Q & A
All the answers you ought to question are right here.
P A Y M E N T
What payment methods are accepted?
BACS is the preferred payment method for invoices but cash, cheques or credit/debit card payments are also welcome.
You may pay an invoice by credit or debit card securely through the Stripe gateway; a link will be provided on your invoice email. There are no additional surcharges for card payments. If you don't trust this newfangled online payment thang and would prefer to make payment in person, I have a SumUp mobile chip-and-pin reader and can arrange to revisit with it. Mickey Mouse payment processors aren't accepted here (I'm looking at you PayPal).
When is payment due?
I don't ask for deposits or advances so, generally, for standard electrical work payment is due in full upon completion allowing you to see what you're paying for. On large projects such as rewires/refurbishments, staged payment will be applied to cover time and materials as each stage completes or at the end of each month for long ongoing work.
Because invoices are only issued for labour and materials delivered to date, immediate payment is expected unless other terms have been agreed beforehand.
I rent the property. Can I book work and have you send the bill to my landlord?
The person booking the work is responsible for payment when due. If you don't own the property, you would have to make arrangements to claim costs back from the landlord yourself such as taking it off your rent. Before booking work, you should check the landlord is happy to go ahead with the scope of work at the agreed price.
I'm a fellow tradesperson. If I get you to do the electrical work on my job, can you bill the homeowner directly?
Yes, but only if I have been introduced to the homeowner to discuss the job and we have agreed between us to make such an arrangement. Where no such pre-work agreement exists directly between me and your client, then the invoicing will be given to you as the person booking the work and immediate payment will be expected upon presentation. Even if you pass my invoice onto your client, the debt remains yours until it is paid.
How much will it cost?
There is no charge to come out to discuss work or to look at a job, however any site visit which involves opening the toolbox and applying specialist knowledge to undertake either faultfinding, repair or installation work will be charged for. Pricing is modular and based on the hourly rates as published on this website. These rates may also be applied part-hourly, so a site visit of less than an hour in duration will still incur the rounded hour charge making it more cost effective if you’re able to batch smaller jobs together. Work that is scheduled to our mutual convenience will be cheaper than an ‘escalated’ response which allows your job to jump the scheduling queue. If an escalated or emergency response is requested because you want it now, then the costs will be higher to reflect the priority service.
Why does the initial hour cost more?
The initial hour is priced higher than subsequent hours to cover the overheads outside of the time on site. Before I turn up all tooled-up and ready to knock on your door, time will already have been expended on any preliminary visits and discussions, quote preparation, travel time, fuel costs and identifying & procuring the required materials. It also covers the time spent after completion on site dealing with the disposal of recyclable materials and administrative tasks such as invoicing, certification and filing.
You've done work for me before, why am I being charged an 'initial hour' rather than a 'subsequent hour' rate?
Any work undertaken for a particular booked job will be charged at the cheaper 'subsequent hour' rate after the first hour even if these subsequent hours occur on different days. If you book a wholly new job which is unrelated to the previous work, then it will be assigned its own unique job number, will have its own time, materials and administrative duties booked to it and will be subject to its own initial-hour charge.
I called you out to find a fault but you haven't fixed anything. Why should I pay you?
If you require me to use my tools and expertise to investigate a perceived fault then you would be charged for my time regardless of whether any fault is actually found or whether you want me to further quote for any rectification work. As a business, I cannot volunteer my time for free troubleshooting unless it has been pre-agreed that I will be paid to fix the issue. I wouldn't pass on my expert findings for nothing just so some other idiot can ask their mate or a rival firm to put it right. Faultfinding doesn't come under any free quotation offer, you're paying to get an answer even if that answer is that all inspections and tests pass and no fault is apparent at that time.
Do you have a day rate?
A reduced rate based on a day figure may be applied to larger projects booked to run into multiple days such as a full house rewire, but for standard work the hourly rate applies. Day rates may vary and, where applicable, are applied at the quoting/estimating stage and cannot be applied retrospectively.
Any specials for trade?
I strive to provide competitive pricing, qualitiy materials and a high standard of workmanship to all my clients, however other trades that I partner with enjoy priority service.
Psst! How about a discount for cash?
No. Cash is a pain in the neck. The business overheads come out of the company bank account and I'm responsible for ensuring there's enough in there to cover the staff wages, pension contributions, insurance, supplier credit accounts, accreditation costs, accountancy, fuel and all those other pesky outgoings, so that's where the payment from any and all jobs needs to be. I cannot offer a discount when I will have already priced the job as competitively as possible. My rates as published or pricing as estimated will be as low as I'm prepared to go. My preferred payment method is BACS, not cash.
Can I claim back the VAT on your invoice?
David Savery Electrical Services Ltd. was VAT registered between December 2016 to end of June 2018, but de-registered from 1st July of that year as it was ruinous for a small contractor dealing with mainly domestic clients. Unfortunately, the gits at HMRC managed to snag me back onto their VAT racket from 01/05/22. Long story short, invoices issued from May '22 will be subject to VAT at 20%. So, yes. If you're a commercial entity, you can run my invoices through your books.
So, what's the hourly rate mate?
My guide prices are listed here on this website - and how many other electricians can you find who are upfront with their prices? Where an invoice lists an hourly or labour rate, please bear in mind this is not money going directly into my pocket to be blown on booze and hookers, instead it goes to the company and incorporates all the boring overheads such as insurance, accreditation, vehicle running costs, office running costs, training, tools, protective equipment, employee pensions, consumables, accountants and so on. For your money you're getting an NICEIC Approved Contractor who is polite (at least in person), turns up on time and who makes every effort to stick to pricing estimates. I supply quality materials, provide a no-quibble 24 month warranty on materials & workmanship, I'm fully insured and I work to within the wiring and building regulations. I strive for a high quality of workmanship and customer satisfaction. If you shop around, then you may find someone cheaper as there are plenty of people out there pretending to be electricians who don't come with all the assurances I'm armed with. What you're paying for when you hire me is the job done once, and the job done right. If you feel you're not prepared to pay my up-front advertised guide prices, then all I ask is that you don't take up my valuable time by asking for quotes or site visits.
I have electrical work that needs undertaking. Can you take care of it this afternoon?
In any given week there’s an average of about forty jobs on the to-do list. Some are temporarily stuck while waiting for materials or third parties such as builders or fitters but there are always jobs being tackled on a more-or-less first come, first served basis. If you want to jump the scheduling queue, then an escalated charge will apply. If it’s not an emergency and it can wait a few days then it’ll be cheaper to wait for a normal scheduled window to open. Like everything else in life, from plumbers to postage, carpenters to car mechanics, if you want it sooner, it’ll cost more. There's no such thing as quick and cheap!
Hey, hi, remember me? I’m the guy who wasn't home when I said I would be / expected something for nothing / took weeks to pay your last invoice. I need a quote for more electrical work, would you be able to come and take a look?
W O R K I N G H O U R S
Can work be booked for any day of the week?
I run this business as a 9-5 Monday to Friday operation. Bookings made outside of normal working hours can be made, albeit begrudgingly, but please be aware that out-of-office-hours working may be charged for at an escalated rate as listed on my pricing page.
How quickly can work start?
Booking tradespeople is notoriously tricky and I'm pretty bad at returning my messages, however I always keep my appointments once they've been made. An initial site visit and estimate can usually be performed quite quickly, but I may not be able to schedule a start date for work until days or weeks afterwards depending on how my diary looks. If it's urgent or an emergency call-out, then I'll do my best to respond quickly, but I won't compromise any current work in progress and cannot guarantee immediate availability. I also partner with other local specialists who I know to be trustworthy, qualified and insured when things are really busy or when extra pairs of hands are required. The busiest time of year is September to December when people kick off large building or refurbishment projects after the summer holidays and with a Christmas deadline. The quietest part of the year is around Easter at the end of the traditional financial year.
T Y P E S O F W O R K
Can you inspect, test and sign off domestic DIY work?
If you need electrical work, hire in a professional. I get called out to too many installations which have to be put right at additional cost because they were done badly in the first place. Rather than go down the DIY route, it'll always be more cost effective to get the job done properly from the start. If you have performed electrical work yourself or a non-qualified person has meddled with your shizz, then I certainly won't be putting my name to it on a certificate. What I can offer is inspection and testing of the work as a partial or full Electrical Installation Condition Report, but I won't provide an Electrical Installation Certificate or a Part-P Building Regulations Compliance Certificate for electrical installations I have not directly overseen from their conception, as to do so would leave me legally liable and be a breach of my NICEIC membership and insurance conditions.
Can you perform Electrical Installation Condition Reporting (a.k.a. Periodic Inspection Reports / landlord certificates)?
Yes. Please see my EICR page for details.
Do you repair electrical appliances?
I might change an oven or storage heater element, but generally if your washing machine isn't washing or your cooker isn't cooking then you should seek someone who specialises in appliance repair. My speciality is fixed building wiring, i.e. supply and communication circuits.
Do you install Solar PV or EV chargepoints?
I was MCS accredited for solar PV renewable technologies, but I came off the MCS database in 2014 as the expense and red tape required to maintain accreditation was too much for a general electrician. While I still offer maintenance services on existing PV installations, I now hand over installation work to a trusted local partner firm. If you're genuinely interested in having PV installed, please contact me and I'd be happy to refer you. When it comes to electric vehicle chargepoints, I can install them, but I'm not OLEV registered so you won't be able to claim the grant if you're entitled to such. If you're not eligible for a grant or you don't want some slap-it-on-and-leg-it installer to leave you with an ugly job, then EV chargepoints are not a problem. Other renewables are taken care of by a partner firm, so let me know if you have a genuine query.
S C O P E O F W O R K
I have a large project, can we agree a scope of works?
I always produce an itemised scope of works in writing for large projects such as a rewire/refurbishment so that all parties are aware of what the price includes. Any items missing or which have been misinterpreted can then be picked up on before work commences.
Can I alter the agreed scope of works?
Any additions or alterations you wish to make after a scope of works and price have been agreed may be undertaken, but such variations may alter the final pricing depending on the impact on time and materials.
Can I order my own materials for a job and have you just provide the labour?
With my trade wholesalers, I can get great pricing on quality branded parts with the materials I provide warrantied for 24 months as I always source decent hardware to ensure I don't lose out on warranty call-outs. My mark-up on supplied materials is 10-25% which covers the cost of shopping around, ordering in & stocking items, transportation to site and dealing with warranty returns on the rare occasion that such is needed. You may choose to source your own materials, however they must meet British or equivalent European standards and be suitable for the job. If I find they're not suitable for whatever reason, then I reserve the right to refuse to perform the requested work. Materials I haven't supplied will not be guaranteed or warrantied in any way by David Savery Electrical Services Ltd. In the event of a subsequent fault or failure post installation, any call out for fault-finding or repair will be chargeable unless it can be proven that the issue was as a result of poor workmanship, e.g. failure to follow manufacturer installation instructions, damage caused by incorrect application of tools, etc.
What are the terms and conditions?
The T&C's relating to a specific job will be listed on the scope of works, however where work has been appointed without an agreed scope of works or, where not explicitly listed on the scope of works, then the standard terms and conditions listed here will apply.
R E F E R E N C E S
Do you have any references or testimonials?
I don't publish testimonials on this site, simply because when I read them on other sites I always suspect they've been made up. If you want to see examples of my work or to talk to past clients I have performed work for in the past, then I'd be happy to put you in touch with them directly once I have obtained their permission to be contacted.
Where can I read/write reviews?
External review aggregators listed on my Reviews page allow user submitted feedback to be written and read by others. Feel free to leave an honest review, but in the unlikely event that you feel your experience to be a negative one, please contact me first and give me the opportunity to make you happy! Unlike others, I won't pester you for reviews once I've packed up my toolbox and cleared off.
What are your accreditations and qualifications?
See my About page for a list of the professional bodies I am currently registered with. You can look up my company on the websites of the listed organisations to ensure my registration is current and I'm not being a big fibber. Any work I perform will always be covered by one or more of these bodies and I am assessed to ensure ongoing compliance with their codes of conduct, qualification requirements and standards. My most relevant and recent qualifications are also listed on the About page.
Are you registered with any rated/trusted trader web directories?
No. As I explain in this blog post, these sites do not properly vet their members, nor do they take responsibility should the relationship between a trade and customer go sour. The service they provide is little more than the Yellow Pages with customer feedback; and the charge to appear on such a middleman site ends up passed back to you, the end client. Despite the 'rated' and 'trusted' names often employed by these directories, traders registered with them may have done so because they don't actually have a reputation that stands up on its own and they need a quick way to hook in new customers. I'm properly vetted through my membership of NICEIC who provide you with an additional workmanship warranty and formal complaints procedure should such be needed. The only directory services I do appear on are ordinary listing sites such as Yell, Thompson Local and FreeIndex who do not charge me to be listed or pretend to champion consumer rights.
Are you insured?
Yes, I am fully insured for both professional indemnity and public liability.
I thought you were accredited through NAPIT?
I was a member of NAPIT between November 2012 to May 2016 when I switched over to the NICEIC Approved Contractor scheme. I decided to leave NAPIT after I felt they weren't taking their own responsibilities seriously enough. More on that here. My membership with them formally ended on 1st December 2016. If you are looking at old business cards, certificates, stationery or website articles of mine, then you may well see my company showing the NAPIT logo which was valid at the time. For a list of organisations I am currently accredited with, please refer to the About page on this website.
R E C Y C L I N G A N D D I S P O S A L
How do you deal with waste?
I am a member of Warwickshire County Council's commercial recycling scheme which came into being at the end of 2014. I've been an avid recycler since long before the kerbside collections began in 2008 and, under the terms of my permit, I can now remove recyclable waste from any job I am appointed to perform and dispose of it at the Princes Drive recycling plant. Regretfully, I am unable to remove non-recyclable waste from site as I may be fined for doing so under a breach of my Waste Carrier Licence conditions, I therefore leave non-recyclables to the site contact to dispose of sensibly. For more details, you may refer to my waste disposal policy.
C E R T I F I C A T E S
When will I receive my BS7671 or Part-P paperwork?
Although the details for the BS7671 certificate will be available to me upon completion of works, please allow up to seven days from the receipt of payment for me to process your certificate. Your Part-P notification, if applicable, will be submitted to NICEIC at the same time and they will inform Local Authority Building Control of any notifiable work. Your Building Regulations Part-P certificate should then arrive within thirty days if a paper copy is required, or can be provided immediately after submission in electronic (PDF) form via email.
Can I get a duplicate copy of a certificate or a report you issued previously?
You will be automatically issued with the relevant BS7671 certificate and, where applicable, a Part-P certificate for any work I perform, however if you subsequently lose this paperwork you can request additional copies. Be sure to provide details of the address the work was performed at so I can find the correct certificates from my records, along with a return address the certificate(s) should be sent to. Please allow up to 14 days for delivery. An administration fee may apply regardless of how many certificates need reprinting. Reprints can also be requested if you were not the person who commissoned the work, i.e. if you've just bought a house you know I worked on and the previous owner didn't pass on the certificates but you require copies for your own records. For data protection purposes, duplicate certificates can only be sent to the person who paid for the work or to the physical address of the property where work took place.
F R E E A D V I C E & B L O G
I read one of your free advice/blog articles. Can I make a comment on it?
The Personal Blog and Free Advice sections of this website consist of informal opinion pieces written in good faith and are not representative of the views or policies of the limited company entity of David Savery Electrical Services Ltd. If you wish to make a comment regarding the content of any of the published articles on this website, then please email me and I will choose whether to alter or expand an article, with or without credit, based on your feedback. I reserve the right to amend or unpublish any articles at any time. Any advice followed by the reader is done so at your own risk and neither I as an individual nor the company of David Savery Electrical Services Ltd. will accept responsibility for incidents, accidents or unfavourable outcomes of any action you choose to take after reading and then choosing to replicate in whole or in part any of this content. Any quotations within the Free Advice section are intended to be used under a policy of personal use. The use of any Trademark or Copyrighted material is not intended to infringe Copyright. All original content on this site is Copyright of David Savery. All rights are reserved. Linked and quoted content is Copyright of the respective owner(s). I have no control over, nor am I responsible for, the content of any other sites, or any other products or services that may be offered through other sites.
Can I quote you on that?
If you quote any content from www.dses.uk, please link back to the associated page or to the homepage of this site. If you wish to use any content from the Free Advice or Personal Blog sections, please contact me first. Copyright infringement will be pursued. I'm quite the git when people rip me off.
A D V E R T I S I N G
Advertising on this site is wholly private and consists of referral links which benefit you and me. I used to have Google Adsense on here, but they got stupid and greedy as Google always does.
Any print advertisment claiming to represent David Savery Electrical Services Ltd. should be verified for authenticity, particularly if different contact details are given to those on this site. I never participate in leaflet drops and rarely run advertisment campaigns in publications other than the local parish magazine.