Terrence Schehen Explains How to Choose a Great Electrical Contractor
The Right Electrical Contractor Doesn’t Just Keep You Up to Code, Terrence Schehen Says, But Also Becomes a Great Maintenance Partner
Whether you are just doing a lighting retrofit or rewiring your entire office building, finding the right electrical contractor ranks near the top of the list of things you need to do to keep your property safe. Commercial electrical work is not the same as its domestic and residential variations, Terrence Schehen says. Commercial electrical work requires different skills, different tools, and different experiences. Terrence Schehen advises that finding the right professional electrical contractor saves you money and makes your life easier.
Here are Terrence Schehen’s top tips for finding a great electrical contractor.
No one in your community is likely to know more about local electrical contractors than the electrical supply stores. There is a good chance that they have a short list of contractors that they recommend to their customers. You can also ask other owners of commercial properties or if you know one, private building inspectors.
Ask About Their Experience with Commercial Jobs
You don’t want to provide an electrician with their learning experience, Terrence Schehen says. It is always a good idea to ask a potential contractor about their experiences with jobs similar to your own. You can also ask your local Chamber of Commerce or local property managers about their experience with a candidate company.
Be Sure to Get a Written Estimate, Terrence Schehen Says
We have all heard horror stories about electricians who pad their bills with unexpected costs, drawn-out timeframes, and excess charges. Terrence Schehen advises you to get price estimates in writing. Good contractors don’t charge hidden fees.
Ask About Warranties and Guarantees
The best electrical contractors offer “satisfaction guaranteed.” Ask for a written copy of the company’s policy and promises regarding issues that may come up after the job is done.
Get a Firm Timeline for Completion of Your Project
Buildings don’t do a lot of good if they don’t have electricity. Your contractor may not commit to working on your project 24/7 until the work is complete, but you should have a clear timeline for the completion of the contract.
Check Insurance and Licensing
In nearly every state and municipality, electrical contractors must carry insurance to maintain their licenses. If you confirm with your state licensing board that a contractor is licensed, they will have at least minimal coverage that protects you in case they make a serious error. You also need clarification about who is responsible for worker injuries that may occur on your property. Coverage by worker compensation insurance takes care of injured workers and insulates you from accident claims.
This means that if your contractor uses day labor, they must be on the contractor’s payroll. Undocumented workers could have a claim against you in case of injury.
You Don’t Want to Be Your Contractor’s “Biggest Job,” Terrence Schehen Says
You want your electrical contractor to be able to complete your project with ease, Terrence Schehen says. And you certainly don’t want an electrical contractor who needs a large down payment or who asks you to pay for materials yourself.