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Get Quotes from Top Carpenters in Nashville, TN

Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Carpenter in the City of Nashville

With more than 8,200 carpenters providing their services to residents of Nashville-Davidson, and across the State of Tennessee as a whole, finding a suitable carpenter to handle your woodwork-related home improvement projects may seem like a daunting task. Nonetheless, it is your responsibility to ensure that you always hire a qualified carpenter for these types of projects. By doing this, you not only ensure that the aesthetic appeal and resale value of your home go up but that your work will also be done in accordance with relevant industry standards, minimizing the risks of on-the-job injuries.

Therefore, whether it's to carry out home improvement and remodeling projects or to commence new construction work, you should always seek out good carpenters near you. A common way to do this is by getting referrals from trusted sources like friends, family, colleagues, and even other home improvement professionals. However, once you have gotten these referrals, it is a good idea to take further steps to find out about the individual you are about to employ. You can find out if a carpenter in Nashville is the right professional for you by asking the following questions:

Are You Licensed to Practice as a Carpenter in the City of Nashville?

Carpenters that wish to carry out home improvements worth less than $25,000 in Nashville must are generally required to obtain a BC-2 - Carpentry, Framing, and Millwork Home Improvement License from the Tennessee Board for Licensing Contractors before doing so. Where the project to be carried out is worth over $25,000, a contractor's license would be required and this is also to be obtained from the Tennessee Board for Licensing Contractors.

Carpenters that carry out any carpentry work without the appropriate license may be found liable for a misdemeanor charge as well as civil charges. First-time offenders can face penalties of up to $1,000 in fines and jail time of up to six months. Any person that intends to get a BC-2 license would be required to provide adequate and verifiable documents as proof that they have attained at least four years of experience as a journeyman within the last 10 years. Applicants are also required to complete and submit a Home Improvement License Application Form and also pay any applicable fees. Once the submitted documents have been properly reviewed and accepted, the license would be issued by the Board.

Before engaging the services of a carpenter near you, it is advisable to ensure that this individual holds a valid Home Improvement License. One way you can do this is by using the online License Search and Verification Platform maintained and made accessible to members of the public by the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance for this purpose. You can also reach the department at (615) 741-2241 to make inquiries concerning Nashville carpenter licensing requirements.

How Much Do You Charge Compared to Other Carpenters in the City of Nashville?

The rates charged by carpenters in the City of Nashville is usually dependent on a variety of factors, some of which include:

  • The nature of the improvements to be carried out
  • The scope of this project
  • The type of materials that would be required, and the cost of these materials
  • The level of expertise required to execute the project

It is important to note that some carpenters prefer a flat rate for their services as not all professionals charge at an hourly rate. Before you hire the services of a carpenter, it is advisable to obtain multiple cost estimates from more than one professional. Doing this will protect you from possible scammers and fraudulent individuals who may provide you with inflated costs.

A carpenter in the City of Nashville earns an annual average wage of $46,240. The table below provides a comparison of the mean hourly wage for carpenters in the City of Nashville against those of carpenters in the rest of the State of Tennessee as well as across several other major American cities:

Nashville Carpenters Mean Hourly Wage
$22.23
Tennessee Carpenters Mean Hourly Wage
$20.88
ChicagoCarpenters Mean Hourly Wage
$34.74
Los Angeles Mean Hourly Wage
$32.37
Houston Carpenters Mean Hourly Wage
$21.53
Phoenix Carpenters Mean Hourly Wage
$23.50
Boston Carpenters Mean Hourly Wage
$31.31
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Do You Comply with the City of Nashville Building Code for Carpentry Work?

The Nashville-Davidson Building Codes are rules and guidelines designed to ensure the safety of lives and property of the inhabitants of Nashville by regulating the construction, repair, alteration, demolition, moving, use, and maintenance of structures and buildings within the city limits. The Building Codes also provide regulations that specify the quality of materials that are used in building and construction projects.

The safe thing to do when hiring the services of a carpenter in Nashville is to ensure that this person is familiar with the city's building codes. This is because the codes contains certain provisions that regulate carpentry work, especially as it relates to interior finishes, building accessibility, and other features of the structure that require the services of a carpenter. If you pay for the services of an individual who is unaware of the provisions of the code, this may expose you to potential code violations that could attract penalties and fines and may also threaten your well-being and safety.

While licensed carpenters are normally aware of the requirements of the Nashville-Davidson Building Code, familiarizing yourself with the Building Codes before carrying out a major home improvement is also advised. You can contact the Nashville City Department of Codes and Building Safety at (615) 826-6500 to get more information on the city's building codes.

Will You Get the Home Improvement Permits as Required by the City of Nashville Code?

Before embarking on a construction or home improvement project in the City of Nashville, you would be required to obtain building permits. These permits are typically required for carpentry projects like the fitting of kitchen and bathroom cabinets, the modification or replacement of wall framing on doorways, the erection of wooden fences, and the replacement of window frames. However, certain projects may be exempted from the building permit requirement. These projects include;

  • Repairs to an existing building, including the glazing of the windows and doors
  • The repair of an existing roof that does not exceed 33% of the roof area
  • Minor repairs to chimneys, stairs, and porches

Where a permit is required for your home improvements, these permits can be obtained only by a licensed carpenter from the Nashville Department of Codes and Building Safety through the Nashville e-permits portal. Through this portal, users can also apply for permits and schedule the required inspections. Alternatively, eligible parties also make permit applications in person by contacting the Department of Codes and Building Safety at

Metro Office Building
800 2nd Avenue Street
Codes Department
1st Floor
Nashville, TN 37210

Note that appointments are typically required for in-person permit applications and these appointments can be done by email or by calling the department at (615) 852-6500. After the submission of the required documents, the board reviews them before permits are granted. Note that once all submitted documents have been reviewed and approved, permit fees are to be paid before requested permits will be issued. Also, at various stages of the home improvement project, inspections would be scheduled by the department to ensure compliance with the relevant provisions of the city's building codes. These inspections can be arranged using the ePermits portal or by calling the department through the aforementioned phone number. If you have any inquiries regarding permits, inspections, or other related activities, you can contact the Nashville Department of Codes and Building Safety at (615) 862-6500.

What Kind of Carpentry Services Do You Offer?

Carpenters in the City of Nashville provide a range of carpentry services, and these services can be classified into two broad groups, namely Rough Carpentry and Finish Carpentry. Rough carpentry involves work that concerns the skeletal structure and is typically invisible after completion, such as beams, and posts. Finish carpentry, on the other hand, requires more technique and skill, as it generally involves carpentry work that remains visible after completion. Examples of these include staircases and floors. Additionally, some professionals may prefer to concentrate on certain areas of their vocation, such as cabinet and furniture making and installation, carpentry work on a commercial scale, and decorative woodwork. Before completing arrangements for the services of a carpenter, it is crucial to make sure that this individual specializes in the specific area that your carpentry project covers. You should ensure that your carpenter has the appropriate tools and level of experience to perform the job.

The average costs of these carpentry services in the City of Nashville is provided below:

Cost of Interior Trim and Molding Installation (with mid-grade trim or molding)
$4.50 - $6.00 per linear foot
Cost of Carpentry Framing (for unfinished home addition framing)
$14.96 - $21.42 per square foot
Cost of Carpentry Framing (for new home framing)
$20 - $35 per square foot
Cost of Exterior Trim Installation/Removal
$20 - $30 per linear foot

Do You Carry the Necessary Insurance Policy for Carpenters in the City of Nashville?

Both state-level and local-level laws require that all carpenters that operate within Nashville-Davidson must hold valid insurance cover to any work done within the city. As stipulated by these laws, carpenters must possess a valid Nashville and Davidson County permit bond valued at no less than $10,000 as well as general liability insurance. The liability cover gotten must be to the value of $100,000 for each property damage incident or $500,000 for each occurrence of bodily injury or death. A certificate of insurance must be submitted as proof to the Nashville-Davidson Department of Codes Administration and the Metropolitan Government of Nashville/Davidson County must be made the holder of the insurance cover.

You should always confirm the insurance cover of any individual that you plan to employ. Doing this would guarantee that you are sufficiently covered and do not become liable for any incident or workplace accidents that may occur during the duration of your carpentry project. If you fail to hire the services of an insured carpenter, you may be liable for any damage that is done to your property during the project. This, in turn, can have several legal and financial implications. Therefore, you should always demand evidence that your preferred carpenter possesses the necessary insurance cover before you conclude any hiring arrangement with them and ensure you verify this evidence and its details by contacting the necessary insurance provider.

How to File a Complaint Against a Bad Carpenter in the City of Nashville

Studies have shown that most homeowners are more likely to opt for a home improvement as opposed to moving houses. These decisions have translated into billions of dollars being spent on home improvements annually across the United States. A lot of the work done in these home improvements typically requires the services of a carpenter, and some dubious individuals try to take advantage of this situation to run scams on unsuspecting homeowners. Before hiring the services of a carpenter, you should always do your due diligence to ensure that you do not fall victim to dishonest service providers. Recognizing the prevalence of home improvement scams, in December 2021, the Tennessee Attorney General's Office warned residents that home improvement scams were likely to be on the rise across the various cities in the state, including Nashville-Davidson, particularly during the holiday periods. These scammers operate in a number of ways and some of the most common methods adopted include showing up at your doorstep unsolicited and proposing to carry out instant repairs usually at a discounted price. Other scam methods utilized by these individuals involve requesting upfront payments for a job and refusing to complete the job, or using substandard materials to carry out the project.

When searching for carpenters in Nashville, you can utilize some of the tips below to ensure you do not fall victim to scammers;

  • Always hire only licensed and insured carpenters. You can verify the license of a carpenter in Nashville through the License Search and Verification portal provided by the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance.
  • Obtain multiple quotes on the same project from various carpenters.
  • Get referrals from reliable sources like friends, neighbors, and reputable online third-party sites like the Better Business Bureau.
  • Always have a written agreement with the carpenter you intend to hire and ensure that the agreement contains all the necessary facts like the agreed cost of the job, expected duration of the work, and any other agreed timelines.
  • Ask for references from the carpenter and make sure you verify these references.
  • Where possible, avoid making any upfront payments.
  • When making payments, do not make cash payments. Instead, use credit cards and checks, as these can be traced.

Note that even after taking these precautions, it is still possible to fall victim to a home improvement scam. However, if this happens, you can file a consumer complaint online with the Tennessee Division of Consumer Affairs. You can make inquiries and track the progress of your complaint by calling the Division at (615) 741-4737. You can also file a complaint through the CORE platform of the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance. If you feel that you have engaged the services of a fraudulent carpenter, you might also consider reaching out to the Nashville Police Department to make a complaint, either in person or by sending a written complaint to

Nashville Police Department Headquarters
600 Murfreesboro Park
Nashville, TN 37210