This past July, my husband and I celebrated 10 years in our home. Woo hoo! It feels like an accomplishment, and it should! Over the past decade, we’ve survived many, many renovations (small and large), and through it all, my husband and I managed not to serve each other with divorce papers.
No, seriously. We are NOT handy people.
We discovered early on that there are DIY folks and Do It For Me (DIFM) people – and we are firmly in the latter camp. In fact, we rely on professionals to tackle most of the handiwork around our home, because we recognize that it’s a good idea to, you know, stay married.
Of course, when hiring others to complete renovations, there’s always one temptation that must be overcome: the desire to cut costs – also known as “cheaping out”.
You know how it goes… you’ll receive a quote from a qualified professional that will be a little (or a lot) over budget. It unsettles you. So you’ll ask around for recommendations, and someone always knows a cousin of a friend who can totally complete your reno at half the cost.
Do you do it? Maybe, because a contractor is a contractor, right?
Not so fast. Whether you’re imagining the home of your dreams or are in middle of a major renovation, having the right plan and the right team of experts increases your chances of completing your project safely, on time and on budget. That’s why the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA) has teamed up with design expert Kimberley Seldon to create Power Your Reno.
Power Your Reno was created to showcase how important it is to consider the electrical implications early in the design process, and hire only a Licensed Electrical Contractor to do the electrical work. Electrical work can be complicated and, in most cases, it is an important part of any renovation plan.
I’ll be honest; we cut a few corners when we finished our basement. In fact, the general contractor that we hired offered to complete the electrical wiring himself. But we insisted on a Licensed Electrical Contractor and I’m so glad we did. He handled all the details when it came to wiring, permits and inspections. Plus, a Licensed Electrical Contractor is the only legal option when it comes to hiring for electrical work in Ontario.
Did you know that if you hire an unlicensed electrician and something goes wrong, you’re responsible? And, if an insurance claim can be traced back to work that was performed by an unlicensed electrician, the claim may be denied?
I’m not willing to gamble to save a few dollars, and neither should you. If you are hiring someone to do electrical work in Ontario, by law they must be a Licensed Electrical Contractor.
Visit Power Your Reno to discover how to combine the best in design and electrical safety to realize any dream renovation. You’ll find a wealth of tips and helpful resources, including 4 Questions to Ask when hiring a Licensed Electrical Contractor:
1. What is your ECRA/ESA licence number? (Hint: It should be on their business card, estimate and their vehicle.)
2. Will you provide me with a written cost estimate of the work that needs to be done, including electrical permit fees?
3. Will you provide me with references from projects you’ve done that are similar to mine?
4. Will you make sure to get a certificate of inspection when the electrical work is complete and give it to me for my records?
To find or verify a Licensed Electrical Contractor, visit findacontractor.esasafe.com. And to learn more about ESA and the importance of hiring a Licensed Electrical Contractor, visit poweryourreno.ca.
This post is sponsored by the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA). The opinions on this blog, as always, are my own.
Good info. We’re thinking of re-doing our basement (and adding a hottub out back!) so we know we need a bunch of electrical work done.
Yes things like electrical is not something to cut corners with. Everyone knows “a guy” that can offer a great deal. But that is dangerous & a very serious issue should something go wrong.
This will be a helpful post for us to look back on when hubby and I decide to take on our very first renovation .. which will hopefully be soon. Thanks for your tips Lena. I have this post bookmarked to refer to when the time comes
Excellent advice! You don’t want to play around when it comes to electricity.
Great advice and yes you are correct you need to protect yourself and your investment!
I wasn’t aware that hiring an unlicensed electrician would jeopardize your insurance coverage if something went wrong. Definitely will hire a professional for electrical. Thanks for this info
Thanks for sharing these awesome tips. We need to hire an electrician very soon.
Great Tips Lena! We are looking to renovate our kitchen soon and this post couldn’t have come at a better time. Now we know exactly what questions we should be asking when hiring a Licensed Electrical Contractor. Thanks!
Some wonderful tips here Lena! Thank you for the great post.
Love this “Do It For Me (DIFM)”. For most jobs I now need a handy man as I can no longer do much myself. There is no way to get around having an electrician when electrical work needs to be done, anybody else and it could be very dangerous.
I love doing a little Reno every few years hubby and i usually do all our own work !
Getting the right people is so important, hopefully we’ve learned our lesson after hiring some not so great contractors.
Always a good idea to have a licensed electrician do your work and also someone who has good referrals or done work for someone you know.
Good info. Renos can be so stressful.
Im lucky my nephews are carrying on their family construction business.
Thank you. My husband is very DIY competent but for areas where there are safety concerns like electrical I would rather hire a pro. Thank you.
Great advice. I am always extremely cautious when it comes to electrical issues.
I’m fortunate to have married a handyman, but sometimes I need to give some direction. Some good hints here.
Good advice. Thanks.
It will be 10 years in our house for us this year too. There are currently 3 men working in my basement – we’re taking out a supporting wall and adding a beam, so we went with professionals, and luckily we knew someone that was qualified! The one thing he doesn’t do is electrical, so we’re hiring my husband’s friend (a licensed electrician) for that. I’m so excited for the finished basement, you have no idea!
Design, safety and without crazy prices decor what we are looking for!
Great tips, wasn’t aware of some of the issues you mentioned.
Lots of good info here. Some I knew, some I didn’t. We will be renovating our kitchen, so a great read!!
Electrical safety and installation is serious business and not the place to cut corners for a few dollars . Cut the furnishing/decor budget or landscaping that you can always complete later. Thank you for the great info.
Great questions to ask – thanks for the tips!
Smart and creative use of space
I absolutely love that first pic with the tools. It’s beautiful
Safety is very important when doing your reno
Thanks very much for these helpful tips. We’re moving into another home next month and planning on making a few updates to it, so gathering as much helpful advice as I can right now.
Thanks for the info on renos. Safety is always important.
I need my kitchen renovated but I know it will be a pain in the butt to get it all done
We have two friends who are licences Electricians & will be happy when I tell them about your post. Building our garage 5 years ago, one of those friends did the wiring. We had installed all the bell & whistles are garage could ever need. The inspector ( sent by the county per the permit we got) was super impressed with the work. It is so important to get it done by a pro! Helps selling a house when you have all the permits and inspections included as well.
Things like plumbing and electrical need to be done by professionals….no cheaping out because it will cost you so much more in the long run.