Magazine for professional home renovators.

Steve Payne

“It’s not what you ask for, it’s also how you ask.”

Here’s a Sales 101 story to remember the next time you have to ask anyone for anything, including a customer.

“If you are going to achieve better margins you will need to do more than just increase your mark-up.”

Presentation is everything. Presentation is everything. Presentation is everything.

“33 per cent gross margin? Lean and mean is the flavour of the day”

Nickel N. Dimeless divides his jobs, on paper, into two parts: (1) His real cost to do the job (2) The hoops and hurdles he will have to overcome from government and regulatory agencies.

“Good on Jim Caruk for his Renos for Heroes organization”

Popular radio personality contractor Shell Bussey weighs in on the Caruk versus Holmes debate started by Alec Caldwell

Tree Permit

Toronto tree protection nonsense drives contractor crazy

A contractor emailed us the comical BS he recently had to go through, all because he wanted to build some porch stairs slightly within a “tree protection zone”


Fill out our Canadian Contractor Salary Survey and you could win an iPad!

Your responses are strictly confidential. By filling out the survey, you will get some good insights into your own business. And did we mention the possibility of the free iPad?

Coaches corner

The Rule of One Third: Are you making a minimum of 33 per cent gross margin?

Markup on direct job costs (labour and materials) to reach One Third gross margin (33 per cent) is 50 per cent.

“My Worksafe BC assessment for commercial refrigeration and A/C is $1.76 per $100. How does that compare?”

We are working on a story on different worker’s comp rates, in different areas of the country (where applicable). We invite you to post your comments and, if you wish, your rates.

“What happened to the government sting operation in Alberta?”

One year ago, the Alberta government set up a pair of entrapment houses – one in Calgary and one in Edmonton – to lure contractors onto the premises to try to get them to agree to do illegal work. Seven of 24 contractors who visited the houses were charged.

“There are bad developers… but bad subtrades, too.”

Obviously, not everyone thinks developers are “greedy scumbag thieves” as one subtrade posted here last week.