You may have all the enthusiasm in the world for DIY. You might even be the neighbourhood expert at building flat pack furniture, hanging wallpaper, and landscaping gardens. But when it comes to electricity, that’s one form of DIY that you simply cannot risk cutting any corners with. You need to know how to choose the right electrician for the job.
Electricals are one of the most dangerous jobs carried out in the home, so you should always seek guidance from an experienced electrician. They must carry out installations, repairs, or replacement installations, and rewires. These are jobs you are not able to complete yourself.
When looking for an electrician, whether you need work completed in your home, commercial or a rental property, they do not have to be ‘qualified’ as such, but they do need to be able to prove they are ‘competent’ at what they do. They need to have the appropriate skills and knowledge, as well as experience of working with electrical installations.
How Do I Know my Electrician is Competent?
The problem is you might not know whether they are ‘competent’ or not, until you have hired them. By which time it might be too late to back out, they could have completed the works, and you may not see any immediate signs of risk or danger.
So, here’s some easy steps, and questions to ask to ensure you choose the right electrician:
- Make sure you know exactly what work needs to be completed. Be clear in your instructions.
- Ask what level of insurance they hold? Can they evidence their insurance? You should expect to see a minimum level of £2m Public Liability
- Do they have any recommendations or references? Recommendations from a known source will give you peace of mind, and you can see completed work, talk through the process, and make sure are comfortable with this person.
- Do they hold any electrical qualifications? Not a necessity, but qualified electricians will be happy to evidence their certificates and qualifications. These will possibly include installations, inspections, and verifications. Although it is important to remember that there are so many different aspects to electricians work now, qualifications alone may not prove they are fully able to do your particular job.
- Are they registered with one of the industry bodies, such as NICEIC, NAPIT, or ELECSA? They should be!
- Are they part of a registered ‘Competent Persons Scheme’?
- Will they contact Building Controls with any necessary notifiable work to be completed?
- Will they provide a certificate of satisfactory completion of the work once you have finished?
These are standard questions which any professional electrician or electrical contractor will be used to, so you should not feel uncomfortable asking them.
A registered electrician is recommended, as you know that they will be regularly assessed; they will hold the relevant insurance and meet the required safety standards; and you will have greater protection should anything go wrong.
Certain work calls for a registered electrician, so its always better to check before you start planning any work yourself.
Quotes and Value for Money
In addition to the questions above, to help you to choose the right electrician, we would also recommend obtaining at least 3 quotes. Again, this is something professional tradespeople are used to, so do not be concerned about this.
This is also the reason for being absolutely clear on what work you need completing. You can then be sure your quotes are like-for-like and give a true comparison of the potential job.
As with everything, customer service can be the decider between using one person or another.
It’s not just a case of how much the work will cost, or the qualifications of the person you hire. If the level of service you receive at first meeting or conversation, and quote stage doesn’t meet your expectations, then why would you go any further and be comfortable with that person working in your home?
Here at Qualitas, the way our team present themselves, the standards of our completed work, and the feedback from our customers over the years, is something we are proud of.
We are transparent in our communication and quotes. And our values demonstrate our desire to provide the highest standard in customer care, no matter how big or small your job will be.
For a professional service, a clear and detailed quotation, with no nasty surprises, contact Qualitas to be sure you choose the right electrician for your job!