4 Hidden Costs to Watch Out for When Getting Bids from Electrical Contractors
For a new electrical project, the first thing a company needs to do is bring in local electrical contractors for bidding purposes. Once the process is underway, several bids are collected, including those that are irresistibly low. While it may be tempting to hire the contractor with the lowest bid, it is not recommended. This is because there are many reasons a bid from an electrical contractor might be particularly low and they can cost you a lot in the long-run.
Following are 4 hidden costs to watch out for when getting bids from electrical contractors:
1. Inferior or Fewer Products Than Expected
It is the responsibility of electrical contractors to provide materials for the projects they undertake. And like anything, there are both high-quality and low-quality electrical products available. Electrical contractors that lowball their project bid may use low quality products or the products that don’t match project specifications. Some contractors have been known to install fewer products than what was specified in the plans. Given their low bid, they do this to maintain profitability. As a result, the project suffers and the client gets a low quality solution.
2. Withholding Labor on Your Project
While some electrical contractors use fewer or low-quality products to cut costs, there are others that do it by starving a project of labor. They use different strategies to do this. Some contractors send fewer electricians to the jobsite than necessary, hence delaying your project. Others put work safety and quality at risk by pushing their electricians to get more done in less time than usual. Whatever the case, these practices to cut bid costs lead to big problems for the client.
3. Lack of Safety Protocols
This is another hidden cost to watch out for when getting bids from electrical contractors. Many inexperienced contractors don’t factor safety costs into their bid. This makes the initial bid cost seem low and attractive. However, you should always look for the safety protocols as jobsite safety is crucial to any construction setting. Lack of safety protocols in an electrical project can lead to high risk of human suffering due to jobsite accidents. Not to mention, it can also cause project delays and drive costs upward.
4. Employing Less Qualified Team
If an electrical contractor puts in a low bid, then it is likely that they will use less qualified team for your project and avoid putting their top electricians on the job. Contractors that do this often send their top electricians to a more lucrative job. A less qualified team of electricians on your project means increased quality and safety risks. So, you should watch out for this factor when choosing a contractor with a low bid.
It’s not always a bad sign when an electrical contractor puts in a low bid. However, bids that are irresistibly lower than others should be considered a red flag. An electrical project is a major investment for your company, so choosing a low bid isn’t always the right choice. By being aware of the hidden costs associated with low bids, you can ensure your project’s quality and safety as well as ensure a favorable return on your investment.
O’Donnell Electric is a full service professional and licensed General and Electrical Contractor that provides reliable, comprehensive and responsive service throughout Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Orange, Riverside and San Diego Counties. We specialize in Commercial,Industrial, and Residential electrical and general contracting. Contact us today at (866) 640-7873 for a free estimate!