Why you may not find us on Angie's List or Home Advisor.
Updated: Apr 17
Safe Current Electric is a local small business based in Winston Salem North Carolina. There is more than one process in finding a top-rated and trusted electrician. In this article, we look at a few reasons why the process of services like Angie's List and Home Advisor may never lead you to finding this electrician.
"Find top-rated, certified pros for your project" and "Find trusted local pros for any home project" are the headline calls to action on two of the most popular places for people to go to find a local, reliable, and trustworthy electrician like Safe Current Electric LLC. Angie's List and Home Advisor offer a service to customers and contractors; the service they offer is basically suggested business relationships. Since their inception, Angie's List and Home Advisor have been joined by many other search and find a contractor services like Yelp, Thumbtack, and BuildZoom...just to name a few others. All of these platforms collect fees from the customer looking for a contractor and from the contractor who has agreed to work with the agency sending them potential work. In other words they double dip; they do whatever they can to attract customers and contractors to meet at their place and collect money from both sides as they get admission to a hopefully successful job. This, of course, is a general description of the process, and each platform has different terms. Nonetheless, they are all comparable business terms that you have to weigh in like when you shop for a new cell phone plan. Some charge more now, some charge more later...but they all are going to collect one way or the other.
It can feel like taking a leap of faith for some in-experienced customers who need to find a good electrician or plumber or any other tradesman; likewise, it can be overwhelming to sort through the steps of a bid process for someone who is experienced and does not have the time or energy to communicate with a handful of different contractors. Needless to say, services like Angie's List and Home Advisor exist to help customers with those kind of obstacles. Contractors who have poor advertising, who are just getting started, or who are trying to grow also have a benefit with these services because they are providing the contractors with more opportunity.
There is another side to the process that these services offer that is not always advertised as much. For one, these services, in the end, cost the customer and the contractor more money. Both parties pay more money to find each other. For another, these services use their own proprietary rating systems that are more or less membership owned. This means that the ratings, reputations, and possibility of a customer finding the contractor and visa versa is "paid for" and controlled by the platform. Customers only see the ratings when they are "members" and contractors only advertise and benefit from their ratings when they are and remain "members". That is a grey area of credibility! Again, this is a generalization of all platforms, but if you do your own research, you will find that there are basic variations of what I am describing above in all of them. A crude way to summarize these more negative points is to label these services as "Contractor Pimps" because they basically sell their contractors' assets to the customers they attract the most and collect from both of them as best they can.
It is no surprise and may not be news to you when I now bring up additional no fee avenues that have surfaced across social media like Nextdoor and Facebook. It is now possible to ask your neighbors and greater community who they like without having to pay a finders fee for a referral. Additionally, for the cost of member fees or finder fees, anyone can research a business or individual on criminal records and background check services...if they felt that was necessary. Licensed contractors will always have their license registered with their State they are doing business in. Those licenses are going to be easy to check by yourself using the business owner's name or the "doing business as" name their license is registered as. In North Carolina you can do that online at the NC Board of Examiners of Electrical Contractors site.
Finally, if you wanted to review general ratings of an electrician within your radius of dwelling...you do not have to look further than Google Maps. There certainly are alternatives now, and they may just save you some stress and money in the process.
At Safe Current Electric LLC, I love keeping a balanced ratio of availability, quality service, and fair prices for every customer that finds and chooses my business. One of the ways I have achieved that ratio so far is by building an organic reputation that is not paid for and is not inflated by huge corporate advertising. Direct communication of electrician to customer without overhead is what I offer. The same guy that you meet and get a quote from is the same guy that will do the work and ensure customer satisfaction. That is the benefit of finding a local reliable electrical service company like Safe Current Electric. That is why you probably will not find this electrician's profile on places like Angie's List and Home Advisor...not that there is anything wrong with them ;-)