There are peaks and troughs in many professions, and plumbing is no different. During the recession many tradespeople saw their workloads shrink as homeowners tightened their belts. Now, as the economy improves, it seems things are on the up once again.
According to a survey by ECIS, the employee benefits company for the construction industry, the vast majority of plumbers and heating and ventilation engineers working in the UK are feeling positive about the prospects for their business.
Some 87 per cent of those questioned said they were very confident or quite confident about what the future holds for them. Of these, almost half said they were feeling very positive about what lies ahead in the coming months and years.
Of course, as demand for plumbing services increases, so too does the pressure that plumbers are under. The survey shows that around a quarter worked more hours last year than they did in the previous year, with a fifth working between 56 and 60 hours a week.
Almost half of respondents said they sometimes work on evenings and weekends just to get through their workloads, while three in ten said they do so regularly, leaving them little time to relax or spend time with their friends and family.
The good news is that their hard work is paying off financially, with almost half earning more in 2014 than they did in 2013. Still, for some it's not enough, as nearly a quarter have actually considered changing their career in the last 12 months as a result of the increased pressure they face.
The publication of the ECIS survey comes after research by Helly Hansen Workwear revealed that plumbers are among the country's most trusted tradespeople, coming third behind window cleaners and electricians. They were also judged to have the friendliest personalities.