Before You Begin

If you're planning to renovate your home, here's the information, ideas and practical advice you need to do it right, from Canada’s professional home renovators.

The CHBA is the national organization representing the professional renovation industry from coast to coast. The Canadian Renovators' Council of the CHBA is committed to helping homeowners make confident and informed decisions about their home renovations. This site is designed to help you get off to a great start.

This is your introduction to the renovation process - how to get the information you need, who's who in renovation, and some of the things to consider before you get going.

Advice From Homeowners - Thinking about renovating your home? Wondering what it takes to get the results you want, without stress and worry? Who better to ask than people who have already done it? Here is advice based from homeowners who have completed major renovation projects, including bathroom and kitchen upgrades, additions and whole-house renovations. Find a renovator you can trust and are comfortable with This is crucial to a good renovation experience. You need to check out the renovator thoroughly. Ask lots of questions when you meet. Talk with previous customers. Visit past or current projects - you want to feel that "if the renovator did something like that in my home, I'd be very happy". You also need to be confident that the company is financially stable and will be around in the future. And while it may be hard to define a comfortable personal fit, you need to feel "in your gut" that you can trust and work well with this person. Find out what services the renovator offers…

Read Full

Golden Rules - The Canadian Renovators' Council of the Canadian Home Builders' Association offers a number of golden rules to help renovating homeowners achieve their goals. Know what you want Take the time you need to explore the possibilities for your home and develop a firm plan. Begins with the fundamentals - what do you need and how you want your "new" home to look, feel and work for you and your family. Once you have a clear idea of the "big picture", your renovator will help you work out all the details. Set a realistic budget Decide as early as possible how much money you want to spend - this allows you and your renovator to focus on the work that is doable within that budget. Experienced renovators can provide sound cost advice and recommendations. Sit down with your lender and discuss the amount you can reasonably afford and the most suitable financing options. Remember that your budget should cover everything that may arise from the renovation, including such items…

Read Full

Get the Information You Need - Home renovation is a multi-billion dollar industry in Canada that includes public and private organizations, professional and industry associations, manufacturers and suppliers, financial institutions, and dedicated renovation professionals from coast to coast. If you are thinking about renovating your home, there is a wealth of information and assistance available from many different sources. It can help you to decide what you want and how to get it, and ensure a successful renovation that you will enjoy for years to come. Most of this information is free of charge or available at a modest price. The Greater Windsor Home Builders Association provides the list of renovator members and information on the renovation process - CLICK HERE to find members. The GWHBA also organizes Windsor-Essex's Premier HOME SHOW where you can access up-to-date information, quality renovators, special promotions, and much more all in one convenient location - visit www.homeshowwindsor.com for more information.…

Read Full

Who's Who in Renovation - Once you have decided to have renovation work done on your home, you want to find the right people to help you plan and carry out the work. Whatever the nature and scope of your project, there are many experienced people who can help turn your renovation ideas into a successful reality. A renovation contractor, or professional renovator, usually gets involved in a wide range of projects - large and small, interior and exterior. Renovation contractors work with you to turn your ideas into reality, and they coordinate all aspects of your project-permits, materials, workers, subtrades, supervision and inspections. In other words, a professional renovator puts it all together for you. A specialty renovation contractor is a professional renovator who specializes in a particular aspect of home renovation, such as kitchens and bathrooms, sunrooms or window replacement. Some contractors focus on renovations for special audiences, such as homeowners with environmental sensitivities. A design/build…

Read Full

Consider the Needs of Your Home - Before making firm plans to put in a new kitchen or add the sunroom you have always dreamed of, it's a good idea to take a close look at the condition of your home. It's important to know if there are any underlying problems or repairs or replacements that need to be dealt with in the near future. With a clear picture of the condition of your home, you can budget for both the short and the long term. Here is what you can typically expect to find in an older home: Wear and Tear Many items that suffer the most from normal wear and tear are not necessarily expensive to redo or replace, but can make a big difference to the appearance of your home, and your enjoyment of it - for instance paint, wallpaper, carpeting, floor finishes, exterior and interior trim, stairs and eaves. Components reach the end of their service life Many of the products in your home have a defined lifespan. Careful maintenance may extend this somewhat, but sooner or later you need to replace them. For instance,…

Read Full

A Home Inspection Can Help You Plan - A home inspection can provide you with the information you need for a well-planned approach to renovation and home maintenance. Consider: A pre-purchase inspection of a resale home assesses the condition of a home you may consider buying. Is it structurally sound? Which repairs or replacements may be needed immediately or in the foreseeable future? When you buy with the intent to renovate, an inspection can give you a realistic impression of what is needed to bring the home up to the standard you want. If you have lived in your home for a number of years, a complete inspection can give you a snapshot of the condition of your home - a solid starting point for a full plan of renovation and ongoing home maintenance. A common reason for renovation cost overruns is the "unexpected". An inspection will help to reduce surprises that can throw your renovation budget and schedule off track. For instance, an inspection can help identify particular problems needing immediate attention such…

Read Full

Get the Most for Your Renovation Dollars - For the vast majority of homeowners, renovating entails balancing what you want and the financial resources you have available. Professional renovators suggest a number of approaches that can help to stretch your budget. Set Priorities Cost-wise renovations begin with defining clearly what you want to accomplish to be sure that you are covering all the important requirements. The whole household should be involved in the planning process - what is really needed and what would be "nice to have"? How will your needs change over the years? Discuss your ideas in detail with your renovator, who can offer sound advice on costs and approaches. Look closely at what you already have Professional renovators can help you discover the hidden assets of your home. For instance, homeowners sometimes assume that they need extra floor space when all that may be needed is more effectively designed space. By rearranging interior walls, eliminating separations and installing larger windows, the…

Read Full

Building Permits - If you are like most homeowners, you may not be familiar with building permits or even aware that you might need one for your renovation project. Here are some of the ins and outs of building permits. Why do I need a building permit? Your home renovation must meet basic requirements for health, safety and structural soundness as set out by building codes for your area. Beyond this, the permit process makes sure that your plans are in line with other municipal requirements, such as zoning regulations and heritage building designations. When do I need a permit? Generally, a building permit is required for renovations that involve changes to the structure or systems of your home. This includes new additions, reconfiguration of space by moving or removing walls, new window and door openings and installation of fireplaces. Electrical and plumbing permits may also have to be obtained separately. Some repairs and renovations may not require a permit. These include re-roofing, painting, re-siding,…

Read Full

Financing Your Renovation - Once you have decided to renovate your home, you need to determine how you will pay for it, and how much you are willing and able to spend. If you intend to borrow money for your renovation, it's a good idea to talk with your lender before you starting making firm plans. Find out how much you can borrow and what options are available to you, and get pre-approval for your loan. Then you know how much you have to spend and are better prepared for detailed discussions with your renovator. Even if you intend to pay cash from savings or the sale of assets, consider talking with your lender first-you may do better by borrowing the funds for your project. Here are some of the options for financing your renovation project. Personal line of credit This is one of the most popular financing options for smaller renovations and is also ideal for on-going or long-term renovations. With one application, you establish a revolving credit line that you can access at any time, up to your approved limit.…

Read Full
Loading...