How much do electricians cost? | The cost of hiring an electrician in Australia | 2023

October 2, 2023

Welcome to our latest blog post where we explore the cost of hiring an electrician in Australia. Navigating through the various pricing structures and understanding the costs involved in electrical work can often be a complex task. It's important to ensure that not only is the work high quality to avoid future safety hazards, but also that the total cost is within your budget. 


Australia has its own set of rules and regulations regarding electrical work, and prices can vary greatly based on location, the nature and complexity of the job, and the experience of the electrician. In this post, we will break down the different aspects that contribute to the cost of hiring an electrician in Australia, offering insights and tips to help you make an informed decision. 


From understanding call-out fees to hourly rates and quotes for specific jobs, we've got you covered, ensuring you feel confident in hiring an electrician for your needs. Join us as we have a look at some of the costs and provide some practical advice for engaging the services of an electrician.


What do most electricians charge per hour?

electrician cost

If you’re hiring an Australian electrician, you can expect to pay between $75 and $105 per hour. This hourly rate does not include parts, fittings, components, wire and other material requirements for your project. It also does not include any call-out fees or other costs associated with completing your electrical job. It's also important to note that this is a broad estimate and rates can be significantly higher, especially for urgent or more complex work.


In major cities like Sydney or Melbourne, electricians’ hourly rates might be on the higher side. For after-hours or emergency services, electricians might charge a premium rate, which could be up to $150 per hour or more. It's always a good idea to ask for a detailed quote upfront to avoid any unexpected charges. Furthermore, some electricians may also charge a call-out fee, which covers their travel and time to reach the job site.


To ensure you're getting a fair deal, it's advisable to collect and compare quotes from multiple electricians. This practice not only helps in understanding the cost breakdown but also in making an informed decision. Despite the costs, prioritising licensed and experienced electricians is essential for ensuring the work is carried out safely and up to standard, safeguarding individuals and properties alike.


How much do electricians cost per hour in each Australian state?

There are a range of factors that mean hiring an electrician in one state or territory can cost more or less than hiring an electrician in another. Large infrastructure projects in the transport, mining, oil and gas sectors in Queensland, New South Wales and Western Australia mean that hiring any tradie in those states is likely to be more expensive. But expertise with electrical systems, wiring and controls is even more universal than some trades, which means electricians have the freedom to choose between residential and industrial work in a lot of cases. 


Doing your research helps, and understanding the general differences between states means you can make an informed decision for your own electrical project. Here’s what our research has told us about the cost of hiring an electrician in each Australian state or territory:


State or territory

Estimated hourly rate

New South Wales

$95 - $105 per hour


$95 - $105 per hour


$85 - $95 per hour

South Australia

$75 - $85 per hour

Western Australia

$90 - $100 per hour

Northern Territory

$75 - $85 per hour


$75 - $85 per hour

Australia Capital Territory

$85 - $95 per hour


As you can see, there can be quite a significant variance in costs from state-to-state, so it’s good to understand why that happens so that you can account for additional costs in your electrical project budget.


How much do common electrical jobs cost?

how much do electrician cost

Electricians perform a wide array of tasks. Below is a breakdown of the approximate costs associated with some common electrical jobs. Keep in mind that costs can vary based on the location, complexity of the job, and the electrician’s experience.


Common electrical task



Electrical property condition report

$250 - $400

This assessment checks the safety of the electrical installations in a property. This can often be done as part of a general property inspection report, but sometimes a specific electrical condition report is required.

Installing new light fittings

$80 - $350 per fitting

This includes removing the old fitting and installing a new one. Costs can increase based on the complexity and design of the fitting.

Installing new power points

$150 - $250 per power point

The exact cost depends on accessibility and the type of power point.

Electrical rewiring

$4,000 - $15,000 for an entire house

The cost depends on the size and age of the property.

Installing ceiling fans

$150 - $350 per fitting

Prices can increase for fans with additional features like lights or remote controls.

Upgrading a switchboard

$700 - $1200

Necessary for homes with old fuse boxes to ensure safety and compliance with current standards.

Installing smoke alarms

$100 - $250 per fitting

For smoke alarms that are hard-wired into existing circuits. Installing battery powered alarms does not require an electrician.


Before hiring an electrician, it's a good practice to get multiple quotes for the work you need to be done, and ensure the electrician is licensed and insured. The actual costs might be higher or lower than the estimates given above, and it's always best to have a detailed discussion about the costs before proceeding with the work.


What factors impact the cost of electrical services?

The cost of hiring an electrician can be influenced by a number of different factors. Some of the key elements that can impact the cost include:


  • Location: the cost can vary greatly depending on your location within Australia. Generally, urban areas may have more competitive pricing due to a higher number of electricians, while remote or rural areas might have higher costs due to limited availability.
  • Experience and qualification of the electrician: highly qualified and experienced electricians might charge more for their services compared to those with less experience or fewer qualifications.
  • Scope and complexity of the work: the extent and complexity of the electrical work required can also significantly affect costs. More complex jobs that require more time, expertise, and materials will generally be more expensive.
  • Materials and equipment: the cost and quality of materials and equipment used will impact the overall cost. If the job requires specialised or high-quality materials and equipment, it will likely be more expensive.
  • Travel time: if the electrician has to travel a significant distance to reach your location, they might charge more to cover their travel time and expenses.
  • Timing: urgent or after-hours services may incur additional fees. Electricians may charge higher rates for work done outside standard business hours, on weekends, or on holidays.
  • Regulatory compliance: ensuring that the work complies with Australian standards and regulations can also influence the cost, as compliance may require additional work, documentation, or inspections.
  • Warranty and insurance: electricians who offer warranties on their work or who are insured might charge more, as these provide additional protection to the customer.
  • Company overheads: electricians from larger companies might have higher charges to cover company overheads, compared to independent contractors or sole trader electricians.
  • Size and reputation of the contractor: established companies with a solid reputation may charge more for their services.


It's important to obtain detailed, written quotes from multiple electricians to understand the breakdown of costs and ensure you are getting value for your money. Ensure that the electricians are licensed and insured, and consider checking references or reviews to gauge the quality of their work.


What is the average call-out fee for an electrician?

The average call-out fee for an electrician in Australia can range significantly based on location, time of day, and the nature of the work required. As a general figure, electricians may charge a call-out fee of around $50 to $90, but this cost can increase for after-hours or emergency call-outs.


The call-out fee compensates electricians for their time, travel, and expertise in assessing your electrical issue. It is charged to cover the cost of the electrician coming to the job site and assessing the work needed. Without this fee, electricians might spend a considerable amount of time and resources providing quotations and assessments without compensation. It ensures that they are paid for their time and expertise, even if the customer decides not to proceed with the work suggested.


Even though the initial call-out fee might seem like an additional expense, it ensures that qualified professionals are available to assess and address electrical issues promptly, potentially preventing further damage or hazards. It is always advisable for individuals to inquire about the call-out fee and other potential costs upfront to avoid unexpected charges and ensure that they are hiring a licensed and insured electrician to complete the necessary work.


How much does it cost to replace a light switch or power point?


The cost to replace a light switch or power point typically falls within the range of AUD $150 to $250. The exact cost can depend on various factors including the type and complexity of the switch or power point, the accessibility of the wiring, and the rates of the electrician you hire. This price generally includes the cost of the new switch or power point, the labour for removing the old one and installing the new one, and the call-out fee.


It is crucial to hire a licensed electrician for such tasks to ensure the work is performed safely and to the required standards. Attempting to do electrical work without proper qualifications can be extremely dangerous and is illegal in Australia. It can also void your home insurance policy.


When hiring an electrician for any work, it’s a good practice to obtain quotes from multiple providers to ensure you are being charged a fair price. Ensure the quote covers all aspects of the job, including parts and labour, to avoid any unexpected costs.


How much does it cost to install a ceiling fan?

The cost for installing a ceiling fan typically varies between $150 to $350. This price range accounts for the labour and the call-out fee but generally does not include the cost of the ceiling fan itself. The exact cost depends on various factors including the complexity of the installation, whether new wiring and switches are required, and the electrician’s rates.


If the installation involves additional wiring, placement in a hard-to-reach area, or integration with a lighting fixture, the cost could be at the higher end of the scale. Similarly, if remote control or advanced features are involved, additional work and therefore cost may be required. It's also important to note that prices can be higher for installations that require adherence to specific safety standards and regulations, or if additional fixtures and fittings are needed to support the fan.


How much does it cost to install an RCD or circuit breaker?

Better known as “safety switches” or by their Aussie moniker “Clipsal switch” (so named because the ubiquitous devices were manufactured by the Adelaide-based company Clipsal), residual current devices (RCDs) or circuit breakers are a safety device that switch off electricity automatically if there is a fault. These devices are now mandatory for all new homes, sold homes and rented homes in every state and territory in Australia. In some states, like New South Wales, you can’t alter, upgrade or add to your home’s electricity circuits without adding an RCD (per circuit) if you don’t already have them. 


This can sometimes represent a “hidden cost” for the owners of older homes as electricians will need to install these devices before being able to undertake any additional work. You can expect to pay between $100 and $250 for a new circuit breaker, regardless of what else your electrician is doing, though they may be able to reduce the labour component if they can roll the task into the other work they are completing. 



Understanding the various cost elements associated with hiring an electrician in Australia is essential for budgeting and ensuring quality and safety in electrical work. In 2023, prices for common electrical tasks such as replacing a light switch or power point generally range from $150 to $250, and installing a ceiling fan can cost between $150 and $350. The call-out fees, which average around $50 to $90, contribute to these costs, covering the electrician’s time, travel, and initial assessment.


It’s crucial to prioritise hiring licensed and insured electricians for all electrical work to ensure adherence to Australian safety and quality standards. Unlicensed electrical work not only poses serious safety risks but is also illegal, potentially leading to further complications and costs down the line. Always inquire about the complete cost breakdown, including call-out fees and potential additional charges, and consider obtaining multiple quotes to ensure you are receiving fair and transparent pricing. 


Remember that the cheapest option is not always the best; prioritise quality and safety when hiring an electrician, ensuring the long-term safety and functionality of your electrical systems and devices.


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