03 Jan, 2023
Posted by rojie
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What Is The Highest Paying Trade Job?

Trade jobs are essential to society, and those who do them require a huge amount of skill. For this reason, many people will pay good money to tradesmen like builders and plumbers to secure their vital services.

For example, getting a job as an electrician could bring you a fairly high income. However, to reach this point, you’ll need extensive training and an army of qualifications to prove that you’re the best person for the job. At Pro Point Electrical, if you’re looking for an electrician in Melbourne, our team is swimming in certifications to ensure we provide the highest quality services possible.

The high pay of tradesmen is not without merit. Trade professionals provide a much-needed service, and their training is incredibly technical, not to mention the responsibilities they bear for ensuring society runs smoothly.

To find out about Australia’s highest-paying trade jobs, check out our article below. You’ll find average salaries for trade jobs and some background information on the service each trade job provides.


The 7 highest paying trade jobs in Australia

As with almost anywhere in the world, Australia has a huge market for trade jobs. There’s significant demand for these services, and there’s no sign of that slowing. This means that people and companies will pay well for tradesmen, and there are many high paying trade jobs out there.

Below, you’ll find the top 7 highest-paid trade jobs in Australia. Check out each one for more information on average wages and typical responsibilities of each trade job.


Construction or site manager

Since construction managers bear large amounts of responsibility for projects and sites, they typically earn the most of any trade job. The nature of their work means their actions can make or break a large construction project, and there can be legal ramifications if they make the wrong decisions. Due to this added stress and responsibility, their average salaries are the highest.

Construction and site managers typically earn a triple-figured salary, ranging from $110,000 to $180,000 a year. This is a broad scope, but it all depends on the extent and type of project they oversee. The high pay also reflects the wealth of qualifications and experience that a construction manager needs to do their job successfully. Many frequently start as ordinary builders before gaining enough experience to manage construction projects outright.



A boilermaker installs, repairs, assembles and manages boilers and various boiler-related equipment. They also handle tanks and vats that contain gases and liquids, such as natural gas, oils, and other chemical compounds. A boilermaker may work in residential homes and factories, performing various technical and physical duties.

In Australia, the average annual salary for a boilermaker is $81,000. This makes it a fairly high-paying trade job, and fully qualified boilermakers with a good degree of experience can hope to earn upwards of $95,000 a year. Despite the lesser demand for boilermakers than other tradesmen, their work’s technical and specialist nature sees their average salaries remain high.



Plumbing is a highly skilled profession with a constant stream of demand. This makes it a fairly well-paying job for those who pass several certifications. Still, those with extensive experience and top qualifications can hope to earn way past the national average. Starting in the trade, you might earn substantially less, but progression can be quick.

On average, plumbers in Australia earn around $70,000 a year. However, this average doesn’t accurately reflect the pay scale of many plumbers. Entry-level positions are paid substantially less, often at $45,000-$55,000, while fully qualified plumbers earn upwards of $90,000, sometimes taking home a triple-figure salary.



An electrician can take several career paths, some earning more than others. Residential electricians typically earn less than their commercial and industrial counterparts, the latter of whom earn the most. Getting a qualification for an electrician job can be difficult for all pathways, reflected in the high average salaries and the potential for even higher incomes.

The average salary for an electrician in Australia is around $85,000 annually. Residential and commercial electricians have a slightly lower average salary, at around $68,000, while industrial electricians – due to the nature of their work – typically earn around $96,000. In some cases, highly skilled electricians earn upwards of a triple-figure salary.



Tiling is a more specific, less utilised trade. It is, therefore, less well-paid than other trades, owing to the reduced demand for the job. The average salary for a wall and floor tiler can vary, but it’s $70,000 annually in Australia. Some tilers (usually those in the early stages of their career) earn substantially less, around $45,000, but the more experienced tilers can earn up to $85,000.

Like many trade jobs, tilers will often get paid by the hour. This gives tradesmen a fair amount of flexibility, as many work on-call or freelance. The hourly rate for wall and floor tilers can be between $35 and $50 per hour.


Air Conditioning Technician

Those who ply their trade in the air conditioning business can hope to earn a substantial income. The average salary for an air conditioning technician in Australia is around $93,000 annually, making it one of the highest-paid trade jobs.

Many air conditioning technicians also manage other electrical components and devices. Heating, refrigeration, and ventilation are all responsibilities that most air conditioning technicians are qualified to manage. HVAC technicians can earn more than those who focus solely on air conditioning.

The average salary for a HVAC technician is around $125,000 in Australia. This elevated wage is due to a HVAC technician’s additional skills and responsibilities compared to an air conditioning technician.



Nowadays, carpenters don’t just work with wood. Their job responsibilities include working with other materials like steel and plastic and performing tasks like laying foundations and building walls. A large number of their duties are shared with builders and construction workers.

The somewhat demanding tasks and manual labour mean that carpenters are some of the highest-paid tradesmen in Australia, with an average salary of $86,000 per year. Carpentry might be your career if you enjoy working with various tools and materials.


What are the easiest high paying trades?

No trade job is a simple walk in the park. The extensive training and responsibilities that go into a trade job mean that it can be challenging to make a career in the service industry. You’ll typically require qualifications and a fountain of specialised knowledge to become a tradesman successfully.

The technical and demanding work that trade jobs entail can sometimes lead to worries and mentality problems for tradesmen. Are electricians stressed, you might ask? On the whole, no. As with all trades, many electricians will no doubt love their jobs. But that doesn’t mean they don’t get stressed from time to time. It all depends on the person as an individual.

So, in summary, no single trade job is the easiest. All have different responsibilities and demands that will be easier for some and more difficult for others. For instance, construction managers have fewer physical requirements than labourers but bear greater responsibility for overall projects and meeting quotas, which can be more stressful for some.


What trade makes the most money (2023)?

The highest paying trade jobs are the ones that require the most amount of training and technical qualifications or that bear the most responsibilities. This means construction site managers earn the most, followed by HVAC and air conditioning technicians, plumbers, carpenters, and electricians. Of course, average salaries can change with supply and demand, but as of 2023, these are the highest-paying trade jobs in Australia.

If you’re looking for a high-paying job, most career paths in the trade industry will bring you a substantial income due to the nature of the work. However, you must pass a fair amount of qualifications and training before you can earn a good amount. Once you do, though, your efforts won’t go unnoticed.


How much does a fully qualified electrician make in Australia?

A fully qualified electrician in Australia can hope to earn upwards of $80,000. Those who work primarily in residential homes or commercial buildings earn slightly less than electricians who ply their trade in industrial areas like factories and mines. This is due to the added specialisms, technicalities, and responsibilities that industrial electricians must possess.

Qualified and experienced industrial electricians earn around $96,000 but can quickly raise this to a triple-figure salary. The most experienced residential and commercial electricians can earn similar amounts but will be less likely to take home triple figures.

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