7 Essentials Tips for Hiring an Electrical Contractor

In the world of residential lighting, someone will often say they “do” electrical work rather than say “I am” an electrical contractor. If you hear such a remark raise an eyebrow of skepticism.

To be sure, from interior lighting installations and home wiring, to landscape lighting and electrical panel upgrades, you need to feel confident with whomever you hire. Here are few tips to shine a light on your decision-making process and help you navigate the way:

1. Make sure the contractor you hire holds a C-10 electrical license. This will help to ensure quality and reliability. The alternative: Hire someone who knows lighting and is not licensed and take your chances.

2. A first-rate electrician combines technical know-how, good instincts and the investigative skills of a keen detective.He or she should be able to resolve wiring issues and design and install lighting projects efficiently. With a depth of lighting design experience, a professional also emphasizes safety and/or security concerns, and has the skill to handle electrical panel upgrades, wiring malfunctions, outdoor landscape lighting installations, or the ability to rewire your entire home and more.

3. Select someone who understand the indoor-outdoor lighting connection. A house is a single entity. From a lighting perspective, every room, including the home’s exterior, needs to share a continuity of style and purpose. An experienced pro knows that both interior and exterior lighting projects will often have similar planning steps and related solutions. For instance, ambient lighting brings a remodeled kitchen to life; and using ambient lighting for the exterior works as part of a layered-lighting effect. Recognizing this indoor-outdoor connection translates into quality work and is a money-saver for homeowners.

4. Expect integrity or enduring quality from any respectable lighting contractor. Quality lighting professionals stand by their work. Warranty periods may vary but often cover workmanship, materials and typically incorporate upgrades factored into the project at little or no additional charge.

5. From the start, hiring someone with strong communication skills will ensure the best possible outcome. Can your contractor clearly articulate the need and the solution? From rewiring a new addition to creating a landscape lighting design-build, make sure you understand the project details. This will save time and energy, and surely help to eliminate unforeseen problems down the road.

6. Keeping up with Technology. A lighting designer/electrician needs to stay current with new lighting technologies. Rapid advances in the industry are dictating more varied lighting choices. For security concerns, for instance, automated mobile-control system are now quite popular; and for maximum control and lighting variety indoors, a lighting control and dimmer system will produce the desired effect.

7. Aesthetic Sensibility. For outdoor lighting, in particular, knowing how lighting products work to enhance a well-designed landscape is essential. There almost seems to be a Zen factor to it: What type of lighting will create balance and harmony? Indeed, creating a “wow” factor for any lighting project consistently requires someone with an artistic vision who is comfortable working within predetermined time, space, and budget constraints.

Learn about five key lighting ideas for your home.