I hope 43 is not to old.
I just turned 44 today.
I am in student debt up to my eyeballs, and Currently in HVAC school fulltime.
I consider this my last shot at a meaningful trade.
Yes i have lived my life in the "other building trades".
I dont think our age, (early 40's) should be a bad thing. We have much to offer an employer.
lots of background experience. And we not to old to learn new tricks.
By the time i have my 5 years base experience in this trade, i will be 49 years old. thats still time enough to be good and viable in this field. (i plan on working until i am 60).
The money i make from this trade is all going toward a house boat, minus the expense of student loan repayment. so thats all down the road. i not even thinking of down the road
the work load of school is all i am living breathing and eating HVAC. As you will be as well if your going to school.
Go for it with gusto. Study hard. and give it your all.
being a carpenter, laborer, truck driver,ditch digger and all around handy man has been paying me the same $10-$12 hour for years now.
no reason starting the same wage as an apprentice in HVAC, a specialized trade, cant be beneficial in the long run. the wage can only go up from there.
I know there is money to be made in this trade. right now i try not to think about the dollars, I am in learning mode. not earning mode.
I study out of the same book as you. 7th edition.
Best of luck to ya.