How Much Does An Electrician Cost?

Electrician working on Cat5 cable

April 8, 2021

At Rock Electric we are frequently asked what goes into determining how much a licensed electrician will charge for their services. Of course, more specifically, people want to know how much we will charge to complete their electrical work.

Well, if we’re being perfectly honest, knowing how much you should expect to pay when you hire an electrician is really dependent on several factors. 

However, since we believe in honest and upfront pricing, we’re here to provide you with some information that will help you answer that lingering question you have: “how much does an electrician cost?”. 

Take the time to learn more about the factors that go into determining the price of electrical services like ours. Once you’re done reading, if you have an outdoor electrical project that you need worked on, Rock Electric is always happy to provide you with a free estimate before starting the work! 

Electrician Base Costs 

The national average labor cost for licensed electricians is between $50 to $100 per hour with most charging an additional service fee of between $75 to $125 per project. This means that the minimum total cost you should expect to pay for your electrical work is between $125 to $335 on average.

That being said, this minimum amount really only applies to some of your more basic electrical work like changing out a light switch or an electrical outlet, or repairing a light fixture. In reality, most electrical projects are more complicated and take more than an hour to complete so be prepared for your project costs to be higher. 

In addition, as we previously mentioned there are several other factors that can affect the cost of your electrician. The most common of these we will talk about more below, but they include:

  • Location
  • Experience
  • Type of Electrician
  • Specific Electrical Project

Location, Location, Location…

Yes it matters for more than just real estate. 

As those of you living in the Greater Seattle Area probably well know things are more expensive here than a lot of other places in the country.  

This includes the cost of labor and materials for home improvement projects, and in this specific case, electrical projects. What this means is that people in urban areas and larger cities can typically expect to see an increase in the average cost for electrical services than someone living in a smaller town or rural area. 

The amount of variation generally depends on the location itself, but the Puget Sound has been known to see average hourly rates that are upwards of $100 per hour.

Experience Matters

Individual electricians’ rates will also vary depending on how much experience they have. 

While titles can vary by state, there are three general classifications of electricians that are determined based on years of experience, and completion of their state licensure and examination requirements. Each of these types of electricians typically charges a different amount due to their increased expertise and ability to perform more complex electrical tasks.

In Washington State the primary classifications for electricians are:

  • Apprentice Electrician – As the name suggests, these are electricians who are still learning the trade and are not individually licensed yet. Apprentice electricians will work under the supervision of a licensed electrician for approximately four years. They typically complete basic work like replacing outlets and switches and installing light fixtures, but will sometimes assist with more complex projects under supervision.
  • Journeyman Electrician – A journeyman, or specialty electrician, has completed their apprenticeship, passed their state journeyman exam, and have received their individual license. They are able to work on virtually any electrical project, and no longer require supervision. Although they are able to handle most electrical work, some may choose a specialty area of focus.
  • Master Electrician – Master electricians have typically spent a minimum of two years as a journeyman electrician, passed the state master electrician exam, and received their state licence as a master electrician. Master electricians often open their own businesses and manage other electricians. They have the ability to not only work on any electrical project but frequently design electrical systems as well, and will therefore bid and work on larger scale projects than they did in the past.

For you, the consumer, the type of electrician that you hire will affect the amount that you pay for your work to be completed. According to the national averages mentioned above, journeyman electricians typically fall at the lower end of the scale.  Master electricians, on the other hand, are at the higher end and often over the national averages.

These same trends also generally apply to electrical contracting companies, like Rock Electric. The greater the overall experience a team of electricians has, the more a company is able to charge. This is largely due to the fact that a more experienced team can also complete more complex electrical projects.

What kind of work do they do?

The cost of hiring an electrician is also dependent on the type of work they perform. For instance, on average a commercial electrician will typically charge 10%-30% more than a residential electrician does. 

This is because residential, commercial, industrial, and outdoor electrical projects generally all have a different level of difficulty and scope. This is due in part to the fact that national electrical codes are typically more stringent outside of general residential work, meaning that electricians who perform non-residential work require more experience and knowledge to complete the job correctly.  Furthermore, non-residential projects also usually require an electrician to work with higher voltages of electricity, which potentially make the work more dangerous. 

Keeping these things in mind, it makes sense that an electrician’s rates would increase for more complex, and potentially more hazardous work. 

What Is The Work You Need Done?

As we’ve already alluded to, the easier an electrical project is, the cheaper it will be.  

According to Home Advisor estimates, simple residential projects like installing or repairing a light switch, electrical outlet, light fixture, or ceiling fan can range between $60 to $$350 on average. However, more complex jobs generally get more expensive because they not only require more time, but more knowledge, experience, and parts as well.  

When you get into larger projects like installing an electric vehicle charger, replacing circuit breakers, remodel or new house wiring, and installing generators, cost will typically increase into the thousands of dollars.

However, that shouldn’t deter you from hiring an experienced, licensed electrician as the costs of a bad electrical job, and the safety risks you take by doing the work yourself, are often higher than the price you pay to have the work done right.

Trust Rock Electric

Rock Electric is a family-owned and operated business serving the Greater Seattle area. Our teams of certified electricians are highly qualified and possess decades of combined experience across multiple electrical industries.  We pride ourselves on providing the highest quality of service, and products, and believe in honest and up-front pricing.

That’s why we are happy to provide you with a free,detailed estimate for the work we perform before we start the job. That way you know exactly what you’re paying for and why.  

We also offer easy and convenient financing options so that you can get the work you need done, without worrying about the bills right away.

If you need electrical assistance with any of the following projects in Puget Sound, we welcome you to call us at (253)-999-9814 or contact us and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have.

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