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How Much Does A Cabinet Maker Make? Important Insights

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So, you’re teetering on the edge, thinking about starting a career in the fascinating industry of cabinet making. It doesn’t come as a surprise; there’s a certain kind of charm and fulfilment in this craft. 


The satisfaction of seeing raw materials shaped into a functional piece of art is just something else. But there’s still something at the back of your mind, and that’s salary. 


How much does a cabinet maker make? 


Let’s take a look at some of the elements before you work your way to an MSF30322 Certificate III in Cabinet Making and Timber Technology.


Salary expectations and influences


Skill level


Specific amounts will vary, but the first variable that can largely impact earnings is your skill level. Just like any other profession in the building and construction scene, novice cabinet makers usually command less in earnings than their more experienced counterparts. 


One key difference may come in the form of accreditation you earn through the years. For instance, entering a programme will teach or sharpen essential skills needed in the industry. 


This includes accurately measuring timber, manually and digitally drawing designs, assessing documents for work, preparing wood-cutting lists, upholding safety and sustainable practices, employing team communication, and much more.


Plus, mastery of various woodworking techniques, effective use of tools, and an eye for detail, developed over time, are often rewarded with higher pay. As you continue to learn and refine your craft, you can expect a corresponding increase in your market value. 




Then comes a unique focus in the woodworking field. Some cabinet makers may form a niche in designing kitchen or bathroom storage, while there are those who work on marine cabinetry. Others could also start creating custom furniture pieces that double as personal storage. 


The services of a specialist are usually valued higher than those of general crafters, and that’s why they typically come with the benefit of higher pay. So, once you’ve got your basics down, choosing to specialise in a certain area of cabinet making can be the next step in your developing career.


Sector demand


Last but not least is the factor of industry demand. The cabinet-making field is also affected by modern market fluctuations. This just means that during times of economic boom and increased construction, the demand for skilled cabinet makers rises, which can result in higher wages. 


However, if you’re also thinking about economic downturns, you should keep in mind that timber technology spans both residential and commercial developments. 


Housing and real estate are typically mainstays in day-to-day life. There’ll be a consistent need for wood crafts, whether it’s making new cabinets for newly-built premises or maybe even maintaining the structural and aesthetic integrity of older ones. 


Comparing cabinet making to other occupations


Cabinet maker versus furniture maker


Cabinet making and furniture making are both valuable crafts. They’re characterised by skilled craftsmanship, complex designs, and even an element of artistry, but they differ in several ways. 


Cabinet makers also make furniture, but the primary focus is creating storage solutions for different locations. This may typically include kitchen cupboards, wardrobes, bathroom drawer units, and much more. Their work often requires precision fitting, especially when installing outlining fixtures in set spaces that may be cramped. 


On the other hand, furniture makers come up with a broad variety of items, including tables, chairs, and beds. Their work tends to be more diverse in design but may not require the same level of accuracy as cabinet making. 


Regardless, cabinet and furniture makers also generally experiment with various wood types and finishes, particularly after taking note of and following the functional requirements requested by the client.


Cabinet maker versus carpenter


There’s some overlap between cabinet making and carpentry, yet they’re distinct trades. Both professions work with wood and timber technology. However, carpentry may generally be more oriented towards the building and construction industry. 


Cabinet making primarily involves detailed woodworking centred around creating and assembling multiple pieces or units. This craft also typically makes use of smaller tools for fine-tuning, requiring attention to specific points, from the selection of coatings to aesthetic finishing touches.


In contrast, carpentry generally deals with large-scale projects. Carpenters construct, erect, install, and repair structures made of wood and even other materials at times. This is because they’re involved in various aspects of building construction, from framing houses to constructing concrete forms.


Finding the right fit and foundation for you


In all trades, professionals can express creativity and craftsmanship, but the scale, application, and technical requirements may differ. The choice between these three jobs may boil down to the craftsman’s interest in large-scale construction compared to specialised woodworking projects.


Career advancement


Ongoing training and development


As the woodworking sector is ever-evolving, staying updated becomes even more critical. Embracing continuous learning is integral to anyone’s career growth and receiving financial opportunities. 


Training and development refine skills, embolden confidence, and infuse new insights into your work practices. The same can be said for specific credentials like an MSF30322 Certificate III in Cabinet Making and Timber Technology, CPC33020 Certificate III in Bricklaying and Blocklaying or perhaps a CPC30220 Certificate III in Carpentry


They increase your marketability, strengthen your credibility and provide an edge in job advancement or potential promotions down the line. At the end of the day, advancing your expertise through continuous learning and levels of certification is a powerful statement to employers, clients, or partners.


Key Points to Remember


  • Skill level impacts earnings. New cabinet makers typically earn less than their experienced counterparts, who may typically gain higher salaries through advanced skills and certifications like the MSF30322 Certificate III in Cabinet Making and Timber Technology.
  • Specialisation increases pay. Cabinet makers focusing on niche areas such as kitchen, bathroom, or marine cabinetry generally bring in higher wages compared to generalists due to the unique expertise and designs involved.
  • Sector demand affects wages. Economic booms and increased construction activity boost demand for cabinet makers, leading to potentially higher earnings, whereas economic downturns may see a steady demand tied to essential housing and real estate needs.
  • Comparison with other trades. Cabinet makers focus on precision storage solutions, differing from furniture makers, who create a broader variety of items, and carpenters, who are involved in larger-scale construction projects.
  • Career advancement through continuous learning. Engaging in ongoing training and earning further credentials not only refines skills but also enhances marketability and job prospects, potentially leading to higher earnings and job promotions.

Everthought is committed to fostering your career growth through our building and construction programmes. We combine professionalism, advanced facilities, and experienced faculty to deliver a flexible, comprehensive learning experience.

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