Retail electricals bought on the job by electrician - no receipt

Electrician unable to repair broken fan. He went to electrical wholesaler and bought a new fan for us.

Electrician account included cost of fan, $115.
No receipt for fan provided.

Are we entitled to receipt for goods purchased on our behalf?

See ACCC website.

I would say yes and a copy should be provided if requested. The original may need to be kept by the tradie for their own claims such as for taxation.

Also, should the fan be faulty, one will need a copy of the receipt to make a claim against the retailer/wholesaler or manufacturer. One can’t rely on a trades person honouring a ‘warranty’ for installed electrical appliances.

It is worth noting that a electrican doesn’t necessarily have to charge you the same amount paid for the fan at the wholesaler. Experience indicates they will usually charge more to cover their own payment costs (a reasonable administration/processing cost).

Payment of the electrican account, including the fan, would indicate you have accepted the price for the service. Any cost disputes should have occurred before the payment was made and preferably at time quote for work was given.

There could be a number of reasons why a tradesperson is relucant to provide a receipt, these being:

  1. Unwilling to disclose the purchase price of the item. This can be overcome by stating that you understand that the tradesperson will mark up the bought price to cover overheads such as accounts or credit.

  2. Didn’t buy the item on the day of the installation, that being the tradesperson had stock which had been purchased in advanced and this may be days to months before installation. This may cause problems if a warranty claim is required as it may be some time post purchase that the item was installed. One may need to present the item receipt and evidence of installation date (and installed by an electrician) for any claims.

  3. There are multiple unrelated items on the order from the wholesaler and the trades person doen’t want you to know the prices for other items. This can be overcome by the tradesperson blacking out other items on the list.

  4. The tradesperson may think that you have to go to them if there is a problem…making you a repeat customer. You are not obliged to use the same tradesperson for repeat service especially if the tradesperson is licensed. Many larger contractors may send out different tradespersons for each new service call and it is not a valid argument not to provide receipt.

It is also worth noting that the tradesperson may not have a receipt but an completed purchase order form. This will be the case if the item is purchased on ‘account’ and a payment statement is issued at a later date. I am not sure whether such can be used for warranty claims, but it should be as it is evidence that the item was picked up on a particular date.

At the end of the day, you are the customer for the fan and have every right to ask for a copy of the receipt (or completed order) as evidence of purchase should a warranty claim be required in the future. It may be worth asking the tradesperson for a photocopy of the relevant document.


Thanks for this detailed and helpful response. :electric_plug: