professionally and safely, to understanding the pay and hours that you can expect, here’s everything you need to know about getting started as a kitchen fitter.
What Training Do I Need?
Getting the appropriate training for the Kitchen Fitter role will ensure that not only do you have the knowledge to do the job in the first place but that you can ensure the safety of you and your clients while doing so. Generally, you’ll need the following skills to be a successful Kitchen Fitter:
- Knowledge of building and construction
- Understanding of Maths
- Ability to be thorough and detail-driven
- Ability to work alone and with others
- Ability to work well physically
- Knowledge of relevant manufacturing processes
- Design Skills
- Basic computer or handheld device understanding
There are two main ways to get the training needed to be a Kitchen Fitter – college, and apprenticeship. The method you choose will depend mostly on personal preference, but potentially on your existing qualifications.
There are a variety of college courses available to introduce you to the world of kitchen fitting and it’s associated skills. According to the UK Government’s website, you’ll be looking for one of the following, or similar:
- Level 1 or 2 Certificate in Carpentry and Joinery
- Level 2 Diploma in Plumbing
- Level 2 Diploma in Fitted Interiors
In order to qualify for one of these courses, you will need GCSEs or equivalent qualifications at the following level:
- For Level 1 Courses: 2 or fewer GCSEs at Grades D to G (or 3 to 1)
- For Level 2 Courses: 2 or more GCSEs at grades A* – D (or 9 to 3)
Apprenticeships are a great way to get stuck into a new career hands-on, learning as you go. For Kitchen Fitting, you could take part in an intermediate apprenticeship in something like fitted interiors, tiling, joinery or plumbing. Entry requirements are usually as follows:
- Some GCSEs – this may vary depending on the apprenticeship provider. This usually includes a requirement for English and Maths.
What Kind Of Pay Can I Expect?
As with any career, the more experience you have, the higher you’re likely to be paid. There’s also a difference between employed, and self-employed kitchen fitters, as well as differences from company to company. When it comes to applying for a job or setting up as self-employed, do your research into the going rates at the time but in general, pay could be as follows:
- Newly trained – £17,000 to £20,000
- Trained with some experience – £20,000 to £35,000
- Senior/master – £35,000 – £50,000
Self-employed kitchen fitters can set their own rates, though the above salaries can be a great starting point.
What Hours Would I Work?
The hours you work will once again depend on who you work for, whether you’re self-employed and in some cases, the demand for work. Generally, however, you can expect to work anywhere between 40-45 hours a week.
Do I Need Insurance?
All kitchen fitters who are employed under a company will already have an Employers Liability policy to protect them against any workplace incidents caused as a result of the company they work for. Some companies will also have public liability insurance to cover damage, injury or other issues to protect the public and the company in the case of claims made.
For those who are self-employed or who are starting a business, it’s important to make sure that you are fully insured in case of accidents or injury. If you’re looking to employ people, you will need Employer’s Liability Insurance as a legal requirement, but it’s also advisable to invest in Public Liability Insurance for Kitchen Fitters for protection against any public-made claims. This is the case for both self-employed solo kitchen fitters and anyone running a business.
What Kind Of Tasks Would I Be Doing Every Day?
There are a lot of different tasks involved in fitting kitchens, some of which are simpler than others but all of which you’re likely to come across at least once in a substantial career. These tasks include:
- Measuring areas and units
- Removing and disposing of old units, decor and appliances
- Understanding and investigating pipework and cables
- Measuring and cutting worktops
- Installing pre-made units
- Building units
- Fitting cornices, pelmets, plinths and worktops
- Cutting space for sinks, cookers and hobs
- Tiling both floors and walls
- Using a range of power tools
- Following strict health and safety guidelines.
Becoming a kitchen fitter requires training and care, but is also one of the most rewarding construction jobs around. For more information about kitchen fitter insurance and how it can protect you in a new job, get in touch, today.