Magazine for professional home renovators.


Seeking the Trifecta of Material Purchasing

Every time we make a purchase, we look for the Best Value, Best Price, and Best Service. It’s only natural. People may say that you can only have 2 out of 3, but…

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.


Trying to make your Ontario WSIB payments by cutting your private insurance? A bad idea – and here’s why…

Ontario WSIB can be extremely expensive. But abandoning your own, private, individual sickness and disability insurance – just to help pay for hour WSIB – is going to absolutely kill you financially if you get cancer or another critical illness

Bleasby flat roof

From commercial pilot to general contractor: (9) ‘Roofer madness’

“I’ve taken quite a bit of ribbing over our decision to build a house with a flat roof… But the technology is proven.”

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.