If you have problems with electrical appliances, you should do what you can to have those problems fixed. Fire departments throughout the United States reported that in 2011, there were about 47,700 structure fires that were caused by electrical malfunctions or failures of one type or another. Between 2007 and 2011, about 63% of all home structure fires involving electrical distribution or lighting were caused by problems with home wiring and related equipment. Every year, nearly $1.5 billion is property damage is caused by electrical fires. Fixing problems with electrical devices and appliances can make a difference in the safety of your home. When you are looking for a contractor to handle your residential electrical repairs, there are steps you can take to make sure you are getting the right person.
- Talk to people you know. If you know people who own their own homes, you probably know people who have had to hire contractors to handle residential electrical repairs. One of the best ways to find good quality products and services is to get a personal recommendation from people that you know. Talk to your friends, family members and your neighbors. Ask them how they found the electrician and what they thought about working with them. Getting a recommendation from someone that you trust is one of the best ways to go about finding a qualified electrician.
- Do not hire a contractor based on the hourly rates that they charge. When you get a quote from an electrician, you need to look at more than just the base hourly rate that they charge. If you use the price as the main factor you use in hiring an expert in residential electrical repairs, you may end up getting a person who is less qualified and will do shoddy work. Going with the cheapest option can often lead to having to spend a lot more as you may have to bring in a qualified electrician to redo all the work that the first person did wrong. When you are looking to hire an electrician, you need to consider their reputation and experience in addition to the price they charge.
- Look at the travel costs. In addition to the cost of the hourly rate the electrician charges, you have to think about how much it costs to get the electrical contractor to your home to conduct the residential electrical repairs. Different electricians have different ways to be paid for their travel time to and from client’s homes. Some will charge you a trip fee while others charge a larger rate for their first hour on the job. The length of the job you need done may impact what kinds of charges will work for the travel time. For instance, if yours is a short job, you may want to go with a contractor who does not charge a travel fee but has an hourly rate that is higher.
- Have all your electrical jobs done at the same time. If you have multiple residential electrical repairs that you need to have done, if you have them dealt with all at the same time, you will save money in the long run. As you find small problems in your home, you can make a list. Before you call around, walk around your home and see if there are any problems or issues that you may have missed.
- Have the contractor install energy efficient appliances, devices and fixtures. You can save a lot of money by switching to air conditioning systems, heating systems and other appliances and devices that use less energy. You can even save yourself a lot on your energy bills by using light bulbs that use less power. New LED lights convert their energy to light, unlike incandescent light bulbs that waste a lot of energy by converting most of the energy they use into heat. If you install thermostats that are programmable and lights that are on motion centers, you can lower your energy usage see your utility bills drop.
When you are hiring any kinds of contractors to do work on your home, you need to be very careful. These tips can help you get the right person for your job.