Get it in Writing
WHY A WRITTEN CONTRACT MAKES SENSE
Having a written contract gives you control over your renovation or construction project, and is a good way to protect yourself and ensure long-term satisfaction.
STEPS TO PROJECT SUCCESS
Working with a good contractor and a written contract will help ensure your building or renovation project goes smoothly — every step of the way. Learn how
Home renovation and construction is a complex process. As a consumer, you need to know where you stand, and that your interests are protected. Information and a written contract are two of the best ways to ensure that your home renovation or construction project goes as smoothly as possible — and offer you the best protection if it does not.
There are many things you should consider before signing a contract and beginning work. Go through the informative sections listed below and you'll be ready to launch your project.
HIRE A PROFESSIONAL
Finding the right professional contractor to meet your building or remodelling needs is important. It helps ensure the construction project is completed to your satisfaction, while providing you with confidence throughout the process.
Using the following hiring process will help you establish and maintain a good working relationship with your contractor and make the homeowner and contractor responsibilities clear to both parties:
- Determine the Type of Contractor
Learn about new home builders, renovators, installers, specialists and tradespeople.
- Locate Contractors
Where is the best place to find the right professional? Find out here.
- Interview Contractors
Find out what you need to ask, and download an interview worksheet.
- Check References
Learn how to evaluate a contractor through talking with past customers.
- Get Bids
How to ask for, review, and evaluate formal bids from short-listed contractors.
- Get it in Writing
Know what you need to cover to ensure professionalism and protect yourself.
- Making Changes to a Contract
Learn about contingencies, change orders and hidden deficiencies.
When renovating your home, or building a custom new home, you want your project to go as quickly and smoothly as possible. How can you ensure this happens? While you can never guarantee perfection, you can take control of the project with a written contract, and use available information and tools to put yourself firmly in the driver's seat.
Do Your Homework
There is a lot to know about contractors, contracts and construction. Being informed is the best way for you to keep things on track, and achieve the results you want. Learn more about how to Get Informed.
Get It In Writing
Having a written contract helps to give you control over your renovation or construction project from the outset, and is one of the best ways to protect yourself and ensure long-term satisfaction. You should continue to be keep everything in writing for the duration, including receipts for all payments, and any change orders if you decide to alter plans. A paper trail is good — it helps to prevent mistakes and misunderstandings. Learn more About Contracts and Making Changes to a Contract.
Get Some Help
For larger more expensive renovation and custom home building projects, you should also have the draft contract reviewed by your lawyer before signing.Try our Documents and Resources section.
Follow Up on Warranty
Professional renovators provide a clear written warranty on their work, and custom new home builders often provide a third-party new home warranty (Note: this is mandatory in some provinces). If you are not satisfied with an aspect of the completed project, follow up on warrantable items in a timely fashion. It is your right — and they should make it right!