My friend is an electrician. Each job is priced differently, according to estimated hours and equipment costs. He has software which is widely used in the industry, and it gives quotes on each job from just a little input. Apparently there isn't a lot of difference between master electricians because they all use the same software. If they're not master ones though (who get inspected more often) then there might be more variety in quotes. At least that's my understanding of it!
Most will charge you by the hour. If they have to do a lot of fishing of lines thru the walls, then he might be there longer.
I've had electrician's charge me as little as $35 an hour (cash), to $100 an hour (weekend call out cost). I like my $35 guy, as he doesn't mark up his materials, and often just uses what I give him to use.
My advice: don't distract him with jabber while he is there if he is charging by the hour. Let him work and get done with the job.
I know most tradies here will do free quotes - maybe similar there? then you can get the best idea. My partner is a plumber and he works for the best plumbing company in NZ in 2008, so of course they charge almost double to a plumber who just does it for himself. It's really too hard for any of us to say (especially me, I'm in NZ).