Editor’s Note: This post by Canadian Contractor reader Chris Langman is probably the scariest, most accurate version of the truth about the “under-the-table” debate that we have ever seen on this site.
“So much of the discussion this year is about “legitimate” contractors.
Who is legitimate exactly?
Is it the contractor who will gut the quality of their workmanship and overall quality of their product in order to stay competitive and comply blindly with every government program, fee, tax, insurance, etc?
Or, is it the contractor who is willing tell a dead and bloated government to “#### off” and work outside the rules in order provide their customers with affordable rates?
Look around. Everything you buy is poorer quality than it was 25, even ten years ago, and it costs twice as much! “Legitimate” contractors are becoming thieves by sacrificing every ounce of quality they can in order to make a buck. When driving by a construction site, one will often see seven people standing around operating one shovel and they get to take winters off either by faking injury or milking EI.
When government gets so bloated from internal decay, I would say the “legitimate” contractors are the ones you won’t find on government radars, provided that they are still offering the end-user a “legitimately” high quality product.”
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And here is a one of the reponses to Chris’s post, from Lars Winter
“@Chris Langman, You sir, have a point. It is a frightening concept. Wander through Vaughan (north of Toronto) and see who is building these $80,000 pool cabanas I am designing. It isn’t our legitimate guys. But the work is stunning… it is all off the books I would expect.
There is your evidence. However, these are just old school Italian craftsmen trying to stay alive I would expect. They aren’t trying to make a point – just doing what they have to to put food on the table.”