How to Hire a Good Electrician in Corpus Christi
Between 2015 and 2019, there were over 300,000 home structure fires across the United States, with these fires causing over 2,000 deaths, over 11,000 injuries, and more than $7 billion in direct property damage. Do not be a victim of any of these mishaps trying to fix an electrical fault by yourself or hiring a handyman nearby to complete the job. Smart homeowners in Corpus Christi go for well-trained electricians that adhere to the National Electrical Code - the standard used across the State of Texas. However, to be assured of the competence of your electrician, ask the following questions before signing off on the repair contract:
- Are You Licensed to Practice as an Electrician in the City of QQQ?
- How Much Do You Charge Compared with Electricians in the City of QQQ?
- Do You Comply with the City of QQQ Building Code for Electrical Works?
- Will You Get the Electrical Permit as Required by the City of QQQ Code?
- What Kind of Electrical Services Do You Offer?
- Do You Offer Emergency Electrical Services in the City of QQQ?
- Do You Carry the Necessary Insurance Policy for Electricians in the City of QQQ?
Per Sec. 1305.151 of the Texas Electrical Safety and Licensing Act, no person or business can perform electrical work or install electrical appliances on any residential building unless the person or business is duly licensed. Violating this Act is considered a Class C misdemeanor, and it attracts severe administrative and civil penalties, including paying a maximum amount of $5,000 per day of the violation.
The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) is in charge of administering and regulating licenses in Corpus Christi. There are about eleven different types of individual electrical licenses issued by the Department, including apprentice electrician, journeyman electrician, master electrician, and residential appliance installer licenses. Interested persons applying for any of these licenses are required to have completed some hours of training under the supervision of a master electrician. However, these hours of training vary by license type. For example, to become a licensed journeyman electrician, interested applicants must have at least 8,000 hours of on-the-job training under the direct supervision of a master electrician. On the other hand, master electrician applicants must have held a journeyman electrician license for at least two years and must have completed 12,000 hours of on-the-job training under the supervision of a licensed master electrician.
Having satisfied these experience requirements, interested applicants can apply for electrical licenses by submitting a completed application form to the TDLR. In addition, interested individuals will be required to pass the necessary examinations, pay the required fees, and may be asked to submit an Experience Verification Form (PDF) alongside their application.
Inquiries regarding general licensing can be directed to the TDLR by calling (512) 463-6599. To verify if your electrician is licensed, you can utilize the TDLR License Data Search or contact the TDLR Customer Service at (800) 803-9202.
How Much Do You Charge Compared with Electricians in the City of QQQ?
While the average hourly rate of an electrician in Corpus Christi is around $24, this price typically differs depending on the nature of the work and the materials needed. The total cost will also vary depending on how long your job may take. Therefore, it is best to consider getting multiple estimates from electricians to compare prices so you can settle for a skilled electrician that is willing to work with your budget.
An electrician in the City of QQQ earns $50,950 annually. Provided below is the annual mean wage of electricians in Corpus Christi and a comparison of these electricians' mean hourly wages with those of electricians in Texas as well as other major cities in the United States:Corpus Christi Electricians Mean Hourly Wage$24.50Texas Electricians Mean Hourly Wage$24.69Columbus Electricians Mean Hourly Wage$22.93Indianapolis Electricians Mean Hourly Wage$28.17Charlotte Electricians Mean Hourly Wage$22.29Phoenix Electricians Mean Hourly Wage$23.86Philadelphia Electricians Mean Hourly Wage$36.95
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
It is essential to always ensure that the electrician you intend to hire is conversant with the Electrical Code regulating all electrical works in the City of Corpus Christi, which includes the National Electrical Code, 2017 Edition and the Electrical Code for the City of Corpus Christi. The provisions of these Codes are mandatory, and non-compliance is classified as a misdemeanor punishable with a maximum fine of $2,000. These Codes regulate the installation, repair, alteration, and removal of electrical, signaling and communications conductors, and raceways and optical fiber cables, amongst others. If you need assistance or clarification regarding the applicability of these Codes to your electrical project, you can ask your electrician, read the Codes, or contact the City of Corpus Christi Department of Code Enforcement at (361) 826-3046.
Will You Get the Electrical Permit as Required by the City of QQQ Code?
It is unlawful for any person, owner, authorized agent, or contractor to erect, install, enlarge, alter, repair, remove, convert, or replace any electrical system in Corpus Christi without the necessary permit required for the work. According to Section 14-207 of the city's Code of Ordinances, engaging in electrical works without a permit is a misdemeanor that attracts fines ranging between $200 and $2,000. However, not all electrical works in the city require permits. For example, permits and inspections are not required for installations, alterations, additions, changes, or repairs to any structure, which is being used exclusively for agricultural use.
The City of Corpus Christi's Development Services Department is responsible for issuing electrical permits in the city. You can obtain a permit by filing an Electrical Permit Application Form and sending it to the Department via email. Additionally, interested persons are required to pay the necessary permit fees. When the permit is issued, a copy of it must be kept at the project site until the completion of the project. Permit holders should note that they are responsible for requesting inspections on their electrical project at different stages of this project. These inspections are mandatory to ensure that the work is handled according to the Electrical Code. Inspections can be scheduled online through the city's Dynamic Portal or by calling the Development Services Department at (361) 826-3240 for assistance. After the necessary inspections, the electrical work will either be approved or the permit holder will be required to effect some changes to ensure compliance with the relevant Codes.
Inquiries regarding permitting and inspection can be directed to the City of Corpus Christi's Development Services Department either online or by calling (361) 826-3240.
What Kind of Electrical Services Do You Offer?
Electricians in Corpus Christi offer a wide range of residential and commercial electrical services to homeowners across different types of buildings. These services include but are not limited to electrical rewiring, troubleshooting, repair, remodeling, and installing electrical and lighting fixtures. Similarly, the cost of the services these electricians provide varies largely because of the scope of the work and their licenses. For example, hiring a master electrician can be more expensive than hiring a residential appliance installer. This is because a master electrician is licensed to install, maintain, or extend an electrical wiring system and the equipment used in connection with the use of electrical energy in, on, outside, or attached to any building. On the other hand, a residential appliance installer is only licensed to deliver, install, and connect appliances in homes. Hence, always ensure that any electrician you intend to hire is the best fit for the electrical work you want to be done.
Below are some common electrical services and their estimated costs in Corpus Christi:Electrical fixture installation for 120v outlet$120 - $135Electrical panel/wiring upgrade to 200 amps$1,650 - $2,170EV home charging station installation for 240 volts level 2 charger$925 - $960Residential electrical work$60 - $70 per hour, plus parts and materialsCommercial electrical work$77 - $84 per hour, plus parts and materialsElectrical work for home remodeling or addition$70 - $80 per hour, plus parts and materials.
Do You Offer Emergency Electrical Services in the City of QQQ?
In some cases, your home's electrical system may develop faults requiring immediate attention due to how dangerous they can be. Such faults include exposed live wires, power outages, burnt outlets, and electrical smoking, amongst others. When left unattended, such situations can become very inconvenient and possibly result in severe hazards. In some cases, such situations may begin from seemingly insignificant issues like flickering light bulbs. Therefore, it is generally advised to deal with any electrical issue you notice in your home as soon as you can. To help address such issues quickly, you can find electricians near you through third-party referral websites like Better Business Bureau and Yelp or consult friends and neighbors. However, endeavor to verify the license of any such electrician you find. To this end, you can utilize the TDLR License Data Search or contact the TDLR Customer Service at (800) 803-9202.
Many mishaps occur in the workplace, especially among construction workers. Hence the City of Corpus Christi makes it mandatory for all electricians to have commercial general liability insurance for bodily injury and property damage, with a minimum coverage amount of $300,000 per occurrence. Also, to avoid situations whereby they become partly liable for the costs of addressing workplace accidents and injuries during their electrical work, residents are advised to engage electricians who have been duly insured. The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that 123 construction workers, including electricians, died in workplace accidents in Texas in 2019.
How to File a Complaint Against a Bad Electrician in the City of QQQ
Most homeowners in the city of Corpus Christi have experienced various kinds of home improvement scams, such that home repair scams are one of the most popular scams across Texas. These scams can take different methods, such as electricians asking for large upfront payments and later disappearing with your money or doing shoddy work. Some scammers will claim to be from utility companies and threaten to cut off your power unless you pay fictitious overdue bills. For example, a scammer duped a Corpus Christi homeowner out of hundreds of dollars after pretending to be from a utility company. However, homeowners should note that these scammers keep coming up with different scamming methods, and it is essential for them to protect themselves. Regarding this, homeowners are advised to take the following precautionary steps when hiring an electrician:
- Get recommendations from family, friends, neighbors, or trusted individuals and institutions.
- Never give your credit card number, social security number, or personal financial details.
- Always verify the license of any electrician you intend to hire.
- Get estimates from at least three electricians so you can decide which offer best suits your needs. Also, ensure the estimates are written and include specific details on the electrical work you want to be done.
- Ask your intended electrician for a written contract that clearly describes the electrical project, when the work will commence, when it will be completed, and payment plans.
- Don't pay a large down payment or full payment upfront to your electrician until the work is complete and you have found it satisfactory.
- Take time to carefully read and understand the details of any document before signing it and ensure you keep copies of everything you sign.
Victims of electrical scams in Corpus Christi can file an online complaint with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR). Additionally, they can report the scam to the Texas Office of the Attorney General Consumer Protection Division online or by mailing a completed complaint form, available in English or Spanish, to:
- Office of the Attorney General
- Consumer Protection Division
- P.O. Box 12548
- Austin, TX 78711-2548
The Consumer Protection Division reviews the complaints received from consumers and attempts to mediate between them and the relevant businesses or individuals. However, this Division does not provide legal representation nor offer monetary compensations. For legal representation and financial compensation, consumers can seek legal advice from a private lawyer and possibly file a small claims lawsuit at the Nueces County Justice Of The Peace 1-2. Note that small claims lawsuits are only appropriate for matters involving at most $10,000.