PEOPLE // London // Protect Your Home


Fall 2018 // Lend your ear to good advice on protective measures for the house.

OUR HOMES London Fall 2018
A version of this article originally appeared in the Fall 2018 issue of  OUR HOMES London and Middlesex County, p.52. Find local businesses in our London directory.

You may have built or renovated the house of your dreams. Make sure you pay attention to the necessary protective measures that will keep it that way.
What electrical issues should be addressed during a reno? Aluminum wiring, if handled incorrectly, can be an electrical hazard. Proper terminating methods and materials are required to limit risk. Also, watch for hidden joints or junction boxes under drywall or flooring, improperly sized wire, incorrect termination of conductors and anything that is not code compliant.
What common mistakes do people make? Doing the work themselves. Electrical should not be a DIY project! Mistakes can cause fire, injury, even death. Other mistakes include performing work without a permit, failing to have it properly inspected according to Ontario Electrical Safety Code standards and cutting corners to save money.
What are the consequences for someone who does not pay proper attention to electrical? Damage to property, such as fire, and injury to themselves and/or others including shock, even death in some cases. As well, most insurance companies will not cover damage to property or person caused by electrical installation done without a permit or inspection

What should a homeowner keep in mind when planning new landscaping? Don’t overplant. Plants and trees will spread and fill in areas in just a couple seasons. As well, pay careful attention to soil type and sun exposure when choosing plant material for a garden install.
Name a few problems that can result from poor landscaping decisions: Grading issues need to be addressed first. If the property has not been properly graded, water will not be guided correctly away from your home’s foundation. Planting trees too close to the house can also cause problems down the road.
How does good landscaping protect a home’s value? A nice landscape around a property can add significant value. Curb appeal is important to many buyers and typically speaks to how a home is maintained inside as well.

What household disasters are homeowners most vulnerable to? Sewer backups, burst pipes, sump pump malfunctions, burst water supply hoses to toilets and refrigerators and kitchen grease fires.
What important steps should a homeowner take to clean up after a household disaster like a flood or fire? It is very important to proceed with caution as potential hazards may exist. Call Paul Davis. This is no time for second best.
How can a homeowner be sure the house has been properly restored? Paul Davis technicians are certified with the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). The institute sets the standards for best practices and procedures for the inspection, cleaning and restoration industries. Our technicians follow IICRC guidelines for a range of damage including water, smoke, mould and asbestos.

Why should you contact your insurer before renovating? Always inform your insurer of material changes in the risk that they are insuring. Insurers may require a Course of Construction endorsement to your policy while your home is under construction. An insurer may occasionally elect not to cover you while your home is under renovation.
What are some insurance issues to consider when renovating? To be protected against loss while renovating, ask your contractor for a Certificate of Insurance, which will show they have a valid insurance policy including their liability limits. Also, you as the homeowner should be added to their policy while your home is under construction.
How much do premiums go up after a renovation? Premiums may or may not go up after the renovation. Most likely they will rise as a renovation usually increases the value of the home. The main issue is the reconstruction value of your home before and after the renovation. That determines what happens with the premium.

What plumbing issues should be addressed when doing a reno? I recommend replacing any existing plumbing that is exposed during the course of the renovation to ensure everything is new and completed to current plumbing code requirements regarding materials and their installation.
Name a few common mistakes people make when renovating or building: Failing to obtain a minimum of three quotes, not fully understanding those quotes and, as a result, failing to choose the right plumbing contractor. Another common mistake is not understanding plumbing fixture choices and their functions.
What is the danger in not paying proper attention to plumbing during a reno? You may end up wishing you’d done things differently since there is the potential for unexpected and expensive consequences when you don’t understand how the plumbing should be completed. With a knowledgeable plumbing contractor, however, you’ll achieve your goals with confidence and enjoy the entire renovation process!