Whenever an investor buys a property that will eventually last as a rental property, he/she will definitely be going to require a tradesman. The tradesman can be anyone who can correct the flaws in the rental property. That is to say, a tradesman can be a plumber, electrician, carpenter or handyman who knows the job very well.
Out of all, this guide will focus on electricians to guide you with How To Choose An Electrician For Rental Property Maintenance.
The tradesman is also known as a tradie.
A tradie must know everything that has to be done under his work. That is to say; tradies must know how to use the specialized equipment and tools for some fault and how to fix the issue without damaging other things or compromising safety.
For instance, an electrician must understand the wiring and electric connection of the building, and he must have enough knowledge to read the map of electric connection in the rental property.
Now, choosing or hiring a perfect tradie to rectify a fault is indeed a difficult task. However, it can be done smoothly by keeping some points in mind. Hence, in this article, investors will learn how to choose an electrician for rental property maintenance.
So, let’s get started.
In order to choose a perfect electrician for rental property maintenance, an investor must keep the following points in mind.
Who Is An Electrician?
Firstly, let’s understand who is an electrician and their role in rental property maintenance. In this section, a reader will know how an electrician works.
An electrician is a trades person who has the skills and knowledge to fix the issues related to electricity, wiring, and electric connection of the rental property or a building.
An investor must consider the electricians’ skills, experience, and legality before choosing him/her.
Let’s understand this in a detailed descriptive manner…
Who Is A Qualified Electrician?
The electrician who is going to be hired must have sufficient qualifications to carry out the task assigned. That is to say, the qualification, for instance, training or apprenticeship, is a must.
Never hire an electrician who has no qualification and cannot present a qualifying certificate to prove his/her skills on paper.
Furthermore, take a detailed account of the electrician’s past projects or jobs. An investor can look at the electricians’ work history to determine whether he/she is fit for the rental property maintenance or not.
In addition to experience, the skills of an electrician must be taken into account. In other words, do not just rely on the qualifying certificates or on-paper skills but also examine the practical skills. It is because practical skills are more important than skilled mentioned on paper and learned just theoretically.
Also, try to get a sense and evaluate an electrician based on his/her problem-solving skill related to electric work.
Take various parameters into account. For example, time is taken to solve the issue related to electricity (i.e. time management), ideas, cost-effective suggestions, how work has been done (i.e. quality of workmanship), and collateral damage (if any).
A property investor should always prioritize the electrician who can minimize the collateral damage or avoid it fully. If any, the electrician should have a sufficient insurance policy to cover the loss their work resulted. (We will cover insurances later, but the insurance claim process is never a pleasant experience) Hence, choose a highly-skilled, experienced electrician who can avoid damage to nearby structures of the fault is a must.
Who Is A Licensed Electrician?
Yet another critical parameter that should be taken into account while choosing an electrician for rental property maintenance is the licensing of that electrician. An electrician must have a legal license to work with this kind of job and issues, acceptable by your state, territory or country.
Different Municipal Councils may issue the license on various bases in some countries. However, all of them (i.e. local licensing authority) always consider the educational qualifications and skills to perform electrical jobs. So, while hiring a certified and licensed electrician, an investor should not need to worry about the electrician’s qualifications.
In other words, the license is given to that electrician based on the electrician’s qualification, after assessing him/her based on various parameters, including qualification.
Hence, always remember to choose a licensed electrician. So, there will be no need to check the qualification certificates of the electrician and on-paper qualifications because that will be included in the license.
In addition to this, a license given to that electrician permits that particular person to carry out the jobs related to electricity, electrical installation and wiring. Without a license, it may be illegal for an electrician to work on electric issues (again, depending on local laws).
Using an unlawful ‘electrician’ may bring legal challenges against that electrician and who has hired him, that is, an investor if you are the one who hired him.
So, to ensure that an investor doesn’t get trapped in legalities, you must check the license of that electrician who is going to be hired for the rental property maintenance.
In the end, it is crucial to have a license, and an investor must check the original license document before choosing an electrician for rental property maintenance. This will avoid legal issues or cases that might occur in the future.
The Safety Is A Priority
Along with the legal issues due to the absence of a license, there come safety concerns.
The unlicensed electricians try to manipulate an investor by offering low costs for rental property maintenance. They may also try to depict the skills that they actually do not possess. This may cause serious troubles in the future if an investor hires unlicensed electricians.
The licensed electricians know how to correct the fault and have skills enough to cover an emergency. On the other hand, the unlicensed trades person may react vigorously in an emergency and may cause a serious catastrophe. Hence, safety is likely to be compromised in case an unlicensed electrician is hired.
The Authenticity Of An Electrician
The electrician that is going to be hired must be an authentic and honest tradesperson. That is to say, a professional electrician will clarify all the processes, timelines, risks, payment and fee details before accepting the work. Hence, an investor must clarify all the doubts regarding the fees of the services provided by the electrician.
Tell the electrician to reveal all the charges before assigning the project. An investor should not have to pay long bills with hidden charges. The best way to avoid unexpected bills is to ask for an estimate, and if you are happy with that, for a fixed price quote for the job.
Firstly, an investor will have to show the electrical issue (e.g. fault) to the electrician he/she has chosen based on the above-mentioned points. Subsequently, ask that electrician to prepare a proper estimate or costing. Compare the budget and the fees.
After that, an investor can choose the electrician if the budget matches the fees of the electrician. This will remove the chances of hidden charges because the fees will be already mentioned in the estimate prepared earlier. However, the cost may slightly increase at the end of the job, which is normal and acceptable in some cases.
In the end, the above are the points to remember while choosing an electrician for rental property maintenance. I am sure the above section has cleared the role of an electrician too.
Tip: Try to stick with the best when you install anything. For example, here are the best air conditioner options for landlords.
Now, let’s learn more about choosing the tradies for rental property maintenance, in a bit more detail and helpful manner.
Challenges Of Choosing Tradies for Rental Property Maintenance
While choosing a perfect tradie for rental property maintenance, an investor will have to fight many challenges. Most known issues or challenges along with their solutions will be discussed in this section so that every investor or developer who reads this can avoid those challenges readily.
So, let’s get started…
1. Paperwork and Contract with an Electrician
Firstly, the paperwork and contract signing are one of the most dreary challenges that will be faced by an investor while choosing an electrician and allocating the work to them. To ensure smooth working, an investor should always opt for the contract (or some sort of agreement).
If paperwork is involved, usually those contracts are produced by the company which is responsible for the electrician.
Some electricians with through at you long contracts with several pages, which can be boring, and an investor may get frustrated while reading them.
The contract and paperwork are made in a legal way that is written by a legal adviser or an advocate in legal terms. The use of so many legal terms and lengthy contract makes it difficult to read and understand it thoroughly.
On the other hand, an investor cannot sign that contract without reading it. Doing so might get the investor in trouble. So, here is a solution on how to avoid this complexity around paperwork.
The only solution to this getting across complex paperwork or contract is to take the help of a legal adviser (Sorry!). But, the most practical way is to call the electrician and sit together to discuss all the points thoroughly so that no doubts arises later.
Suppose you choose to get some legal input. In that case, the legal adviser will also explain the meaning of some tricky legal terms mentioned in the contract. Hence, this will avoid the misunderstanding and boredom of reading the lengthy contract.
Additionally, all the points will be perfectly understood by both the parties as an advocate or a legal adviser can explain them too.
Secondly, the paperwork or contract may get lost, burn or torn. In this case, an investor or an electrician may lose the copy. However, there will be another copy of the contract with the legal adviser. However, an investor should not depend on it only and must store the soft copy of the contract on a personal computer or mobile device.
Of course, using soft copies comes in handy to minimize this risk. In this way, you can exchange a copy of the contract with the receiver or electrician via email. This will ensure the safety of the contract and transparency.
Hence, these are the ways to counteract the paperwork and contract-related challenges.
2. Possible Communication Gaps
An investor or a developer will have to communicate thoroughly with the electrician. The communication gap between both parties may result in severe consequences.
Suppose an investor does not clarify the doubts and his/her concerns with the electrician. In that case, there may lead to several issues which cannot be resolved at a later stage.
Hence, before a communication gap increases between both the parties, an investor and electrician, both should sit together in the presence of a third party as a mediator to resolve the doubts. The only way to fill the communication gap is to sit together and discuss the problem calmly along with a mediator or legal adviser.
Always keep emotions aside and be professional.
3. Keeping Records
Keeping the records of the job done and the cost of the work is indeed a hard task.
A beginner investor may get confused and might not keep track of the expenses. This might lead to a big loss in the investment. So, to avoid this issue, an investor must hire a person who is good at keeping records.
By this means, a record will indicate the expense of the job done and help the investors to minimize the over expense.
In the end, the challenges will come while choosing and working with an electrician for rental property maintenance. However, counteracting those challenges in a well-manner will yield the best results.
The above are some of the most common challenges faced by investors along with their solutions.
Now, let’s learn about how to find an electrician for rental property maintenance.
How To Find Electricians?
This section will cover a few concepts around how to find the best electricians for your rental property maintenance.
However, the firsts section has already mentioned the most common things to consider while finding an electrician (e.g. licensing), but in the following section, you will have additional options to consider while finding a good electrician.
1. Look For Recommendations
A property investor can take the recommendation of an electrician from his/her friends, family, and neighbors. This will make the search easier for the investors if a friend or someone has already hired an electrician.
The investor can know all the details of the recommended electrician from his friends or family or whoever has appointed that electrician.
The best point is that the investor can trust the electrician and the quality of his/her work because a known person hired him. Moreover, an investor can evaluate the electrician by knowing his working style and fees. So, employing a recommended electrician while finding the best electrician will decrease much workload and possible risks.
Ensure that the electrician that an investor is hiring has the insurance. That is to say, always try to find an electrician having insurance along with a legal license. This will help the investor at a later stage if an unforeseen emergency or catastrophe occurs.
In case of any electrical catastrophe, an investor will not be responsible for paying for the damage to the property if a professionally insured electrician is used. The insurance company will be held responsible for it, and the insurance will compensate for the damages and any losses.
Another way to find an electrician is to contact the company that provides the best electrician in your locality. There are plenty of reputed companies in the market that avails the electrician services. An investor can contact the company to find the best electrician. The company will analyze the electrical fault and assign a perfect electrician accordingly.
Search for reviews about the company before allocating any job to them. The reviews can also help you to short-list the good electricians from the average.
However, an investor must check the reputation and legalities of the company. Check if there are complaints lodged against the company or not.
Does electrical company employs qualified and licensed electricians only or not?
After ensuring these points, an investor can choose the electrician in this way, in case of no good electrician can be located through word of mouth.
Tip: The electricians should be knowledgeable. For example, suppose you are tossing between motorized automated gate vs solar gate. In that case, he should be able to advise and guide you if he knows what he does.
A Good Electrician vs. Bad Electrician – What is The Difference?
Let’s compare a good electrician with a bad one.
This section will enable property investors to differentiate between the electricians and to choose a good electrician rather than a bad one.
He will have educational qualifications depicted by a qualified certificate along with practical skills.
For example, apprenticeship or training.
No educational qualification. No practical skills. Their skills are mainly gained from work experience here and there.
Licensed electricians are with licenses from trusted authorities to avoid any legal issues in the future.
For example, Municipal Corporation License or State License.
No work license from a trusted authority.
They have quick, cost-effective problem-solving skills. They have an extensive practical experience as an electrician.
No experience and take much more time than usual to diagnose and resolve electrical issues.
Good at working with all equipment and tools. That is to say, enough knowledge of every tool and how to use them. He will know his job very well.
No or insufficient knowledge of tools that will be used during the job.
Budget-friendly with no hidden charges. Sometimes expensive as he will be a well-established, reputable professional tradie.
They could try to propose a low price at first and try to rip you off later. Sometimes, they will provide unrealistic expensive quotes for small work. But most likely might try to tempt the investor by offering low cost.
Why Do You Need To Compare The Quotes Before Allocating The Work?
In order to minimize the expenses and over budgeting, investors must compare the quotes before assigning the work to an electrician. Before allocating the work, an investor should ask for estimates or quotes to compare.
The comparison of quotes from different tradies will enable the investors to know the market pricing. That is to say, the investor will get to know the average pricing of the electrician service in the market. This is how an investor will not have to pay more money for the same service available at a low cost.
As a guide,
- Take 3 quotes if the work cost under $1,000
- Take 6 quotes if the work cost between $1,000 – 10,000
- Take at least 10 quotes if the work cost over $10,000
Moreover, the comparison of quotes and budget will clearly depict whether that electrician will be the perfect tradie for the work or not. To simplify, the higher-budget tradies can be avoided by the comparison.
How To Choose an Electrician for Rental Property Maintenance Work?
Here are the points to consider.
- Licensing of the electrician.
- Qualification of the electrician.
- Experience and practical skills.
- Reasonable pricing and fees.
- Insurance of the electrician.
- Recommendations and word of mouth.
- Good clear professional communication
Let us know if you have any questions.