Currently some areas of Canada are experiencing "hot" real estate resale markets. This often may cause a boom in new home construction as well. These conditions may sometimes create a falsely overpriced housing market. Then add to this situation the fact that some new home owners are not particularly satisfied with the quality of their new homes. This has resulted in a lot of homeowners who were thinking of selling their current homes and repurchasing looking for some serious alternatives. One alternative is a home renovation.
A renovation may solve a myriad of problems found in many older Canadian homes (e.g., the requirement for additional bathrooms, upgrades to existing kitchens and baths, solarium and porch additions). Whatever the reason, a good quality home renovation project by a professional contractor may solve a homeowner's immediate needs and provide a solution to his/her housing problem.
While many homeowners are proud to show off their new home renovation, others are often shaking their heads in disbelief having been the recipients of either poor quality workmanship or substandard materials.
There a two common reasons why some renovation projects get "out of control":
- Some home owners accept a renovator's proposal without checking out the renovator's "track record" first. This process involves a few simple steps (see below) to determine if the contractor has the skill and experience needed and a history of satisfied customers. Making sure that a renovator consistently delivers professional results to customers is the best way to avoid hiring someone who "seems like a nice guy" but turns out to be the wrong person for the job.
- Some home owners, hoping to save money, hire nonprofessionals who offer to do the work without a contract, at cut-rate prices, or to "forget the GST" if paid in cash. Not surprisingly, individuals who operate this way frequently shortchange customers by delivering shoddy or incomplete work and no warranty. And without a written contract, there's not much the home owners can do about it.
Avoiding these two mistakes will help you find the right renovator for your job.
There are several steps to a successful home renovation; planning and research are key.
Many homeowners do not realize that municipal building permits are required for most projects and that specific building codes should govern the renovation.
We encourage homeowners to ensure their renovation contract includes a clause that stipulates that all applicable building permits will be applied for by the renovator and that the renovator will adhere to all building code requirements throughout the project.