Self-employed tradespeople work five hours a week unpaid

They have a reputation for taking extended tea breaks and knocking off early, but a new survey has revealed that seven out of 10 self-employed tradespeople put in more than five hours a week unpaid.

Self-employed tradespeople work five hours a week unpaid

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The research, carried out by Direct Line, found that the average tradesperson completes 5.29 hours for free, which, based on the minimum wage, equates to a loss of £1,075 in wages or £4.8 billion a year across the board.

Furthermore, one in ten complete more than 10 hours of unpaid work each week. Those who have been working in their trade for more than a decade typically work the longest hours, and 48 per cent of all skilled tradespeople work more than 40 hours a week, compared to the national average of 37.

Only 26 per cent said they did not do any unpaid overtime during their normal working week.

Jazz Gakhal, head of Direct Line for Business, told The Telegraph: "Tradespeople are the unsung heroes leading the way in nursing our economy back to health.

"The research shows that, despite the sometimes negative publicity that surrounds the work ethic of tradespeople, they are doing more than their fair share and setting the right example for the rest of the UK's workforce."

Gakhal added: "Next time a builder or plumber takes a tea break, be conscious that you are probably getting free hours spent working on your home improvements or repairs."

Are you a self-employed tradesperson? Do you regularly put in unpaid hours to get the job done? Leave your comments below...