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Confirmed: Tradie prices higher on the fancy side of the ‘latte line’

By Tim Neary
26 February 2019 | 10 minute read
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New data gathered by a tradie jobs website reveals how your postcode can drive up the cost of hiring a tradesperson.

ServiceSeeking.com.au has found that the diagonal divide between the north-east and the south-west of Sydney is clearer than ever. 
CEO Jeremy Levitt said that inner city residents of the inner city, eastern suburbs and the north shore were paying up to 140 per cent more for tradies, especially towards the end of last year as tradie prices started to decline.
He said that the closer you get to the inner city and eastern suburbs, the higher the charge-out rate.

“The most expensive suburbs are clustered around the inner city, east and north; most of the south and west and outer north-west of the city is the land of ‘milk and honey’ for cheap tradie prices,” Mr Levitt said. 
He said that the dividing line bears a “striking resemblance” to the so-called “latte line”.


“North of the line is where the jobs are, while south of the line is where there’s greater housing availability.
“While we’ve seen a cooling in the levels of demand for tradies, there are some pockets in Sydney where customers will pay significantly more for an hour of a tradie’s time. Tradies working in suburbs considered to be more affluent often increase their charge-out rates because they perceive their customers to be more capable of paying higher prices. In addition to this, these suburbs generally have a higher demand for renovation services.”
Mr Levitt said that a lot of tradies are commuting from the south and west to the north and east for jobs.

“Their hourly charge-out rates will incorporate overheads, including the cost of commuting along with insurance, vehicles, staff and tools.”
He said that the data also revealed some interesting pockets of low and high prices.
“The cheapest prices for tradies are around the Blue Mountains, Milperra and Horsley Park where the average cost of a tradie is below $60/hour.”
There are also pockets of low charge-out rates in the north and east, which Mr Levitt puts down to either “a low demand for renovation services or a perception that residents in these suburbs can’t afford higher prices”.

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