Tradie Partners - Tips for Living with a Tradie

Last updated at: 2021-11-02

We often talk about tradies and the opportunities and challenges they face in their industry, but one thing we forget to touch on is those living with a tradie – the tradie partners!

When tradies are up at the crack of dawn their partners usually are too. Work clothes come home caked in mud and hi-vis dominates the wardrobe. Sound familiar? Let’s investigate the life of the tradie partner and our top tips for living with a tradie.

The sleep schedules

Love a good sleep in? If you live with a tradie, that’s basically out of the question. Most tradies are up with the sun and many of them aren’t quiet about it! The ones who have a bedroom right next to the kitchen cop the worst of it, but many partners and kids still can’t fall back asleep until they hear the front door close again. More than likely you’ll get into the habit of waking up early or having disturbed sleeping patterns.

We suggest: Invest in a pair of high-quality earplugs if you’re susceptible to the noise and struggle to fall back asleep. You could also try asking your partner to walk around a little more quietly in the mornings too! If that doesn’t work, you could try matching their routine and going to bed at the same as well as waking up to see how you feel – you may find you are an early bird after all!

The washing

If you live with a tradie we’re going to hazard a guess that your house and wardrobe is covered with hi-vis (that all looks the same to you). From vests to shirts to hoodies, you’ve probably questioned more than once when the last time you saw your partner in something other than hi-vis was! Then they come home and stink of mud, dirt or whatever else they got up to onsite that day and it’s caked onto their clothes. Worse still – they throw it in the laundry hamper stink out the room and other clothes. We hear you loud and clear! Because of all that washing, your washing machine is going to need repairing or servicing way more often than others, so make sure you pay special attention to signs your machine may need replacing – the grease and grime is a tough job.

We suggest: Investing in a separate laundry hamper for your partner’s workwear or asking them to leave it outside somewhere until it’s time to go in the wash. Asking your partner not to bring their dirty clothes inside will help keep your house smelling fresh and clean. You could also gently nudge them in the direction of soaking their clothes to get the mud out as soon as they get home. Make sure they’re getting the most out of their workwear by following (or making sure they follow) all washing instructions on the garment. This will help the garment keep its colour, shape, and features. For a quick idea, you can have a look at our symbols guide.

The work that doesn’t always get brought home

You’d think living with a tradie would mean all those fiddly bits and pieces will be fixed or you’d have nice new additions to the house. Unfortunately, a lot of DIY projects seem to go unfinished as, after knock-off time, your tradie is pretty much incapable of doing anything else! Although you may dream of a new kitchen or an updated backyard, it’s likely this project will take three times longer to finish than any other work project.

We suggest: Offer to do it yourself. This thought will leave them trembling in their boots of you going near their project (unless of course, you’re handy yourself). The pride will kick in and they’ll come around to adding or finishing that new thing you’ve been hoping for.

The constant pestering from family and friends

Whether it’s your parents, a friend, or even an estranged relative, everyone who knows you’re living with a tradie knows what that means – a potential for mates’ rates! You’re probably constantly getting hounded by people to “fix that little thing” or “install this for me quickly” and unfortunately, most of these people will hassle you – not him. However, tradies have work diaries so they know what they have to do each day. Requests from family and friends don’t make it to the diary and therefore rarely get completed.

We suggest: Talking to your partner to come up with a solution that works for both of you. Whether that be giving family and friends your partner’s number or business to contact or keeping a log of all family and friend requests, this will help them to choose who they would be happy to do work for and who they’d prefer not to.

The lunches

Let’s face it – tradies lunches aren’t always the healthiest. While there seems to be an abundance of eskies in the house, you never seem to see any meal prep happening to go into these eskies – just the use of them at BBQs and festivals. Working onsite often means there’s a takeaway place or other unhealthy shop nearby which is often a temptation for tradies – especially if it’s what all their mates are doing. Eating unhealthy food can have a serious long-term impact on mental and physical health and it’s important to both be aware of what these impacts are.

We suggest: Apart from discussing the health risks with your partner, consider meal prepping at the end of each week so you both can ensure the diet is balanced and providing the needed health benefits to get them through the day. Still struggling? Here’s How to Ditch Macca’s and Eat Healthy Onsite.

Being a tradie is hard, but so too is living with a tradie and adapting to how they work and operate. Laugh about the things that are out of your control and move on from the things you can with a better understanding. If you’re after a new uniform for your partner, head to our website.