Magazine for professional home renovators.

Alec Caldwell

An update on asbestos, the silent killer, and home renovating

Many, many building products commonly in use before the late 1980s contain asbestos. The chances of you encountering asbestos dust during renovations or demolition work are extremely high.


2014 Blitz Results: Enforcement on new and young workers by Ontario Ministry of Labour

FIFTEEN young people between the ages of 15 and 24 were killed in workplace accidents in Ontario between 2009 and 2013. An appalling record. Any one of them could have been your son, nephew or grandson.

Will Ontario introduce their version of the Home Renovation Tax Credit?

Ottawa’s Home Renovation Tax Credit, in 2009, pumped $4.3-billion of extra work into our industry. Now, a similar idea for Ontario has at least reached the conversation stage.

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Posting photos of your jobsites online? Here’s how it can cause you serious legal problems…

It’s really tempting to whip out your phone, take instant photos of videos of your jobsite, and upload them to Facebook, etc. This can cost you. You’ve got to plan all online images of your work very carefully.

Don’t mess around with methylene chloride!

As if we don’t have enough to worry about from asbestos and lead, here’s another substance to avoid ingesting or breathing in, on the job site.

Correction: New Ontario Working at Heights Standard arrives April 1, 2015

CARAHS currently offers a fall protection training course for Ontario, and if you were to complete this course before April 1, you essentially have an extension period up to April 1, 2017, for Ontario’s new training standard for Working at Heights.

“How come it’s news when a contractor rips off a homeowner, but never when the reverse occurs?”

Alec Caldwell writes that he is sure the Ontario College of Trades is rubbing his hands in glee at the well-publicized story of GarCon Building Group stiffing its homeowners, employees and trades.

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A one-way bridge for Ontario and Quebec contractors?

Ontario contractors have to jump through numerous regulatory hoops to ever tackle a project in Quebec. Is the reverse true? Of course not!

What kind of cell phone etiquette do you or your workers use?

Don’t answer the phone at all if you can’t answer the phone professionally and courteously. If you can’t leave a professional voicemail message, have someone else record one for you.

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Reducing WSIB rates for self employed contractors in Ontario

A private members bill that would reduce Ontario WSIB premiums for owners/operators passed first reading earlier this month.