The average consumer thinks of The Home Depot as “their store” for all things remodeling and home improvement. Most people probably don’t think of it as much of a “professional” supply house. Pros know different.
The Home Depot is, in fact, one of the best sources for professionals to buy materials, supplies, and tools. For many contractors, HD is the first place they go and usually the last. I’ll bust another myth while I’m at it: It’s not just builders, remodelers, and handymen who shop at The Home Depot. Trade Pros love it too.
I recently spoke with Dean VanLengen, the owner of Dean’s Electrical Service in Tampa, FL, and was surprised to hear that the majority of his purchases on everything an electrician needs to do his job no longer happen at traditional “to the trade” supply houses. He said that hardly a day goes by when he doesn’t find himself in The Home Depot at least once. He was happy to share some of the reasons why; some of them might surprise you!
5 Reasons Pro Electricians Love The Home Depot
1. You Can Buy More than Just Electrical Supplies
Electricians need much more than just wire, breakers, panels, and plugs to do their work. Electricians commonly need 2×4’s, wood screws, and spray foam too. They also have to stock their trucks with equipment such as drop cloth’s, ladders, garbage cans, and brooms. The Home Depot carries all of these. Dean’s words: “One stop shop.”
2. Home Depot Often has Lower Prices.
I was surprised to hear this from a professional electrician who’s been in business for more than twenty years. I would have assumed that the relationship built with trade-only suppliers would have afforded him enviable special pricing by now. I would have been wrong. The Home Depot consistently proves lower on a vast array of commonly purchased materials such as Romex wire and even electrician’s tools. On larger orders, a call to the Pro Desk will put a HD staffer to work on offering the lowest prices available.
3. More Convenient Locations
Kind of a “no brainer” here. A major city may have two or three locations for trade-only suppliers while The Home Depot could have more than a dozen. All pro’s know that time is money so being able to drive two miles to get what you need rather than 20 makes all the difference in the world.
4. Better Selection and More Brands
Another surprise to me was that many of the traditional electrical supply houses are often limited to stocking parts from only two or three major manufacturers. Since things like breakers and fixtures generally have to match existing manufacturer in a remodeling, repair, or rehab situation it can get very frustrating trying to find the right brand. I’ve seen this first hand with replacing breakers or adding circuits to a panel. The Home Depot has a much wider selection of more brands making the electricians job that much quicker and easier.
5. Quick Special Orders
While on the subject of what The Home Depot usually has in stock, Dean mentioned the speed with which they can get the rare item they don’t have. He said special orders are quick, often getting the needed item in his hands the very next day.
The Bottom Line
Pro electricians who don’t shop at The Home Depot might want to give it a try. It might make a major difference in your business by reducing not only your direct costs, but also overhead costs such as fuel, office staff, and time spent running for materials.
Disclosure: While I know that such a glowing article seems like a big old “advertorial”, and The Home Depot is a paying sponsor of Remodeling Guy (indirectly, through our ad network partners) the content of this post is pretty much 100% the opinion of a friend of mine who has been doing my electrical work and that of other customers in Tampa for a long, long time. I didn’t ask a loaded question either, I just asked where his business purchased supplies and materials and why; the above was the answer I received.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of The Home Depot. The opinions and text are all mine.