Help protect yourself and your home by knowing what your rights are before starting home renovations. Your home is your biggest investment, learn how to hire a reliable contractor and see what you need to include in your contract with them.
Ask the right questions:
- Can I get a reference from people who have had similar work done in their homes?
- Will my estimate be included as part of your contract?
- Do they have an HST number?
When you’re looking to hire a contractor make sure to:
- Make a list of exactly what you want to be done. Remember that changing plans in the middle of a project will cost extra money.
- Set a clear budget.
- Ask for recommendations from friends and neighbours.
- Consider dealing with a local company. This may make it easier to check references, enforce a warranty or have follow up work done.
- Get written estimates from at least three contractors.
- Remember that a good contractor will ask a lot of questions so they can understand and plan out the project.
- Ask the contractor if they carry full and proper WSIB and Liability Insurance.
- DO NOT go for a deal that sounds too good to be true.
Before you sign a contract for home renovations or repairs, remember to:
- Check the Consumer Beware List to see if there are any complaints or charges against the contractor.
- Check with the Better Business Bureau, Chambers of Commerce and your city for any information they may have on the contractor.
- Get a written estimate or contract before the works begins.
- Never pay the full amount of the contract before the work is done. This will help ensure that the contractor will finish the job. It will also protect you from losing money if the company goes out of business or declares bankruptcy before finishing your project.
- Ask if the contractor for a copy of their liability insurance – Very important!