Locate the right licensed electrician for your job.
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Always be prepared
You should understand some of the terminology that contractors use. This would prepare you for additional costs that may occur during the work.
- What are extras?
Extras are additional costs that may occur during the work phase. For example, If you want an additional light installed, (not on the original job estimate) then this would be considered and priced as an “EXTRA”.
- What are unforeseeables?
Unforeseeables are hidden defects. Old wiring may be worn or badly frayed from age. Or maybe Mr. Handyman improperly installed his new gadget.
- Why didn’t the contractor know this?
It is impossible for anyone to know about all problems hidden or buried. Only when a hidden problem is exposed can the contractor take action.
- How should I prepare financially?
It is common practice to keep an additional 25% of an estimate at the ready. This would assist in additonal costs for extras and unforeseeables.
Asking the right questions
It is important to get to know your contractor. You should always ask your contractor:
- for a copy of current license and insurance
Protect your assets. Make sure you ask for a copy of current license and an updated certificate of insurance. Some counties require bonding. Putnam is one of those counties, while Westchester is not.
- for two recent references
Follow up with references. Ask questions like, “Were they happy with the results?”, “Did contractor work in a timely manor?”, “Was the contractor courteous, knowledgeable, and neat?”. The more questions you ask the better.
- what organizations they belong to
Ask if the contractor belongs to an organization. Electricians who belong to trade associations are generally more aware of the latest procedures, products, and code updates.