Even if you know nothing about how electrical systems work, you can still be smart about spending money on electric repair. Before you schedule an appointment, consider these tips for reducing and controlling your expenses for electric repair service:
Compare your options, apples-to-apples
A low hourly rate from an inexperienced electrician can easily lead to a higher bill than what you would get from a talented, experienced electrician with a slightly higher rate. You want electric repair completed as quickly as possible, and you don’t want to have to call someone back out for additional service because the original work was shoddy.
By hiring someone with expertise in the type of electric repair you need done, you can save money compared to less professional options that seem cheaper on the surface.
Buy parts yourself
Buying parts through your electrician is easy and efficient, but he has to charge you a markup to cover his costs and turn a profit. If you know what parts you need, track them down at hardware stores or online and buy them yourself for the lowest price available.
Basic parts like light bulbs and outlet covers can be purchased inexpensively at local stores. You can even buy more technical parts if you know the specifications and what the electric repair will entail. You’ll save money, and you’ll also have more control over the aesthetics of your fixtures.
Choose premium products that last longer
Save money in the long run by opting for better parts and ensuring highly professional installation. The better your electrical wiring and parts, the longer your systems will last without needing repairs or replacements.
Buy better parts when shopping yourself, and open a conversation with your electrician about whether you might benefit from choosing premium parts for the work.
Prepare your home for electric repair
Time is money when an electrician is on the clock—don’t waste precious minutes rearranging furniture and clearing the way to electrical boxes. Think about the electric repair being done and clear a path for all potential work areas.
Take care of multiple tasks in one visit
Don’t postpone calling for help when you need electric repair. However, you can save money on service by having multiple jobs performed in one visit. Ask about any minimum fee, travel expenses, and similar charges your electrician may charge. Calling out an electrician for one job at a time can result in paying these basic appearance fees unnecessarily.
When it’s time for electric repair, walk around the home and look for other electrical work. Test things out and think about potential trouble spots like crowded electrical outlets, and consider having extra work done while you’ve got the electrician at your house.
Use surge protectors & safe operation to prevent problems
Prevention also saves you money on electric repair service. Make sure your electrical panel has a surge protector—a “whole house” surge protector—and that your electrical wiring can safely support your household’s electrical usage in the modern age of heavy electronics use.
When you call for electric repair, talk to your electrician about safety tips and any proactive steps you can take to prevent future electrical problems. The cheapest call is one you don’t have to make.
When you need electric repair, talk to your electrician about the estimated costs beforehand. Don’t be afraid to ask questions—your electrician may be able to give recommendations that save you money now, or save you money in the long-term.