How Long Does It Take To Become A Drywall Finisher?

You can play a crucial role in new construction and renovation projects by choosing to pursue a career as a drywall finisher. The technique requires building smooth, even walls to give any place a clean and fresh appearance. With their ability to operate in both residential and commercial environments, drywall finishers offer a variety of tasks that one might potentially participate in.

What is Drywall Finishing?

Three steps are required for drywall finishing before the finished product may be put on building partitions, ceilings, or walls. As a drywall finisher, you’ll be primarily responsible for these tasks.


The drywall repair installer will usually cut and hang the drywall components; finishing doesn’t usually require doing anything. As an alternative, concentrate on laying down a smooth, paintable texture. Using hot mud, fill in cracks and joints in the drywall while concealing all visible screws. A flat finish devoid of any deviations is what is ultimately desired.


The joints between two adjacent drywall sheets are sealed with tape after they have been covered in mud. The mud is smoothed, and the joints are strengthened by finishers rolling mesh tape over it. Securing both pieces of drywall securely is especially crucial in corners. You’ll remove the extra muck when the tape has been firmly placed.


The tape is covered with a topping compound as the last stage in finishing drywall, following the drying of the mud. Different coats may be necessary depending on the finish you’re aiming for. Each of the five available levels has a different smoothness level. For example, utilitarian facilities like garages only allow a level 1 finish. The most uniform appearance of all the possibilities is provided by a level 5 finish, which needs four coats.

What Does a Drywall Finisher Do?

An occupation in drywall finishing requires a variety of abilities. It’s a physically taxing job that could involve new installation and repairing damaged walls and ceilings in existing rooms. You may need to learn how to read blueprints to comprehend what must be done for each task.


Using a hand trowel and climbing ladders (and maybe even scaffolding) to reach all of the drywall installation and fixing that has to be repaired, mudding is often done throughout the job. However, specific equipment simultaneously spreads the mud and tape, speeding up the process. To achieve the desired finish level after coating, sand the area as necessary and reapply the coating.

Throughout the week, the majority of drywall finishers work full-time. According to the BLS, the median salary in 2020 was about $59,000 annually. This specialism offers a higher salary than the average annual wage of $48,000 for installers. Finishers have a stable 10-year employment outlook as more senior professionals leave the sector.

Drywall Finisher Responsibilities

  • Tape and plaster are used to join drywall panels.
  • Taking care of the drywall panels’ cracks and other issues.
  • Drywall surface covering up any flaws or apparent abnormalities.
  • Creating a smooth surface by applying plaster or spackle in layers with trowels.
  • To attain a smooth area, sand down the rough sections of the wall.
  • Adding a final layer of plaster and skimming the surface to prepare for finishing work
  • Taking charge of and looking after all the tools necessary for the job.
  • Reporting any concerns with your task and keeping your supervisor informed of your progress.
  • Ensuring the efficient and safe use of all tools and supplies

How to Become a Drywall Finisher?

Even though no formal education is necessary to work as a drywall service finisher, there are a few ways you may educate yourself to stand out in the competitive job market.

High school diploma

Before joining a program to complete work, employers typically need trainees to have a high school diploma or GED. Concentrating on math and shop classes would be wise if you’re still working on this level.

Apprenticeship program

An apprenticeship or a trade school certificate will probably be required before you start working as a full-time drywall finisher. In an apprenticeship program, you’ll train under a seasoned finisher for two to three years. The job is paid and may result in a permanent post. Check out the apprenticeship programs offered by construction companies or by unions.

Under the guidance of a journeyperson, a certified drywall finisher, an apprentice will get both classroom instruction and on-the-job training. While working on the job site as an apprentice, you are compensated per hour while learning. A journeyperson’s hourly rate serves as the starting point for wages, which rise throughout the apprenticeship until you are paid at the full rate.

There are various drywall finishing apprenticeship training programs in the USA. These four-year programs typically include technical instructions in classes and on-the-job training. If you have relevant job experience or have finished a drywall finisher program at a college or technical institute, less time is needed to complete your apprenticeship.

Trade school

You could also sign up for a two-year program at a trade school. There is no requirement for this, but the additional certification or associate’s degree may enable you to launch your own firm or advance your work. It’s possible that there are not any drywall work programs available, but you can still develop the skills necessary to be a finisher by concentrating on a general contractor track.


A rewarding career path that brings you to various workplaces is available if you want to become a drywall finisher. For those who enjoy being busy all day long and pay close attention to details, it’s a great alternative to consider.

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