Trades & Services

Floor Layer and Finisher

Floor layers and finishers install and repair floor coverings such as carpet, timber, vinyl, rubber, and cork.

  • Entry-level education

    Apprenticeship or traineeship

  • Job outlook

    1 2 3 4 5

What does a Floor Layer and Finisher do?

Floor layers and finishers install and repair floor coverings such as carpet, timber, vinyl, rubber, and cork. They may specialise in one of these areas, such as carpet laying, or timber flooring installation and finishing.


Work activities

As a floor layer, you would:

  • measure areas to be covered, and estimate and order quantities of floor coverings
  • repair minor defects before laying coverings
  • fix underlays of hardboard sheets, rubber or felt
  • lay covering materials over the floor, match patterns, and trim edges
  • fix floor coverings and fit edge trims in doorways.

As a timber floor finisher, you would also:

  • scrape and sand floor edges and areas inaccessible to floor sanders, using scrapers, disk-type sanders, and sandpaper
  • use sanding machines to smooth floors
  • apply filler compound and coats of finish to floors to seal wood
  • remove excess glue from joints, using knives, scrapers, or wood chisels.

Key skills and interests

To become a floor layer and finisher, you would need:

  • be able to cope with the physical demands of the job
  • enjoy practical work
  • have good hand-eye coordination
  • have normal colour vision
  • not be allergic to chemicals.

Working hours and conditions

Working Hours

You would normally a standard number of hours in a week. You may have to work evenings and weekends to limit the disruption to a client's business. You could be working at several different locations every week.


This job is physically demanding, and you would spend much of your time kneeling down, lifting and carrying heavy flooring materials, and moving furniture.

You may come into contact with chemical adhesives and sprays, which must be handled safely.


How to become an Floor Layer and Finisher?

Entry Level Education

To become a floor layer & finisher you usually have to complete an apprenticeship in flooring technology. Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require junior secondary school certificate or equivalent.

Depending on the state in which they operate, floor layers & finishers may be required to hold, or work under someone who holds, a valid building contractor's licence.


Job outlook

  • 1 2 3 4 5

Employment of floor layers & finishers is projected to grow about the average for all occupations.

New home construction will stimulate the need for new workers. Home renovation needs should also spur demand for floor layers & finishers.


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