Canadian Contractor


June 11, 2013 News

Can ClubLocal become the "Amazon of home repair"?

by Steve Payne

Club Local is funded by wealthy publicly-traded owners, and the website promises homeowners needing repairs that they can track the whereabouts of their tradespeople “in real time.” And that the trades hired online will do their work for “below market” prices. Good luck with that.

June 10, 2013 Voice

Is the home renovations industry starting to boom again?

by Alec Caldwell

Stats Canada says it is. Online home improvement referral companies have never been busier. And the lineups at Timmies at 7 am have never been longer. That last statistic is the one that cinches it for me: We are in a boom!

May 28, 2013 News

Training opportunity for Winnipeg contractors in the HVACR industry

by Steve Payne

The opportunities on the mechanical side of the construction industry, throughout Canada, are huge. If you are thinking of moving into a new field, HVACR is worth a look.

May 21, 2013 News

Has your reno work been slammed by a customer online?

by Steve Payne

Two weeks ago, our online columnist Alec Caldwell (president of CARAHS, the Canadian Association of Renovators and Home Services) wrote an opinion piece that argued that online consumer review websites should mediate in cases where homeowners have slammed their renovators

May 21, 2013 Voice

Maxwell’s rant: Why government spreads

by Steve Maxwell

The Ontario College of Trades, with its mandatory annual fees for plumbers, electricians, etc., is just the latest example of how governments naturally keep spinning tighter and tighter webs of regulation.

May 21, 2013 Voice

Maxwell's rant: Why government spreads

by Steve Maxwell

The Ontario College of Trades, with its mandatory annual fees for plumbers, electricians, etc., is just the latest example of how governments naturally keep spinning tighter and tighter webs of regulation.

May 14, 2013 Product

Build-it-Yourself Learning Centres opening at Lowes

by Steve Payne

The BiY Learning Centres concept was founded by TV renovation star Jim Caruk. After operating independently in recent years, they have now been picked up by Lowe`s Canada which is adding BiY Learning Centres to some of its stores in Southern Ontario

May 14, 2013 Voice

VIDEO: TV renovation gurus breaking safety rules again

by Alec Caldwell

When celebrity contractors such as Mike Holmes can’t get it right on the safety issues, there’s no doubt that we have a Culture of Silence when it comes to health and safety in our industry

May 2, 2013 Video

Home inspection: a new revenue stream for you?

by Robert Koci

Home Inspection is a growing industry for which renovators are well suited

April 29, 2013 Voice

Mold and contractor liability

by Alec Caldwell

Most contractors’ general liability insurance policies do not normally cover them for mold issues.

April 25, 2013 News

The case for flat-rate pricing for service and repair work

by Steve Payne

“Until flat rate pricing becomes the industry standard – and realistically that would take a long time to bring about – there are bound to be customers who will ask how much you charge ‘per hour.’ “

April 25, 2013 News

April 30 tax filing deadline: Who can claim self-employment

by Steve Payne

The tax advantages of declaring yourself self-employed are obvious. But be aware that Ottawa has four specific rules for the definition of “self-employment.”

April 23, 2013 News

That housing market crash everyone's been worrying about? Looking less likely.

by Steve Payne

Housing starts up slightly. Fears of a Canadian real estate crash, which were widespread in the media just a few months ago, seem to be easing.

April 9, 2013 Video

The Mike interviews: Part 6

by Robert Koci

A big knock on Mike Holmes is that he doesn’t have a certification in any trade. Does it matter? Maybe not.

March 27, 2013 News

Ontario College of Trades undermines federal government's funding of skilled trades, Stop the Trades Tax lobby group says

by Steve Payne

Federal politicians are plowing money into skilled trades training. But in Ontario, the McGuinty government decided to force skilled trades people to pay fees to belong to a “College of Trades” that will offer no classes and train no workers whatsover.

March 13, 2013 News

Looking for a terrazzo tile or marble installer?

by Steve Payne

Successful contractors know their own strengths and know when to hire a qualified sub to get the best results.  But finding the right people who meet your high standards for quality and professionalism can be a challenge.  One source too

March 12, 2013 News

Renovators staying busy across Canada, CHBA Pulse Survey says

by Steve Payne

Once again, bathrooms and kitchens were the most requested projects during the past year

March 5, 2013 News

Apprenticeship ratios making the trades shortage worse

by Steve Payne

The organized sector is making the trades shortage much worse than it should be. And qualified applicants, who want to work, can’t get jobs.