Category: Tiling News and Blog

Essential Things You Should Consider When Purchasing Tiles

For many people, tiles are an invaluable solution to their decorating problems. Durable, attractive and available in various colours, tiles are excellent options for your flooring or walls. 

When purchasing tiles, there are many things to consider, and we’re going to look at them in this post. Whether you’re planning on decorating your bathroom and kitchen, or want to make your flooring more appealing, these are the things you need to think about. 

Which Tile Types Are Available? 

There are so many tile types around; you’re spoilt for choice. But it’s essential to know the pros and cons of the most popular tiles before you make a final choice. Let’s take a look at them now. 

Ceramic Tiles: Most homes incorporate ceramic tiles because they’re so easy to source and lay. There are hundreds of styles available, and ceramic is durable enough for households with children and pets.

Porcelain Tiles: The second most common type of tiles are popular because they can look like stone, brick or wood. While many homeowners love the look of porcelain tiles, they are more challenging to apply, which is why ceramic is more popular. 

Cement Tiles: If you’re searching for a timeless classic, then cement tiles might be ideal for you. They’ve been around since the 19th Century, and come in a wide range of patterns.

Glass Tiles: Glass holds the vital benefit of being stain-resistant, which means the tiles are easy to clean. However, glass also chips easily, so it’s not a good idea for households with pets and children. 

Mosaic: If you’re a fan of Moroccan, Roman, and Greek-themed bathrooms, then it’s impossible to forget mosaic tiles. They come in a range of patterns, colours and sizes. These tiles also look incredible. 

Marble Tiles: The essence of upper-class decor, marble tiles are more expensive than most other variations, but they give any space a classic appeal. 

Stone/Rock Tiles: Rustic decor or more traditional buyers have plenty of tiles to choose from. Options include granite and limestone, both of which are effective for improving your home’s aesthetic appeal. 

Metal Tiles: One of the newer tile types is metal, but it’s not for everyone. While metal tiles are more durable, some people find the overall look of them is too much. 

How Small Is Your Bathroom?

The size of your bathroom impacts its aesthetic appeal. While there’s nothing wrong with smaller spaces, it can look crowded if you don’t utilise the right decorating techniques. One of the biggest mistakes we see people making is purchasing the wrong size tiles. 

Large tiles take less time to install, but they’re also the easiest way to make your small room look even tinier. In fact, it’s a common bathroom mistake we see all too often. 

Opt for smaller tiles to give the impression that your bathroom is more spacious. You’ll feel more at home and avoid the cluttered effect. 

Which Colours Will You Use? 

Decorating is a fun job for everyone, but many people get caught up in the latest trends. It’s perfectly normal to want a modern decor theme, but you should think about how your tiles will fit in with the rest of your home. 

There are plenty of things you can do, but try to consider the needs of your household. For example, if you’re tiling your bathroom and you have a young family, it’s best to have a bright decor scheme to make spending time in the room more appealing. 

Older families should try to incorporate their tastes into the overall design of their bathroom or kitchen. If your home generally follows a themed decor scheme, such as Moroccan or Boho Chic, then you’ll want to continue it with your tiles too. 

Black and white tiles can be a popular choice, but many people find them too familiar. You should only use children’s tiles if the room is specifically for your little ones. They might love the design, but it’s probably not the best idea if guests will use the room too. 

Are You Buying Online? 

In these uncertain times, online shopping has become a convenient way in which we source items. There are many benefits to buying tiles online, but you should always make sure the company is willing to send you a sample first. 

If you can’t get a sample, check to see whether there’s a returns policy. The tiles you choose might look fantastic from behind a computer screen, but very different in person. To ensure you don’t have to worry about wasting money, always have a back-up plan. 

Factor in Extra Costs 

Most people budget for their tiles but forget about the essential tools to lay them correctly. Before you choose an expensive design, make sure you factor in the cost of: 

  • Spacers 
  • Grout
  • Adhesive 

If you’re tiling a shower area, it’s essential to check the adhesive you use is suitable. Planning will save you a lot of money in the long-run, so work out how much you can afford on the actual tiles before you spend money. 

There are plenty of retailers that sell specialist tiling tools at low prices. Remember, once you have the necessary tools, you’ll store them for future use. 

Measure Up 

Never – and we mean never – forget to measure how many tiles you’ll need. The simple way to do this is by multiplying the length by the height of each wall you’re planning to tile. 

Add the number of tiles you’ll need from each wall together, and add an extra 10% to account for breakages. Most retailers cost their tiles based on square meters, so it should be easy to work out how much you’re likely to spend. 

The Bottom Line 

With so many tiles available, you can find ones that suit your decor scheme and practical requirements. Instead of making an immediate decision, shop around and enjoy the experience. With a little time and an open mind, you’ll find the perfect tile type, design and colour for your home.

Tiling Staircases

Staircases are not always the most glamorous installation in your home unless you live in a grand, luxurious large home where the staircase makes a big impression on opening the front door.  Tiled staircases can really make an incredible, practical, long lasting impact on an interior and many luxury hotels or commercial businesses will have impressive tiled staircases installed.

So, what type of tile would you need to use on a domestic interior staircase and how do you tile a staircase compared to tiling a wall or a floor? Well, the process of tiling stairs is pretty much the same as for any tile installation, but there are a few things to consider.

Tiles

The tiles to use would need to be slip resistant and suitable for floors.

Preparation

With tiled stairs there is a lot of preparation involved for both internal and external tiled stairs. Firstly, it’s important to get the measurements correct in order to work out the square meterage required and to do this you would need to measure both the length and width of the stair and the vertical riser of each stair. Once you have calculated the square meterage then remember to allow for an extra 10% – 15% for breakages, cuts and wastage. Once measured and the tiles ordered, you are ready to prepare the staircase for tiling. 

Most internal staircases are constructed of wood but if your staircase or steps are concrete then the same preparation applies except there may be a need to use levelling compound if you find the stairs are not level.

Ensure the area is flat, clean and dust free. If the staircase to be tiled is constructed of wood then it is key to make sure there is no movement and that each stair is completely secure. If your staircase is not solid and secure after the tiles have been applied, it will result in cracking of the grout and the tiles. You may also have to reinforce the stairs to take the weight of the tiles. 

Each stair will also have a nose board on the front of it – this will need to be cut flush to the riser – make sure the cut is smooth and free of any dust.  Once you have completed all your preparations you are ready to apply the tiles. 

Applying your tiles

For a successful, professional job start at the top of the staircase tiling the vertical stair risers. Use an L square on both sides to ensure the tiles are plumb (remembering to leave a gap for the grout). Start from the centre of the stair and work outwards. It is important to leave a gap of around 3mm and to keep this consistent use 3mm tile spacers to give an even gap around each tile. This is absolutely necessary to avoid any future cracking of both the tile and grout on the staircase. Once you have worked your way down the staircase and with all the tiles in place, the grout will need to be applied. 

Grouting

As with most tiling jobs it is advisable to leave grouting the tiles for at least 24 hours after the tiles have been installed to allow enough time for the tile adhesive to dry properly. When choosing the grout you will need to take into consideration that it will need to be able to withstand the wear and tear of constant use, be durable and flexible. 

So, job done nearly…

Finally

After leaving the finished grout to dry for a further 24 hours, good tiling practice requires the tiles to be cleaned to remove any excess grout to reveal a beautiful tiled staircase.

Tips for Tiling a Bathroom

Bathrooms are surely the no.1 choice to decorate using tiles, with tiles having the most practical, hardwearing and waterproof properties as well as a huge choice of styles, colours shapes and sizes.

How easy is it to tile a bathroom? With obstacles such as sink and toilet pedestals, showers, windows and door frames to consider there is a lot of planning and preparation involved to create the perfect tiled bathroom.

So, first of all what tools do you need? Well, the checklist below is a lists the tools you are likely to need:-

Pencil

Level

Tape measure

Sponge

Bucket

Tile cutter 

Tile nipper

Notched Trowel or Spreader

Square

Rubber grout float 

*Sander

**Piece of timber

And importantly for your own health and safety:-

Safety goggles

Dust mask

Gloves

Knee pads (depending how good your knees are!) 

There are additional tools such as a contour or layout tool that can be included in your list for those awkward cuts or you can go back to basics and use card or paper to make a template. 

So, with your tools and safety wear sorted, next is to measure the area that needs to be tiled (remembering to allow 10% for breakages and spares).

Whatever the job, the key to a successful and professional looking finish is always in good preparation. Walls and floors to be tiled need to be flat and clean – some areas may need *sanding so be sure to remove all dust before applying the tiles.

Planning how to apply your bathroom tiles

One way of ensuring the tiles run symmetrically on the wall is to try using a ‘gauging stick’ to mark out where the tiles will need to be placed. This is where the *timber in the tool list comes in.  Lay the timber (which should be just over half the width of the wall)  and put the tiles and spacers along its length and mark with a pencil. A second piece is used to place tiles widthways.

Measure the width of the wall and draw a vertical line at the midway point. Do the same for the height. Use the ‘gauging sticks’ to mark out a grid where the tiles will start and end. Adhesive is applied to the tile and tiling starts at the bottom of the wall, working in an upward direction, not forgetting to cut any tiles required before applying adhesive.

For the floor just as for the walls, preparation is all important. Ensure the floor is clean, dry and level. If the floor is constructed using floorboards it will need to have something like a ply covering to level it.

Using the same method of measuring to find out the midpoint of the floor as for the wall and start by dry laying the tiles working outwards towards the wall or first piece of bathroom furniture (bath, loo or sink pedestal).  Mark the position of the last complete tile and draw a line from one end to the other. Lay your tiles along this line  (you could use battens if working on a plywood base) checking regularly the tiles are flat and straight.

Cutting tiles around those awkward shapes.

Depending on your chosen tiles you can use a tile scorer or a tile cutter. For porcelain or natural stone tiles over a 15mm thickness a tile saw is better. And for those awkward curved cuts around a toilet or a pipe you can choose a tile nipper or tile saw to create a neat curve. If you don’t have a contour tool or layout tool then make a card template to mark out on the tile where the cut needs to be and remember to wear safety goggles! 

After grouting and cleaning the tiles, your finished bathroom will look amazing.

Thinking of Starting a Tiling Business? Think about Networking (just keep your distance ?)

With the business and economic climate we are currently experiencing, it may seem like a bad time to consider starting up a new tiling business and becoming a self-employed tiler. But, for the construction industry, there appears to be some bright light at the end of the tunnel compared with other business sectors who are experiencing difficult times. Since March this year, the world of work in the UK has changed – shaken, stirred, turned upside down and inside out and for many people who were in employment then, have now found themselves without employment as their employers have suffered an economic Tsunami.

If you have been considering changing career, attaining a new skill or simply need to find some form of employment, then seriously consider the option of becoming a highly skilled floor and wall tiler.

The tiling industry is a part of the ever growing UK construction industry – with the demand for building new homes across the country and the domestic markets’ increased demand for interior and exterior makeovers, now is a good time to think about diving in and taking the plunge on running your own floor and wall tiling business.

Finding the right course that will give both the practical skills and theoretical skills is key to your future success and with a considered investment in our tiling training courses you are more than halfway to building a successful business.

In addition to the practical skills and detailed course information acquired at UK Pro Tiling Training there is continued support with the (optional) Elite Aftercare Package to give you peace of mind and a professional ‘help line’ for when you need it.

In addition to the practicalities of starting a business (take a look at www.gov.uk/set-up-business ), what are the personal qualities you need to run a tiling business or be a successful self-employed tiler? Qualities such as self-motivation, the ability to work long hours, offer fantastic customer service, develop good negotiating skills and have a great understanding of your market (i.e. your customer requirements) these personal attributes are key to being successfully self-employed and having a great business.

If you are looking to be self-employed only without the additional responsibilities of employing people, then learning how to price up and quote for potential jobs should be a bit easier than having to consider what each job will cost to cover all your material and labour costs. But whether self-employed or running a tiling business employing people, the basic business skills crossover. Most importantly, get your name (or business name) out

there! Marketing costs can be expensive and you don’t want to blow your budget. Use social media platforms, word of mouth, place a sign with your name, contact details and profession where you are working and advertise on your vehicle before placing costly adverts.

So what is the importance of networking when running your own business?

Well, by having knowledge of and contact with good quality suppliers who will negotiate with you on the best prices, advise on current market trends and put you in contact with other businesses that you could work alongside with ( for example kitchen and bathroom fitters, decorators, builders) will only grow your reputation when working alongside these businesses. Consider widening your network by joining a local business support group and attending professional events and trade fairs (when it is possible to do so) and keeping up to date with the latest tiling trends will impress potential clients.

If you are a UK Pro Tiling Training trained floor and wall tiler, your toolbox will be filled with all the skills, knowledge and continued professional support then your tiling business is bound to thrive.

Beyond The Tiles

As you start to grow your business and want to offer your customers the very best service, you may be able to save yourself (and your customers) some time and, indeed, money. If you can acquire some additional skills and knowledge outside of tiling it may save you having to try and find, and then pay for, some of the other trades people. Be aware that some jobs will definitely need you to get qualified trades people involved.

Know when to use an expert.

If you feel any electrical installation or modification is needed, then don’t be tempted to tinker yourself. Not only could this be dangerous, but also illegal. The same goes for plumbing and definitely if you feel a gas supply needs moving.

Another time when you should get an expert opinion is where any structural changes are taking place as part of the work being carried out.

Maybe do try this at home.

Many other jobs which might be taking place in areas you are tiling could be tackled by yourself. If there is to be small adjustments to studwork, maybe around a bath or shower area, it might be worth teaching yourself the skills needed to carry this out yourself. Often, befriending a carpenter or other tradesperson could be mutually beneficial. They might be happy to offer you tips rather than tackle a very small project themselves.

With studwork in place, another skill which is relatively easy to acquire is plasterboarding, maybe behind an area to be tiled. Be sure to check on the correct specification for the area. Behind a shower area for example, will need a specialised moisture resistant board.

You don’t need to be a plasterer.

Many of us have watched skilled plasterers and been in awe at the smooth flat finish they achieve. If an area needs plaster work repairing or replacing before you can tile, try and become confident enough to apply a browning, bonding or other undercoat. If you can get this flat enough to tile over, there really is no need to spend out on a plasterer. The finish doesn’t need to be silky smooth.

Finishing touches.

If your customer is having the majority of a room tiled, you might feel confident enough to offer to decorate any remaining wall space, be sure to research the best methods and use the best materials. Also, having the right tools will mean you can confidently fit mirrors and other finishing touches to the tiled walls.

Be sociable.

And don’t forget your admin! Being up to speed with social media marketing and other effective advertising platforms will save you money and hopefully generate income. If you can learn to use bookkeeping tools and understand Inland Revenue returns and documentation this could avoid employing an expensive accountant. As with the trades listed above, if you are really not confident, it is still better to bring in an expert.

Get in touch with us to chat about your tiling career, we have courses to suit all levels of experience and knowledge.

Tiling On Construction Sites

If you’ve only ever worked in domestic properties, not employed through agents, major contractors or other organisations, you quite possibly have got used to dealing with the customer directly. You will have been responsible for every aspect of the work from start to finish and will have needed just your skills and your customer service. Working on large sites as a subcontractor comes with added complications and requirements.

Health And Safety Executive (HSE) The HSE offers advice on how you should approach working as a subcontractor. Like all trades people on site, you are there in your capacity as a tiler and should only work in the area designated and only carry out the tasks you are there for. The main contractor will have policies for each site regarding disposal of waste (and whether you or their own staff will do this) and which PPE is appropriate for both the job in hand and the site itself. You should never assume anything or ignore risks on sites. Most have site managers and safety officers who you should approach with your concerns or queries.

Power Tools

Again, the HSE is a great source of advice. The main message is that tools should either be battery powered or operate using 110 Volt with Centre Tapped to Earth (CTE) system which ensures the total voltage doesn’t exceed 55 Volts. When you are asked to price work on sites, take into consideration tools which you may need to buy or hire.

Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS)

To obtain a CSCS card, which will give you access to construction sites, where you can work as, or for, a subcontractor, you will need to have passed an accredited CSCS Health and Safety at Work course. This is the minimum requirement for anybody wishing to work on a construction site. It is more complicated than that though: As a skilled tradesman, you will need to have a skill specific card.

Using NVQ To Obtain Your CSCS Card Check out our NVQ courses to see how we can help you get the level of qualification you need. The cards are colour coded depending on your level of experience. A trainee can get a red card before achieving an NVQ qualification although they would be unable to work on site alone. Similarly with the green card, you will effectively be just an ‘operative’. Achieve an NVQ level 3 or above and you can get your Blue, Gold or Black cards which will show that you are a skilled operative, a supervisor, or manager and can operate on construction sites accordingly.

We have courses to prepare you for all levels of tiling and to get you feeling comfortable about working on construction sites. You’ll need to be switched on to the business aspect of the job, and fully understand payment terms and contracts with larger organisations. Don’t forget we offer a one day course which has some great content to help you with your business model.

Get in touch today and let’s get your journey to construction sites started.

Entrance Appeal – A Tiled Hallway

How else to make real impact at the front door than with a beautifully tiled hallway. Both a chic and practical entrance to a property being hard wearing, durable and with a resistance to muddy and wet footprints.

Using floor tiles, either plain or patterned in the hallway will need careful preparation and planning. Most floor tiles are larger than wall tiles and most importantly choose a tile that has a non-slip finish. The style and type of floor tile will depend on the property and client choice.

With the floor measured and tiles chosen, prior to preparing the floor remember to wear heavy duty gloves and safety goggles, the removal of old tiles or getting the floor ready for applying the tiles may have shards of old tiles, large splinters etc. that could cause damage to hands and eyes. So, in the preparation of the hallway floor it may require some form of levelling and cemented backer board if the floor isn’t even or have a concrete base (tiles can be laid on any dry concrete level base). But if this isn’t the case it will be necessary to ensure the floor is levelled and suitable.

Can you lay new tiles over an existing tiled floor? It is possible and essential that the tiles are firmly laid if so. If the floor has a vinyl covering, ensure the surface is coated with a primer. For laying the tiles, choose a specific adhesive necessary for the floor type – for example if the floor is a wooden floor or concrete. Equally, if the floor to be tiled is of a wooden/timber construction then it may be advisable to strengthen it by using an appropriate plywood (an exterior grade ply would be best).

Once the floor is prepared, laying the tiles out is the next step. Dry laying using the key tile (that is the first tile that will be laid ) will set the rest of the layout. It is usual to start as central as possible so the key tile will be laid in this central position, followed by laying a row of tiles from the centre to the wall. This will give you an idea of what the floor edges will look like. Preferably, there shouldn’t be a small slither of tile at the edge, so if this is the case, move the tile line so that you have an even and equal edge on both sides. From this point continue the dry laying leaving a gap of around half a tile around the edge of the hallway these will need to be cut to size. For an immaculate and professional finish, take the chosen adhesive for the floor, spread around a metre of the adhesive evenly, working outwards to the hallway wall and ensuring that the markings that indicate the position of the key tile are still visible, and lay the tile. Tile spacers can be used and with the first tile in position continue at right angles across the floor ‘criss crossing’ the key tile and checking the level of the tiles regularly.

Once your floor is covered leaving only the edge tiles to lay, make sure excess adhesive is cleared from the edges to ensure a level finish. Apply adhesive to the edge tiles and not the floor to lay them. Finally use a well mixed grout appropriate for the tiles used and finish off the hallway corners with a flexible sealant matching the grout. After removing and leaning off any excess grout and whether the hallway is tiled with patterned or plain tiles, the final finish will be impressive, long lasting waterproof and damage proof. Perfect.

What type of tile is best to use for an outdoor patio?

So what type of tile to use? Well, firstly, porcelain tiles are used in favor of the ceramic tile as the porcelain tile is a more dense and stronger form of ceramic. Porcelain tiles that have a rating suitable for flooring can be laid outside. And the tiles will have a textured finish in order to avoid any slippery accidents.

Depending on personal choice (and maybe budget), the type of property and the overall look that is to be achieved, then a slate tile could be considered. The slate tile will need to be of a higher quality grade and make a great choice for exteriors as they have a resistance to stains and are non-porous. And where slate has been used in interior and exterior designs it gives a very eye-catching and striking look.

So why choose tiles over the more common (and popular) brick or paved exteriors? Well if you are looking to add a bit of style, individuality and uniqueness to your outside space, tiles will give you a wider choice of style, colour and pattern than the more usual brick and paved look.

There are things to consider when choosing tiles to be outside such as what is most appropriate for the climate and environment that the patio/ exterior space will be exposed to. We know that porcelain tiles are preferable to ceramic as it is a much more hard-wearing tile but isn’t the only option to choose from. Consideration for how the outside space is going to be used will be another important factor when choosing your tile.

For a patio/ outside space that will be used with heavy footfall (commercially or domestically) then the stronger the tile type the better; after all there is nothing worse than looking out on to your new outside area and a couple of cracked tiles appear.

Having looked at porcelain and slate, the quarry tile is a popular choice being strong and functional and if choosing the quarry tile, remember there is limited choice of colours to choose from and think about the climate where they are to be laid, as quarry tiles are not the greatest choice for cold and freezing temperatures. They do have a great resistance to water and are hugely popular in warmer climates, after all, haven’t we at some time sat on a warm, red quarry tiled terrace? And, being unglazed, the other great advantage of the quarry tile is that they are non-slip.

Maybe if you are looking for a bit of luxury (and may blow the budget a bit) granite tiles could be used, but, because they are normally highly polished then the ‘slip factor’ is high if the granite tiles get wet and because granite is more porous than some of the other materials it will require some regular maintenance by sealing it against water penetration. But if your choice is to go for a more luxurious and high maintenance look then granite tiles may appeal.

Then we come to travertine, a natural stone, which, depending on where it is quarried, can vary in its quality but is still a strong and durable tile. For a higher quality and more water resistant tile, travertine tiles from Italy or Turkey are a good choice. Travertine is a beautiful tile with earthy, warm tones and texture.

With the various choices of tiles available, it is highly likely that budget, style and colour and how the patio or outside space will be used will have an influence on which tile will be best for your outdoor patio.

Wet Rooms: Pitfalls To Avoid And Tips For A Perfect Job

Preparation

As with most tiling jobs, what you do before you even start is just as important as the tiling itself. In fact, with a wet room, the preparation is the most important part. Planning is essential, check that the tiles chosen will work with the style and placement of the drain being used. Also consider the user of the wetroom, for example, is it important for the tiles to be non-slip.

The tiling will be done over a tanking membrane. A tanking system comprises of a primer, self adhesive latex tapes and water guard membranes that will line the walls stopping any water, This should result in a completely waterproof bathroom and is quite a specialist skill. Only tackle this part of the work if you are experienced in preparing wet rooms.

Plan The Whole Floor

Try to arrange the tiling pattern in such a way that you are minimising the number of cuts needed to complete the job. Setting out the floor is the most crucial part, The tiles that fall on the wetroom tray have to be cut according to the slopes of the aqua tray that has been installed below, this is known as envelope cutting, it is important to cut the tiles on a wet saw at the correct angles so the gap where the wet saw has cut can be grouted to form the seal between the tiles

Best Tile Types For Wetrooms

Ceramic tiles are not ideal if being used over a sleek, frameless drainage grill. Because of the nature of their manufacture, these tiles may show the ceramic colour underneath the glass polished finish. They are fine for creating a waterproof finish though and will suit many wet room applications.

Porcelain Tiles are harder than ceramic and therefore more difficult to cut. This does mean they are extremely resilient and maybe a better choice for a wetroom which is going to have a lot of use. With a consistent colour, they are much more likely to look sleek when used with a central or linear drainage system.

Natural Stone Tiles are just that, natural. Because of this, they might not be completely uniform and may cause slight issues where there is a very shallow fall for drainage. It is also important to make sure they are fully waterproof.

Mosaic tiles are a popular choice as they add a non slip property to the floor, they can also look aesthetically better as there are no diagonal cuts leaving al tile joints square with the outside tiles of the wetroom tray

Adhesive and grout

A good quality primer over the whole surface will avoid any danger of dust or dirt breaking your adhesive layer and help to bond the latex tapes and paints. Adhesive should be applied with a 12mm notched trowel over the whole floor. A dot and dab system will inevitably lead to problems later on, wet rooms must be 100% waterproof, and the adhesive is just one component of that. Use rapid set, flexible adhesive, ensuring it sets on the waterproof membrane.

Allow for the very best grout when costing a wet room. Top of the range wet room grout is Epoxy grout which is chemical resistant, flexible, perfectly waterproof and strong enough to withstand even the most vigorous cleaning.

Looking to learn new tiling skills, we have courses to suit everyone from complete tiling novices to those who have been in the game a while but are looking to top us their skills.

Get in touch today to find out more.

How much can you earn as a wall and floor tiler?

All construction trades are in demand – but that’s especially true for tilers. The UK is currently seeing a mass shortage of wall and floor tilers, which is pushing up prices and creating opportunities.

There are two directions of work for an aspiring wall and floor tiler. One is the domestic market where people remodel their own homes. The other is site work where new homes are being built.
How much tilers get paid in the UK?Tilers average around £30 – £40 per metre for fitting, or a minimum £200 per day.

That equates to between £50K-£70K per year for experienced tilers.

Professional Tilers will usually charge around £30 per metre square for fitting ceramic tiles or £200-£250 per day (In the north) or around £45 per metre (in the South) for general domestic tiling work, good tilers are usually always in demand. Think of an average bathroom which is roughly 25 square meters on the walls and 8 square meters on the floor ( 3 days work= £900), a conservatory floor tiling job would be roughly 12 square meters, this should take only a day to complete (£360). Kitchen splash backs (£200-£250) for the day, both plus material profits.

In addition to these rates above you can add extra profit by selling all the materials and adhesives the job requires to your customers due to buying with discounts through your trade accounts, so if you are thinking of starting a business this is earnings you could expect once you get established and up to speed, a £1000 – 1500 per week could be achieved.
The skills you need

  • Basic maths skills are required to calculate areas and materials, both when you create estimates for work and undertake the project.
  • A keen eye for detail. Tiling is precise work where cuts have to be measured and made accurately
  • General fitness and good health. Tiling can be quite physical especially if you have to remove old tiles in preparation for starting a job.
  • Cleanliness. You have to work cleanly to avoid stains and damage from cement adhesives.

Interested in becoming a tiler?In these unsettled times many people are looking at their career options and considering highly-skilled trades and self-employment as the logical next step.
UK Pro Tiling Training can help. We offer fast-track intensive professional tiling courses ranging between 1-3 weeks.

Courses start from as little as £499 and can set you well on your way to a lucrative career as a tiler.

CTA: Would you like more information about tiling as a career? Contact us today.

How to find work as a wall and floor tiler

The key to any successful business is marketing. To win as many jobs as you can, large and small, you need to network a bit. Get your name out there. Make contact with as many tradesmen and suppliers as you can.

Find the people who work in complementary trades and can tell you where tiling work might be needed.

Here are some effective ways to promote yourself for the different types of tiling work available.

Floor tiling

Introduce yourself to all the conservatory suppliers, including any window fitters that you can find, and pitch your services.

  • Consider offering a commission for every job they pass onto you.
  • Try and find your local shop fitters who are currently working on shop refurbishments. These projects usually need floor tiling done.
  • Introduce yourself to floor screeding service tradesmen, as they do floors that might soon need tiling.

Kitchen Tiling

Visit all the kitchen shops in your local area and pitch your services with cards and flyers.

Make contact with kitchen fitters and joiners. Customers always ask them to recommend a tiler after they have finished installing a kitchen.

Make contact with electricians. They rewire a lot of kitchen sockets and bathroom down lighters, and tiling will always follow this service.

Bathrooms

Bathroom showrooms and plumbers merchants and also the actual plumbing tradesman is how you will get these jobs.

Tile shops

Tile shops obviously sell loads of tiles and will be asked all the time to recommend a tiler, so it is really important that you get in with the sales and counter staff.

Marketing options

  • Facebook. Setup a business page and promote yourself with pictures and testimonials. Include your contact details with every post.
  • Church parish magazines. Visit your local church and ask them if they do a monthly magazine or newsletter then ask them about advertising in it.
  • Estate agents. These are always looking for tradesmen for the property developers on their books, and the properties they rent.
  • Insurance companies are always looking for tradesmen to correct damaged properties, fires, floods etc. Ring the insurance companies and ask who to speak to about getting subcontracted work.
  • Checked & Vetted services. These work very well. Ask them what and how they charge for getting referrals to customers.
  • Vehicle signage. This is essential. Get yourself a van and make sure it displays your business name and contact details.
  • Setup Google pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns.

How to earn more as a tiler

If you are self-employed or thinking of going solo then having a strategy to maximise your earnings is vital

There is a lot more to running a tiling business than just having great tiling skills. You need to master the basics of running a business. Understanding basic sales and marketing techniques will help you row your clientele and find projects that pay well.

Courses

Our 1-day business Maximizing Your Earnings course will give you a firm grounding in sales techniques that can help boost your earnings.

You’ll learn how to:

  • Win more repeat business
  • Sell yourself to potential new customers
  • Convert pricing and estimates into active jobs

What the course covers:

  • Ways of finding work
  • Handling first meetings
  • Pitching your services
  • Closing a sale
  • Handling objections
  • Understanding the marketplace
  • How not to ‘oversell’
  • Reading body language
  • Establishing common ground with your customer
  • Customer buying modes
  • Understanding reciprocation
  • Setting goals

UK Pro Tiling courses

At UK Pro Tiling Training we can tutor you on all aspects of running a tiling business. Our lead instructor has over 30 years of successful self-employed experience; NVQ Level 1,2 and 3 Tiling, Assessors and Quality Assurance, as well as teaching qualification. He has personally delivered our tiling training program for more than 15 years.

Courses start from as little as £499 and can set you well on your way to a more lucrative tiling career.

Want to learn more?

For more on these and other key aspects of tiling, sign up for a course with UK Pro Tiling, the fast-track pro tiling course provider.

How to set-up a tiling businessSDC11393-1024x768There is a lot more to running a tiling business than simply attending a course and learning how to put tiles on a wall and floor. Being a great tiler isn’t enough. You have to learn effective business skills.

We teach you everything you need to know

UK Pro Tiling Training has been delivering quality fast track career changing courses for over 15 years and have taught thousands of learners from all over the UK and Europe. Our learners travel because of our strong reputation and excellent advice we give.

Our instructors will teach you practical tiling skills at the highest level, including all the product and background information. Courses cover:

  • How to get started
  • Choosing a business name
  • Bookkeeping basics
  • How to pay yourself
  • How tax and NI work when you’re self employed
  • Marketing your services
  • Setting up trade accounts
  • Measuring, pricing and estimating jobs
  • Keeping ahead of the competition

Darren is the owner of UK Pro Tiling Training and a tiling industry expert with over 32 years of self- employed experience to share.

Contact us today to find out more or enrol in our next business course.

How to create a portfolio of your work when you’re just starting outPotential customers will be keen to see examples of your work. Yet until you’ve completed projects, there’ll be nothing to show. This isn’t a dead end, though. There are a number of ways to put together a portfolio.

Keep all of your courseworkWhilst training, you should take good quality photographs of your work. Even a small area which has been expertly tiled is evidence of your work.
Work with an established tiler

Reach out to fellow tilers. Maybe through contacts made on your course, or by contacting tradespeople in your area. Be honest with your experience too. If you get lucky, you’ll get some work which you can then evidence, to show the quality of your work.

It’s who you know

Offer to tile your Nan’s bathroom or your mate’s conservatory floor. There will be people in your network who would be happy to have their homes revitalised for a reasonable rate (or in return for a roast dinner and a couple of cold beers). Maybe that downstairs cloakroom in your own house could do with a splashback behind the sink.

Take great photos

Be sure to take plenty of photographs of all of your work. Use a photograph editor to write a few comments on the pictures explaining the job. If there has been a substantial amount of preparatory work, use some before and after shots too.

Share your work online

Now it’s time to get your portfolio out to potential customers and employers.

Create a Facebook Business Page

Using no more knowledge than most of us need for our personal social media accounts, you can create a professional looking presence one of the biggest platforms of all.

Instagram lets you take photos on your smartphone and post them immediately online for followers to see. It offers enhanced services for business as well.

How to market yourself as a professional tiler

Website

It may sound daunting but building and hosting a website can be a cost effective and simple process. Providers such as Wix, Squarespace and GoDaddy offer complete packages with simple to use templates. You’ll just need to provide a great description of your services and some quality images.

Facebook

It is still possible to have an effective Facebook page for your tiling business which is free. There are many options to pay to promote your page, and some are worth considering, where you only pay for the number of clicks your posts generate. Use your friends and family to share your page and remember to keep new content appearing regularly.

Blogging

A regular blog can be a productive part of marketing yourself. Do some research and read up on popular blogs kept by other sole tradespeople. You’ll find the best ones offer advice rather than try and actively sell. If a potential customer trusts what you have to say they’ll be more likely to get in touch.

Google

It is still free to have a Google business profile and you should absolutely have one. Set up a business account and you’ll find you can be found across searches and also via Google Maps. You can include images from your portfolio and give all your contact details.

Trade Directories

Paying to be featured on one of the new trade directory sites and apps could be lucrative. As with all digital promotion, fill your entry with as much detail and examples of your work as you can.

Ask the tile shops if they need any displays tiling for free

Tiling displays for tile shops is a great way of meeting new customers. And as the tile shop will owe you a favour, you can suggest that they pass your cards out in return.

The Tile Association

An independent body which has a directory of tilers, and their logo can add some kudos to your marketing material. They can inspect work when a dispute occurs and support you through this. Being listed as one of their approved tilers puts your name forward to the thousands of hits their website gathers each month.

Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram

All social media sites are worth having a presence on. Most offer free entry level packages for business as well as more premium packages to push your brand. Only use the social media sites which you know you will have time to post regular content on.

How plumbers can using tiling as a new source of revenue

If you are a plumber who doesn’t offer tiling services you could be missing out.

Most customers would prefer one tradesman to complete a multi-faceted job. If you are already handling their plumbing needs why not offer your customer a full bathroom installation service

Wet Rooms

Wet rooms are becoming quite mainstream in properties all over the UK, from trendy apartments to elderly and disabled bathrooms. Plumbing skills coupled with tiling skills will see you completing these kinds of jobs and raising your earnings potential. Note: the price of an average wet room is double that of a bathroom

Training

UK Pro Tiling Training are fast track tiling course specialists.

The course will cover practical exercises and detailed product information, to show you what it’s really like to tile like a professional. You’ll also learn how to start and run a successful tiling business and what’s required to install a full wet room, along with tanking systems and aqua trays etc.

Would you like more information about adding tiling services to a plumbing or plastering business? Contact us today.