Canadian Contractor


May 13, 2015 News

CIBC poll has some good news and bad news for contractors

by Steve Payne

More Canadians say they will do some reno work on their homes this year (42 per cent) than last year (40 per cent). But budgets are down almost $3,000 compare with last year.

April 8, 2015 News

Yorkdale Mall catches flak for signs appearing to ban construction workers

by John Bleasby

Yorkdale Mall has now gone into damage control mode, saying construction workers are welcome on its premises and always have been. That’s better than “will be dealt with accordingly,” we think.

March 11, 2015 News

J.A.B.A. Construction, Saskatoon, in ‘white knight’ renovation rescue

by John Bleasby

Armed with an insurance payout, Janice Braden of Saskatoon hired a local contractor to repair the damage to her home caused by ice dams on her roof. But a so-called contractor took off with her money. It has taken J.A.B.A Construction and TrustedSaskatoon.com, among others, to bail Braden out of her renovation nightmare.

November 12, 2014 News

Quoted on a job and did not get it? Did you commit one of these Proposal Killer errors?

by Steve Payne

Mike Draper’s seven ‘Proposal Killers,’ if you commit one of them, will cost you profitable jobs you should have been doing.

October 22, 2014 Voice

On-site fire extinguishers: Yes, you have to have them, even for a small renovation job

by Alec Caldwell

Very few professional renovators give much attention to the issue of fire safety on the jobsite. Did you know that you are required to have fire extinguishers on your site, in locations that are plainly labelled, and that everyone on your site has to know how to use them?

October 15, 2014 News

Incompetence, greed and lies: Report into Algo Mall collapse blames owners, engineers, government officials

by Steve Payne

“Although it was rust the defeated the structure of the Algo mall, the real story behind the collapse is one of human, not material, failures,” said Commissioner Paul Belanger.

May 5, 2014 Voice

Opinion: Self-employed contractors in Ontario need to turf the Liberals on June 12th

by Alec Caldwell

“If the Ontario Liberals are allowed to form another government in Ontario, the Ontario College of Trades, a smoke-and-mirrors organization that can’t even tell us the truth about its policies, its backers and its agenda, will be here to stay. Vote NO WYNNE!”

April 8, 2014 News

Home renovators will become unemployed if Ontario College of Trades has its way with carpenters

by Alec Caldwell

Earlier today I took part in a protest at Queen’s Park by my CARAHS members against OCOT. Those hardhats on the ground in this pic all have “pink slips” attached. Which is exactly what OCOT would like to see happen when it forces the certification of carpenters, including renovators. Pleased to see PC MPP Garfield Dunlop holding a press conference with Tim Hudak on this issue.

February 26, 2014 News

American renovators talk about a boycott of Angie's List

by Steve Payne

Renovation contractors can find it much harder to close a sale once negative reviews of their work appear online. Angie’s List, based in Indianapolis, has angered so many contractors that a boycott is now a possibility.

February 14, 2014 Voice

Do you have a defective vehicle or trailer? Don’t make Smokey Bear’s day!

by Alec Caldwell

In Ontario, the MTO can take your truck away from you for a minimum of 15 days, which will certainly throw a wrench into every project you are currently working on.

February 14, 2014 Voice

Do you have a defective vehicle or trailer? Don't make Smokey Bear's day!

by Alec Caldwell

In Ontario, the MTO can take your truck away from you for a minimum of 15 days, which will certainly throw a wrench into every project you are currently working on.

August 28, 2013 Product

Wrapped laminate cabinets from Quebec: up and coming

by Steve Maxwell

Today’s best wrapped laminate cabinets allow very convincing wood grain reproductions of cherry, walnut, mahogany and dozens of other luxurious hardwoods. All for about half the cost of real wood!

August 21, 2013 News

How to hire the right painter: A general contractor's guide

by Steve Payne

Reaching for the Yellow Pages to find a painter is fine if all you want is the cheapest bid or someone to do mass production. But for most quality contractors, that is just too risky.

August 14, 2013 News

Illegal 'villa' on top of 26-storey apartment building in China might be world's most flagrant building code violation

by Steve Payne

The 8,600 sq.ft. structure looks like a craggy mountain-top mansion, surrounded by trees, rocks and shrubs. Presumably the tonnes of illegal construction materials all came up the elevator. We hope the builder booked it with the management office.

May 21, 2013 News

Why most renovations start in the kitchen… and what homeowners might be missing

by Steve Payne

What web search data tells us about how Canadian homeowners go about finding a contractor online

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.

February 12, 2013 Voice

Working for cash, some thoughts

by Alec Caldwell

It’s the homeowners. They are the ones that want to avoid the taxes, but it’s the contractor who is exposed to most of the risk.

December 11, 2012 Voice

Moving faster than cracking an egg!

by Alec Caldwell

It can take just seconds for you to die, if you fall off a ladder more than 10 feet high. In fact, 60 per cent of all such falls are fatal.