The LHBA feels that it is important to educucate and protect our fellow Londoners by continuing to point out the dangers of The Cash Deal. We have asked both the federal and provincial governments to step up on behalf of homeowners and create a permanent tax rebate for home renovations, along the lines of the temporary home renovation tax credit that was briefly offered as a recession-fighting measure.
The big advantage of such a mechanism is that homeowners are given an incentive to use legitimate contractors as receipts have to be provided to qualify. This paper trail would disqualify the cash-only operators, support legitimate professional renovators and protect homeowners. Let's be honest, if a construction contractor offers to take cash and not charge you the 13% HST, you're going to be tempted. Who wouldn't be? But did you know that it makes you liable if a worker is injured? Or that you will have no recourse if they do a shoddy job?
RenoMark ™ professionals provide detailed written contracts, warranties AND insurance coverage so you can't be sued if there is an accident. Use a RenoMark professional - Be protected and do it right the first time.
Being frugal is admirable but just think about it. Is it worth the potential savings ? When depending on the size of the project, and a potential of a lawsuit, it doesn't make sense to put your family in such a risky position. Yet, it still happens.
Here in lies the problem -
You can't have a written contract with a cash deal. It's the contract that specifies the work to be done, completion date, responsibilities of the homeowner,contractor and the proof of insurance. Without this valuable document, it’s the homeowner who is liable and could be sued should a worker be injured in their home. It also is the only proof of the contractor's involvement, should the workmanship not be of suitable quality.
With a Cash Deal the homeowner also doesn't get a building permit or city inspections. This means that even years later, when a homeowner tries to sell their home or have new work done, the cash deal can backfire with an order from a city inspector to rip down walls to prove a past renovation or addition was done safely.
There have also been instances where a homeowner, who decided to oversee the construction of their new home, in Richmond Hill was fined $20,000 for a violation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act that resulted in the death of a worker in their home.Whether from lack of awareness or diligence, the resulting tragedy will affect many lives for years to come. The $20,000 fine was likely a hardship for the homeowner, but think of the emotional trauma of being responsible for such an accident.
The LHBA office receives calls on a regular basis from Londoners who unknowingly agree to do business on a handshake and a promise. We don't like our neighbours and friends not being protected or not getting their expectations met and we dislike our industry being tarnished by the conduct of underground contractors.
Renovations are what dreams are made of - there's nothing more exciting than having your dream realized. Picturing a open concept kitchen/family room where you can cook and still interact with the kids? How about the luxury of a 'spa' master ensuite? It's all possible.