Whether you need a full house rewire or you’re just looking for an outdoor security light to be installed, you’ll need an electrician to help to ensure you keep your home safe and compliant with Building Regulations. Our cost guides give you an idea of how much a range of lighting and electrical jobs cost, both in and outside your home.
The average hourly rate for an electrician is £37, but it can be as little as £27 depending on where you live in the UK. If you want a small job done like fitting a new plug socket, you’ll pay your electrician by the hour, but if you’re looking for an electrician to help you with a big project like installing solar panels, they’ll charge you a day rate. The average electrician day rate is £232.
When you’re looking for quotes for an electrician, it’s worth asking them whether they charge a call-out fee. It’s not as common as it is for plumbers to charge one, but some still do, which can make a cheap-sounding electrician more expensive than you think.
Whether you think electricians are expensive is based on your outlook and whether you can complete these jobs yourself. But electricians charge what they do because they are highly skilled at their trade and have gone through vigorous training and examinations to be able to work as an electrician.
Electricians can also have lots of costs, which impacts how much they have to charge per hour or per day. For example, an electrician’s insurance costs are high because of the hazards their work entails; there is a fire risk and risk of electric shock should something go wrong. To protect themselves, they need a good level of insurance, which they will factor in to their hourly or daily rate.
You can try to negotiate with your electrician, but it’s important to remember that they are experienced and qualified professionals that know their worth and have set their rates accordingly. If you do think that their rates are high, you can try to negotiate by showing them quotes from other electricians in the area that are cheaper. You could also offer to buy any materials or replacement parts yourself rather than letting them supply them, but they will often be able to get better prices than you anyway.
Whether you really need an electrician depends on the job and your competence. Part P of the Building Regulations state that anyone carrying out electrical work in a home must make sure that the work will protect people from electric shocks and fire risks. You have to notify Building Control of major electrical work, such as new electrics for an extension or basement conversion, so you should have this work done by an electrician so you can be confident that is has been done correctly. However, minor works like changing existing ceiling pendants or replacing light switches are permitted, so if you feel confident enough you can do this work yourself.