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

AndyGibson 19 August 2019 62
Ask RiotACT

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.


What's Your Opinion?

Please login to post your comments, or connect with
62 Responses to Ask RiotACT: $140 p/h for an electrician?
belleione belleione 7:53 pm 27 Aug 19

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

Mark J Fairwether Mark J Fairwether 9:31 pm 26 Aug 19

Try being an Automotive engineer...or as called motor mechanic....the lowest paid of all tradespersons !! Disgraceful

Victor Armstrong Victor Armstrong 4:02 pm 26 Aug 19

Still cheaper than a

Greg Douglas Greg Douglas 3:38 pm 26 Aug 19

Go and do the apprenticeship and get your tradies licence and then do it yourself, and then you can do jobs for people and charge them the pittance you expect to pay

Capital Retro Capital Retro 4:12 pm 22 Aug 19

Over $50 billion owing in tertiary education HECS debts.

I wonder how much of this is owed by electricians?

Sarah Tozer Sarah Tozer 2:13 pm 22 Aug 19

With the current trade skills shortage that will $440 in 5 years so suggest you snap the sparky up now at that rate!

Paul Allen Paul Allen 11:07 pm 21 Aug 19

Well said Daniel J. Fitzpatrick $140 p/H is probably short if it's only a 1 hour job considering travel and needing materials on top

Meg Ferguson Meg Ferguson 7:16 am 21 Aug 19

Pay peanuts, get monkeys 🤷

Cathy Baylis Cathy Baylis 6:24 am 21 Aug 19

I don’t question if people deserve their money-both my kids(adults now) work hard for low pay and deserve more - I think my pay is well below what I have to put up with for sure- but I do understand why people can’t always afford to pay tradies to come out- I sympathise with everyone!

Justin Watson Justin Watson 1:53 pm 20 Aug 19

Sounds fair to me. A couple of factors contribute to this. Cost of doing business and cost of living has been increasing in Australia. Tradies will put their prices up to cover their costs and lower them when the demand for work is not there. Secondly, they are highly skilled people. The stupidity in this country is we pay executive managers whose job could be done, by 80% of the population ridiculous wages, yet highly skilled professionals, tradies, teachers, police etc, are expected to get by on far less, despite being overall more valuable to our country and society.

William William William William 1:27 pm 20 Aug 19

I pay $60.00. Per job not hour

Tascha Loadsman Tascha Loadsman 1:26 pm 20 Aug 19

Andy sounds like many university educated people who disregard and underrate any person with a qualification or skill learned elsewhere.

Andy, your office job doesn't have the ongoing expenses, skills and high risks of tradespeople.

Perhaps also consider that given they work in a physical field their bodies will break down faster than those who work in offices and therefore may not be able to work until the recent arbitrary 70 year old retirement age so need to make their lifetime earnings in a shorter time period.

Capital Retro Capital Retro 10:41 am 20 Aug 19

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

Those are Sydney prices.

Peter Mackay Peter Mackay 10:29 am 20 Aug 19

Shock horror.

Deirdre Russack Deirdre Russack 10:17 am 20 Aug 19

Trades will charge what people will pay ($80/hr where I live) and sometimes they charge too much because they don't want the job. Get recommendations and get three quotes.

    William William William William 1:34 pm 20 Aug 19

    Deirdre Russack used hipages ,one flare , air tasker you can negotiated price per job i know builders CHARGED more than handieman i had gas fitter charge $500 to relocate heater across room when other quote was $180. Some charge more as not much work where if small jobs charges minimum rate depending on job time ,

Julie Coker-Godson Julie Coker-Godson 10:16 am 20 Aug 19

One of the reasons why my repairs don't get done. That's too big a lump sum out of my age pension.

Moira Passfield Moira Passfield 9:39 am 20 Aug 19

I agree and Butchery would be the worst paid trade of all!!!

Adam Greenough Adam Greenough 9:29 am 20 Aug 19

Recently got quoted $5400 for curtains on 4 windows... sparkies should pick up a needle and thread to make more money

    Deirdre Russack Deirdre Russack 10:14 am 20 Aug 19

    Make your own curtains.

    Claire Lenehan Claire Lenehan 10:14 am 20 Aug 19

    Adam Greenough you’ll find that cost is more about materials than their time.

    Adam Greenough Adam Greenough 10:33 am 20 Aug 19

    Deirdre Russack exactly what I'm going to do 👍

    Adam Greenough Adam Greenough 10:37 am 20 Aug 19

    Claire Lenehan they quote like the material comes from Louis Vuitton

    Deirdre Russack Deirdre Russack 11:03 am 20 Aug 19

    I can recommend Colour Curtains from Dickson.

Julia Ross Julia Ross 9:27 am 20 Aug 19

Why is it that people under rate a trade qualification? They do a 4 year apprenticeship, just like a uni degree but for some reason people think tradies should be paid a pittance. Try getting a lawyer to work for $140 an hour.

Trades people should be respected and paid accordingly.

    Bek Clark Bek Clark 9:41 am 20 Aug 19

    5 years once GDLP is included. When doing an electrical trade costs tens of thousands of dollars maybe it’s a neat analogy. Apples. Oranges.

    Racheal Green Racheal Green 11:26 am 20 Aug 19

    Its amazing that by the time they are qualified they will have purchased all their own tools, uniforms unless supplied, their own vehicle, and more all done on apprentice wages. Plus they have to do their accreditation’s, update their skills every 2 years, Renew licenses, make sure they are always compliant with the correct certifications at all times. The amount of money tradies spend to supply these services is huge. If they are self employed once qualified they also have to pay their own insurance, super and income tax. The list goes on....

    Rob Chalmers Rob Chalmers 6:39 pm 20 Aug 19

    Bek Clark So those that went to University when it was free should be charging less but they would now be the top silks so that doesn't stack up.

    Julia Ross Julia Ross 2:19 pm 22 Aug 19

    Racheal Green I just get so cross when I hear well educated people who only think someone with a uni degree should be paid well and whinge and whine about someone who has worked just as hard for their qualifications getting a decent wage.

    Alene Yorke Alene Yorke 4:35 pm 23 Aug 19

    At the end of the day we are all reliant on each other no matter what our occupation is.

    Julia Ross Julia Ross 4:39 pm 23 Aug 19

    Alene Yorke So true, but some people think they are better and that other people should do work for them for a pittance.

Dragica Ivanovic Dragica Ivanovic 9:09 am 20 Aug 19

Read comments

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Region Group Pty Ltd

Search across the site