Of course, we have to be politically correct and use the term ‘tradesperson’; after all, some women are better bricklayers than their male counterparts and female joiners have won awards. Whether you are a guy or a girl, once you have your City & Guilds Certificate, you are qualified and are able to freelance your services.
While you might try to get work as a plumber with only a little practical experience, we wouldn’t recommend it. If you take a registered apprenticeship, then you will receive your certification that shows you meet with the very high standards and any potential employer or contractor would wish to see your trade papers. You could approach a local builder to see if they would accept you as an apprentice; the company would want assurances that you work for them for a specific time period after you graduate, after all, it is costly to train a person to become qualified, so your sponsor requires your services for a few years.
Tools & Equipment
If you are going to offer your talent, you will obviously need a full tool kit, while certain equipment you can hire from a local plant provider. Search online for a reputable van dealer, where you can lease or by the perfect vehicle that doubles as your mobile workshop and with low-interest finance, you can spread the payments over a few years.
If you search online, you can find insurance brokers with special tradesperson insurance that covers you for every eventuality. Contractors will want to see documentation that shows you are adequately insured, while private customers also want to have some form of reassurance that you are covered in the case of an accident.
Whether you are offering your services to the general public or small builders, the Internet is the ideal platform to find contracts; design your own website and partner up with another person in the same trade and enjoy a partnership. It is all about networking and if your work is good and you are quick, you should have no issues finding work. Check out the UK government website about becoming self-employed, as this has all the info you need to get started.
Paying your Taxes
As you would expect, you have to file tax returns, starting at the end of your second year; get in touch with a chartered accountant at the very outset, as you will have to register for VAT, as well as carry out essential bookkeeping.
Many people prefer to freelance their services rather than be directly employed and with a little organisation, you can become qualified and offer your services on a freelance basis.