Finish carpentry isn’t just a trade. It is the art of completing interior spaces with attractive, long-lasting and perfectly fitted trim and millwork. It requires incredible finesse to create baseboards, railings, crown molding and door and window casings that truly elevate a home. And we should know: our contracting company has served the Twin Cities and St. Cloud, MN areas for all their finish carpentry needs for almost three decades now.
Whether you’re constructing a new house or breathing fresh life into your current home, selecting the right finish carpenter is crucial to ensuring your project’s success. You don’t want creaky floors, warped window frames and loose chair railings to eventually reveal that you hired a fly-by-night amateur. Follow our advice and rest assured that you’re placing your most valuable possession in the most capable hands!
Ask a Finish Carpenter About Their Experience
Generally speaking, a carpenter needs three to four years of formal instruction and on-the-job training before they can rightly claim to be skilled. But in order to be considered a true master, a carpenter must boast at least 10 to 15 years of experience.
Naturally, a carpenter can only become better at their craft the longer they practice it. If you get an opportunity to hire a finish carpenter who brings multiple decades of experience to your project, strongly consider seizing it. But if you’re approached by a finish carpenter who’s still relatively new in their career, politely decline their offer. They do deserve to work – just under the supervision of a more experienced carpenter who can teach them the finer points of an extremely complicated craft.
Ask a Finish Carpenter About Their Qualifications
To be sure, there are many carpenters who never received any formal instruction. Many of them learned from their fathers, who in turn learned from their own fathers, and as such may represent a legacy that began centuries ago. Don’t automatically exclude the heir to a family carpentry tradition from your search for a qualified professional!
That said, you can enjoy greater peace of mind by selecting a finish carpenter who completed a course of formal education. Ask a candidate if they have a diploma from a carpentry program, such as the excellent one offered by Hennepin Technical College, or if they have completed a registered carpentry apprenticeship program.
Ask a Finish Carpenter for Their References
If they have a long and steady track record of delivering outstanding results, a finish carpenter should have zero difficulty providing a list of general contractors and/or property owners who would endorse their services wholeheartedly.
Your potential finish carpenter’s professional references would ideally be local. That provides added assurance that they intend to stay in your area, which will prove extremely important if you need them to return to your property to correct any mistakes. A competent finish carpenter shouldn’t make many errors, but even the greatest contractors are still human.