Home upgrades a key factor in our economy
Kitchen are among homeowners' top choices for upgrades and contributed to over $63 billion spent on renos last year.
By: Bryan Tuckey Special to the Star, Published on Fri Jul 11 2014
Canadians love their home improvement projects.
We've experienced an amazing 15 consecutive years of annual spending increases on home improvements, according to a recent housing report by Altus Group, a Toronto-based global real estate consultant.
Among the factors for the climb are: a growing stock of aging homes; changing consumer preferences; and a big increase in media exposure of home renovations and the industry.
Another factor, especially for the GTA, is a lack of land supply which has been driving up prices for ground-related housing. That has led homeowners and renters to stay in their homes and renovate.
The Altus report said that the rise in reno spending will continue, and noted it expects about three per cent growth for this year and 2015, both nationally and in Ontario.
During the past five years, the average annual renovation cost per occupied housing unit (rental and owned homes) was about $4,600 a year, up from $2,500 between 1994 and 1998.
About $63.4 billion was spent nationally in the residential renovation industry last year. That's more than was spent across Canada on new residential construction. In fact, that figure represents about 3.7 per cent of total gross domestic product.
Renovations can add value to a home when they're made by the right professional. We recommend that you visit renomark.ca, where you will find Canada's top contractors.
Founded by BILD in 2001, RenoMark is a program that was designed to bring professionalism and integrity to the renovation industry. Each RenoMark contractor agrees to abide by a renovation-specific code of conduct and a code of ethics. The program is in nine provinces and more than 40 communities across Canada, and there are about 200 RenoMark renovators, trade contractors and custom builders across the GTA.
As well as providing a written contract, RenoMark renovators must return all phone calls within two business days; offer a minimum two-year warranty on all work; carry a minimum of $2 million in liability insurance; and provide a detailed written contract or scope of work for all jobs.
BILD's renovator members are our top advocates and ambassadors for the program. But don't take my word for it. Look for a RenoMark renovator today and you'll find a top professional who will be well-suited to create your dream kitchen, add that new bedroom you've wanted for years or remodel your bathroom.
Use renomark.ca's searchable database by region and type of project. In addition, check out the website's RenoGuide list for helpful tips.
Bryan Tuckey is president and CEO of the Building Industry and Land Development Association. Follow him at twitter.com/bildgta , facebook.com/bildgta , and bildblogs.ca.
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