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Jobs Outlook: Home Appliance Repairers




Good job prospects are expected as job openings will continue to outnumber jobseekers. Many potential workers may choose not to enter this occupation because they prefer work that is less strenuous and that has more comfortable working conditions. Employment of home appliance repairers is expected to increase more slowly than average for all occupations through the year 2012. Although employment of self-employed home appliance repairers is projected to decline, employment of wage and salary workers will increase about as fast as average.

The number of home appliances in use is expected to increase with growth in the numbers of households and businesses. Appliances are also becoming more technologically advanced and will increasingly require a skilled technician to diagnose and fix problems. In recent years, many consumers have tended to purchase new appliances when existing warranties expired rather than invest in repairs on old appliances. However, over the next decade, as more consumers purchase higher priced appliances designed to have much longer lives, they will be more likely to use repair service than to purchase new appliances. Employment is relatively steady during economic downturns because there is still demand for appliance repair services. In addition to new jobs created over the 2002-12 period, openings will arise as home appliance repairers retire or transfer to other occupations.

Self employment of home appliance repairers will continue to decline due to the availability of manufacturer-sponsored training programs. Manufacturers often make these programs available only to large equipment dealers, thereby discouraging repairers from becoming self-employed or working for small shops. Many self-employed repairers are forced to join larger shops so that they can stay abreast of developments in the industry. Jobs are expected to be increasingly concentrated in larger companies as the numbers of smaller shops and family-owned businesses decline. However, repairers who maintain strong industry relationships may still go into business for themselves.