Magazine for professional home renovators.

Steve Payne

The best tradesperson dance video we have ever seen – by Weird Al Yankovic

“First things first – he’s a craftsman.” If you’re having a lousy day, or just happy it’s Friday afternoon, watch this Weird Al video especially dedicated to the renovations industry.

The Ontario College of Trades, directed by the unions, seems to be modelling itself after North Korea’s dictatorship

“The fuse is set, the Liberals have been re-elected in Ontario, and the OCOT is all set to expand its tentacles, hire more bureaucrats, increase the size of their University Avenue offices, increase their incomes, put in place great pensions, add an amazing health care plan and line their pockets with golden nuggets.

I’ve been working on a T&M basis for years, including charges for sourcing materials, and I have had no complaints

“I think it is just a matter of educating your clients to the process. Lord knows, they want to be paid fairly for their work, right?”

My plumbing ‘warehouse’ on wheels – just a GMC Savana – helps me avoid supplier runs 90% of the time

Having a fixed price list, such as StraightForward Pricing, in the service business requires a second component… you have to have almost all the basic parts of a typical residential home’s plumbing set up (excluding import parts and large fixtures) with you before you head out for the day.

Coaches corner

VIDEO: Contractor Coach Mike Draper’s best solution to our “Family Business” conflict-of-interest challenge

Conflicts of interest created by personal relationships are common in family contracting business. See how Mike Draper would solve this particular one.

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New code for seismic building in B.C. affects sliding door installations

Support beams are coming under particular scrutiny by inspectors in the Greater Vancouver Area, says Mark Cooper of Shakespeare Homes and Renovations, North Vancouver

HYFSiteLive, a superb website for DIYers, has lots to offer contractors, too has been launched by Rust-Oleum Canada, who bring you such well-known brand names as Tremclad, Varathane, EpoxyShield and Zinsser.

If you’re in the residential service business, then StraightForward Pricing is the only way to go

“The last thing you want is some customer standing behind you, looking at their watch and complaining that you’re too slow for their wallet.”

Minister, it is unbelievable that you have accepted this conflict of interest (at the College of Trades) and done nothing about it…

The Ontario College of Trades is about as democratic as the Republic of North Korea. It needs to stop congratulating itself about how it’s all about the trades being “self-regulated.” No contractor ever voted for any policy decision from the Ontario College of Trades, except for the handful that have been selected by their (mostly union) friends and (public sector) cronies for plum board or committee jobs. The self-regulation stuff is nothing but BS.

Having know Mike for many years, it was a surprise for me to see him venture into the referral business

“Follow-up is a major commitment and you have to do it, otherwise your credibility will suffer.”