A good carpenter can perform a variety of home improvement and remodeling services, including crafting fine trim and finish work which can increase the aesthetic appeal of your home, raise its market value significantly, while giving you a sense of accomplishment. According to a survey conducted by the National Association of Realtors, 77% of homeowners feel a sense of accomplishment after completing a home improvement or remodeling project. Furthermore, hiring a carpenter that can improve the aesthetic appeal of your house gives it an inviting exterior that can make it stand out from other structures in the neighborhood.
You can find good carpenters near you by asking friends, family, and neighbors for referrals. Regardless of how you come in contact with a carpenter, it is always good to take your time to evaluate the individual before finalizing any agreement. You can determine if the carpenter is right for you by asking the following questions:
- Are You Licensed to Practice as a Carpenter in the City of Jacksonville?
- How Much Do You Charge Compared to Other Carpenters in the City of Jacksonville?
- Do You Comply with the City of Jacksonville Building Code for Carpentry Work?
- Will You Get the Home Improvement Permits as Required by the City of Jacksonville Code?
- What Kind of Carpentry Services Do You Offer?
- Do You Carry the Necessary Insurance Policy for Carpenters in the City of Jacksonville?
In Jacksonville, it is unlawful for anyone to work as a carpentry subcontractor without holding a valid carpentry subcontractor certificate of competency issued by the appropriate city agency. According to section 342.120 of the Jacksonville Construction Trades Regulations, failure to obtain a carpentry subcontractor certificate of competency before working as a carpentry subcontractor is a civil infraction punishable by a fine of up to $1,000. However, you do not need a certificate of competency to be eligible to provide certain carpentry or woodwork related services in the city. Carpentry services that do not require a certificate of competency include minor repairs like:
- Door repairs and paneling
- Dry rot repairs
- Painting touch-ups
- Repairing damages to wooden equipment
The City of Jacksonville's Construction Trades Qualifying Board is the agency responsible for issuing carpentry subcontractor certificates of competency. It is the responsibility of the Board to certify persons that have acquired the knowledge and requisite skill necessary to install any wood products in a building including, but not limited to, structural and non-structural walls, rough framing, sheathing, and wood siding. To obtain a certificate of competency in this category, applicants must pass an approved examination, provide proof of at least four years of practical experience in the carpentry trade and no less than two years of which must be in a supervisory position, and proof of payment of an occupational license tax for the last two years.
For inquiries concerning the requirements for obtaining a carpentry subcontractor certificate, contact the Construction Trades Qualifying Board at (904) 630-2657. You can also call the aforementioned telephone number to confirm if the individual you intend to hire is certified to work on your project.
The hourly rate for carpentry services in Jacksonville is generally determined by factors like:
- The nature of the work
- The amount of labor required to complete the work
- The type and cost of materials that are required for the work
When considering a carpenter for your home improvement or construction work, it is always important to ask the individual you intend to hire for a written work estimate detailing the type of work to be done, the cost of materials, and the cost of labor. Nevertheless, getting a second opinion on the project can help you find out the average cost of the particular carpentry services you need. Accordingly, you should always get multiple estimates from different carpenters to identify the right person for your project
A Carpenter in the City of Jacksonville earns an annual average wage of $39,770. The table below provides a comparison of the mean hourly wage for carpenters in the City of Jacksonville against those of carpenters in the rest of the State of Florida as well as across several other major American cities:Jacksonville Carpenters Mean Hourly Wage$19.12Florida Carpenters Mean Hourly Wage$20.23New York City Carpenters Mean Hourly Wage$34.16Chicago Carpenters Mean Hourly Wage$34.74Houston Carpenters Mean Hourly Wage$21.53Phoenix Carpenters Mean Hourly Wage$23.50Boston Carpenters Mean Hourly Wage$31.31
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Hiring a carpenter that is conversant with the Jacksonville Building Code and the Jacksonville Construction Trades Regulations is the first step in ensuring that your home improvement or construction project meets the minimum construction standards in the city. The aforementioned codes are established to protect public health, safety, and welfare by regulating the construction, installation, repair, and maintenance of structures in the city. These codes also establish the minimum requirements for engaging in construction trades in the city. Some of the requirements of these codes pertaining to carpentry work include mandatory certification of carpentry subcontractors and the issuance of permits to only certified contractors. Violating any section of the applicable codes is an offense punishable by a fine of up to $1,000. You can direct inquiries concerning other requirements of the Jacksonville Building Code and the Jacksonville Construction Trades Regulations by contacting the Building Inspection Division at (904) 255-8500.
Except for minor home remodeling and improvement repairs, anyone who intends to construct or alter a building in Jacksonville must obtain the appropriate permits for such work. Constructing a new building or altering an existing building without first obtaining the appropriate permit for such work can lead to the payment of twice the amount of the regular permit fees with an additional administrative fine of $250. In Jacksonville, major carpentry works such as installation of structural and non-structural walls, rough framing, sheathing, and wood siding are included in building permit applications. You can contact the Building Inspection Division at (904) 255-8500 to find out the list of carpentry works that are typically included in a building permit. Building permits are issued by the Building Inspection Division and to obtain a building permit, certified contractors must provide details of the work, as well as necessary plans and specifications. Carpentry works that require submission of plans and review include window and door replacement not exceeding $5,000 in total cost, and construction of single-story accessory structure not exceeding 150 square feet and $5,000 in total cost. Applications for carpentry related work permits can be made online, or in person at:
- Building Inspection Division
- City of Jacksonville
- 214 North Hogan Street
- Jacksonville, Florida 32202
Once your contractor has submitted all the necessary plans alongside the permit application and the permit fees, the Building Inspection Division will review your application. In Jacksonville, permit applications are processed within seven days of submission and a permit is issued after review of the application. Note that no permit issued by the Building Inspection Division shall be valid until the permit fees have been paid.
Besides the issuance of building permits, the City of Jacksonville Building Inspection Division also performs inspections on carpentry-related works for which a permit was issued. Note that inspections can only be scheduled by the certified contractor that applied for the permit. Once a permit is issued, your project inspector's name and phone numbers are recorded on the issued permit and your contractor can schedule an inspection by contacting the inspector via their phone line. Similarly, certified contractors can schedule inspections online. For further inquiries concerning permits and inspections contact the city's Building Inspection Division at (904) 255-8500.
Jacksonville carpenters offer a variety of residential and commercial carpentry services. These services are broadly categorized into two groups, including rough and finish carpentry. Rough carpentry involves woodwork-related activities that focus on the structure of a building such as framing and sheathing of a building. On the other hand, finish carpentry involves the installation of trim and pieces of furniture after the structure of the building is fully built. Before hiring a carpenter in Jacksonville, it is necessary to confirm if they can provide the type of carpentry service you need. You can do this by asking the individual if they have undergone some form of carpentry training in the past. You can also ask the carpenter about their years of practice and if they can provide references of previous clients with similar needs. Always ensure that you contact these clients to verify the work done by the carpenter. Furthermore, you can ask the carpenter if they have the necessary tools and equipment to start and complete the project satisfactorily. Once you have confirmed the carpenter's qualification, experience, expertise, and preparedness, you can now find out the average cost of carpentry services near you.
Listed below is the average cost of some carpentry services in Jacksonville:Interior trim and molding installation (with mid-grade trim or molding)$7.10 - $8.12 per linear footInterior trim and molding installation (baseboard installation)$2 - $5 per linear footInterior trim and molding repair (plus material)$66.67 -$105 per hourCarpentry framing (for unfinished home addition framing)$21.82 - $26.55 per square footExterior trim installation/removal$22.50 - $37.55 per linear footExterior trim repair$0.88 - $3.50 per square foot
Do You Carry the Necessary Insurance Policy for Carpenters in the City of Jacksonville?
Jacksonville carpenters are not required to maintain any statutory general liability insurance to be eligible to work in the city. However, considering that construction work accidents may occur at any time during your carpentry work, it is always recommended that you hire a carpenter that is duly insured for your project. This is very crucial as carpenters often deal with hand tools that may result in several workplace injuries. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, nail guns are responsible for over 37,000 emergency room visits annually. Considering that 68 percent of the 37,000 emergency visits involved workers, you should always ensure that your carpenter is insured as this is the only way to protect yourself from claims that may result from work accidents. Before hiring a carpenter near you, it is always important to confirm their insurance status. You can do this by asking for their insurance certificate and contacting the company that issued the certificate to be sure.
In a recent report, it was established that home improvement and the construction-work-related scam is the second most reported consumer complaints across the United States, including the City of Jacksonville. This ranking was based on complaints that appeared most in state and local agencies, including agencies in Florida. Residents of Jacksonville must always be on the lookout for unscrupulous individuals posing as contractors as this is the only way to avoid falling victim to home improvement scams. In October 2021, a Jacksonville contractor was charged with forgery, fraud, and grand theft. This contractor received payment for home improvement work from several people but failed to perform the job. While home improvement scammers are always ready to steal from unsuspecting citizens, you can protect yourself from scammers by identifying these common red flags:
- The contractor insists on cash only deals
- The contractor wants a high upfront payment
- The contractor refuses to provide a written contract for the work
- The contractors claim they are from another county or state and are in the area solely to help disaster victims
- The contractor claim that they were doing work in your neighborhood and noticed that you need a repair
You can also protect yourself from home improvement scammers by taking the following steps:
- Be wary of door to door solicitors
- Avoid hiring a carpenter that does not have a verifiable business address
- Always ensure that the carpenter is certified. You can contact the Construction Trades Qualifying Board at (904) 630-2657 to confirm your carpenter's certification status
- Get more than one estimate for the job and ensure that each carpenter provides details of the work to be done
- Ask for references and checks to confirm if they are true
- Always ensure that your contractor is insured
- Always get a written contract and do not sign until you have carefully read and understood it
- Do not make full payment until the job is satisfactorily completed
If you suspect a home improvement scam in Jacksonville, you can report it to the City of Jacksonville Citizen Active Response Effort Office by calling (904) 630-2489. You can also report it to the city's Office of Consumer Affairs online. Finally, you can take further action by speaking with your attorney and filing a legal action at the Duval County Courthouse.