Why are electrician services more expensive since the pandemic?
The are various reasons why hiring an electrician has become more expensive since 2020. The main one is clearly the large increase in prices for the supplies. We are mostly talking about copper. Perhaps you have heard or read on the news as it was a big topic, especially during 2020. As we say, the money circulating is the same, it just shifts where the people spend according to trends and what is going on. With the pandemic, most families did not spend money on vacation and tourism-related activities for example, and were forced to spend more time at home. Some were forced to figure out how to work from home. Others had the option and preferred it anyway. The home improvements that were on the back burner for years became a priority, and they needed it fast. With great opportunities for all the home improvement industries comes the competition for quality supplies and good employees. Can you see where we are going with this? It is all about supply and demand.
Why do electricians use copper?
The main metal that was affected was copper. Copper is a fantastic metal to use for wiring. It is less oxidative than many others which prevents corrosion. This is especially important when we are talking about wiring that needs t last a long time. The conductivity is good and makes it a favorite for electricians and it is very hard to find an alternative to copper for many uses.
The price of copper
The price of copper has been on the rise since 2019. The biggest jump was in 2020 secondary to the COVID-19 pandemic. At that time the copper was at about $2.8/lb. It jumped high for the next years, corrected itself a bit in 2022, but is now on the rise again – about $4.25/lb as we write this article.
Forecasts for copper price
The forecasts vary, but for most is likely that the price will continue to increase gradually. On top of the shortage, China quickly figured out how to buy most of the copper supply in the world. Not to mention the costs of employment and transportation that are needed to get the copper to the electrician, which also seems to be on an upward trend.
Is this the right time to rewire my home?
Instead of looking at the price hike, think about the current condition of your wiring and the safety of your home. Rewiring a home is a big project and is likely to not get cheaper unless the cost of copper decreases. Some electrical companies like us have decreased their profit margins in order to keep the cost lower to the client and avoid a big jump. However, we may not be able to do that for much longer as all the costs, in general, continue to increase.
How to minimize the cost of rewiring a home?
We have several suggestions that may help you ensure you get quality work but avoid headaches and unnecessary costs:
- Shop around: you may want to call 2-3 different companies to hear their recommendations and compare quotes. Make sure they seem confident with what they are suggesting and compare how they do it. If their recommendations are very different you may want to figure out who is cutting corners.
- Look for a company with a satisfaction guarantee. That means that they will go back to check/correct anything that was missed at no cost.
- Be aware that some companies may make their quote very low to get the job. That is usually a red flag. Most of the time that means you will not get a licensed electrician, and/or they will cut corners to skimp on materials and labor.