How can we report people who are building homes without a licence?

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Posted by: from Port Hope
11/9/2014 at 12:29:45 PM

Who do we report contractors to that are not licensed to build homes and do electrical, plumbing, etc in the home?

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Steve from OMC Contracting in Kitchener
Date/Time11/9/2014 at 2:16:44 PM

Hi Steve,

Is this effecting you or your life in any shape or form, and how is this your business? For many people license is a-man for others knowledge and years of experience is what counts.

Relax and take a drink.

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Date/Time11/9/2014 at 2:32:01 PM

Hi Steve,

If it's not your property, or changing the way you live...

You shouldn't worry about it you will just create a big migraine to you and your family.

How do you know they're not licensed?

They can do plumbing and electrical as long as they get it inspected by master licensed trade.

Enjoy life it's too short!

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Date/Time11/9/2014 at 2:37:35 PM

The easiest way is to find out the names of the contractors. If you can't thats ok.

Go to your local city where the work is being performed and let them know.

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Steve from OMC Contracting in Kitchener
Date/Time11/9/2014 at 2:50:25 PM


You are life saver. How would I survive without you prior you were born?

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G A Fraser Custom Contracting Inc in Norwood
Date/Time11/9/2014 at 3:43:35 PM

Tarion are the people to contact for new build. All contractors building new homes should be registered with them. You can contact them at

If you have the address of the property they will send someone to investigate; there are massive fines for unlicensed contractors building new homes.

You can also try the Ministry of Labour to investigate whether the contractors are licensed and insured to be working in construction.

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Steve from OMC Contracting in Kitchener
Date/Time11/9/2014 at 3:53:40 PM

All brains are popping up. Yahoooooo!

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Date/Time11/9/2014 at 7:33:10 PM

To start if it's not your property or affecting your health or costing you money you should mind your own business. There's always one like you in every neighbourhood. There are many rules and regulations that can result in not needing a license to build a house. A builder or even someone building their own house can take out an electrical and a plumbing permit. That's why there are inspectors. They make sure things are done correct.

I'm quite sure you have skeletons in your own closet you can deal with rather than create trouble for someone else. It's a shame that we don't have a rating system on here for customers like what we have for us. It sounds like a case of jealously to me and of course I am sure you're not telling the whole story here. This could very well backfire on you and cost you a pile of money and a law suite.

PS: I am a tarion licensed builder and like many licenced guys we don't have the time of day for people like you.

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Henry from A.W.C Projects in Vancouver
Date/Time11/9/2014 at 10:15:58 PM

Hello, responding to your ad.

I am going to have to agree with Al's comment and Darren's comments. If it is really not affecting you and if the builder is getting an inspector to inspect every stage than hey, things are properly getting done. In this day and age people are just trying to make a living and as long as they are not hurting nobody or ripping off any customers then they are just trying to make an honest days pay.

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TrustedPros Inc. in Toronto
Date/Time11/11/2014 at 2:57:12 PM

We're a little confused and concerned by some of the responses provided to Steves question. We would expect that as licensed contractors - as we are assuming you all are - would have no problem providing valid and useful responses instead of attacking him.

We often have conversations with contractors that are troubled about the 'underground economy' and how it's impeding on their ability to operate a legitimate business. Unlicensed and uninsured contractors do not carry the same overhead costs of a legitimate business which allows them to undercut businesses like yours. Wouldn't you want these individuals held responsible and exposed for their actions?

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Mark from CMJ Renovations in Oakville
Date/Time11/12/2014 at 11:10:13 PM

Customer Support

You are 100 percent correct. I was surprised by several comments by other contractors, frankly I am sick and tired trying to do every thing above board, insurance, licences, permits, etc to be constantly undercut by some guy who owns a mini van who thinks he knows what he is doing and making a quick buck, the only way to get rid of these fly by night guys is call your local building depts and ESA and report them.

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Date/Time11/13/2014 at 9:54:24 AM

Wow! What a great forum!

I completely agree with Mark and Customer Support. I can't believe the responses.

For the record, if you are 10 years old and your Mom or Dad let you drive their car in a parking lot does that count as "experience"? If you keep doing that for the next 6 years can you skip getting a license and drive around on the streets because you have "years of experience"???

I think a lot more people would be Doctors if you didn't need to worry about that silly license and insurance and schooling!

Steve, you absolutely need to be licensed and insured both with the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) and with Liability Insurance (both of which are expensive).

If your project is valued at over $50,000.00 it MUST be registered with the Ministry of Labour. Failure to do so is a $50,000.00 fine for a corporation or $25,000.00 for an individual owner operator.

Most municipalities require you to have a business license. Here in Toronto all Builder / Renovators require a license. In order to get that license you are required to take an oral exam at the licensing offices and submit a criminal records check as well as all of your business documents and your proof of insurance.

As a contractor you are required to be registered with WSIB (without exception) and depending on the trade you are in are required to submit a certain percentage of your labour costs in order to remain compliant (again, there is NO exception in the Construction Industry).

You can report unlicensed companies to the Municipal Licensing and Standards office in your town and to the Ministry of Labour, and to WSIB.

No legitimate contracting company could care less about defending these illegitimate "companies" out there that steal projects and the livelyhood of both the owners and staff of the companies that do what they are required to do. They SHOULD be reported and SHOULD be fined as they have pocketed enough money by not paying for anything that they are required to that they can afford it.

If they cannot trouble themselves to get licensed and registered, what are they possibly doing to their Clients homes? Unfortunately they will keep getting work because they can always be "cheaper". And in response to one post: we would all survive A LOT BETTER without the scammers!

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Date/Time1/9/2015 at 9:07:07 AM

Before you start on the comments by some of the contractors, maybe Steve should be giving more information. Is he a contractor? Or is he an employee fired by this contractor? Is he a contractor with a reputation for doing bad work?

Where's his proof of what he's complaining about? That's the problem now a days, right away the complainer is right and the contractor is a crook.

I'm one of the fortunate contractors who was brought up in this business being a 4th generation contractor and was taught to do it right and never cut corners.

Building a new home in Ontario you are required to be licenced by tarion. But there are situations where you don't have to have tarion. Mabe this is one of them.

We are all commenting on a subject without knowing all the facts. So in reality, none of us commenting are either right or wrong


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B. Vince from BVM Contracting in Toronto
Date/Time2/26/2015 at 9:59:07 AM

It's funny. I just typed in everyone's business name in WSIB's eclearance website and not one of the responders above (except for Jason) is registered with them. It's pretty simple to do, just type in the name of the company, and it will show if they are eligible or not.

Such a simple tool for the public to use. Chances are if they do not carry WSIB, they probably do not carry Liability Insurance either.

Also, a General Contractor is not licensed to do Plumbing or Electrical, they hire licensed individuals to carry out this work for them (sub-contract). You can go onto the ESA to check their approved Electricians, and for plumbers you can go to

to check on their credentials.

Hope this helps!

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G A Fraser Custom Contracting Inc in Norwood
Date/Time4/10/2015 at 12:12:50 PM

In response to BVM Contracting's post.

You are absolutely within your right to point out the uninsured contractors - however, please ensure you have all the facts. My company has always been licensed with CGL & WSIB - we are one of the good guys!

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Date/Time5/31/2018 at 8:04:20 AM

I agree having a General Contract License is the backbone of the construction world. You take away that right when the city lets these underground construction guys work build, and renovate then destroy's your home and runs away with 95% of your hard earn money.

As a certified and licensed Contractor. I am tired of seeing home owners get fined for simply not being aware of the issues the industry faces. this is why i am willing to help other contractors to get license and certified

if you live in the toronto area please give me a call 647 551 7527 i don't care who you are. if you want your contractors license i can help you get it. guaranteed or your money back.

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