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VOL.28 NO. 6





November 2015


Building tall in wood View Points: Five businesses, five points of view Uncovering investment opportunities in the Canadian housing market Electromagnetic Fields: What you need to know Tool Talk: Sensible solutions for the jobsite

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Economics: Prepare now for tomorrow’s future 2015 National Building Code preview UBC’s Wilden Living Lab Visit us online at


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Vancouver Coquitlam Kamloops Penticton Edmonton Calgary Saskatoon Brandon Winnipeg •



CHBA Report 24 25

President’s Message CEO’s Update

Columns 9 Economics 10 Building Science 12 Expert Opinion 13 Common Cents Construction 28 Tool Talk

Departments 6 News 8 Association 23 Product Announcements 30 Renovation 31 Industry News 31 Advertisers Index 31 Calendar


BUILDING SCIENCE: 2015 National Building Code Preview


Home BUILDER Magazine is published by Work-4 Projects Ltd. six times a year. Editorial/Advertising: 4819 St. Charles Boulevard, Pierrefonds, Quebec, Canada, H9H 3C7. Tel.: 514-620-2200, E-mail: Entire contents copyright November 2015 by Work-4 Projects Ltd. Reprints only by written permission. Opinions expressed are those of the authors or persons quoted and not necessarily those of the publisher or any other organization. The occasional appearance of photographs depicting safety violation does not represent an endorsement of the practice by the publisher or any other organization. Subscription rates in Canada: $36* a year, $60* for two years, $80* for three years. U.S. and foreign subscriptions payable in U.S. funds only. ISSN No. 0840-4348. Legal deposit — The National Library of Canada and Bibliothèque et Archives Nationales du Québec, 2007. Canada Post Permit #0295647. *Plus applicable taxes. GST/HST registration #R105741383 • Date of mailing: November 2015


A summary of some of the significant changes affecting Housing and Small Buildings in the new NBC, reasons for these changes, and their anticipated outcomes.


EXPERT OPINION: Tech Trends in Residential Construction Net Zero. Social Media. Attracting—and retaining—employees and sub-trades. Building quality affordable housing. Using online video to communicate with buyers. These are the five talking points. Which ones resonate with you and your business? A look into how a few growing residential construction technology trends are working together to improve the communities we build.

13 High density residential block in Oakville, Ontario. Photo by Kelvin Chan


COMMON CENTS CONSTRUCTION: Uncovering Opportunities It’s a global market and investors are finding Canada an increasingly attractive place to spend their money.


BUILDING REPORT: Building Tall in Wood Lightweight wood framed (LWWF) construction has gained significant popularity over the past decade as a sustainable, cost-effective solution for lowrise multi-level buildings. An interview with Michael Baldinelli, Strik Baldinelli Monizk, on building taller with wood.


ENERGY EFFICIENCY: The power of partnership UBC’s Wilden Living Lab examines the energy efficiency of building materials.


TECHNOLOGY UPDATE: Electromagnetic Fields More and more Canadians are calling on building professionals to reduce their exposure. Here’s what you need to know.


TOOL TALK: Sensible Solutions for the Jobsite Sometimes the best solutions to age-old problems aren’t sensational techno-wonders. Instead, they’re just plain sensible.

January/February Economic Outlook & Housing Forecast Tools of the Trade Economic Outlook for 2016, plus a look at the upcoming year’s residential housing and renovation market. An expanded hand and power tool section.

The News, The Facts The Stories...

To book your premium ad space, call 514-620-2200 or e-mail

Home BUILDER November/December 2015



CIBC: Lack of Succession Plan Puts Canadian Businesses at Risk TORONTO — Canadian small and medium-sized business owners are putting their companies at risk by not having a succession plan in place, with nearly three-quarters of family-owned businesses failing after just one generation.

employees, business partners and shareholders—in your plan so you can objectively consider succession.  Understand where the business sits in the competitive landscape and what resources it needs to survive and grow. These could be financial

“Some 70 percent of family-owned businesses fail to make it beyond

or managerial resources.

the first generation simply due to the owners’ lack of preparation and

 Consider the future leadership needs of your business and adequately

communication with their children,” said Sean Foran, Managing Direc-

prepare a willing and capable successor. This could be a member of

tor, Business Transition Planning, Wealth Advisory Services, CIBC. “In order for the next generation of owners and managers to succeed, a well-thought-out succession plan is crucial, and acts as a roadmap for the successful transition of your business.”

your family, a business partner or a third party.  Update the succession plan as your business grows and changes to reflect both your personal and business objectives.  Assess your lifestyle and income requirements in retirement. The

Foran offers advice for business owners to consider in a succession plan:

transfer of your business should be reflected in your overall tax and estate planning.


 Define the short and long term objectives of all stakeholders—family,

BMO Harris Bank: Most Americans Are Planning Renos

RBC Economics: Housing Affordability Rift Widened Across Canadian Markets

CHICAGO — Most American homeowners say they expect to spend money on updates to their home in the next five years, according to the

TORONTO — With the exception of Toronto and Vancouver, where

2015 BMO Harris Bank Homebuyers Report. The report states that 80%

the bar to own a home at current prices was set to multi-year highs,

plan to make cosmetic changes and 45% plan to make their homes more

housing affordability remained fairly stable across Canada in the second

energy efficient.

quarter of 2015, according to the latest Housing Trends and Affordability Report issued by RBC Economics Research.

The research, conducted by Pollara, also found that more than half of homeowners plan to make changes to the exterior of their homes, 25%

While trends in the national affordability measures have been fairly flat since 2010, RBC reports that Toronto and Vancouver continued

plan to enlarge their home or put on an addition, 62% plan to remodel their kitchen or bathroom, and 26% will refinish their basement.

to experience strong housing price increases—particularly for single-

Fifty-eight percent of American homeowners plan to pay for these

detached homes—in the second quarter, further widening the rift

renovations with savings, while 18% plan to pay with a credit card and

between these two markets and the rest of Canada.

17% plan to use a home-equity loan or line of credit.


“The Toronto and Vancouver markets really stand out because of their elevated and rapidly rising prices, and they are the main factors contributing to further modest erosion in affordability overall in Canada,” said Craig Wright, senior vice-president and chief economist, RBC. “Outside of Toronto and Vancouver, affordability levels are close to, or slightly better than, long-term averages, which suggests that housing affordability remains fairly neutral in most of Canada with limited signs of undue stress being exerted on home buyers.”

CMHC: Fourth Quarter Housing Report


The Magazine of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association Vol. 28 No. 6 November/December 2015 Publisher Nachmi Artzy

A W O R K - 4 P R O J E C T S LT D . P U B L I C AT I O N

Contributors: Jon Eakes Andre Fautex Sarah Gibb Lauren Hasagawa Grant Matthews Bo Mocherniak Peter Norman

Production Manager Kelvin Chan production@ Sales Coordinator Polly Ma Accounting Patricia Fleurent Circulation Manager

Editor Judy Penz Sheluk Published by Work-4 Projects Ltd. Advertising/Editorial: 4819 St. Charles Blvd. Pierrefonds, Quebec Canada, H9H 3C7 Phone: 514-620-2200

The report provides a revised outlook reflecting the evolution of risks since the second quarter of 2015. Visit


Home BUILDER November/December 2015

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Viewings Increase Substantially at Lethbridge Parade of Homes LETHBRIDGE, Alta. — The Lethbridge 2015 Parade of Homes ran for the 49th year from September 12 to 27 with 16 builders participating. The total number of viewers has climbed dramatically despite road construction in the area; 2015 saw 47,895 people view the show homes compared to 40,027 in 2014 and 36, 524 in 2013. “The increase of nearly 8,000 people goes to show that the community anticipates the show every year and they make the time to take it all in,” said Angela Zuba, CEO, CHBA Lethbridge Region. “We constantly receive comments from the public about the caliber of Lethbridge building; people take note of quality when they see it. That mixed in with the diversity Lethbridge has to offer is one of the many reasons our City continues to grow despite what is going on in the rest of the Province.”

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CHBA Lethbridge Region is planning to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Parade Homes in a big way from September 10 to 25, 2016.C

Waterloo Region Home Builders Care “Fore” Gabbie’s Wish

WATERLOO, Ont. — The Waterloo Region Home Builders’ Association (WRHBA) hosted its Fall Charity Golf Classic September 22 at Whistle Bear Golf Club in support of Cystinosis research.

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The annual event, now in its 18th year, provides a platform for a community-based charitable organization to elevate awareness of its

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cause and to receive a donation to further their work. Over 130 members

and picking, as well as being Grade 1 certified by the BHMA

Cystinosis Research Foundation in recognition of Gabbie’s Wish.

sis, the Association’s 2015-16 Charity of Choice. To mark the occasion, WRHBA’s President, Graem Jackson presented a $5,000 cheque to the Gabbie Strauss, just seven years old, is a beautiful, bright, articulate

to withstand the kinds of attacks typically associated with forced entries.

and happy little girl who not only fills the important role as big sister to her two younger siblings, but is also the local face of Cystinosis. Gabbie (pictured, left) shares a very big wish with others across the globe: to find a cure for Cystinosis.

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and guests came together in support of Gabbie’s Wish - to Cure Cystino-

Cystinosis afflicts children right from birth, immediately beginning to destroy every one of the body’s 78 organs; it causes cells to crystallize

and die slowly, destroying organs including the eyes, kidneys, muscles and the brain. For more information about Gabbie’s Wish, or to make a donation, visit


Home BUILDER November/December 2015



Prepare Now for Tomorrow’s Home Buyers

By Peter Norman

A remarkable demographic trend is emerging in Can-

And now all of this is about to come to an end.

ada that promises to have a significant effect on housing

Between now and 2026 the rate of growth in family

demand in the decade ahead and beyond. No, this is

households is expected to more than double to some

not the aging of the population or the “grey tsunami” of

37,000 net new households per year—and account for

baby boomers on the precipice of retirement, nor is it

over 20% of total household growth.

the influence of the so-called millennials. Rather, a third

This change will create significant changes in the

important demographic is emerging and they are just

profile of what houses are demanded and, hopefully,

now being born.

supplied in Canada. Traditionally, households (with chil-

Between 2000 and 2014 the annual number of births

dren) predominantly choose single-family structures in

in Canada rose by about 60,000—a 20% increase over

all markets across Canada. In 2011, some 78% of family

the period. The year 2014 saw 388,000 new babies born

households chose a single family dwelling and, by some

in Canada, a high not seen since 1993—21 years before.

surveys, the desire to be in one is even higher than that.

This mini “baby boom” is about to catch all sorts of sectors by surprise, influencing in the years ahead everything from school attendance to housing markets.

Between now and 2026, the rate of growth in family households is expected to more than double to some 37,000 net new households per year.

Reuse, Recycle There are currently about 10 million single-family

Importantly, family households (with children) will

dwellings in Canada, and about 56% of them are occu-

entail a significantly stronger share of household growth

pied by baby boomers or older generations. There are

in the decade ahead. Certainly, this will be much more

those who see a great transition ahead, as baby boomers

significant than over the past decade, a period that was

choose to move out of single-family homes, freeing them

driven by the corresponding “baby bust” of the early

up to be “recycled” to younger households.

1990s to mid 2000s (see chart).

While there will be some of this “recycling” taking

The baby bust that bottomed out in 2000 was the

place in the decades ahead, it’s a lot less than many would

harbinger of a long period of unusually low growth in

believe, and will certainly not be sufficient for the mag-

family households in Canada between 2006 and today.

nitude of single family dwellings that younger families

By our estimates, since 2006, only some 15,800 net new

will demand. As an illustration, over the next 10 years,

family households per year were formed in Canada—less

only about half of the requirements for single-family

than 10% of total household growth. Correspondingly,

homes by younger emerging generations will be met by

single-family home construction fell precipitously from

a “recycled” single family-home vacated by someone

75% to 60% of total.

born before 1961.

Many would believe that a change in planning policy, a fundamental shift in preferences, or a crisis of afford-

Expect More Aging-in-Place

ability are primarily responsible for the decline in sin-

Traditionally, seniors in Canada have tended to “age

gle-family housing production in lieu of higher density

in place”—which is to say they remain in their family

condominium apartments, and there may be some truth

homes as long as physically possible. While “downsiz-

to each of these points. But far more significant was the

ing” is often spoken of, it is relatively rare. Only about

baby bust and the corresponding lull in family household

4% of seniors move from their family homes each year,


and many of these moves are to another ground-oriented home (rather than truly “downsizing” to a higher density option). Some will speculate that baby boomers, as they retire, will buck this trend and downsize more prevalently, but to date there is no evidence to support this. The remarkable demographic trend about to influence our markets in the years ahead is the mini baby boom happening now, and this will dramatically increase needs for singlefamily homes in your community. These needs

Peter Norman is a member of the CHBA Economic Research Committee and is Chief Economist at Altus Group (formerly Clayton Research), the leading provider of independent real estate consulting and advisory services.

will not be fully met by resale markets with homes recycled by baby boomers, so home builders will have to step forward and bring more new product to market. What are you doing to address this coming need?

Home BUILDER November/December 2015




2015 National Building Code Preview The 2015 National Building Code of Canada (NBC)

The current airborne sound transmission ratings

some of the significant changes affecting Housing and

(STC) will be replaced with a new metric that reflects

Small Buildings in the new NBC, the reasons for these

the acoustical performance of the complete building

changes, and their anticipated outcomes.

system (Apparent Sound Transmission Class or ASTC).

Stairs (Step Dimensions, Stair Configurations, Continuity of Handrails, Climbable Guards)

By Sarah Gibb

Airborne Sound Transmission

will be published this December. This article summarizes

Unlike the existing rating which only includes direct sound transmission through the wall or floor separating adjacent dwelling units, the ASTC also includes indirect sound transmission through floor and wall junctions (i.e.

Step Dimensions

flanking noise).

The run dimension of stairs in housing and small

This will shift the focus from the separating assembly,

buildings is set to increase to 254 mm (10 in.) from the

which may be over-designed, to the more critical floor-

current minimum of 210 mm (8¼ in.), bringing stair

wall junction, which, without sufficient isolation, often

dimensions more in line with requirements for other

dominates the sound transmission. The minimum per-

buildings, and with international codes. Research shows

formance level is set at 47 for the complete system. Com-

that steps with a larger run dimension provide better foot

pliance can be demonstrated by measuring the ASTC of

placement and greater stability, potentially reducing falls

the assembly, looking up acceptable constructions in

by up to 64 per cent. Research didn’t

The new NBC permits additional stair configurations, such as flights, with a mix of tapered and rectangular treads.

tables or by a calculation method in Part 5 of the NBC.

support a reduction in the stair rise;

This change should help designers and builders cre-

so this requirement wasn’t changed.

ate dwelling unit assemblies with acceptable sound

Analysis shows that the increased run

ratings, cut compliance costs, and reduce the likelihood

dimension is the most cost-effective

of failures.

option for construction with 2400 mm (8 ft.) and 2700 mm (9 ft.) ceilings. This

Lateral Loads (Seismic Resistance)

change may require an increase in the

The lateral resistance requirements have been updat-

dimensions of minimum-sized houses

ed for all areas across Canada reflecting new calculations

and cause some lot sizes to increase.

of the seismic hazards for those areas. In some areas the requirements have been increased, while in others

Stair Configurations The new NBC permits additional stair configurations, such as flights with

the requirements have stayed the same or decreased. 110 locations in Canada, mostly in the West, have been assigned an increased risk.

a mix of tapered and rectangular treads.

To address the additional lateral resistance require-

Spiral stairs are permitted when used

ments for these higher risk areas, Part 9 of the 2015 NBC

as secondary stairs or when the stair

contains new prescriptive solutions that allow design

serves three people or less. These new

without a professional engineer. These include braced

provisions allow design flexibility while

wall panels, thicker sheathing, perpendicular blocking

ensuring a reasonable level of safety.

between wall studs, nailing of splices in wall top plates and anchor bolts.

Continuity of Handrails To improve safety, the 2015 NBC has more stringent requirements for continuous handrails throughout the length of a stair and at changes in direction.

Roofing, Dampproofing and Waterproofing Roofing, dampproofing and waterproofing standards currently referenced in the NBC have been updated. This applies to the many outdated Canadian General Stan-

Climbable Guards The requirement that guards should not encourage climbing has been relaxed where they protect occupants from an elevation difference of 4.2 metres or less. There is little evidence of people (especially children) having Sarah Gibb is a housing industry researcher and writer based in Ottawa. Sarah wishes to thank Barry Craig, Technical Advisor at NRC – Canadian Codes Centre for his help with the article.

dards Board (CGSB) standards for roofing, waterproofing and dampproofing materials, and in some cases their installation.

Changes Outside Part 9

serious falls as a result of the decorative design of bal-

For buildings designed to Part 3 of the NBC, the height

ustrades. The outcome is that there will be many more

for combustible construction has increased from four

possibilities for the design and manufacture of guards up

stories to six. While this does not affect Part 9, it does

to the second floor level, such as those already permitted

enable builders to construct mid-rise buildings using

in the United States.

wood-frame construction. 

10 Home BUILDER November/December 2015


Reach the residential construction market in Canada.

You’ll find us where the action is.

Highly targeted and constantly updated database of builders and renovators from coast-to-coast — the real buyers of your products and services. With a high rate of pass-along readers, we reach more than 115,000 people. So does your message.

Canadian Home Builders’ Association

514-620-2200 • •

More advertising from major manufacturers and suppliers than any Canadian magazine in the business.


Tech Trends in Residential Construction Technology is evolving at an exponential rate. Each

many Canadians. Starting with the Nest (

year there are more impressive advancements than the

thermostat (launched in 2011), which allows users to

last, and the time between a technology being born and

control their home’s temperature from their smartphone,

its practical application will continue to become shorter.

the integration of smart home technologies is now a

Today, it is more important than ever to pay attention to

simple process and includes everything from controlling

emerging trends and identify how they will impact our

heating/cooling to home monitoring and keyless entry.


By Lauren Hasegawa

Despite the simplicity of setting up smart home

Construction innovation is happening in relation

technologies, it is still something that many home

to materials, building processes and communication.

owners take on post-construction, replacing builder-

Here’s a look into how a few growing residential con-

grade thermostats, locks and switches with new, smart-

struction technology trends are working together to

phone powered devices.

improve the communities we build.

Real-Time Construction Collaboration

However, we are currently seeing a trend toward including smart home technologies in the initial construction plans for both single and multi-family projects.

This past year, more construction-focused technol-

Companies specializing in smart home technologies,

ogy companies were launched than ever before and the

such as Toronto-based True Marque (www.truemarque.

majority of them are focused on improving construction

com), are partnering with leading developers to create

collaboration through the use of mobile apps and cloud-

homes that are smart from day one.

based web platforms. Several companies are catering

With the introduction of smart home technologies

specifically to the residential construction industry and

into the construction process, a new range of skills are going to be required from construction teams in order to support the installation and technical testing needed to ensure proper performance. It’s time to start preparing for the day when we will literally need to test a home the same way we test a software—before launching it to the owner.

Connected Communities The need to communicate with our friends, service providers or neighbours without friction is one of the most important trends at play today. This ranges from being able to order an Uber car from your phone in seconds to the ability to book your condo’s party room during your commute. While online community management software for

Lauren Hasegawa is the co-founder of Bridgit, a construction software company focused on developing mobilefirst solutions that can help relieve on-site pain points, such as punch list management. Lauren is an active mentor to young women in engineering and a frequent speaker at local and national industry events focused on construction innovation. She can be reached at

are focused on workflows like managing deficiencies,

condos and rental buildings has been around for over a

pre-installation checklists and pre-delivery inspections.

decade, the trend of integrating this kind of technology

The options for construction collaboration software

into buildings from day one is growing rapidly.

are plentiful and include Canadian products such as

Today, many new communities are being designed

RENOMii (, a change order management

and marketed as technologically advanced. According

app for renovation contractors, and Closeout (www.

to Peter Pietrzkiewicz, CEO of Concierge Plus (www.con-, a comprehensive subcontractor man-, “offering an online community website

agement software for larger residential developers.

is now a critical component of this product positioning.

Whether it’s a single-family home or a large condo,

Condo buyers are tech savvy and they really value know-

residential construction projects always bring together a

ing that the developer from whom they are making an

multitude of stakeholders who are all on the go and either

important purchase is as well.”

spread out across a single project or around the city.

Software of this type is used during construction for

Moving forward, communication practices that allow

things like sharing progress photos and communicating

people to get all of the project information and updates

construction milestones as well as once the residents

they need—on the go and in real-time—will be a non-

move in for tasks such as amenity bookings and notifying

negotiable in construction.

residents about deliveries or community events.

The Internet of Things Is Coming Home

more important takeaway is how they all work together

In the past few years, the concept of a smart home has gone from an exciting idea to an accessible option for

12 Home BUILDER November/December 2015

While each of these trends is important on its own, the to build smart, connected and high-quality living environments for homeowners and renters alike.



Uncovering Opportunities Canada is increasingly attractive to inbound real estate investment Given the scope and expense of major real estate

By Bo Mocherniak

Understanding who your tenants are and what they

analysis and insights to support project location deci-

want is critical to sustained investment success. Two

sions. In the second quarter of 2015, Grant Thornton sur-

global population trends—an increasingly aging popula-

veyed a number of experienced real estate professionals

tion and the growing impact of millennials and their work

across our global network, as well as representatives of

and lifestyle needs—are influencing investment strate-

several global real estate firms.

gies. For instance, older people are living longer and

The resulting report—Uncovering opportunities for

staying healthier, making traditional retirement homes

overseas investment and growth: Real estate and construc-

less appealing than independence-focused retirement

tion 2015—uncovered four key trends driving and shap-

communities and villages. Millennials, on the other hand,

ing global real estate investment and offers a range of

tend to look for mix-use real estate in downtown centres,

valuable data and opinion on where, and how, global

where residential, retail and work spaces merge.

investors should be looking to commit their resources. Moreover, the data made it apparent that these investors are finding Canada an increasingly attractive place to spend their money. Here is a brief recap:

Investment decisions are often influenced by factors other than hard data.

Four Key Trends Are Guiding Global Investment

Urbanization Breeds Opportunity The world’s urban population grew from 746 million in 1950 to 3.9 billion in 2014 and is projected to grow by 2.5 billion more by 2050. With urban growth spiralling up and mobile workforces increasing, the need for infrastructure should create opportunities that are appealing

The more complex the global picture becomes, the

to both foreign governments and investors. Keeping an

more potential risks arise—and the more opportuni-

eye on urbanization trends and their implications—such

ty there is for savvy, judicious investors to optimize

as where people are going and what they will need—is a

their decisions by uncovering opportunities others have

good way to extract opportunity from complexity.

missed. Understanding how key trends such as “soft power,” political stability, demographic trends, and urbanization play into strategic investment success will be critical going forward.

“Soft Power” Investment decisions are often influenced by factors

Foreign Investment is Proving Successful Global trends have contributed to Canada becoming a popular target for foreign investors. Significant opportunities exist for Canadian construction firms that can attract foreign investment money. Survey research supports this:

other than hard data. The concept of “soft power,” for

uu Of the 10 countries receiving major inward real estate

example, is illustrated when a nation’s cultural attrac-

investment in 2014, only 25 per cent of that invest-

tiveness begets a positive view of the nation itself—a

ment went to the five highest-ranked countries in

phenomenon that can impact investment decisions, as

the World Bank’s political stability index, of which

when someone is predisposed to invest in the country

Canada is one. As the trend toward investing in stable

where they were educated. Investors need to consider

regions continues, this number should rise.

carefully whether their target environments are sup-

uu In Toronto, Allied Properties REIT has attracted mil-

ported by data and research or are the product of flawed

lennials by investing in properties that integrate office

investment logic. With over 30 years experience with audits, acquisitions, divestitures and valuations, Bo Mocherniak, CA, CBV, provides services to both public and private companies in Canada and the United States. Bo is National Sector Leader for the Real Estate and Construction Group of Grant Thornton Canada, a member of the Grant Thornton International Real Estate Sector Group and past Chair of Grant Thornton LLP. He can be reached at

Ask for a “Demo”

investments, global investors are hungry for research,

Stable Thinking Political stability is another key investment influencer, as the ongoing attractiveness of investment in countries such as the US and UK indicates. Other factors, however, should be considered to successfully realize a foreign opportunity. Investors should be certain that:

and living workspaces in the city core. uu In Edmonton, the growing population (an 8 per cent increase from 2011 to 2014), spurred by high levels of oil and gas-related manufacturing, is driving demand for residential property.

Success Starts Where Instinct Meets Analysis While entrepreneurial intuition will always be impor-

uu Stability is real and not just perceived.

tant, fact-based market and trend analysis is becoming

uu It is supported by an investment-friendly, tax-

indispensable to investment success, especially at the

incentivized, low-regulation environment. uu Opportunities are not lost because a false assumption of instability exists. uu The country, though stable, is not already overinvested.

international level. The good news is that the facts point increasingly to Canada as a strong environment for a range of real estate initiatives, positioning Canadian construction companies to benefit through contracts and partnerships with foreign investors.

Home BUILDER November/December 2015



BuildinG report

Building Tall in Wood An interview with Michael Baldinelli, Strik Baldinelli Moniz

Q4 Architects

By Judy Penz Sheluk

Lightweight wood framed (LWWF) construction has gained

toured four six-storey wood buildings under

significant popularity over the past decade as a sustainable,

an internal Wood Building R&D group and

cost-effective solution for low-rise multi-level buildings.

construction. Following the visit, SBM formed spent 18 months (on and off) researching the structural design implications, fire issues during construction, implications of wood shrink-

More recently, the push has been to extend

Waterloo, Ontario. Baldinelli has been involved

age and cost implications for six-storey LWWF

the use of LWWF to mid-rise construction for

in the design of more than 35 LWWF buildings in


increased density on urban or rural projects.

Ontario. His firm has won numerous awards in

In 2009, British Columbia amended its building

regard to low-rise wood construction, includ-

HBM: What was the result of the research?

code to allow five- and six- storey residential

ing Best Design for Multi-Level Wood Building

MB: We developed a proprietary three-dimen-

wood-framed buildings, and in September of

(2013) by the Canadian Wood Council.

sional software program that analyzes LWWF

2014, the Province of Ontario passed legislation to permit wood-framed buildings up to six storeys in the next Ontario Building Code amendment (effective January 1, 2015). In Quebec, rule changes in 2010 allowed for wood to be used in buildings with up to five or six floors. The province recently unveiled a 60-page technical guide for designing and constructing taller wooden buildings, including

buildings under earthquake and wind loading

The program has been implemented on five wood buildings and found savings of 10-15% versus traditional design methods.

what type of lumber can be used, fire resistance

and at the same time takes into account material costs, the first of its kind in the industry. [See flowchart on next page.] During the design, the program selects from a database of walls, floors and tie-downs based on the least expensive option (ranked as such). If the option selected “fails� then the next wall, floor or hold-down is selected. The program typically goes through 300 to 400 iterations to


ensure all Code requirements pass. Once com-

Home BUILDER sat down with Michael

MB: I knew our current commercial clients

pleted, the most cost-efficient code-compliant

Baldinelli, MESc, P.Eng, principal of the large

would seize the opportunity to building tall-

design is produced.

building division at Strik Baldinelli Moniz

er with wood, but I also saw a tremendous

(SBM), a medium sized Civil and Structural

opportunity for residential construction. In

HBM: Have you implemented the program or

Engineering firm with offices in London and

early 2014, I went to British Columbia and

is it still in the beta-testing stage?

and structural calculations.

14 Home BUILDER November/December 2015

BuildinG report

MB: The program has been implemented on five wood buildings and found savings of 10 to 15 per cent versus traditional design methods. We are finding in most cases a building that was originally designed or planned as a fourstorey building is easily being transitioned into a five- or six-storey wood building (pending Q4 Architects

zoning requirements). HBM: What is the occupant use for the buildings? Are they primarily commercial? MB: Not at all. The occupant uses vary from

Oak Park Phase II, Oakville, Ont.

affordable housing projects, post-secondary student residences and residential apartments or condominiums. In some instances, municipalities are requiring a commercial component on the main floor to encourage mixed-use buildings where people can “work and live.”

LWWF buildings do have their pros and cons.

MB: LWWF buildings do have their pros and cons. For example, sound transmission (STC rating) through walls and floors is always a concern, but if properly detailed and built, the sound ratings compare closely with other

HBM: What were the key issues during the

maximum building height requirements, non-

conventional products such as block and con-

review process?

combustible cladding requirements, higher

crete. Structurally, floor joist spans, depths

MB: At the beginning of the review process,

seismic loads vs. non-combustible buildings,

and overall flexibility are often less than con-

fire prevention, mitigation and suppression

and enhanced automatic sprinkler with addi-

ventional products such as steel and concrete.

were the key issues, both during and after

tional compartmentalization for large sprin-

With the advancement of engineering wood

construction. The OBC has adopted a slightly

kler spaces such as attics.

products (floor joists, beams, columns, walls, etc.) we are noticing an increase in perfor-

more stringent life safety requirement than British Columbia. Some of the provisions

HBM: What are the challenges of building

mance, allowing wood buildings to become

are:non-combustible exits (1.5 hour fire rated),


much more flexible than in the past, meeting the requirements of the architect, owner and engineers. The main advantages of LWWF buildings are reduced cost of construction, speed of installation, reduced construction time, and reduced demand on the foundations. These types of buildings are not the answer for every project but we should always consider them as viable building material going forward.

SBM’s proprietary three-dimensional software program analyzes LWWF buildings under earthquake and wind loading and at the same time takes into account material costs, the first of its kind in the industry. The program:   Calculates all wind and seismic loading on the building.    Takes into account both rigid and flexible floor diaphragms.    Calculates the overall building deflection and inter-storey drift at any point in the building.    Accounts for the stiffness of other building materials (Concrete Masonry Units, Cast in Place Concrete, Steel Cross Braced Frame, etc.).    Calculates building natural frequency, overcapacity ratio and torsional sensitivity.    Takes into account the cumulative effect of hold-down anchor slippage and nail slippage in deflection calculations.    Meets CSA O86-14, Canadian Wood Design Manual and Ontario Building Code 2012 (OBC) code requirements.    Optimizes the shear wall selection based on material costs (i.e. labor and material).

Lintack Architects

HBM: Thank you, Michael.

King William: Templar Flats, Hamilton, Ont.

Home BUILDER November/December 2015



Five Businesses, Five Points of View Compiled and edited by Judy Penz Sheluk

Net Zero. Social Media. Attracting—and retaining—employees and sub-trades. Building quality affordable housing. Using online video to communicate with buyers. These are the five talking points. Which ones resonate with you and your business?

Building Affordable Quality Housing

quality to be. I like to relate housing to the

In Western Canada, home build-

did to the car—we are completely

automobile. In the late 1800s, car

early days of the automotive industry.

changing the way the game is played

makers built cars one at a time. Cars

Every home is essentially custom built

by using modular construction. With

were expensive, lacked features and

in the sense that each home is built

factory-built modular housing, it

prone to failure and costly breakdowns. However, in 1908, Henry Ford revolutionized the industry by building cars on an assembly line. Not long after, the average person had a Tyler Mathies, Innovative Residential, Co-founder and CEO

Quality housing doesn’t have to

to construction what Henry Ford

ing has been much the same as the

car that was better than they could have ever imagined. Fast forward over 100 years and we now have cars with

becomes possible to incorporate

“Housing affordability is vital to the success of any city’s growth strategy.” Tyler Mathies

features typically reserved for high priced site-built homes: on-demand hot water heaters, hydronic furnaces, and Energy Star certification. As of Q4 2014, the average price of a new single-detached home in Saskatoon surpassed $500,000,

break the bank. Unfortunately, people

features that our grandparents could

often think they have to spend a lot

have never imagined. An affordably

of money to get a good quality home.

priced car selling for $20,000 now

one at a time by tradespeople who

new townhomes are all less than

This is ingrained in all of us— when

comes with a GPS navigation system,

are usually different people from job

$300,000, whereas townhomes in

we don’t have a technical under-

satellite radio, and a 100,000km

to job.

the same neighbourhoods are gener-

standing of a product, we instinctively

warranty. It was the efficient assembly

relate quality to price—the higher the price, the higher we assume the

16 Home BUILDER November/December 2015

while the average MLS home was over $353,000. By comparison, our

At Innovative Residential, we

ally in the $330-350k range. We also

line approach that allowed this to

are not satisfied with settling for the

include (at no extra charge) features


status quo. That’s why we’re doing

such as quartz countertops,


„„ To demonstrate the feasibility of

on-demand hot water, tile back-

NRCan’s CanmetEnergy’s Net Zero

splashes, stainless steel appliances,

Energy Home cost-optimization

building Net Zero Energy Housing

Federal government through its new

triple-pane windows and doors, 12”

research, this project is aimed at these

(NZEH) Communities in Alberta,

EnerGuide rating system and the

sound-walls between units, program-

requirements and promises to be a

Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia.

R2000 standard, which is the plat-

mable thermostats, and full home

very significant milestone on the road

Energy Star certification. As a company, we believe it is

mance will be recognized by the

„„ To address challenges to building

form of NZEH. CHBA’s Net Zero Ener-

to Net Zero Energy Homes and com-

to NZEH performance levels spe-

gy Housing Council has announced a

munities in Canada.

cific to production housing, and

labeling program for both NZEH and

possible to run a socially responsible business and we demonstrate that through our ongoing commitment to building high quality affordable housing. We are proud to have partnered with the City of Saskatoon for over seven years to provide cost-shared

NZE Ready Homes.

“For the first time, NZEH performance will be recognized by the Federal government through their new EnerGuide rating system and the R2000 standard.” Andy Goyda

vision and dedication. Net Zero Energy Homes no longer need to be research projects or one-offs. The five innovative production builders have shown that it’s not a question of if but

down payment grants for modest income first-time home buyers earning less than $78,000 annual income. Housing affordability is vital

To date, NZE Homes continue to

rather when affordable NZEH will be

„„ To act as a platform for the

be stuck in a research and develop-

broader adoption of NZEH across

ment phase and pilot demonstra-


built as a standard.

tions, with little focus on the unique

The Project will assess and

strategy. Without affordability in the

challenges that the housing platform

resolve challenges in relation to site

home ownership market, sustainable

presents for the production builder.

planning, construction, equipment,

in-migration is difficult to achieve

To achieve wide acceptance and

grid connections, cost, trade capabil-

because renters often have nothing

industry adoption, a community-sized

ity/training, warranty, reliability, sales,

stopping them from moving to other

demonstration by production builders

marketing and home buyer informa-

communities. On the other hand, our

is critically important.

tion / education.

new home buyers have a track record of putting down roots in Saskatoon and contributing to the city’s future D

ecoEII Net Zero Energy Home Project

The ecoEII Net Zero Energy Home


Social Media for Builders and Renovators

to the success of any city’s growth

tax base.

The success of the ecoEII NZEH Project is a product of the group’s

Owens Corning Canada has

Project is the largest NZE Community

assembled a team of experts in the

demonstration in Canada to date.

fields of building technology, building

Owens Corning Canada is the Lead

science, solar technology and energy

Proponent of this project and is work-

efficiency / renewable energy mea-

ing with five leading production home

sures, including NZEH. The participat-

builders across the country. The five

ing builders have been selected based

builders are: Mattamy Homes Lim-

on their experience and successful

tors and new home builders say they

ited (Calgary, Alta.), Reid’s Heritage

adoption of voluntary measures in

don’t have time for social media

Homes (Guelph, Ont.). Minto Com-

their products. It is intended that

because they can barely keep up

munities (Ottawa, Ont.), Construction

project insights will be disseminated

with their daily work. However, most

Voyer (Laval, Que.) and Provident

through CHBA’s Net Zero Energy

will have a family member or staff

Development Inc. (Halifax, N.S.).

Council for use by local HBAs to pro-

member who is on social media of

mote and facilitate the construction

some form, such as Facebook, Twitter,

of other NZEH communities.

Houzz or Pinterest.

Each builder will be building a minimum of five Net Zero Energy

Stefanie Coleman-Dias, Co-owner, Coleman-Dias³ Construction Inc. (CD³)

Frequently, renovation contrac-

Homes in a community setting. Reid’s

What has become very clear

Heritage Homes held a ribbon-cutting

is that conservation is the lowest

keting such as direct mail becoming

ceremony in September at their NZEH

cost to the builder. Reducing energy

increasingly less popular, particularly

opening and have announced that, as

consumption requires a super tight

with the younger generations, social

of 2016, NZE Ready Homes will be a

and super insulated envelope that

media is entering this space. The good

industry building Net Zero Energy

standard for all of their single-family

includes triple pane windows and effi-

news: Digital marketing is often low

Homes (NZE) by 2030. Simply put, a

homes. Minto Communities’ ribbon-

cient mechanicals. Generating energy

cost or free. Furthermore, once you

Net Zero Energy Home produces as

cutting was held last month in Kanata

on site (solar photovoltaic) is currently

have invested the time to develop

much energy as it uses. NRCan part-

(Ottawa). The other builders will be

the highest cost to builders; the key to

your plan, it does not have to take

nered with Owens Corning Canada to

opening their NZEH projects by end of

affordability is first conservation, then

a lot of time to manage. You do not

develop a platform to build affordable

this month.


need to be on every app; select a few

Net Zero Energy Homes. Leveraging

The objective of this Project is:

Andy Goyda, Market Development Manager, Owens Corning Canada

Canada’s goal is to have the

For the first time, NZEH perfor-

With traditional methods of mar-

that work best for you and will give

Home BUILDER November/December 2015



you the greatest benefit in reaching

to search and save photos on Houzz

to enhance word-of-mouth market-

when planning the renovation with

your target customer.

Ideabooks. Business accounts allow

ing is to send your client a link to their

clients. Uploading photos to your

Marketing professionals tell you

any size of business to upload images

Houzz project folder with before-and-

company website and then pinning

to be where your customers are. For

of their renovation projects and share.

after photos. They can then share this

them from your website to Pinterest

our company, and I believe for most

Both of these accounts are free to

on their social media pages with their

can drive people to your website.

construction companies, female cli-

use. Additonally, Ideabooks can be

friends and family.

ents are often the primary influencer

shared between client and contractor

Pinterest is another very popular

or decision makers for the construc-

or designer, and are a useful and easy

free website and app that is a digital

tion work on their home. Therefore, we want to be where the women are, and more often than not our female clients say they are on Houzz and Pinterest. Houzz is a website and mobile

Once you have photos taken of your projects, it’s easy to upload these images to your website and a quick click to share them on social media

“Female clients are often the primary influencer or decision makers for the construction work on their home.” Stefanie Coleman-Dias

app that is a free database filled with

platforms. To take it one step further, you can set up free company Twitter and Facebook accounts and link them together. From Houzz and Pinterest, you can “tweet” your new images and they will automatically post to Twitter

photos of residential homes. Current-

tool for design planning and com-

bulletin board where you “pin”

and Facebook, just by a single push

ly, the site has more than eight million

municating between client and con-

pictures from the web to your boards.

of a button.

photos of only residential housing,

tractor. Should a company want more

Pinterest is open to any subject

which is broken down into multiple

exposure in their geographic area,

matter, where both individuals and

family member or staff member who

searchable categories—rooms,

they can pay to promote their Houzz

businesses can set up accounts and

enjoys social media to get this set

spaces, styles etc. There are two

business page and it will pop up

pin images to their boards. These

up and running: it will put you in the

primary account types. The personal

frequently when anyone in their area

boards can be shared between clients

same room and conversation with

account is geared for homeowners

searches for ideas in Houzz. A benefit

and contractors and are a useful tool

potential clients.

If this is not your thing, find a

more brains

Tear down the wall between finance and operations. Make smarter decisions in real time, so you can speed workflows across multiple projects with Sage Construction Solutions. Synch up with

© 2015 Sage Software, Inc. and its affiliated entities. All rights reserved.



Using Online Video to Communicate with Customers

our customers. This is particularly true with condominiums, an increasingly

environment. We’re aware that our customers have a deep hunger for informa-

just over eight seconds. This creates

more to buying and maintaining one

tion. We’re equally aware however,

definite challenges, yet at the same

than most people realize.

that how customers want to digest

time presents opportunities, one of

80,000 homes we’ve delivered, has gained a tremendous amount of wisdom. Each community teaches us something moving forward as our Sales and Customer Care team

Our approach to communication and education with our custom-

the average attention span in 2015 is

popular choice, where there’s a lot

Tridel, through each of the

Andrea DelZotto, Director, Communications TRIDEL

modern technology. Not surprisingly,

continuously respond to topics and questions that surface daily from our customers. This “mind trust” has served

them being our continued improve-

“The average attention span in 2015 is just over eight seconds.” Andrea DelZotto

ment in how we interact with our customers and ensuring that we’re a company that they enjoy doing business with. For that reason, Tridel is tapping into the power of online video to help new condominium buyers understand the ins and outs of condo life and has created the Condo Talk video series,

ers is founded on the belief that an

as a source for our educational

informed decision is always the best

initiatives moving forward and, as a

decision. It’s a philosophy that starts

result we’ve invested both the time

well before purchasing one of our

and effort in delivering relevant and

homes and extends well into the years

meaningful content to our customers.

the information they’re seeking is

our job right, a customer will have one


The end result is a better understand-

important. Similar to most of us, our

less problem every time they do busi-

ing of what’s involved in both pur-

customers are drowning in informa-

ness with us. We will not have wasted

chasing and living in a condominium

tion as a result of the conveniences of

their time, money or effort.

Buying and moving into a new home is merely a starting point with

more nerve Tear down the wall between finance and operations. Manage your bids with confidence, so you get to market faster and build your book of business with Sage Construction Solutions. Synch up with

© 2015 Sage Software, Inc. and its affiliated entities. All rights reserved.

hosted on our website and on our YouTube Channel. We realize that the path our customers are on shouldn’t be a confusing one, and that if we do


The Condo Talk Video series has become a resource for our customers and allowed us to become a consistent part of their home buying journey—even prior to the decision mak-

Attracting & Retaining Good Employees and Sub-trades

„„ Comprehensive Benefits Plan:

two annual Christmas parties:

shorter than average probation-

one for our trades and one for

ary period for employees to start receiving the benefits. „„ Group RSP: We offer our staff a

ing process. In reality, 60% of home

more personal level. We also hold

We offer great benefits and have

buyers have made their decision to

group RSP wherein they can con-

purchase before even reaching out to

tribute up to 4% of their salary

our staff. „„ Team Building trips: Every year we plan a team building trip as an employee reward and a group. „„ Employee recognition programs:

your company. The mobile and social

per month and we match it.

Employees are recognized for

world they’re part of offers them an

„„ Education Support: We value and

their years of contribution to

unprecedented amount of research

encourage employees’ ongo-

tools at their fingertips. As a result,

ing learning and development. Andrew Williams, CEO, North Prairie Developments

they’re better informed consumers than ever before.

North Prairie Developments has

By presenting intelligent and helpful information, every step of the way, we essentially serve as a “go to” in the industry. We realize that it’s our responsibility to solve, not sell, while at the same time ensuring that we both educate and empower our

been in business for over 27years in Saskatchewan. Our company currently employees 31 direct employees and multiple long-time sub trades and suppliers. We have a number of employees and trades that have had a relationship with our company that

customers. In addition to Condo Talk , there’s a video series, called Maintenance Minutes, explaining practical everyday condo ownership issues such as

extends over 20 years.

We personally sit down with all

We strive to be leaders in quality,

employees on an annual basis, at

affordability and innovation. We

which time we review their skill

place a large marketing emphasis

sets and work collaboratively

on our awards and achievements

to provide an educational plan

by visibly displaying them in a

to assist them in achieving their

show case in our front office,

goals. In the past, we have sent

placing a section in our corporate

employees to national conferenc-

newsletter and sending out “hot

es, brought in industry specialists

news” emails for our employees.

for seminars, sent managers to

It is important for our staff to take pride in their work and this is a

“Set clear goals and a mission statement.” Andrew Williams

way they can publicly display the company’s collective achievements. „„ Set clear goals and a mission

changing air filters, resetting circuit breakers and cleaning and maintaining appliances. YouTube has transformed the way we share and discover information and is now the second largest search engine we use. We’ve embraced it with our customers in mind and want to make every interaction they have

We are able to attract and retain employees based on the following: „„ Family Owned and Operated: We are perceived as a medium-sized company with strong family values. „„ Compensation: We pay competitive salaries with the market.

with us as easy and convenient as possible.

North Prairie Developments. „„ Celebrate our Achievements:


Bonus programs are available over a certain time period.

We’re almost ready to launch our inaugural issue! To receive Home BUILDER Magazine’s e-newsletter, all you have to do is subscribe. (Don’t worry: You can opt out at any time, and we promise we won’t sell your email address to anyone else). Visit: An industry-specific e-newsletter delivering timely information about the residential housing market.

20 Home BUILDER November/December 2015

the Ivey School of business, hired

statement. This offers clarity and

university students on internships

direction on the company’s future.

and supported numerous site

One of our tag lines is that “fun

employees in completing their

must always prevail.” This helps

Red Seal Carpentry program

establish part of our corporate

to become certified journey-

culture where hard work is


rewarded with excitement.

„„ We produce an annual company

„„ We conduct an annual strategic

newsletter where we showcase

planning session with our entire

our projects, innovations, new

staff. We spend the time going

features and employee news. This

through the corporation’s annual

helps to establish our corporate

objects and future plans. The

brand as we highlight our bench-

staff spends time in break-out

mark employees and feature

sessions where they can openly

personal events and stories.

offer suggestions on areas of

„„ We hold a number of corporate

improvement. Then we bring in

events throughout the year,

a guest speaker to talk with the

including a spring barbecue for

staff on areas of the business that

our staff and families. The day

we want to focus on. Last year we

consists of a ball tournament,

brought in Chandra Crawford, a

barbecue in which our owners do

Canadian Olympic gold medalist

all of the cooking, and a number

who talked about the importance

of events for the kids. This is

of setting clear and achievable

a great event to socialize and

goals and the possibilities that

engage with our employees on

goal setting leads to.


CALL FOR ENTRIES ENTRY DEADLINE: FRIDAY, JANUARY 15 THE RACE IS ON for the 2016 CHBA National Awards for Housing Excellence. Canada’s most prestigious national housing awards are now better than ever, with a new name, new look and tighter focus. This is your opportunity to showcase your best new homes, renovations, community developments and marketing excellence.

OUR NAME SAYS IT ALL • Expanded awards categories offer more opportunities to gain recognition for your projects. • Extended project eligibility period (from 12 to 18 months) means more of your projects can be entered. • Streamlined award criteria have a sharper focus on design and customer appeal. • A new online entry process makes it easier and less expensive to enter. • Heightened media outreach will get 2016 finalists and winners more traction in the marketplace.



Energy Efficiency

The Power of Partnership UBC’s Wilden Living Lab examines the energy efficiency of building materials

By Matthew Grant

Like many places in Canada, British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley is a

PLANNING - UBC’s Shihria Alam (left) reviews blueprints with builder Scott Tyerman and developer Karin Eger-Blenk at a construction site located near UBC’s Wilden Living Lab.

region with an active housing market. Having been discovered in earnest, the valley has grown substantially over the past 20 years. Since 1995, its

ince’s most prestigious research university, the

largest city, Kelowna, has grown to a population of 117,000—more than

University of British Columbia (UBC), with the

20%—and has welcomed large and small businesses, wineries, resorts and hotels, and scores of new housing developments.

idea of turning homes into guinea pigs.

Partnerships From those initial conversations, the

Over the same period, Kelowna has experi-

ter, more sustainable homes, there is a limited

Wilden Living Lab was born, a project that has

enced the rising cost of electricity and fuel seen

amount of information they can provide to

enlisted the help of the Blenk Development

in the rest of Canada. According to local real

their customers to help them make informed

Corp., engineering researchers from UBC’s

estate figures, the average price of a single-

decisions. “We’ve been building in greater

Okanagan campus, teachers and students

family home has increased from $170,000 to

energy efficiencies for a long time, but we’re

from Okanagan College’s trades programs,

just shy of $500,000. Combine those factors

always trying to do better and to help our

and builder AuthenTech Homes, another

with a greater focus on energy efficiency—from

customers do better, because that’s what they

CHBA Okanagan member.

both people and building codes—and companies in the housing industry have their work cut out for them. “It’s a priority we’re always looking to stay on top of,” said Karin Eger-Blenk, director at the Blenk Development Corporation, a

Each partner has brought their own resources and expertise to the table.

Each partner has brought their own resources and expertise to the table, from the two building lots and $60,000 in research funding from the Blenk Development Corp., to the equipment and expertise provided by UBC. It is, according to the partners involved,

CHBA Okanagan member currently develop-

want and it’s the right thing to do. It’s tradition-

an exciting real-world project that will take

ing one of the largest housing subdivisions in

ally been a balancing act, because people want

cutting-edge energy efficiency research out of

Kelowna. “There are a lot of new products on

to know what kinds of features and products

the lab and into the marketplace.

the market, from HVACs, to insulation, to win-

they should put into their homes, what those

“As researchers, we know how things work

dows, but nearly all the information available

features would cost, and what using them

on paper, but we don’t always see how they

is from manufacturers.”

would actually mean.”

actually perform in the real world, and that’s

That’s a challenge, said Eger-Blenk,

It is with that information gap in mind that

what this is,” says UBC’s Shahria Alam, Associ-

because in her company’s quest to build bet-

Eger-Blenk’s company approached the prov-

ate Professor of Engineering and the project’s

22 Home BUILDER November/December 2015

Energy Efficiency

lead researcher.

Homes, the builder in charge of

The project, Alam says, will involve the construction of two identically designed homes on similar lots in Kelowna’s Wilden subdivision.



between the two? One will be built to current building code standards and the other will include additional energy efficient equipment and upgrades. UBC researchers will then install sensors throughout both homes with the energy use of the

“As researchers, we know how things work on paper, but we don’t always see how they actually perform in the real world, and that’s what this is.” Shahria Alam, Associate Professor of Engineering, UBC.

construction of the Living Lab homes, notes that there are a number of companies who see the benefit that the university/ industry collaboration could bring with regard to sustainable development, and suppliers have already stepped forward. “We’ve been building homes in the Okanagan since the 1990s and, through the years, we have seen people get more energy conscious and environmentally

participating families monitored

aware, so it just makes sense

and the results published online

for us to do this,” said Tyerman.

in real time. “These will be homes, but at the same times

“People are quite excited about ment here in Kelowna.”

the prospect of working with the university and

they will be our labs,” said Alam. “We will see

The technologies to be added to the upgrad-

the benefits of the different types of energy effi-

ed house are being selected with the help of the

ciency measures installed and measure them

building trades program students and teachers

Construction on the two homes is set to

over three years. At the end of the research, we

at Okanagan College. Many of the supplies are

begin in the spring of 2016. Once completed,

will have information to provide to home build-

being donated to the project by building sup-

energy use data will be available on UBC’s

ers and home buyers as to the performance and

pliers in the region.

Okanagan campus website,

benefits of certain technologies in our environ-

Condo Pack • Gas • Electric • Hydronic

We’ve reinvented high efficiency. Designed for conventional thru wall installation applications, Condo Pack is the most effective choice with an ‘all indoor design’ for a clean exterior look. Perfect for residential low and highrise applications as well as institutional and industrial installations. Napoleon’s streamlined design is an aesthetically pleasing solution for your unique architectural needs. By removing exterior equipment and refrigerant connections from your application, your next installation will benefit with the added protection from extreme climate conditions and unforeseen damage. Pre-wired and pre-charged, our dual unit slide out chassis allows for easy installation and maintenance of both heating and cooling units. For More Information, contact: Napoleon Heating & Cooling Phone: 866-820-8686

the college, and the benefits that could bring to the community as a whole.”


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Home BUILDER November/December 2015


Technology Update

Electromagnetic Fields More and more Canadians are calling on building professionals to reduce their exposure. Here’s what you need to know. By André Fauteux


hen leukemia struck Christian

antennas and wireless devices, which IARC

(see and hundreds of experts

Groulx’s three-year-old son,

tied to brain cancer in 2011. (Electric fields

( suggest otherwise. High

Ylan, in 2007, it rattled the Quebec builder’s

created by voltage have not been classified

EMFs can notably hamper the body’s nighttime

outlook on life. Luckily, Ylan was cured and

by IARC.)

healing mechanisms. Builders, renovators and

Groulx was transformed right down to his

And in the age of wireless, “the number

electricians have an important role to play in

building practices. That’s because he learned

of diagnosed cases of electrohypersensitivity

helping reduce their clients’ unnecessary EMF

that electromagnetic fields (EMFs) produced

(EHS) has increased dramatically in the last 10

exposure, often with no-cost or low-cost mea-

by power lines, electric appliances and home

years,” according to Dr. Riina Bray, Medical

sures. This introductory article will focus solely

wiring are among the suspected triggers of leu-

Director of the Environmental Health Clinic at

on 60 Hz magnetic fields.

kemia and brain cancer, especially in children.

Women’s College Hospital in Toronto. As many

In fact, electrical code violations are the major cause of EMFs. “I decided to investigate EMF health effects in detail to see how I could reduce their impacts on my family and my clients,” said Groulx, coowner of Eastman-based Habitations Kyo.

Why Precaution Is Warranted

Builders, renovators and electricians have an important role to play in helping reduce their client’s unnecessary EMF exposure.

Electrosmog mitigation is a growing hous-

Start by Measuring How can building professionals stand out? “In existing housing, many constraints warrant hiring a consultant to measure EMFs, pinpoint problems and recommend solutions,” said Christian Groulx. “In new housing, it’s pretty simple if you follow a few basic rules.” The first thing to do is to buy a quality meter, such as the Cornet ED-78S EMF/RF detector,

ing market as more and more Canadians are

as 3 per cent of Canadians are complaining

which costs $155 (at IARC said

calling on building professionals to reduce

of severe headaches, insomnia, heart palpi-

children chronically exposed to magnetic fields

their radiation exposure. Two types of domes-

tations and other acute EHS symptoms not

above 4 milligauss (mG) or 0.4 microtesla (µT)

tic radiation are classified as “possibly car-

linked to any disease and which regress when

double their relative risk of leukemia. And

cinogenic” by the International Agency for

RF exposure is reduced, often without people’s

kids with leukemia have a poorer survival

Research on Cancer (IARC): 60 Hertz (Hz) mag-


rate if they are exposed to fields above 1-3

netic fields, generated by current (amperage)

But the science is inconclusive, so Health

mG (0.1-0.3 µT). Paradoxically, Health Canada

when electricity is consumed, officially linked

Canada says precautionary measures are not

says short-term exposures to 833 mG (83.3 µT)

with greater risk of child leukemia in 2001;

needed to reduce daily EMF exposures. Yet

fields are acceptable to prevent acute effects

and radiofrequency (RF)/microwaves used by

thousands of independently funded studies

such as nerve and muscle stimulation, but

24 Home BUILDER November/December 2015

Technology Update

it does not consider long-term risks such as

rent splitting and part of it exiting the building

cancer. For its part, the Austrian Medical Asso-

through the grounding conductor to the metal

ciation says chronic exposures above 1 mG (0.1

water pipes which present a parallel path for

µT) are unacceptable.

neutral current to return to the transformer.”

Wiring Errors the Major Culprit

plumbing as it is non-conductive and grounds

This is why Christian Groulx prefers plastic

Living close to a power line, using electric

the electrical system on two buried metal

heating and outdated knob-and-tube wiring,

rods. In existing housing, replacing a section

and living in multifamily housing are com-

of the water service pipe with plastic pipe or

mon sources of high magnetic fields. However,

dielectric (brass and plastic) coupling stops the

about 70 per cent of the time, the most common

flow of neutral current (and its magnetic field)

cause is living in a home with wiring errors,

throughout the house.

and/or code violations that present fire and shock hazards, says American consultant Karl Riley, author of the bestselling guide, Tracing

Karl Riley/Magnetic Sciences

EMFs in Building Wiring and Grounding.

The electrical service drop should ideally be buried and located as far away from bedrooms as possible.

Energy Efficiency and Distance Key Since magnetic fields are generated by cur-

materials. “Net current from wiring errors is

rent, reducing power use will reduce their

unshieldable and drops off slowly with dis-

intensity. And by balancing the amount of

tance,” said Riley. “As for magnetic fields from

current circulating on nearby cables, their

correctly wired sources, they can only be

magnetic fields cancel each other out. That’s

shielded with expensive ferrous metals, such

why twisted pairs are now used in most radi-

as in MuMetal shielding. Appliances produce

ant electric heating cables instead of single

fields based on their containing coils of wire

conductors (like knob-and-tube wiring). “If the

and weaken fast, with the cube of the distance.

wiring is correct (neutral equals hot current,

For example, a microwave oven produces a

hence cancels fields),” explained Riley, “then

field from the wires of its transformer, usually

inches away achieves under 1 mG, but if there

under 1 mG at 1 meter.”

is a wiring connection error, three feet away

Shielding Electric Fields

could still have you in 3+ mG. However, too many factors are involved to recommend safe

The most common wiring error is to connect the neutrals from two different circuits, which happen to be sharing a box like a wall switch box with multiple switches, according to Karl Riley. Returning neutral current from one circuit then goes back on both neutrals (paralleling), unbalancing the cable and generating a magnetic field. This is a code violation as is grounding neutral buses in subpanels, but is commonly done out of both ignorance and convenience by many electricians.

Finally, home wiring and plugged appli-

distances from power lines and wiring.”

ances always produce electric fields because

Ideally, site building and bedrooms as far

of tension (voltage), present even when appli-

away as possible from power lines. The service

ances are turned off. But, according to Riley, if

drop should be underground and perpendicu-

installed according to Code, regular Loomex

lar to structure, and electrical panels should be

cable won’t expose you to high electric fields.

at least 6 to 10 feet from sleep and work areas,

However more sensitive people such as chil-

advises British Columbia consultant Chris

dren may react to very low levels, which is why

“Elevated magnetic fields in buildings are

Anderson of ElectroSmog Solutions. Riley adds

Chris Anderson recommends hydronic heating

caused mainly by net currents in unbalanced

that DC power does not induce currents in

instead of heating cables.

circuits, meaning some of the neutral return

people and objects and that pure sine-wave

“It’s best to use short back-and-forth wiring

current has been diverted to other paths due to

inverters for alternative energy systems also

runs than creating loops around beds,” said

common wiring connection errors,” explained

produce less EMFs.

Groulx. The good news is that electric fields

Riley. “It can also be caused by neutral cur-

Magnetic fields travel through building

are easily shielded with armoured cable, which Chris Anderson prefers where people spend time, especially bedrooms. “Since we are up to 100 times more vulnerable to any stress when we sleep and metal acts as an antenna, avoid placing bedrooms over garages and workspaces, or having metallic components under and near bed sites.” Concludes Riley, “Those rare people who are hypersensitive to electric fields will need a whole house with armoured cable, and the

More and more people with electrohypersensitivity are leaving cities to live in the countryside away from high EMFs, such as this group in France showing their medical certificates confirming their diagnosis.

cords and extension cords to all lights and appliances will also have to be shielded.”


For more, visit and

Home BUILDER November/December 2015


CHBA President’s Message

A Busy Fall, Heading into a Very Busy Winter CHBA’s Fall meetings ran from October 27 through

work shifting gears, moving ahead at full speed with the

29 in Ottawa, and my take-away was that our Commit-

new government. It is clear we are in good position to

tees and Councils are both busier and more productive

continue our successful engagement on Parliament Hill. At our Board meeting, we received a very thorough

than ever.

Jane Morgan President, CHBA

Our committee, council and board meetings are a very

briefing on the changes in Ottawa and what this means

important part of moving the business of the Association

in terms of how CHBA government advocacy can best

forward. The expert input from our Association leaders

proceed. Our CEO Kevin Lee, joined by Yaroslav Baran

from across Canada is critical to best representing our

from Earnscliffe, guided us through the changes taking

members and their interests.

place and how events will likely unfold over the coming

From the Board of Directors meeting, I can report

With some 60% of MPs being new to Parliament, there

have set, both in terms of tangible results and financial

is certainly a lot to be done. As we’ve learned over the

management. There was a very positive mood around

last three years, ensuring that these MPs understand our

the Board table, and considerable enthusiasm for moving

industry, and its significant role in the economy both

forward in the post-election period.

nationally and in their home communities, is vital.

Overall, I think these meetings demon-

To this end, I’m pleased that CHBA’s Forum for Growth

strated a strong focus on priority items and

will be taking place early in March 2016, soon after the

a real push to “get things done,” taking full

new Parliament begins its work in earnest in the new

advantage of our volunteers’ knowledge and

year. This annual event brings Association leaders from

insight. I want to thank all of the members

across Canada to Ottawa, and onto Parliament Hill, for

who travelled to Ottawa for this round of

a day of face-to-face discussions with Ministers, MPs

meetings—your commitment and effort is

and senior government representatives. The Forum for

deeply appreciated!

Growth has proven to be invaluable in ensuring that

There were a number of highlights from the various meetings I’d like to share:

A Warm Welcome to CHBA-Prince Edward Island The Board of Directors was pleased to

Jane Morgan welcomes members at the Association’s fall meeting reception


that the Association is certainly achieving the goals we

the federal government is knowledgeable about our industry, which in turn provide the best assurance that policies impacting our industry will be well informed and appropriate.

Enthusiastic About Net Zero Energy Homes

welcome our newest provincial Association,

One of the Association meetings in Ottawa I very

representing our industry in Prince Edward

much enjoyed being part of was the Net Zero Energy

Island. Following the Board’s unanimous

Housing Council. This is certainly a “high energy” group,

vote in favour of accepting this new mem-

with a great deal of enthusiasm for the work they are

ber to the CHBA family, CHBA-PEI President

doing. It is so cool to see builders driving this initiative

Martin Hilchie, who was present, immediately took his new seat at the Board table.

forward. For me, personally, it’s a big deal. I see Net Zero

This marks completion of a lot of work on the part

Energy homes as building on Canada’s pioneering work

of our PEI members, who were helped immensely by

in energy efficient home construction, which is R-2000.

our colleagues at the CHBA-New Brunswick as they

Net Zero homes embody the R-2000 standards, and then

worked toward provincial status. Martin and his team,

take them to the next level. Since my father was President


including CHBA-PEI Executive Officer Susan Zambonin,

of CHBA back in the 1980s when the original R-2000

President: Jane Morgan, St. John’s, NL Past President: Bard Golightly, Edmonton, AB First Vice-President: Bob Finnigan, Toronto, ON Second Vice-Presidents: Eric DenOuden, Belleville, ON Nathan Stone, Langley, BC Treasurer: Blake Hudema, Burnaby, BC Presidential Appointees: Carolina Oxtoby, Calgary, AB Stefanie Coleman-Dias, St. Thomas, ON Chief Executive Officer: Kevin Lee, Ottawa, ON

have ambitious plans for building their Association’s

Standard came into being, I love to see it evolving into

membership on the Island, and we wish them the very

its next phase, and I love being the President of CHBA

best in their efforts!

as I watch the evolution. Talk about “next generation”!

CHBA Contact: David Foster National Office, Ottawa, ON

Martin was not the only new Board member. Replacing their HBA president predecessors, Steve Ruggiero, the new President of CHBA-Edmonton Region took his seat, as did John Meinen, the new Ontario Home Builders’ Association President. Welcome to all our new CHBA Board members!

Catching Up on the “New” Ottawa As Kevin outlined in his CEO Update, with the federal election now behind us, CHBA’s government relations

26 Home BUILDER November/December 2015

CHBA CEO’s Update

CHBA Advocacy with the New Liberal Government Well Underway

Kevin Lee CEO, CHBA

For the past two and a half years, the Canadian Home

councillor who won a by-election last year and was re-

Builders’ Association (CHBA) has dramatically increased

elected in October. His experience with big city housing

its government relations activity, strengthening the voice

issues has made him a key participant in forming the

of the residential construction industry on Parliament

Liberal party’s thinking on housing.

Hill. Much of this was in anticipation of the 2015 Federal

The Liberal campaign team also contacted CHBA

Election, and involved working with all parties. As a

during the election campaign to help inform the party

result, CHBA and the industry are in a strong position

platform. CHBA provided recommendations to all parties

moving forward.

in similar fashion, and was pleased to see its policy pro-

CHBA’s goal was to make housing and affordability

Finally, and very importantly, CHBA’s engagement

discussions and party platforms show that we were suc-

with party headquarters resulted in a three-page letter

cessful. Housing has never been more prominent in a

from the President of the Liberal Party to me during the

federal election campaign.

campaign. This is a direct response to CHBA asks and a

The national office contacted over 1,000 candidates

demonstration of understanding, by what is now the new

in the four national political parties. Engagement by all

government, of the key CHBA issues of affordability, jobs,

three levels of the Association turned into meetings with

and the underground economy.

local HBAs and members, and all-candidate debates

CHBA’s goal was to make housing and affordability issues prominent during the campaign.

posals reflected in many ways throughout the campaign.

issues prominent during the campaign, and both public

hosted by HBAs. These were supported by CHBA’s online election toolkit, including videos, Q&As and more.

Moving Forward As we move forward, CHBA will continue to work

With the election of a new majority Liberal govern-

with all the parties, as it is important to work with the

ment led by Justin Trudeau, we can take a quick look at

government in power as well as with the opposition.

CHBA engagement with the Liberal party to date, the Lib-

This is how the Association has conducted its federal

eral election platform as it relates to housing, and plans

government relations over the past two years. Many of

to continue building on our solid reputation in working

the key players from the past government will be return-

with the government of Canada.

ing to Ottawa in the opposition, and CHBA will continue

Forum for Growth

its relationship with all MPs. In the months to come, we will learn more about

Firstly, we met with Justin Trudeau during CHBA’s

how key housing-related aspects of the Liberal platform

Forum for Growth day on Parliament Hill in each of the

will move into the policy space. Much of the platform

past three years. Through this engagement, the new

was in strong alignment with CHBA recommendations.

Prime Minister is familiar with the issues and posi-

These include changes to the RRSP Home Buyers’ Plan,

tions of our industry, and knows our leadership. On his

measures to encourage rental construction and address

return to Ottawa the day after the election, CHBA was

social housing priorities, increased investment in skills

invited to, and attended, a reception in Ottawa with Mr.

training, a focus on innovation, and a significant ramp-up

Trudeau. And needless to say we have congratulated Mr.

of infrastructure investment. These are a good start, and

Trudeau, expressing how we look forward to working

additional measures to support affordability, particularly

with him and his new government on

for first-time home buyers, will continue to be at the heart

the housing issues facing Canadians and

of CHBA advocacy.

our industry.

In each of these areas, CHBA will be working to ensure

At the Forum for Growth as well as

that the new government sets its policy on the basis of

other occasions, including House of

solid information and an understanding of our industry

Commons Committee appearances and

and our customers.

one-on-one meetings, CHBA has met

So the table is set for CHBA to continue to provide

and had very meaningful dialogue with

solid advice and build a strong relationship with the

many Liberal MPs who will now be form-

new Liberal government. We already have a good start-

ing the 42nd Government of Canada, as

ing point!

well as senators. From finance committees to human resource committees and more, CHBA has engaged and informed all parties, including the Liberals. On an individual basis, CHBA has CHBA CEO Kevin Lee in discussion with Justin Trudeau on Parliament Hill (May 2015)

also engaged key players such as Adam Vaughan, the former Toronto municipal

Home BUILDER November/December 2015



Sensible Solutions for the Jobsite Sometimes the best solutions to age-old problems aren’t sensational techno-wonders. Instead, they’re just plain sensible.

Tool Tethering Goes To Sky Hooks

Dock onto your belt or pouch. Then you attach

We often need to tether our tools when

the 9” tether with its SkyHook to your hand tool.

working at heights where we would not want

The SkyHook has two openings with a teeter-

the tool to fall on a fellow worker, or in places

totter catch mechanism. When the tool is teth-

where recovering a dropped tool could be very

ered to your belt, you simply slide your wrist

difficult. It is common to tether them to a rail-

dock into the second slot and the connection

ing or to our own tool belts with cords long

is released on the belt dock: Away you go with

enough to let us work, but long tool cords can

the tool securely attached to your wrist. When

be a safety hazard in itself. Attaching them to

you want to change tools you simply slide the

your wrist greatly reduces that problem since a

open side of the Skyhook onto the belt dock

cord from your wrist to your hand is very short,

and it releases from your wrist while locking to

while allowing you to move while you work.

the belt. You don’t even need to look in order to

However, untethering wrist attachments and

make the secure transfer. With a dock on each

transferring them to your tool pouch or belt

wrist, you could change the tool from hand to

can be cumbersome and the tool is not safely

hand instantly.

Led Lighting With Legs

secured at the moment of transfer. Stanley

The Skyhook system is made for hand tools

All companies are competing with small,

Tools has just acquired Proto Tools and their

weighing less than six pounds only, not power

lightweight but powerful LED light sources

Proto Skyhook systems, listed as Stanley JPS

tools, and only for tools that have an obvious

and many have pivoting heads and/or hanging

Proto SkyDock.

hole or ring for attaching the carabiner clip on

hooks. Milwaukee just put some sturdy legs

The beauty of this is that you strap a Sky-

the tether. Ask for it where they sell Stanley

on one of their lights with their TRUEVIEW

Dock onto your wrist and thread another Sky-

tools or, on, just look up SkyDock.

LED Stand Light. The M18 battery is the ballast

28 Home BUILDER November/December 2015

hanging low for tripod stability, while the light-

shear tack while being easy to lift off

weight light source is adjustable from 4 to 7

the board so it actually holds onto

feet height, with both rotation and pivot adjust-

the board while you hammer the

ments as well. It can provide 2,000 lumens of

rubber bumpers in one direction or

light for 10 hours.

the other.

The Bulldog Takes a Plank Out of the Middle of a Click Floor

tape end with your hand or your foot,

Putting pressure on the hinged you first slide the boards out a small

One of my dreaded tasks has always been

bit, starting at the wall and working

replacing a plank in the middle of a floor. On

toward the damaged board until the

a nailed down floor it remains a daunting task

damaged board is free on both ends.

and, while lifting a click floor up from one side

Then force the boards in the two

of the room to the middle and laying it back

rows next to the damage away until

down was better, it wasn’t really much better.

the click tongue and groove is free

The flooring guys at Torlys have invented the

on one side. After that, simply put

Bulldog Easy Plank Replacer, and it works for

the taped end on the damaged board

all click flooring.

itself and use the hinge action to tilt the

The key is that under the flat-hinged section of this tool you apply a special doublesided tape, which Torlys supplies. It has great

board up and free. Work backwards to snug the new board into place. The tool is selling for about $110, and $34 for a 75-foot roll of Bulldog tape. It is worth

The Connected/Disconnected Job Site Sound Box

watching the demo on the web at www.Tor-

Suspended inside the rubber and aluminum under Residential/Accessories. The

roll-cage is the new Bosch Power Box PB360C.

dealer locator is under Residential/Resources.

On the power side you can plug this in or cut

DeWalt Goes Retrofit

it loose running on a Bosch 18V Li-ion battery. On the sound side you can plug in your sound

When Lithium Ion batteries came out,

source through an AUX plug and even store

DeWalt did not make them backward com-

small devices inside a secure weatherproof

patible for all of their Ni-Cad tools. The bases

storage nook, or cut that music side loose with

were a completely new shoe design. That is

new Bluetooth connectivity up to 150 feet from

always frustrating for someone who has old

any Bluetooth enabled device, or simply tune

tools still in good condition but no more bat-

in an AM or FM radio station. The free Power-

teries to drive them.

Box smart phone app even controls the sound

I thank you, DeWalt, for finally bringing out

box from a distance, giving you maximum

the adaptor that will make the shoe style Li-Ion

use of the four-way 360-degree speakers and

batteries compatible with my old insert tools.

subwoofer—or instant quiet to be able to hear

You simply slide it into the shoe of a battery

the boss.

and insert it into the socket of your still good

Since it is intended for a jobsite, you can

old tools. The DCA 1820 is listed at about $55.

also use it as a power bar, to charge Bosch bat-

They also offer a kit with two 20v Max batteries, a charger and the adaptor.

teries and profit from its powered USB outlet.

L TOOK TA L L TOOK TA L Montreal-based TV broadcaster, author, home renovation and tool expert Jon Eakes provides a tool feature in each edition of Home BUILDER.

Home BUILDER November/December 2015



Survey Shows How Much Canadians Willing to Spend on Kitchen Renovation In its 2015 Kitchen Trends Study: Canada, surveyed 701

The study also found that, when compared with the U.S.:

homeowners who either completed a kitchen renovation in 2014 or

 Canadians are more likely to hire a kitchen designer

planned to start one within three months. Half of the respondents are

 More Canadians favour contemporary and modern kitchen styles and

budgeting $25,000 or less for upcoming kitchen remodels; about the

fewer show interest in farmhouse and craftsman styles

same number spent that much on finished projects (51%). One-in-ten

 Electrical appliances are in half or more of Canadian urban and

are spending more than $75,000.

suburbanDemand homes, compared to less than a third of those in the U.S. Pent-Up

When it comes to the colour of cabinetry, more than half are choos-

Find the complete survey at


More than a third of us finally have the means to renovate (34%). In 2014, just 8% of us are remodeling to improve resale value in anticipation of selling a home.

ing white cabinets (51%), while16% are opting for medium-toned wood. This is consistent with last year’s finding that 75% of new kitchens have


“soft and neutral” colour palettes. When it comes to style, the choices Wanted to do it all along and finally have the means to do it

are more varied, with Shaker (43%), raised-panel (25%) and glass-front (22%) topping lists.


Can no longer stand my old kitchen

While most respondents opt for subtle backsplashes, homeowners

Purchased my home recently and want to make it my own

This is in keeping with the 2014 Houzz and Home Survey, which found

27% 23%

Old kitchen broke down

that homeowners under 35 are more likely to renovate for resale. Stainless continues to shine, with 83% of kitchens incorporating stainless appliances. That’s up from 65% in 2013. Granite and engineered quartz are counters of choice in all neighborhoods. Rural dwellers are

Was recently inspired to make changes


Adapting to recent changes in my family and lifestyle


twice as likely to install laminate, and also go for butcher block more so


Improve resale value to sell soon

than the urban and suburban dwellers.


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Update: Registered Apprenticeship Training Programs

Canadian Apprenticeship Forum: On the Move

OTTAWA — In 2013 the provinces and territories reported 469,680

OTTAWA — Canadian Apprenticeship Forum (CAF) is offering a one-

registrations in apprenticeship programs in Canada. Of these, more

stop, online reference for apprentices who move prior to being certified

than three-quarters were apprentices continuing their programs from

and employers who hire apprentices from other parts of the country. It

the previous year (already registered), about one-fifth were new regis-

outlines apprenticeship regulations, inter-provincial agreements and

trations in 2013, and the remainder were people reinstated in a specific

processes to support recognition of previous on-the-job hours and tech-

trade over that year.

nical training. Immigrants can also access information about the trade

The majority of registrations (77.3%) were in apprenticeship programs where the associated trade had a Red Seal designation at the

qualifier process in each province and territory. Find it at http://caf-fca. org/on-the-move/.


Canada level. Already-registered apprentices in trades with the Red Seal designation accounted for 6 in 10 registrations. About 15% were new registrations in Red Seal designated trades, and 1.5% were reinstatements. By comparison, 22.7% of all registrations were in trades without Red Seal designation. Of these, 17.2% were apprentices who were already

Trending in Paint for 2016: Soothing Colours The forecast for the year

registered in the apprenticeship program the previous year, while 5.4%


were new registrations in 2013.

when it comes to paint. Some

Men accounted for more than 85% of registrations, while just over 14% were female. In some trades, males made up almost all registrations in the group. In 2013, four trade groups (electricians, carpenters, plumbers, pipefitters and steamfitters, and automotive service technicians) were the most common choices for male registered apprentices.

Construction electricians and carpenters accounted for more than 20% of overall registrations.




of Canada’s leading paint brands have announced their popular colours for 2016 and the common theme is serenity. The 2016 colour palette by Dulux Paints, for example, is filled with soothing, misty-coloured pastels, highlighted by the brand’s top pick, Bear Run (10BG 46/112), an ethereal, calming blue. CIL paint predicts that warm colours will

Together, these four trade groups

take centre stage. Think brown-

accounted for just over half of all male apprentices.

hued neutrals, beachy driftwood

Just over 65,000 certificates were awarded to apprentices and trade

tones and cloudy transluscents,

qualifiers in 2013. More than 7 in 10 of these certificates were issued to

with pink, especially CIL’s Che-

apprentices. This compares with 27.8% issued to trade qualifiers. Almost

mise Pink (60YR 75/075 MC10),

23,000 of the certificates issued in 2013 had the Red Seal endorsement.

being the hottest colour of all.

The 10 Red Seal trades with the highest number of registrations

For the PPG Paints brand, next

accounted for half of all registrations in 2013. Among these Top 10 Red

year’s colours are all about tran-

Seal trades, construction electricians and carpenters accounted for over

quility and security in the midst of

20% of overall registrations.

uncertain times. Taking the PPG


Paints top spot is a soft, muted

According to CIL paint, soft blush pink—such as Chemise Pink—will be the hottest colour in home decor in 2016.

CALENDAR Do you have an event you want posted on our new Online Calendar? E-mail your listing to

December 3

shielding feel, echoing the urban

Housing Outlook Conference CMHC Montreal, QC

CHBA - Conference . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 . . . 613-230-3060 . . .

militia-inspired look popular on

December 2-4

CHBA - National Awards . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 . . . 613-230-3060 . . .

fashion runways. According to

A d v e r t is e r s in Th is Issue Advertiser



Web site

green called Paradise Found (PPG1135-5), which emits a

E.I. duPont Canada Company . . . . . . . . . 30 . . . 800-387-2122 . . .

Sico paint, gold will be all the

NAPOLEON Fireplaces & Grills . . . . . 2, 23 . . . 800-461-5581 . . .

rage is 2016, delivering a warm,

Robinson Lighting & Bath Centre . . . . . . . 4 . . . 604-879-6847 . . .

nurturing aura to living spaces.

Rogers Communications . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 . . . 866-567-5778 . . .

Citing Buckwheat Yellow (6113-

Royal Building PRODUCTS . . . . . . . . . . . 23 . . . 614-754-3463 . . .

54) as the brand’s colour of the

The Buildings Show (Construct Canada, PM Expo, HomeBuilder & Renovator Expo, World of Concrete Pavilion, and IIDEXCanada) Informa Canada Toronto, ON

Sage Software, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18, 30 . . . 866-420-7289 . . .

year, Sico paint pointed to golden

January 15-17, 2016

Simpson Strong-Tie Canada . . . . . . . . . . 32 . . . 800-999-5099 . . .

yellow as reflective of a less com-

Weiser Lock / Spectrum Brands . . . . . 8, 23 . . . 800-340-7608 . . .

plex time in history and people’s increasing quest to return to cocooning.

Winnipeg Renovation Show Winnipeg, MB

C Home BUILDER November/December 2015


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Experience Simpson Strong-Tie® Deck-Drive™ screws. Each screw is specifically designed for its application. Whether working with wood decking, premium composite or exotic hardwood, we have a fastener to fit the project – and it drives faster and easier than competitors. Once you try one of our Deck-Drive fasteners, you’ll want to experience them all. Contact your local rep for samples and a demo at (800) 999-5099 and learn more at

©2015 Simpson

Strong-Tie Company Inc. DD14-C

November / December 2015 | Home Builder Magazine Canada  

Industry Leaders Speak / Technology & Trends | A selection of the latest opinions and advice to our readers—direct from top builders, contr...