Removals operatives, sometimes called furniture removers, move the contents of homes and offices, including furniture and personal belongings, from one location to another.
You could be:
- lifting carpets, taking down curtains or taking apart large items such as beds and wardrobes
- carrying heavy objects such as household appliances up and down several flights of stairs in a tenement building
- detaching, packing and reinstalling IT and other office equipment (this may be a specialist job)
- packing items into the van in a certain order, making sure that everything is fixed securely
- driving the van or accompanying the driver
- unloading the van and unpacking boxes, using pads and hessian to separate and protect boxed items
- putting large pieces of furniture back together
- positioning furniture in its new location
- remove doors or windows to move items through.
The figures below are only a guide. Actual pay rates may vary, depending on:
- where you work
- the size of the company or organisation you work for
- the demand for the job.
The starting salary is often based on the National Minimum Wage (NMW).
As of 1 April 2017 the National Minimum Wage is £4.05 an hour for workers aged 16 to 17, £5.60 an hour for workers aged 18 to 20 and £7.05 an hour for workers aged 21 to 24. The National Living Wage is £7.50 for workers aged 25 and over.
With experience this can increase to £8.05 an hour, and for those undertaking driving duties pay can be up to £12.00 an hour. If you have to spend time away from home, you would be given a living allowance. You might be given tips by customers.
- You would work either for a small to medium-size local removal firm or for a large national firm of removers with branches throughout the country.
- Depending on the nature of each job, you could travel either long or short distances.
- If travelling longer distances, you might sometimes spend nights away from home.
- You might often work long and irregular hours.
- You would have to lift and carry heavy items.
- You might sometimes work in cold, draughty or dusty conditions.
- You would be working in all weathers.
- You would usually work in a small team.
- You might work early mornings and some weekends.
LMI data powered by LMI for All
- A good general education is useful.
- You need to be strong and fit.
- If you are going to drive the removal van, you need an appropriate driving licence, preferably a Large Goods Vehicle (LGV) licence together with the Certificate of Professional Competence (also known as the Driver CPC). The minimum age requirement is 18 years of age. Further details are available from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) website.
Predicted Employment in Scotland
LMI data powered by LMI for All
What Does it Take?
You need to be:
- fit, energetic and hard working
- honest and reliable
- careful with fragile or valuable goods
- aware of health and safety issues
- pleasant and helpful with people
- able to make quick decisions.
You need to have:
- common sense
- the ability to work as part of a team
- You would train on the job, learning from experienced removers.
- You would learn a variety of removal techniques, including lifting and handling, packing and unpacking, loading and unloading, together with the handling of valuable goods.
- Your employer may also wish you to attend courses run by the British Association of Removers (BAR).
- You may be able to train for an LGV driving licence and Driver CPC.
- You may be able to gain Scottish Vocational Qualifications (SVQs).
- Furniture removal firms are found in towns and cities throughout the country. Generally, there is always work for these firms.
- With experience, you might go on to specialise in moving goods that need particularly careful handling, such as antiques and works of art.
- In larger companies, there may be opportunities for promotion to posts such as supervisor or manager.
- You could become self-employed.
The following organisations may be able to provide further information.
Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA)
Tel: 0300 200 1122
The DVSA replaced the Driving Standards Agency (DSA) in April 2014. Its aim is to promote road safety through improving driving standards, testing drivers, motorcyclists and driving instructors, maintaining the registers of Approved Driving Instructors and Large Goods Vehicle Instructors and supervising training for learner motorcyclists.
Was this article useful?
Please help us improve Planit by rating this article.