Whether you are hiring an electrician for the first time in your life, or are looking to find a new electrician, it is important you find a sparky with the right expertise and experience. These ten questions will help you in your search for the right Brisbane electrician for your job.
1. Is the electrician’s work guaranteed?
Established and reputable tradespeople are happy to provide a guarantee on their workmanship. A workmanship guarantee means that if something goes wrong with the work performed, they will return and fix it for you. Most electricians provide a 12 month guarantee on workmanship, so if something goes wrong in the first year, you will be able to call and ask them to return and assess the situation.
Keep in mind though that sometimes when electrical problems occur they have nothing to do with the electrician’s workmanship. Electrical components sometimes fail due to a manufacturing fault, which will be an issue to resolve with the manufacturer of the part. In these cases, a good electrician Brisbane will provide you advice on this and steer you through the process.
2. Are they insured?
When it comes to hiring an electrician, the old adage ‘you get what you pay for’ applies as well. If you ring around a few electricians near you and compare their call out fees and hourly rates you might find that some are extremely cheap. Some of these cheaper electricians are cheap because they are not properly insured. Running a reputable business involves lots of ongoing costs like good quality insurance, which factors into service costs. Always ensure your electrician is insured.
3. How long have they been in business?
An experienced electrician is worth their weight in gold. The longer a tradesman has ‘been around’, the more likely they are to have done your particular job before and the more likely they are to know how to fix a problem.
Even if the electrician that is coming to your house is at the start of their career, knowing that there is an experienced senior electrician at the helm of the business gives you peace of mind. The other advantage in engaging an electrical company that has been in business for a long time is that they are more likely to be around should you need to query something about their work performed down the track.
4. Are they are Master Electricians?
A Master Electrician is an electrical contractor who is committed to best practices in the electrical industry. Hiring a Master Electrician gives a consumer peace of mind that the contractor will perform their work to a high standard. It also gives the customer reassurance that their electrician will behave in a professional manner. A Master Electrician will ensure your work complies with the Australian Standards and Statutory legislation. Most Master Electricians have decades of experience.
5. Do they tidy up after the job is completed?
Many homeowners are frustrated when tradespeople leave a mess behind after they finish a job. Good electricians always tidy up after themselves. But they might have simply overlooked this part of the job, so if you are unhappy with the state of the worksite, it is okay to ask them to clean up before they leave. Making a special request that they clean up after themselves when you first book the job is another way to ensure that this happens.
6. What do other customers say about them?
Does the electrical company have a social media presence? Find out if the Brisbane electrician you are about to hire has a Facebook page and read some of the reviews on it written by previous customers.
While you definitely can’t trust every negative online review you read (some are written by competitors or by clients who may not be being truthful about the full situation) online reviews can be another way to decide if a particular electrical company is right for you.
Looking at pictures of previous jobs they have done for clients on their website and social media accounts also gives you an impression of the quality of their work and if it matches the sort of standard you require.
7. Do they provide free quotes?
Before you engage an electrician to do substantial work at your home, it is a good idea to get a quote. Most reputable companies will be happy to provide a quote free-of-charge.
8. What is their hourly rate?
Most electrical companies charge an hourly rate for work performed and you can ask for this rate before you engage them. Most electricians work with an apprentice to make the job more efficient and for important safety reasons, so ask if the tradesman will be accompanied by an apprentice and what the hourly rate for both people are.
Having an apprentice at a job usually saves you money, as you are paying the apprentice a lower hourly rate to complete basic tasks such as fetching materials, allowing the experienced tradesman to get on with the task at hand.
Asking for a ballpark estimate of how many hours it will take to complete the job will allow you to work out roughly how much the job will cost. Keep in mind though that some things about a job can not be known until the job is underway so time estimate are estimates only. There will also be additional charges for parts.
9. What is their call out fee?
Reputable electrical companies charge a call out fee. This covers the expense involved in the electrician getting to your house; such as the operating costs of their vehicle, insurances and the time it takes to travel to and from your house.
10. Are they happy for you to ask questions?
A good electrician will be happy to answer your questions about the job you want done. The electrical system in your home is a complicated thing so it is okay to want to get a clearer picture of what will be done and how it will occur. Experienced electricians will do their best to explain the work in an easy-to-understand way.