There is no shame in enlisting the help of an electrician for even the most seemingly insignificant electrical job. Even veteran DIY-ers do that from time to time when there are electrical issues that must be addressed. Electrical wiring is one area where you will definitely want to be safe than sorry. But how do you go about searching for a good electrician or electrical contractor?
Ask for personal recommendations. Ask people around you – friends, relatives, colleagues, etc. – for recommendations. Word of mouth is still the best way of making sure that the job will be done properly. If you can’t get a recommendation for whatever reason, the Internet or local press, or business directories can be good sources of prospects too.
Call three or four and ask for full quotes so that you know how much you will be paying before the work starts. For instance, will there be a call-out charge or a per-hour rate? For example, do you pay an hourly rate or is there a call-out fee?You need to know, for instance, if you have to pay an hourly fee of if call-outs come with a charge. As well, check if the quote covers all the materials.
Don’t focus too much on price. See if the electrician or electrical contractor offers a work guarantee and will correct whatever is not up to applicable standards.
Choose a specialist. Like other professionals and tradesmen, electricians and electrical contractors have specialties too. Definitely, you should go for an expert in the type of job or project you have.
Find out if a prospect works independently or for a company.
It is typically more expensive to hire an electrician who works in a company. However, you may get some extra confidence knowing that this tradesman has been properly vetted and has been allowed by a brand to carry its name.
Don’t hire an electrician without a valid license. Check if your prospect is registered and has a valid license for the jurisdiction in which the job must be performed.
Always choose an insured electrician, with both public liability and workers’ compensation insurance.
Get client references. This doesn’t necessarily rule out electricians who are new in the industry. An electrician can be good even without such a long experience, but they must provide references from their training provider.
Contact the Better Business Bureau to know if there are complaints or negative feedback on the electrician or contractor you’re considering.
Listen to your gut.
If you’re not knowledgeable about electrical systems, ask a friend who is, to accompany you when meeting with the electrician or contractor. You need to ensure that you will not pay more than a fair amount, or that you will not be scammed or played in any matter.
Make comparisons. Don’t feel limited to one potential contractor. When you compare, you have a point of reference that you can use to determine who is actually best for you.