Home Improvement Articles

Project-specific guidance and tips

Tap into an extensive repertory of interesting articles about renovation and construction. Should you DIY or outsource to a professional? How to go about a specific project? Should you renovate before selling? Access a wealth of expert-contributed posts on an exhaustive variety of topics, organized by convenient categories, so you can find spot-on information.

Latest Home Improvement Articles
7 Unique Home Decor Gifts for 2016

If you're tired of the same gift lists from year to year then look no further. We've scoured design catalogs and artisan craft hubs to bring you a fantastic and original gift list for 2016. This list is geared towards those who love home d cor items (especially Canadian-inspired items!). We've hit every price point to make gift-giving easy this holiday season.

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6 Things you didn't know about paying your contractor in cash: Contractors spill and tell us why paying for home improvements under the table is all wrong

The contracting industry is widely funded by under-the-table transactions. Homeowners who submit to 'cash only' transaction agreements may think that they are getting a deal. However, the reality is that under-the-table transactions do more harm that good--for homeowners and contractors alike. Cash only deals bring on a slew of problems for both parties including scams, economic insecurity, audits, and warranty complications, among other things. Contactors across the country agree that cash transactions completed to forgo taxes can only be prevented by homeowners.

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Yard Deck
Building a wooden deck in the garden 101: design options, extensions, and craftsmanship

You may have your dream deck envisioned, but do you know if you can trust that a contractor will execute it properly? TrustedPros has got your back. We've asked the experts and have come up with 5 tips to help you identify deck-building quality craftsmanship. And in case you haven't seen every deck design option out there yet, we've got a few more ideas to help you plan the best outdoor oasis yet! Learn about deck quality, outdoor structures, and deck designs inside!

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look out!
Fraud contractors are one step ahead of you - and this is how to outsmart them.

It's always a shock to hear about vulnerable homeowners who get scammed by contractors they thought they could trust. The truth of the matter is that these stories tend to follow the same patterns time and time again. TrustedPros is back with more advice for homeowners to avoid getting scammed. We cover common vulnerable targets such as high-demand markets, senior citizens, poor payment plans, and industry awareness.

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You'll never guess what the building material of the century is!

Builders relied on a simple building process 150 years ago. They took planks of wood, and nailed them together. Since then, the construction industry has moved onto new building strategies and new materials. We've seen iron, steel, and concrete take the forefront of home and high-rise construction. However, builders are starting the realize the virtue of simplicity, and nature! Laminated Timber products are prized for more than their aesthetic. Read on to find out about an amazing building material, and why you should build you next home with it.

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Are You Building a Monster Home?

Monster homes are taking the country by storm. Homeowners are building homes in excess of 5,000 square feet within mature neighbourhoods. These monster homes are tearing communities apart, destroying the character of old neighbourhoods, and drastically changing property values. As the home renovation industry in Canada continues to grow, homeowners need to familiarize themselves with the monster home problem and learn how to avoid it. TrustedPros recommends homeowners to double check their building permits, stick to their project, and aim to maintain neighbourhood aesthetic to avoid contributing to this growing Canadian issue.

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4 Reasons Why You Should Care about Licensing, Permits, and Trade Qualifications

Homeowners are often encouraged to find contractors who are qualified, licensed, permit holders. But are homeowners aware of the problems that can arise when they hire a contractor who doesn't fit the bill? Three different examples in this article help illustrate clear problems with hiring uncertified experts'. Although it may be cheaper to hire contractors who aren't totally legitimate, the harm that they could cause might be exponential.

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Four Compulsory Contractor Requirements that Consumers Need to Know About

Consumers may be led to believe that a certified professional is an expert at the job. However, this isn't necessarily true. Instead, consumers ought to know that certified professionals are more legitimate and legal than anything else. Nevertheless, the four qualifying certifications and requirements that help legitimize contractors and projects in Canada are often overlooked, misunderstood, or forgotten. This article helps clear up some confusion. It identifies the importance and tension around trade qualifications, licensing, permits, and Workers' Compensation Insurance.

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Professional Holding Hard Hat
Untangling Workers' Compensation Insurance Misunderstandings

Because Workers' Compensation Insurance (WCI) varies provincially, it's difficult to generalize homeowners' responsibilities when it comes to the contractors they hire. Since rules and regulations vary, some homeowners are unaware of the mandatory coverage obligations that businesses must provide for their workers. There are several misconceptions surrounding WCI policies for residential properties. This article debases common misconceptions within the industry by providing provincial standards in a comprehensive summary. Companies that do not follow these standards may be fraudulent businesses. As part of Fraud Prevention Month, we believe that homeowners should learn how to spot fraud businesses to save themselves from legal battles, additional expenses, and how to prevent the underground economy.

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Paying with Cash, and Dealing with Fraud Businesses

There are drawbacks when you choose to pay in cash. This article examines the drawbacks of cash deals in the contracting world. Some consumers have a hard and fast rule about strictly cash business: don't do it. Some consumers are happy to pay cash. Some consumers prefer to combine payment methods. This article discusses how to tell your contractor is running an illegal business. Inside are tips on how to identify legal and illegal cash deals via national legal business operating standards and tips from our trusted contractor community. Learn how to avoid fraud businesses and scams before you get on the bad side of one.

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