Consideration #1: Licence and insurance
The first thing you look at is whether the electrician is licenced. Each state and territory has strict policies on electrical safety standards. It’s actually illegal to do repairs and electrical installations without a licence. This is for your own safety as well because a licence is your assurance that the electrician has completed the necessary requirements to accomplish the job safely and properly. Don’t forget to look if the licence covers the work you want done, and if the electrician has the necessary insurance.
Consideration #2: Qualification and experience
Electricians have varying qualifications. Hiring a Master Electrician means the contractor has at least three years of experience and should provide a 12-month warranty. If you don’t get a Master Electrician, see to it that the contractor has the relevant experience for the job you need accomplished. For instance, a commercial construction electrician might not be well-versed in residential construction, so if you need work on something at home, the contractor might not be sure how to go about it.
Consideration #3: Means of advertising
See how the electrician’s company advertises. A larger ad doesn’t mean they’re better at what they do. It could mean, however, that a bigger overhead will be passed on to you.
Consideration #4: Trade membership
Australia has several electrical associations that regulate standards among professional electricians. If the electrician you plan on hiring is trade member, it means they follow these standards. Here are a few examples of electrical associations in the country:
- National Electrical Contractors Association
- Queensland-based Electrical Contractors Association
- National Electrical and Communications Association
- Energy Supply Association of Australia
Consideration #5: Value for money
Always remember to get at least three estimates. Take note that the most expensive estimate doesn’t necessarily mean that electrician is the best among your choices. You shouldn’t automatically go for the cheapest quote either. Ask for a breakdown to make it easier for you to compare quotes and see the best value for your money.
Consideration #6: Recommendations or references
To help you decide which electrician to get, look for recommendations from people you trust. If you don’t have recommendations, ask your prospective electricians for references, which you can check out individually. Don’t hesitate to ask each reference questions, like if the work provided is good; or if the electrician shows up on time.
Consideration #7: Communication and behaviour
You may have gotten the best electrician in the state or even country, but you wouldn’t want to deal with the person if he or she is unprofessional, hard to get along with and/or doesn’t inform you what’s happening. As the client, you need to be informed or face the possibility of not having the job you wanted completed.