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Minecraft | Why can’t I trade with Villagers?

Are your inconsiderate, honking neighbors refusing to trade with you? Does that town full of tall-headed traders shake their head when you try to right click on them? Sometimes you’ll find that you’re unable to trade with a Villager in Minecraft, and figuring out why can be a mystery in version 1.14 or newer. Our Minecraft Why Can’t I Trade With Villagers? guide will tell you what causes this problem and how to fix it!

Minecraft | Why can’t I trade with Villagers? | Nitwits and Unemployed Villagers

Minecraft Why Can't I Trade With Villagers?

The first thing you need to understand is that there are three types of Villagers that can’t trade at all: Nitwits, Children, and Unemployed Villagers. Each have their own unique problems when it comes to trading in Minecraft.

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Nitwits, simply put, are too dumb to do any of the Professions in the game. They will never be a productive member of society, so it’s a waste of time to bother talking with them. You can identify them by their green robes and lack of any kind of region-specific clothing that modern Villagers wear, and it wouldn’t be a half-bad idea for them to have an “accident” with a bucket of lava so they’re not taking up space.

As for Children, they won’t be able to trade in any circumstances until they grow up. It doesn’t take very long for them to grow up, so you can simply wait it out. Once they’re grown up, you’ll need to help them find a job, though.

Unemployed Villagers, on the other hand, can learn a Profession—they just haven’t done it yet. Odds are, it will be up to you to fix that problem.

Minecraft | Why can’t I trade with Villagers? | Employing your Villagers

Minecraft Why Can't I Trade With Villagers?

Understanding Villager employment means understanding Job Site blocks. Each Villager in the newer versions of Minecraft requires one to be able to do a job. The downside is that you might have to craft these blocks if you don’t have the ones you want at a Village. The upside is that you can use them to determine which Professions are in the Village and how many of each type there are. A Villager “owns” a particular block; they don’t share them with one another.

Here is what you’ll need to hire each of the different Villagers:

  • Armorer: Blast Furnace
  • Butcher: Smoker
  • Cartographer: Cartography Table
  • Cleric: Brewing Stand
  • Farmer: Composter
  • Fisherman: Barrel
  • Fletcher: Fletching Table
  • Leatherworker: Cauldron
  • Librarian: Lectern
  • Mason: Stonecutter
  • Shepherd: Loom
  • Toolsmith: Smithing Table
  • Weaponsmith: Grinding Stone

Once they’re employed, you’ll be able to trade with them.

It’s important to note that Villagers can change their Profession, but there is one condition: They must have never traded with you. If you have done even a single trade with a Villager, they are stuck in that Profession forever. After they do have jobs, there is still one last thing you’ll have to contend with: The trade limit.

Minecraft | Why can’t I trade with Villagers? | The trade limit (and how to reset it)

Minecraft Why Can't I Trade With Villagers?

Much like previous versions of the game, Villagers will only do so many trades of a particular type before locking it out. Typically, you can expect to do between two and 16 trades in total before they disable the trade. Once a trade is disabled, you won’t be able to use it again until it resets. For this reason, it’s a good idea to have multiple Villagers of each type if you’re going to be buying or selling items from them frequently.

How does a trade reset, exactly? Well, a Villager simply needs to use their Job Site block and they’ll be able to trade with you again. If you’re building a more traditional Village, you should make sure that everyone can easily access their own Job Site blocks.

You may also want to make a “shopkeeper” kind of Village where everyone is trapped behind a counter or in a Minecart. As long as that Villager’s Job Site block is right next to him, he’ll eventually reset his trades at some point in the day.