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!