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Perhaps it's a sign of the economy, but Canadians are spending more money on home renovations this year, according to a recent report by Moneris

 

Home improvement spending soared nearly 10 per cent in the second quarter of the year compared with the same time last year, led by sales of glass, paint, wallpaper and flooring. [Globe and Mail]

If you're planning a home renovation, here's some tips for success, and some mistakes to avoid:

 

  • Prepare: a detailed plan will not only keep you on budget, but on time as well. Also be sure to have written agreements with any and all contractors you hire.
  • Buy materials after planning: never buy any materials for a renovation before your entire plan is fully established.
  • Don't ignore any issues: especially important when you live in an older home, if you uncover plumbing or electrical issues during the renovation process, ensure you deal with them.
  • Take your time: don't rush a renovation just to finish it on your proposed time. Cutting corners will only lead to more problems and more money.
  • Careful who you hire: never deal with an unlicensed or uninsured tradesperson.
  • Don't do it all yourself: while you might think doing it all yourself will save you money, chances are outsourcing to a professional for a lot of things will actually save the most time and money.
Be sure if you're hiring a professional, always get it in writing and always understand your contracts!
As a homeowner, if you ever need to make a warranty claim, you’ll need to have proper documentation of the job. Plus, if you’re hoping to participate in one of the various government, utility or manufacturer rebate programs out there, you’ll need to have a legitimate signed contract to qualify. [Toronto Star]

 

If you have recommendations on contractors you've used for renovations, please feel free to share them with me on Twitter.

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