19 August 2019

Ask RiotACT: $140 p/h for an electrician?

| AndyGibson
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Hi, Rioters,

Can someone share with me what the going rate for an electrician is in Canberra? I’ve been quoted $140/ph which is just ridiculous- even if it’s the going rate it just sounds crazy. All we are doing is changing some lights and light switch panels – no rewiring of the walls at all.

Also I know that tradies charge a callout fee, but why? I don’t charge my boss at work for me to drive to work each day, why do tradies have to be any different? I feel if they have the work confirmed then they can drive to it like everyone else – not my problem if they live a few suburbs away.

Keen to hear what people think.


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We own a house in Canberra but currently posted overseas for partners work. Seems like $140 is pretty standard, as frustrating as it is. Had tenants complained that one of the downlights needed to be replaced and I literally bought the bulb and fixed it myself when I went there for a routine inspection. For that, not going to pay a sparky to change a lightbulb.. but wiring stuff etc then yes that’s what you pay for

Capital Retro4:12 pm 22 Aug 19

Over $50 billion owing in tertiary education HECS debts.


I wonder how much of this is owed by electricians?

Capital Retro10:41 am 20 Aug 19

“The guys who built Opel Towers charge $50/hr”

Those are Sydney prices.

Capital Retro8:14 am 20 Aug 19

An EL2 with all the benefits capitalised would earn about the same which is crazy also.

Yes, it’s crazy that an EL2 gets paid so much but what’s the OP going to do – get an EL2 to write a minute about the lights that need to be changed? And edit it 6 times before it goes anywhere? You’ll get far more actual work done if you spend your $140 on a sparky than on an EL2.

Capital Retro6:15 pm 23 Aug 19

Ironically, if a light bulb needs replacing in a public service building they have to get a union approved electrician in to do it – after the mandatory site and risk assessment has been completed, of course.

I would highly recommend using Toby at Switched On Electrical Services – they are awesome and I think $85/hr for labour. They’ve done a heap of work for me at home and I keep using them because they do an excellent job and are reasonably priced.

$140 sounds steep, should be closer to the $100 mark. Why think of a tradie any different to another professional? they all have many years of training and seeing a good tradie in action is magic. Call out covers travel costs wether it is 5 mins or 55 mins. It is a lot less than the hourly rate and without it they would have to charge more for ever hour they are on the job.

If you are after a second quote give Nathan a call from NDP Solutions a call 0418 495 133

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