For This Florida Plumber, Nothing Beats the Thrill of Helping Customers
Whether you have a $100,000 house or a million-dollar house, they’re both worthless without plumbing. That’s what Brittany DeRosa’s dad always told her, and now that she’s a professional plumber in St. Petersburg, Florida, she makes sure all homes work like they should.
“I love the satisfaction of fixing something,” whether that’s changing out a toilet, swapping out a water heater, she says. Lots of clients assume the worst when they have a plumbing issue, but DeRosa takes pride in being able to put them at ease with a quick fix. Only she can do that for them.
Now in her 12th year in plumbing, the second-generation plumber reflects on her journey to becoming a professional in the trade and how she sees a path forward for the future of the industry.
Trying the Trade
Though her father has been a plumber since 2001, DeRosa didn’t initially gravitate toward the same work. She graduated high school and started taking classes at night. After a while, she realized she didn’t have a clear direction in school, so she started working full time for her dad’s company, Scott’s Plumbing.
Since she grew up watching her dad work in the industry, she had a positive impression of a career in plumbing. But now that she’s in it, she gets to experience it on an even more personal level.
“Now, as time goes on, it’s definitely exceeded what I expected,” she says of her career.
Though she loves the trade, DeRosa is also aware that she operates in a male-dominated field of work. When she greets customers, sometimes they tell her she looks nothing like they thought a woman in plumbing would look. Still, she’s optimistic.
“The stereotypes are slowly changing,” she says.
A Versatile Career
To those who are unsure of what career they want to pursue — and to those who have children who aren’t sure — DeRosa strongly recommends trying a skilled trade.
In plumbing, there are options for everyone, she says, whether you’d prefer to plan a large project or you like working directly with residents. There are multiple pathways to success, something that a specialized college degree might not afford you.
“School’s not for everybody, and it takes a lot — a lot of patience, time, money,” DeRosa adds. She was able to make a real living right away in a trade — and there’s a wealth of demand.
Plus, she gets to enjoy a work-life balance that some jobs don’t afford. When she’s not working, DeRosa is caring for her array of houseplants, working out or grabbing a beer with her dad. She also loves her chickens and is constantly building out new structures for them.
Explore more reasons to have a career in plumbing, whether you’re interested in entering the trade or you’re looking for a resource you can share to get more people interested.