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making history: the unique challenges of preserving the past P.38 a s yo u l i v e a n d b r e at h e : H ow h a z a r d o u s m at e r i a l s t r a i n i n g c a n g i v e co n t r ac to r s a n e d g e P. 2 1

out of the woods: are you barking up the right tree? P.48

The art of containment during renovations P.56

ohba.ca reno 2019 | $5.00


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Contents

32 Is Everybody Happy? How to keep a reno from falling apart at the seams

38 Saving This Old House

48 Bark Up the Right Tree

56 64 The Art of Making a Containment Splash

Think the technical challenges of preserving the past are tough? They’re just the beginning!

From decking to flooring, are you choosing the right wood for the job?

How you treat a client’s home says a lot about your company.

9 One Voice Ontario’s recently modernized apprenticeship system is netting positive results

21 Inside Storey Why it might be time to break the mould and get some hazardous materials training

11 Ontario Report Ontario firms dominate at nationals, gearing up for the 2019 conference, Stefanie Coleman takes the CHBA president’s seat, EQ spring training and this year’s Tarion Awards winners are...

25 Top Shelf Arriscraft leaves no stone unturned, Window City’s black beauties, Permacon is conducting some new business, DuroSpan adds a whole new layer, DeWalt nails it again, rocking on with Erth Coverings, Stone Selex goes natural, setting a new American standard and what’s the fasten-nation with Ramset?

19 Frame of Mind Using a building’s own walls to regulate temperature ohba.ca

Want to know what’s hot in kitchens and bathrooms for the next few years?

71 Building Buzz Koben Systems is helping home breaker panels smarten up, a compact tools launch from DeWalt, new resources for renovators, groups push for a new standard on wind resilience and the math adds up for skilled trades 77 Product Focus Firing up all the latest trends in home interiors 86 Words to Build By Stefanie Coleman, Owner, Pretty Smart Homes

ON THE COVER

Amsted, Highland Restoration, Oke Woodsmith, Pioneer Craftsmen and Toronto Custom Concepts share their tricks to containing the mess.

ontario home builder Reno 2019

5


The official publication of the Ontario Home Builders’ Association RENO 2019 | Vol. 35 Issue 3

Quality

editor

Ted McIntyre ted@laureloak.ca

Reliability

associate editor

Va lue

Norma Kimmins, OHBA

FIND OUT MORE

Erik Mohr

art director

assistant art director

Ian Sullivan Cant Intern

Marikha Saira copy editor

Barbara Chambers contributors

Avi Friedman, Tracy Hanes, Marc Huminilowycz, Jonathan Oke, Joe Vaccaro advertising

Tricia Beaudoin, ext. 223 tricia@laureloak.ca Cindy Kaye, ext. 232 cindy@laureloak.ca publisher

Sheryl Humphreys, ext. 245 sheryl@laureloak.ca PRESIDENT

Wayne Narciso Published by

Laurel Oak Publishing laureloak.ca

ohba.ca Ontario Home Builder is published six times per year (Winter, Spring, Renovation, Summer, Fall, Awards). All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher © 2019. For address corrections please email info@laureloak.ca or phone: (905) 333-9432.

WWW.TRISTUCCO.COM | TEL: 905-845-9500 | INFO@TRISTUCCO.COM Tristucco_02.indd 1

2016-02-25 11:12 AM

“Helping Builders Finance Their Dreams since 1974”

Single copy price is $5.00. Subscription Rates: Canada $12.95 + HST per year, USA $29.95 USD.

Order online at http://ohba.ca/subscribe-or-buy-past-issues CANADIAN PUBLICATION MAIL AGREEMENT NO. 42011539 ISSN No. 1182-1345

Project Financing:  Land  Land Servicing   Mezz Financing

300 John St. Suite 328, Thornhill ON L3T 5W4 B: 905-731-111 x 229 C: 647-838-5061 rena@cyrfunding.com www.cyrfunding.com 6

ontario home builder reno 2019

    

Custom Homes Subdivisions Apartment Buildings Inventory Units Condo Management

Financing   Commercial / Industrial  Special Purposes ohba.ca


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One Voice

The Honourable Merrilee Fullerton, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities, with OHBA president Rick Martins.

one-to-one is a win-win Ontario’s recently modernized apprenticeship system is already netting positive results. “We’ve already hired some new

apprentices. Thank you.” That was the message that several OHBA members delivered to the Honourable Merrilee Fullerton, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities, when she addressed an enthusiastic group of industry leaders including local HBA presidents, executive officers and OHBA committee/council chairs last month in Markham. Members were keen to let the minister know that the Ontario government’s move last fall to set journeyperson-toapprentice ratios at 1:1 for all trades where ratios apply was already reaping rewards, particularly for small- to mid-sized builders and renovators who, after years of delay and frustration, are finally able to hire apprentices in their companies. Minister Fullerton confirmed that members’ anecdotal stories of apprentice hires were accurate when she noted that total apprenticeship registrations are already 11% higher than at the ohba.ca

“apprenticeship registrations in the construction sector are 6% higher.” same time last year, and that apprenticeship registrations in the construction sector are about 6% higher. That’s very good news, especially when we consider that by 2021 one in five new jobs is expected to be in trades-related occupations. And the minister said the PC government is just getting started. Further improvements include a group sponsor grant designed to make it easier for two or more employers to better support the registration and training of apprentices. By reducing administrative and training costs, group sponsorships should help small- and medium-sized employers

to fully participate in the apprenticeship training process. The program will also create opportunities for more people to enter the skilled trades and give apprentices broader experience to develop the skills they need to become certified. A win-win scenario! In addition, in anticipation of the wind-down of the Ontario College of Trades by this fall, the government has already eliminated apprentice membership fees and reduced the annual membership fees for journeypersons by 50%. Minister Fullerton told OHBA members, that if passed, the Modernizing the Skilled Trades and Apprenticeship Act (2019) will establish a new streamlined and modernized delivery model to replace the Ontario College of Trades. The framework would allow for faster, competency-based training for apprentices and ‘cross-skilling’ through the trades, and be based on portable skill sets. The idea is that training and certifying skills sets will allow both tradespeople and the industry to better meet the needs of our rapidly changing economy. With 21% of Ontario’s skilled trades workforce expected to retire this decade, the need to attract and train new workers with the right skill set has reached a critical point. In the past, Ontario’s education and training system was just not producing enough skilled tradespeople and the industry’s needs were not being met, which impacted Ontario’s ability to compete, grow and prosper. It is refreshing and encouraging to work with a government determined to create a flexible and adaptive system that will respond to the needs of our industry and allow more Ontarians to join the skilled trades. Sounds like another win-win in the works! OHB

joe vaccaro is the CEO of the ontario home builders’ association

ontario home builder Reno 2019

9


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Ontario Report

Alvin Curling, former MPP, speaker of the Legislative Assembly in Ontario and Ambassador to the Dominican Republic with Hyacinth Sulph.

OHBA Past Presidents were joined by Municipal Affairs and Housing Minister Steve Clark, MPPs Logan Kanapathi and Billy Pang, and MP Phil McColeman.

London HBA President Toby Stolee, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities Merrilee Fullerton, London HBA Past President Sue Wastell and Brantford HBA President Jennifer Stuart.

OHBA 1st VP Bob Schickedanz (centre) with students from the Durham College School of Skilled Trades, Apprenticeship and Renewable Technology.

Ontario Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, the Honourable Steve Clark. Past President Pierre Dufresne with Minister Steve Clark, OHBA President Rick Martins and OHBA Secretary Jackie Caille.

OHBA Renovation Chair Jamie Adam, Minister Merrilee Fullerton and OHBA 2nd VPs Louie Zagordo and Dave Depencier.

ohba.ca

Housing Minister at Industry Leaders’ Dinner An appreciative crowd welcomed Ontario’s Minister of Municipal Affairs, the Honourable Steve Clark at its annual Industry Leaders’ Dinner on April 15 in Markham. Minister Clark, who was joined by several area MPPs, addressed industry leaders including local association presidents, executive officers and OHBA Committee/Council Chairs and volunteers. He confirmed that his ministry continues to look for ways to reduce red tape and delays to ensure that the industry can bring more housing to market, more quickly for Ontarians. Earlier in the day, the Honourable Merrilee Fullerton, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities brought OHBA members up to date on her ministry’s plans to make further improvements to Ontario’s skilled trades and apprenticeship programs. ontario home builder Reno 2019

11


Ontario Report

WINNING BIG TIME at CHBA NATIONALS Congratulations to the Ontario builders, renovators and marketing teams who won over half of the 40 National Awards for Housing Excellence presented at the Canadian Home Builders’ Association (CHBA) 76th National Conference held in Niagara Falls in early May. The National Awards program attracted more than 700 entries from across the country, and this year’s Ontario entries were strong and numerous, with 21 firstplace results in both the production and custom home categories, as well as in home renovations and marketing. “As a home builder, I am tremendously impressed by the quality, design and innovation that this year’s award winners represent,” said CHBA outgoing president Nathan Stone. “Our 2019 Award finalists and winners are leaders in our industry, and we are all very proud of what they have achieved in showcasing our industry. They certainly represent the best of the best.” MARKETING AWARDS

Congratulations to the 21 Ontario winners:

Signage & Logo

Tridel and The Brand Factory, Toronto: “Aqualuna Logo & Signage” Brochure/Kit

Lucchetta Homes, Fonthill: “Davis Heights” Website

.NEW HOME AWARDS

DETACHED HOMES

ATTACHED HOMES

Custom | 3,501 to 5,000 sq. ft.

Low-Rise under 1,500 sq. ft.

Lucchetta Homes, Welland: “The Aberdeen, Riverside: The Residences At Hunters Pointe” with That’s Fab Design ATTACHED HOMES Mid- to High-Rise Condominium or Apartment Project (Completed)

Kylemore Communities, Markham: “The 6th Angus Glen” DETACHED HOMES

Production | One-storey Bungalow

SanDiego Homes Inc., Simcoe County: “The Strathmore”

Timberworx Custom Homes, Aberfoyle: “Avant Garde”

with Pella Windows and Doors, Building Knowledge Canada Inc., Bluewater Energy, Panasonic Eco Solutions Canada NET ZERO HOME AWARD

Timberworx Custom Homes, Aberfoyle: “Avant Garde” with Pella Windows and Doors, Building Knowledge Canada Inc., Bluewater Energy, Panasonic Eco Solutions Canada

Mizrahi Developments, Ottawa: “1451 Wellington” Digital Media Campaign

Empire Communities, Toronto: “Empire Phoenix” with Pureblink Print Ad

Lucchetta Homes, Welland: “Riverside: The Residences At Hunters Pointe” with 180 Marketing Sales Office Low-Rise

DETACHED HOMES

RENOVATION AWARDS

Pace Developments and Ngen Communications, Barrie, ON: “Urban North”

Production | Under 1,800 sq. ft.

Kitchen

Sales Office

Linwood Custom Homes Ltd., Kawarthas: “The Caven”

Under $70,000

DETACHED HOMES

Granite Homes, Fergus: “Heritage Lane Farmhouse Kitchen”

Production | 2,501 to 3,000 sq. ft.

Whole House

RND Construction Ltd., Ottawa: “The Meadow” with Christopher Simmonds Architect DETACHED HOMES Custom | Under 2,500 sq. ft.

Timberworx Custom Homes, Aberfoyle: “Green With Envy” with Ensuite/Emco Guelph, Riverside Millwork Group, Barber Glass

12

ontario home builder reno 2019

Mid- to High-Rise

figure3 and CentreCourt, Vaughan: “Transit City”

Under $150,000

Design/Decor Centre

Whole House

Activa, Kitchener: “The Activa Design Studio”

SLV Homes, Sudbury: “The Aspen” $150,000 to $300,000

ARTium Design Build, Ottawa: “The ART House” Whole House $300,001 to $500,000

Granite Homes, Fergus: “Heritage Lane Farmhouse”

Interior Decorating

Timberworx Custom Homes, Aberfoyle: “Avant Garde”

ENTER SOON AND ENTER OFTEN! The 2019 OHBA Awards of Distinction opened for entry on May 1 and if you enter before May 31 you will enjoy big savings with an early-bird reduced entry fee. We have added some new categories this year, so be sure to check out the website to see where you can enter—and do it soon to pay less! The online submission final deadline is Friday, June 21. There will be absolutely no extensions! Finalists will be announced in early August and the program will culminate in the Awards of Distinction Gala on September 24 in conjunction with OHBA’s Annual Conference at Blue Mountain Resort in Collingwood. The 43-category awards program honours the vision, innovation and expertise of some of Ontario’s most creative and talented builders, renovators, designers and marketers. Visit the website at ohbaaod.ca for full categories and entry details. ohba.ca


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Ontario Report Local Association Golf Date

Tournament

Local Contact Name Contact Number email

May 23

BILD

Tiffany Kohl

(416) 391-3446

tkohl@bildgta.ca

June 4

NHBA

Alicia Dimitrov-Lawrence

(905) 646-6281

alicia@nhba.ca

June 4

GOHBA

Jason Burggraaf

(613) 723-2926 x 224

jason@gohba.ca

June 6

PKHBA

Danica Logan

(705) 876-7304

danica@pkhba.com

June 6

WRHBA

Hayley Hopkins

(519) 884-7590

hayley-hopkins@wrhba.com

June 11

LHBA

Lois Langdon

(519) 686-0343

llangdon@lhba.on.ca

June 13

SDHBA

Gisele Regimbal

(705) 671-6099

sudburyhomebuilders@vianet.ca

June 13

BHBA

Fred DeCator

(519) 755-9690

freddecator@rogers.com

June 18

HHHBA

Cindy McIntosh

(905) 575-3344 x 3

cindym@hhhba.ca

June 21

LLHBA

Darlene Fendley

(613) 523-5656

darlenefendley@gmail.com

July 10

SABA

Derek Smith

(519) 271-4795

dsmith@stratfordbuilders.ca

HHHBA

Cindy McIntosh

(905) 575-3344 x 3

cindym@hhhba.ca

July 18

STEHBA

Amanda Koning

(519) 852-6025

stehba@25percentmore.com

July 18

SCHBA

Sandy Tuckey

(705) 718-1202

office@simcoehomebuilders.com

July 23

DRHBA

Stacey Hawkins

(905) 579-8080 x 1001

s.hawkins@drhba.com

July 17

U40 9 & Dine

July 26

SLHBA

Marty Marshall

(519) 344-7422

office@slhba.ca

Sept. 10

WRHBA

Hayley Hopkins

(519) 884-7590

hayley-hopkins@wrhba.com

Sept. 12

GDHBA

Melissa Jonker

(519) 836-8560

guelph.homebuilders@gmail.com

Sept. 12

GOHBA

Jason Burggraaf

(613) 723-2926 x 224

jason@gohba.ca

Sept. 13

HCHBA

Aggie Tose

(705) 457-6901

aggietose@gmail.com

Sept. 17

BILD

Tiffany Kohl

(416) 391-3446

tkohl@bildgta.ca

Sept. 18 Women’s 9 & Dine HHHBA

Cindy McIntosh

(905) 575-3344 x 3

cindym@hhhba.ca

TBD

Kierstyn Pare

(519) 948-3247

windsoressexhba@gmail.com

WEHBA

ENROL NOW IN IBE COURSES

The Ontario Home Builders’ Association and our Institute of Building Excellence (IBE) provides professional development opportunities for the residential construction industry. The following courses are approved by Tarion Warranty Corporation and are required to obtain warranty coverage.

Tarion Customer Service and Warranty Increase your awareness and understanding of the elements of Customer Service and Warranty that directly affect the everyday operation of your building or renovating company. Management and staff will gain a better understanding of the importance of exceeding service expectations. Location: OHBA offices, North York Date: June 13 Instructor: Stefanie Coleman

result in improved performance and profitability for your building companies. The course covers methods to encourage employees and subtrades to work together to get the job done on time and on budget while meeting standards for quality and using new and innovative methods and materials. You will learn techniques that will help in planning and scheduling of complex projects, get people working as a team and keep your projects on the path to successful completion

Project Management and Site Supervision

Location: OHBA offices, North York Date: June 20 Instructor: Greg Labbe

To help both novice and experienced superintendents improve their awareness and understanding of the primary elements of construction supervision that will

All course fees (including the final exam) are $350. Visit learnyourliving.ca for further information and to enrol.

Spring Training at EQ EnerQuality offers three courses this spring aimed at helping builders achieve their goals of building better homes (low, mid- or high-rise). Part 9 Residential Air Barrier (Back by popular demand!) May 28

See why the first two offerings of this intensive one-day workshop sold out. Airtight construction leads to greater comfort for your customer and proper air barriers lead to increased savings, while leaky homes lead to higher heating and cooling costs. Part 3 Large Building Air Testing (New!) May 31

Whether you’re building to the new Energy Star Multifamily or LEED standards, or just want to ‘build better,’ high-performance air barriers and low-infiltration rates are essential for ensuring healthy, comfortable, durable and efficient buildings and enclosure systems. High Performance Home Sales & Marketing (New!) June 5

Your customers are buying better-built houses and condos. But what does it mean and how do the qualities of a better-than-code home affect sales and marketing? This is for those certifying or just wanting to distinguish themselves from code builders. HBA and group discounts apply. Many students are also eligible for training grants. Visit our Education page for more information, or contact Jessika Diamond at (416) 447-0077 or

Jessika@enerquality.ca. 14

ontario home builder reno 2019

ohba.ca


Ontario Report

Tarion Announces 2019 Homeowners’ Choice Awards Recipients Four outstanding building companies in Ontario were recognized by Tarion on April 17 as the winners of the 2019 Homeowners’ Choice Awards, the only awards in the province that focus solely on customer service and that are based on feedback from homeowners. Some 11,376 homeowners responded to the 2018 survey about their builder’s performance before, during and after they moved into their new home, and their feedback determined the recipients for outstanding customer service in four categories. “A new home is a place to make memories,” says Tarion President and CEO Howard Bogach, “and a builder has a big role in determining whether a homeowner’s first memories are positive ones. Thanks

to their exemplary customer service, this year’s award recipients not only met but exceeded expectations, and by so doing set an example for others to follow.” The Ernest Assaly Award recognizes the highest level of excellence in Ontario home building while honouring the legacy of Ernest Assaly, a highly respected leader in the residential building industry who was Tarion’s first Chair. Only a select number of Ontario builders met the rigorous criteria required to even receive an invitation to make a submission. Similar to a lifetime achievement award, a builder can only receive this recognition once. Congratulations to The Daniels Corporation, which was selected by the Tarion board of directors as the 2019 recipient of the Ernest Assaly Award.

Tarion Winners and Finalists 2019 Small Volume Category (5-20 possessions per year) Winner:

C hris King and Son’s Construction Ltd., Kingsville FINALISTs:

C . Kelos Homes Limited, Thunder Bay Ed Robinson Homes Ltd., Dunnville Lockwood Brothers Construction, Oxford Station OPUS Homes Inc., Vaughan Terry Waito Homes Inc., Petawawa

16

Medium Volume Category (21-100 possessions per year) Winner:

T imberland Homes, Lasalle

Large Volume Category (More than 100 possessions per year) Winner:

H ayhoe Homes, St. Thomas

FINALISTs:

K lemencic Homes Inc., Trenton Larry Otten Contracting Inc., Stratford LeBlanc Enterprises, Cobourg Policella Homes, Welland R.V.L. Contracting Inc. - R.V.L. Homes, Grimsby

ontario home builder reno 2019

FINALISTs:

A ctiva, Waterloo Mountainview Homes, Thorold Rinaldi Homes, St. Catharines Sorbara Group of Companies, Vaughan Uniform Urban Developments, Ottawa

High-Rise Category (More than 100 highrise possessions per year) Winner:

Brookfield Residential, Markham FINALISTs:

B ranthaven Homes, Burlington Del Ridge Homes Inc., Markham Great Gulf Homes, Toronto Onni Group, Toronto Tridel, Toronto

Ontario’s Stefanie Coleman Leads CHBA Congratulations to Stefanie Coleman, who was elected as the 2019/2020 President of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association at the national organization’s annual conference held in early May in Niagara Falls. Stefanie had previously held the position of 1st Vice-President of CHBA and has served on CHBA’s Executive Committee since 2015. Stefanie has been active on the provincial level as well, as a member of the Ontario Home Builders’ Association Board of Directors, its Renovators’ Council and Technical Committee. She has also contributed her time and talents at the local association level where she joined the board of directors of the St. Thomas-Elgin HBA in 2007 and served as its President in 2011-2012. Stefanie also served on the Renovators’ Council and as Chair of the Technical Committee for the London HBA. The St. Thomas-based renovator has been involved in the residential construction industry for 14 years and specializes in building science as it relates to renovations and new-home construction. Stefanie’s background is in design, where she started in the fashion industry before moving to residential renovation. Her renovation projects have won awards at the local, provincial and national levels for both design and marketing. Elections to the 2019/2020 CHBA board were underway at press time, so please visit chba.ca for announcements on other Ontario member representatives.

JOIN US IN COLLINGWOOD!

Registration is now open for the 2019 OHBA Conference with earlybird rates in effect until September 1. Hosted by the Simcoe County Home Builders’ Association, the annual conference will be held at the spectacular Blue Mountain Resort in Collingwood from September 22–24. Expect a great selection of exciting, educational seminars to meet your professional business needs, as well as ample networking opportunities, a president’s and awards gala and lots of entertainment and fun. Join your colleagues from across the province and take advantage of early registration rates. Visit conference.ohba.ca.

ohba.ca


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Frame of Mind

Thermal mass appeal Using a building’s walls to regulate heating and cooling by D r . Av i F r i e d m a n

Mechanical Heating began to gain widespread appeal in the 1950s. Prior to that, inhabitants for the most part relied on various methods to keep their homes warm, one of the most efficient being the building’s own thermal mass. A material with a high thermal mass is one that has the innate ability to absorb heat and release it in a controlled and prolonged manner. As the sun beats down on a wall with a high thermal mass, the wall absorbs the heat and retains it. When its surrounding environment cools down, it will slowly begin to release the thermal energy. This method of temperature regulation can be quite efficient. In winter, thermal mass absorbs heat from the sun and releases it indoors. In the summer, it shields the interior from outdoor heat and allows the inside to stay cool. By selecting materials with a high thermal mass, a structure will regulate its ohba.ca

temperature efficiently and naturally. The concept has been adopted at House R in the city of Karlsruhe, Germany. Four storeys tall, the home consists of a small rectangular prism stacked atop a larger cubic volume, with a break on the northeast corner for parking. The 4,898 sq. ft. home utilizes concrete as a principle design material. The southern facade is made entirely of concrete. With the help of large expanses of glass, the thermal mass walls make up the home’s primary source of heating. As the sun rises, light penetrates the home, beginning to heat the living spaces and the concrete wall. The thermal wall continues to absorb light as the sun moves southward. Lacking any windows or openings, the monolithic wall blocks direct sunlight from entering the interior, preventing heat from building up in the living spaces and maximizing the wall’s thermal storage. In the evening,

sunlight penetrates the living space and can still reach the concrete wall through the glass wall on the western facade. Operable exterior sunshades provide control of sunlight exposure and allow privacy for the residents once the sun has set. As temperatures drop, the built-up heat steadily dissipates from the concrete wall, heating the home. The understated design of the simple concrete walls complements the home’s modern elegance. The house is slightly raised above a large basement that projects out sideways, opening to the exterior. Glass wall panels line the south basement wall and face an exterior concrete wall. The diagonal slant of the wall, as well as the full floor height of the glass, allows solar radiation to reach the concrete that lines the basement floors and walls. By raising the house one metre above ground level, light can penetrate further into the subterranean space. The heat attained within the concrete walls also heats a swimming pool in the basement. Together, the water and concrete walls and floors will radiate heat at night to warm the basement. Also made of concrete is the simple staircase at the centre of the house. Surrounded by glass, the stairs are heated by the solar radiation inside. The glass walls retain a greater amount of heat than if left bare, because as light moves through glass, its wavelength increases and is no longer able to pass through. The concrete stairs are left exposed (like all concrete surfaces found in the house) to maximize thermal absorption and eliminate heat loss caused in low-thermal-mass finishes. Concrete is a recurring feature in the home and is fabricated with a subtlety that allows it to blend with the overall design. Accomplishing its functional need as a source of heat, its features demonstrate how thermal mass can be integrated to complement modern simplicity. OHB Dr. Avi Friedman is an architect, professor and social observer. He can be reached at avi.friedman@mcgill.ca.

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Inside Storey potential consequences. According to Statistics Canada data, in 2016, well over 500 Canadians died of mesothelioma, an asbestos-linked lung cancer. The number of new mesothelioma cases has risen more than 60% in the last 20 years, and that number doesn’t even include data from Quebec since 2010. Further, after falls, exposure to asbestos is the second-leading cause of occupational death in the country. And that makes experts like Geoff Leclair increasingly important. Not only did Leclair train the staff at Holland Renovations, but as the principal environmental consultant and owner of Ottawa’s Contaminant Solutions, with more than 17 years of experience in the industry, few are more adept at measuring for asbestos, mould and other hazardous materials.

breaking the moUld Hazardous materials training can offer an edge By Ted McIntyre with Geoff Leclair, principal environmental consultant, Contaminant solutions

Ottawa’s holland Renovations has seen the forecast and they’re bracing for phone calls. “I suspect we’re going to start seeing a lot more mould because our weather is changing so much,” notes Holland’s president and owner Robert Breau. “Homes are being taxed a lot more than they ever were previously. With so much snow melt and rain, people who’ve never had a problem are going to start seeing water in their basements. The result is going to be more mould.” Given the potential costs of mould and asbestos remediation, Breau took a savvy proactive approach by training staff to remove the materials themselves, rather than subcontract. “Before we begin a project, we have to get a Designated Substance Report,” Breau notes. “It’s technically the homeowner’s responsibility, but as the contractor, we realize that many ohba.ca

of our customers are not aware of the Ministry’s requirement, so we’ll advise them and get the reports for them. “But if they have to deal with a costly asbestos removal, it can get in the way of us getting the work,” Breau notes. “So we decided to have our staff trained to do Type 1 and Type 2 asbestos abatement. But for vermiculite or that kind of thing, or anything with power tools, we’ll bring someone in. “We got involved in it almost on a loss-leader basis,” Breau explains. “We’ll do it at cost and to cover our insurance, so (the client’s cost) might be $2,000 instead of $10,000 for an asbestos removal.” It’s something contractors need to be aware of, particularly with the Ontario Occupational and Safety Act now prescribing a $25,000 fine for those who remove asbestos without testing and without taking proper precautions. There are, of course, much worse

OHB: YOu have three levels of asbestos training? geoff leclair: The first is asbestos awareness, for workers or project managers, to help them be aware of what materials contain asbestos, and the health implications that can occur. For example, in a renovation, they can say, ‘OK, we’ve got drywall, so the joint compound might contain asbestos. Same with a textured ceiling. The second level is Type 1 and Type 2 worker training—low- and moderate-risk asbestos abatement operations, such as removing flooring, plaster, stipple coats, transite siding. Type 3 training is high-risk asbestos removal. For mould, it’s just two levels of training. Other than the obvious visual, what are warning signs for mould?

Any signs of water infiltration, like historic water staining. Essentially when water travels through concrete, the water evaporates, but any salts present in the water remain, leaving a white residue. So that’s a good indication that water is getting through. Another sign to watch for is bulging or warping of drywall around windows and doors, ontario home builder Reno 2019

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where there has been an exchange of moisture-laden air. A big one is the odour—a musty, earthy smell. Existing health issues could also be a warning.

Sometimes health issues are actually the driving force for a mould assessment—homeowners experiencing allergic reactions, such as watery eyes, itchy throats and runny noses. Homeowners are often very thankful you found the issue. Typically we collect air samples on each floor of a residence, and in a lot of cases one of these samples will show an elevated concetration of mould, which helps tells us where to look, whether it’s in the basement or a bathroom due to an improperly sealed toilet or bathtub overflow and wall condensation. What must contractors Legally be aware of?

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In terms of mould, there’s little liability with getting into trouble with the Ministry of Labour, but it can cause your workers to feel ill. You can contaminate a residence, including carpets and porous materials. In terms of asbestos, there are similar health concerns, but it’s more regulated. One of the big risks is that if you don’t get the Designated Substance Report prior to their project, they risk getting a stopwork order and the project owner is liable to pay their contractors who aren’t working in the interim. In terms of health issues for asbestos, you can contract three irreversible respiratory illnesses: mesothelioma, asbestosis and cancer. With mould, everyone reacts differently depending upon their physiology, so the challenge for regulators is finding appropriate exposure limits. It is regulated, though, through the Occupational Health and Safety Act, wherein employers must take every reasonable precaution to protect workers from a known contaminant. which is why it’s probably smart for many firms to get some training.

For companies like Holland Renovations, it makes them a bit more competitive, because if they have to hire a hazardous materials subcontractor, 22

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their price is going to be marked up. So I often recommend to companies such as these that they get Type 1 and Type 2 Asbestos Worker certification, because that will cover them for most issues, and it’s only a half-day of training.

Are you aware of contractors who have gotten ill because of exposure?

Absolutely. I’ve had coworkers (in my past career) who have done mould assessments without wearing respiratory protection. There was one incident of workers inside a school portable. Everything inside looked fine, so they spent a considerable amount of time poking around, but when they opened things up, the walls were black and furry on the inside, covered with toxigenic mould. That night, both workers developed severe headaches—headaches like they’d never experienced before—and one had to go the hospital. With asbestos, it’s more of a chronic issue, but with mould it can happen pretty quickly. OHB ohba.ca

2018-12-19

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I actually did a mould assessment for a property manager a few weeks ago for two apartment units—one on top of the other—to assess the risk for people occupying the units. We found a number of hot spots and staining, and I did some test holes in the wall and air sampling. The normal indoor concentration of Aspergillus/Penicillium-like mould spores is 700 counts per cubic metre or lower, but the concentration in these units was 250,000. So remediation workers were obviously required to wear protective suits and respirators to remove it. The critical thing with mould is often timing, where there’s been a flood or a pipe burst. If you get in right away and dry the materials and remove what’s impacted, you’ll typically have a very small issue. But if it continues to be wet for as long as 48 hours, the problem can become severe and you can get some significant mould growth on mould-susceptible materials. So you have to be careful even during renovations.

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Leaving No Stone Unturned By expanding its extraction and finishing capabilities, Arriscraft now offers a wide variety of Adair natural limestone products for the residential market. In March, the company announced two exciting product additions: Parliament (featuring a rugged split-face finish and natural sepia tone) and Studio (a sepia tone with a glacial finish highlighting natural elements like fossils) in extra-long lengths designed for a convenient coursed stone installation. Arriscraft.com ohba.ca

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Top Shelf Black Beauties Vaughan’s Window City has introduced a new Capstock Black colour (in/out) with its Heritage Maximum windows, patio doors and entry doors. Whether for a new home construction or renovation, each of the value-priced lines can be produced in multiple configurations while promising optimum performance, energy-efficient design and style. Windowcity.com

Master of their Domain Permacon’s new Maestro stone combines sturdiness and style. With its sleek design, long straight lines and contrasting colours, it’s ideal for residential and commercial use. Available in four colours, Maestro will ensure a modern, linear and unique look to any project. Permacon.ca

Life is No Longer Such a Grind The new X-Lock Interface from Bosch makes grinder wheel exchange simple and up to three times faster. X-Lock wheels are ejected with a mere lever pull and firmly connected without the need for any other tools (an audible snap tells the user that the wheel is installed securely). They’re also backwardcompatible with standard 7/8” mounts. Boschtools.com

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This Adds a Whole New Layer Looking for a durable insulation board that’s easy to handle, cut and install? The DuroSpan GPS R5 from Plasti-Fab is a closed-cell graphite-enhanced insulation that meets or exceeds requirements for expanded polystyrene (EPS) manufactured to CAN/ULC S-701. Its design, which includes a thin film laminated to the top and bottom surfaces, makes it ideal as continuous insulation for both interior basements walls and exterior/perimeter foundations, as well as insulating above a basement slab. PlastiFab.com ohba.ca


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This Trend is Set in Stone Erth Coverings’ two new additions to its stone veneer line—Rock Face and Mountain Ledgestone—are a striking complement to the trending organic-modernist aesthetic. Rock Face (Tundra series pictured) features natural split surfaces and sides, with a substantial visual weight that measures just 1” to 1.5” thick, while Mountain Ledgestone offers a rugged face and natural hewn edge that personifies a warm, cabin-inspired aesthetic. Erthcoverings.com Insulation Fasten-nation The new Ramset Cobra+ InsulFast Kit easily converts the Ramset Cobra+ Powder Actuated Tool into an insulation fastening tool— perfect for fastening rigid and semi-rigid insulation in basements and onto concrete walls, and up to four times faster than traditional installation methods! Ramset.ca

A Little From Column A and a Little From Column B Fisher & Paykel’s Column Refrigerator & Freezer models fit flush and have only ⅛" gaps around them with no visible hinges or grilles. The Integrated Column models can be hidden behind cabinetry or can be purchased with stainless steel door panels. Features include bright LED lighting, a simple, efficient interior design and separate food modes to allow you to adjust the temperatures independently for optimal storage. Fisherpaykel.com 28

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Nailed it again! DeWalt’s 20V Max XR 16-Gauge Straight Finish Nailer Kit comes with everything needed to get started on jobs large and small. It drives nails from 1-1/4" to 2-1/2", making it ideal for tasks such as fastening baseboards, door and window casings, and crown moulding. Its brushless motor is powered by DeWalt’s 20V Max lithium-ion battery, offering the features of a pneumatic tool with the freedom of cordless. DeWalt.ca ohba.ca


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Top Shelf Top Shelf…and Other Shelves Too While tiled shower shelves can be challenging to install and not always the ideal design solution, Schluter’s new line of brushed stainless steel models fit neatly between rows of tile and do not require any materials or fasteners to penetrate the waterproofing membrane on the walls. They’re available in five different sturdy shapes, including three corner-mounting styles, which can be installed with the tiles or after the fact as a retrofit. Schluter.com

Natural World Quarried in Ontario and Quebec, Natural Stone from Stone Selex adds value and natural beauty to a facade or interior fireplace. Edenhurst Natural Stone Veneer (pictured)—flat on one side and cut into pieces of up to 1.5” thick—features 90-degree corners to continue the illusion of full-bed-depth stone (although it is also available in full-bed styles). Stoneselex.com 30

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Plumbing Installation in a Flash American Standard’s game-changing new Flash pressure balance valve delivers maximum installation flexibility with features that speed up installation. The compact unit, with its exclusive stub-out connection, is the first to work with press-connect fittings without additional solder or piping. Another time-saving exclusive is its PEX elbow connection. The valve body rotates 180 degrees, enabling PEX connections from either floor or ceiling supply lines, with no need for additional elbows. Americanstandard.ca

Dörken Gets the Last Lath Designed to manage moisture to prevent mould, wall rot and decay in stucco and manufactured stone buildings, Beamsville’s Dörken Systems Inc.’s new Delta-Dry & Lath combines Delta-Dry rainscreen technology with an innovative fibreglass lath to deliver a new one-step solution. Apart from not rusting over time, the fibreglass aspect makes installation safer, lighter and smoother than when working with metal. Dorken.com

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Keeping a reno rolling smoothly from end to end By T r ac y H a n e s

E

ven the most straightforward renovation project usually has bumps along the road before it reaches a successful completion. Dealing with a host of subtrades, each with different skill sets and levels of ego, while managing clients’ expectations, is a fine balancing act. We asked four veteran renovators, all members of RenoMark, to share their views on what stage of the process creates the biggest headaches and how to make a project move along as seamlessly as possible. In each case, advance planning is critical. Chris Phillips of Greening Homes says many homeowners don’t appreciate the time it takes to prepare an estimate—usually 40 to 60 hours of unpaid work—but it’s important not to rush it. “I can’t walk around a house and give someone a perfect price in 15 minutes,” says Phillips. He says the industry unfortunately has renovators who will say what the client wants to hear in terms of pricing, then make up the money with change orders. Phillips believes honesty is the best policy from the start. “If a client has plans for a $1-million job and only have $400,000 to spend, I’m going to say you can’t do it,” says Phillips. “It’s a huge challenge because I’m incredibly transparent. My industry is one-offs and sometimes I want to take the client by the lapels and say, ‘I’m telling the truth.’” Mark Jackson of Jackson & Associates says the project start-up

ohba.ca

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“Most clients are relieved and thankful that we are looking after their best interests.”

is the biggest pain for him, and that’s why he has a project manager on staff to set the schedule. “Our project manager has four to six weeks to set up a project. He’ll determine timelines, line up our staff and start calling subcontractors to make sure they’ll be there when we need them. It’s an issue if they don’t come through on the day they are supposed to. Dealing with subs and our own staff is likely the most difficult challenge.” That’s why it’s important to speak to all subs and make sure they are in alignment, Jackson notes. “You give them the time frame at the front end of a project. Most have worked with me for 15 to 25 years and I’m used to how they work and they’re used to how I work. If they are too busy, they’ll say so, then I have two or three other names on a list I can call. The odd time I have to hunt for a new sub. When you have enough lead time, you can overcome most things that happen on day-to-day stuff.” Joel Scopelleti, partner in Carick Home Improvements, agrees it’s important to allow ample preparation 34

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time. “Get your subcontractors lined up as early as possible. In a perfect world, get all the sub prices first, then determine your price.” Scopelleti also orders and procures materials before a job starts. “For instance, the client wants hardwood floors and it might take six weeks to get it. It eliminates stress and delays if you have the materials in hand first.” Scopelleti’s contracts include numerous details that are mainly for the homeowner, but they can also help the job proceed more smoothly with trades as they spell out where the parking is, where the dumpster will be located, what washrooms can be used by the workers and what hours they can be on site. Jackson does what he calls ‘exploratories’ early in the process to see what issues might be lurking behind the walls or under the floors that could create unexpected problems down the road. “As long as we have an agreement in principle with a client, we’ll absorb the cost of the exploratory,” Jackson says. “We can’t find every issue, but we do a bit of

demo in the area where we feel there are red flags. There might be pipes we didn’t know were there, for instance.” Scopelleti says even if subtrades are lined up, it’s important to remind them of the job coming up. “Don’t expect them to remember the date you need them,” he advises. “If a plumber is scheduled for the 21st of the month, call him on the 16th, 18th and the 20th. It’s your responsibility to remind them.” Scheduling trades and suppliers and making sure they stick to their schedules is a constant headache, confesses Joe Gatti, an owner of the Gatti Group Corp. “Once there is a delay with one trade, there’s obviously a ripple effect. It’s a loss of time and a loss of profit.” To mitigate issues, Gatti and his brother Tony become “glorified babysitters” who are constantly on site to monitor work and make sure it is being done correctly. But they also provide their trades with scopes of work that are as detailed as possible. “We don’t get as detailed as saying, ‘The piping is three inches apart.’ We ohba.ca


TECH THAT MAKES THE JOB EASIER

can’t get that specific. But we try to write down as much as we can.” Joe says he and Tony will get hands-on if they think it’s warranted. “We ask a sub, ‘Can we help you?’ Some guys are okay with it, and some aren’t. Some don’t want to do what we’ve asked, and those are the ones we want to weed out.” Subtrades often try to find the easiest path and have to be monitored, agrees Phillips. A renovation requires management and clearing areas to make way for the trades to do their work. That’s why Greening Homes relies on both its project manager and site supervisors to keep jobs on track. “We have site supervisors who spend about 70% of their time on tools and the rest of the time managing trades,” says Phillips. “Our project manager is more office-based and orders materials, schedules subtrades, meets with clients. It’s sometimes seen as an expensive luxury, but when you have someone devoted to the communication aspect, it makes the project successful.” Carick Home Improvements takes a ohba.ca

Keeping everyone on the same page on a major project can be more difficult than juggling porcupines. But new technology is helping many avoid any prickly situations. Procore construction management platform, for one, is a technology that can help builders and renovators streamline their projects. Builders, subtrades and real estate professionals are all on one platform and can use the Procore app to send information to the Cloud. The software, which has been in Canada since late 2017, can be used to assign, quote and manage jobs and eliminates the need for emails or telephone calls. Site supervisors, who usually have no shortage of activities to keep track of on a site, can use it to manage the process on the fly. “It’s a fully integrated solution designed to equip everyone on the project with the tools they need to mitigate risks and drive efficiencies,” offers Procore’s V.P. of Canadian operations, Jas Saraw. “From field to office, you get a full view of how everyone is collaborating in real time—all on one platform.” Owners, contractors and trades can use the software to put processes in place that boost productivity and profitability and provide better protection from physical and financial risks, adds Saraw. Although Canadian builders tend to be slower to embrace new technologies than their U.S. counterparts, Ontario builders such as Clark Construction, Mizrahi Developments and Broccolini are now using the software. A couple of apps have also been transformative for Greening Homes. One is Streak, which integrates with Gmail and logs all emails automatically, providing the ability to follow the entire process and transfer files. Phillips’ team uses it to track a project in real time from start to finish. Greening Homes also uses Builder Trend, an

online project management software. Project managers provide daily logs detailing what trades were on site, what was achieved, what materials were delivered, what the weather was. It facilitates posting photos from the jobsite, lists all change orders and decisions and the client has access to all that information. “We were one of the first companies to use this and it was really a differentiator for us,” says Phillips. “If a client likes daily communication, I’d say it’s essential. People don’t realize they are paying for the quality of the process, not just the product. We had a high-value client and he was travelling around the world during the entire reno, but we could hold regular video meetings and he saw pictures of the project every day.” Jackson says he’s tried various technologies but has yet to make anything work satisfactorily, and it’s tough for employees at small companies, who have multiple duties and aren’t using the software constantly, to become really efficient using some of the programs. “I used an estimating program but the turnaround and time it takes to do some of these programs is just phenomenal,” he says. “I’ve gone back to using spreadsheets. We do project management manually too.” Gatti uses Quick Books online, and while he doesn’t have any project management software at the moment, he is looking at some options that he believes will help streamline his business.

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NIGHTMARES ON RENOVATION STREET Even for renovators who line up their ducks as well as possible, plans can sometimes go awry. Take the case of a not-so-Merry Christmas for Jackson, his crew and the homeowner. “We had a house in a pretty high-end community at Bayview Ave. and York Mills,” Jackson recalls. “One of the past homeowners was a DIYer and had pipes running throughout the place. Some had shut-offs, some didn’t. We were finishing up on Christmas Day and the pipes burst, as we had no clue that pipes were in there. It ruined the new basement floor that cost about $30,000 to $35,000.” Phillips felt similar pain on a project in the Beach in Toronto that involved a major addition and a partial gut of a 100-yearold home. “As we did the demolition, we started to uncover years of shoddy workmanship. Someone had cut the joists and something that was supposed to be a surgical renovation ended up being much more. Then, on the day of the client’s move-in after nine months of an $800,000 renovation, one of the hydronic lines burst because one of the subtrades hadn’t crimped it properly and there was a major flood in the fully renovated home. We called in our entire team and descended on that project and we couldn’t have done anything more, but it still hurt.” Scopelleti’s nightmare tale involved scheduling around a sensitive pet. The homeowner feared his cat would be upset if it was alone when unfamiliar people were in the house, so work could only take place when the client was able to take days off or work from home. 36

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lead-carpenter approach, designating one lead person who controls the job. “Everything funnels through him. The pull and tug of this business is you can’t get things done by relying on individual trades, as they won’t take responsibility for anything except their exact work,” notes Scopeletti. “Pay a little more for a lead carpenter to be the specific point man on the job to make sure it all goes smoothly.” Gatti finds trades often don’t respect each other’s work and educating about the processes may help. “For example, the plumbers or the HVAC guys will start cutting up the framing. They are not framers and are not mindful of the process.” Scopelleti tries to foster a teamwork atmosphere, even with subcontractors. “Number one, always have your trades’ backs,” he recommends. “Whether they are right or wrong, never throw them under the bus in front of homeowners. Talk to them about an issue in private. Never belittle them.” And pay them as quickly as possible, as they’ll be happier to work for you and to go the extra mile, Scopelleti advises. “Don’t micro-manage them,” he adds. “I’m hiring them because they are professionals and I believe in respect and treating them well. You have to have good trades to do good work, but you have to have lots of work to keep good trades. Having the work gives you power.” He says respect extends to being reasonable about small stuff and not trying to outsmart a tradesperson. “If an electrician scratches the floor, don’t charge him $500. He’ll make it up in the back charge. Think long-term. You can put a little money in your contract upfront to cover those types of things.” Gatti says finding good subs is challenging, as is weeding out poor subcontractors in a market where there is a shortage of skilled trades. He had to fire a roofing contractor that didn’t deliver on their promises and didn’t follow proper safety procedures. “They were always late and sometimes did not show up at all and it started to delay other trades, such as aluminum work and exterior painting,” Gatti recalls. “I heard all the excuses

and gave them many opportunities to comply with safety regulations and to finish the job. It didn’t work out, so I let them go and paid them up to the work they had done.” Gatti says letting trades go is difficult, as his company is small. “We’re not a production builder with people lining up to work. What we do is specific and custom. We take time, we try to educate our guys and we want to create an elite team.” Jackson also recently had to let subcontractors go who weren’t adhering to the policies outlined in his company’s subcontractor agreement. They weren’t doing the work properly and after they were approached, they starting not showing up, says Jackson, who also learned those subs hadn’t been paying their workers. “The lack of integrity in this industry is phenomenal at times,” he says. Jackson’s project manager Cory Norris alerts him if he thinks a sub isn’t doing what’s required and Jackson decides on the course of action. If he has let a subcontractor go, the client is informed and told that it may take three or four days to get someone else in. “Most clients are relieved and thankful that we are looking after their best interests,” Jackson says. “I usually give subs a couple of chances, as they may have worker issues of their own. Strike 3 and they are out, unless Strike 1 was so severe we can’t keep them on. I have been doing this for so long, I tend to have a feel for a person and know how they operate.” Jackson says he usually knows by the third job if a subcontractor is going to work out. “With the first job, they are trying to impress us, so do their best. On the second job, a few flaws may show up. By the third job, they’ve straightened out or gotten worse.” Finding a replacement quickly isn’t always easy and Jackson says at times, his staff will step in, clean up and keep things moving until he can find a replacement. He says while it’s a headache, it’s important not to keep subs that aren’t doing the job, as the renovator’s role is to protect the client and the substantial investment they’ve made.”OHB ohba.ca


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Saving This This Old HoUse House The technical, legal and physical challenges of preserving the past By T r ac y H a n e s

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W

e’ve all heard the expression “if these walls could talk.” For the builders and renovators who work with aging houses and buildings, the stories those old walls have to tell are often not pleasant. Dealing with rodents, faulty wiring, mould, leaky plumbing and asbestos insulation are just some of the issues presented by old residences. Inefficient building envelopes, structural issues and past mistakes by misguided DIYers are also common and can make renovating those projects very challenging. Mike Hodgson, whose Old Castle Renovations in London specializes in old house improvements as well as newer homes, has seen it all. He’s done everything from classic farmhouses to former churches and says you never know quite what you’ll find

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once a demolition begins. “We did one heritage house that had horsehair in the plaster and ground-up cork as insulation,” he says. “We went outside, held a match to the cork and it went up in flames as fast as gasoline does.” Another time, he came across a safe buried in a wall that had been plastered over. A locksmith opened it to find nothing but 1920s newspapers. Some surprises aren’t as novel, such as lamp wire or old extension cords used to wire the home. One of the biggest issues is flooring, Hodgson says. “Floors in old houses are usually very roly-poly, as builders didn’t used to use footings and the floor will sink over time. Levelling floors takes a lot of work, and we have to jack them up and use levellers. Floors have become a focal point in homes and a

lot of people want to use the new vinyl planks and show their floors off.” Hodgson developed a love for old houses when he bought a 1930s home “that was a wreck” and restored it to look original. Then, a neighbour had him restore his farmhouse, then Hodgson bought and renovated his own farmhouse. “I made a name for myself buying and fixing up old houses.” Some of the common issues he sees include shoddy wiring or missing structural elements where do-it-yourselfers have cut into floors and joists to add a secondfloor bathroom. Despite the challenges, Hodgson relishes working on antique houses. “What my team loves is if a customer wants to recreate the house’s original look. We can get reproduction trim work and

wood windows to the exact style. And if you go back to old kitchens, Shaker was the style then and is popular again, but it is harder to find other components. I don’t like to walk into a heritage home that looks old on the outside and all modern on the inside.” Brendan Charters, founding partner of Eurodale Design + Build, says regardless of the age of a home, the biggest challenge is consumer management, but it can be even more delicate in old buildings. “With old houses, you are not able to see the true composition of the home until you open things up.” Charters says if homeowners are restricted by scope or budget—for instance, just doing a kitchen reno or putting on an addition—part of the house will be built to ontario home builder Reno 2019

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Home to Maclean Publishing from 1910 (left) to the 1980s, the new United Building in Toronto will represent the tallest architectural heritage retention in North America.

“The benefits of saving these homes is that if done correctly, they can provide a focal point and complement the new community.”

old standards and part of it to current energy efficiency standards. “You’ll have the new part hyper-insulated and 2016 Code-compliant, but the rest of the house is totally different,” says Charters. “It’s akin to putting on a Canada Goose jacket, leaving the zipper open and walking out in -30C weather.” That’s when it becomes a challenge to balance the mechanical systems too, he notes. What happens when new technology meets old buildings? Charters says smarthome components such as thermostats, lighting, audiovisual components and home security that can be controlled from a cell phone or by devices from companies such as Google and Amazon aren’t 40

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a problem. “It’s relatively easy, no matter the age of the house,” he says. “You used to have wire everywhere, for the phone jacks and TV jacks and it was costly to run copper. Now, so much is wireless.” Where modern technology is at odds, though, is with building science. Older structures breathe and are energy-inefficient. Making them tighter makes it trickier to mitigate moisture and condensation issues. “We as renovators need to know home compositions across the decades, such as how a solid masonry home was built and how it deals with moisture, or how a brick veneer home built in the ’60s breathes, or one built in the 2000s,” says Charters. “We have to consider what the best

changes are for us to make. Do we hyper-insulate and seal, or look at improving some insulation values and put in the most efficient mechanical system? Every home and composition provides a different building envelope.” Laws of the Land

New home builders must heed guidelines for heritage conservation in land use planning under the Ontario Planning Act, Ontario Heritage Act and associated Provincial Policy Statement. These documents identify conservation of significant architectural, cultural, historical and archaeological resources as a provincial interest and enable municipalities the ability to conserve individual properties and areas. In many cases,

municipal official plans and/ or secondary plans provide further guidance in terms of preservation that must be considered through the draft plan approval process. Mattamy Homes has dealt with at least a dozen heritage homes within the GTA over the years, says Jon Rafter, Mattamy’s senior project manager. Mattamy has built extensively in Milton and has worked collectively with the Town of Milton, Heritage Milton and its own consulting teams on four different heritage houses to integrate the old homes into its developments, either by restoring them in situ or in relocating them within the limits of the existing property prior to completing the restoration program. Mattamy has partnered with a local Milton company that specializes in historic house restoration. Sedgwick Marshall Heritage Homes, founded in 2004 by Mandy Sedgwick and Mirella Marshall, has restored three historic homes that belonged to Mattamy and is currently working on a fourth, as well as a pair for other builders. “A heritage building takes a lot of time, and if there’s a conservation report, you have to follow it, and it’s challenging,” says Marshall. “It’s not what production builders do, so we navigate those waters, get to the design stage so it’s accepted and go from there.” Marshall’s firm can arrange for the houses to be moved to a different lot, or disassembled and reassembled if necessary. “Mattamy is doing a good job in situating the lots for these homes, such as at the entrance or as an anchor in a subdivision,” says Marshall. “They think ahead about ohba.ca


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Sedgwick Marshall was previously given the 1860 Featherstone farmhouse by Mattamy. In that case, they purchased a lot in the builder’s Milton subdivision, relocated and rebuilt the house, then sold it. It was a rare example of a five-bay Regency Cottage built with cut stone. It was set along a creek on land planned for a park, but because the structure was in such poor condition, it couldn’t be moved. It was deconstructed and its stone shell rebuilt, with new doors and windows recreated to match the era and a totally new interior build. “The benefits of savings these homes is that if done correctly, they can provide a focal point and complement the new community, while respecting the historic aspects of the home associated with either its architecture, design, previous owner or significance in terms of the era in which it was built,” says Rafter. “The preservation of these historic buildings helps to maintain an important link with the past and the landowners who originally settled the area generations ago.” MAIL STRIKE

Sedgwick Marshall Heritage Homes works with Mattamy to restore and sometimes relocate heritage homes, such as the Wilkinson Lundy home above, which was moved within a Mattamy subdivision in Brampton.

where they can incorporate them. The current house we’re working on for them (known as the Bowes house) is not large and backs on to greenspace and the lot beside it has nothing on it, so it looks better than if it was stuck between two huge new homes.” 42

ontario home builder reno 2019

The 1827 Bowes farmhouse is believed to be the oldest house in the area. While not architecturally distinctive, it is historically significant as the site for community gatherings before any churches were built in the area.

Condo developers also have to deal with old buildings, whether they are required to save them due to heritage regulations, have a desire to create unique suites in an old building that will have market appeal, or to foster goodwill with the neighbours. The day the Rockport Group closed a deal to buy a property on Yonge St. and Montgomery Ave. in midtown Toronto in 2012, 400 protesters gathered on the steps of Postal Station K, a 1937 Art Deco building on the property. They feared the

developer would demolish the postal building on the former site of Montgomery’s Tavern, where William Lyon Mackenzie organized the Upper Canada Rebellion in 1837. As a federal government asset, the post office technically didn’t fall under the Heritage Act and could be demolished without a permit. Jack Winberg, Rockport CEO, struck a deal: His company would preserve the post office’s limestone facade and redevelop Montgomery Square on that corner, but in return, Rockport required a certain density for its intended project (initially planned as a condo but now a luxury rental building) for it to be feasible. Rockport’s project got the support of all five ratepayers’ associations in the area and the three local councillors. RAW Design fashioned a 27-storey tower that rises from the rear of the postal station while preserving the limestone facade. The post office is the only building in Canada to bear King Edward VIII’s insignia, as his rule was short-lived before he abdicated the throne to marry divorcee Wallis Simpson. It also features bas-relief depictions highlighting the era’s modes of transportation. “The restoration is about 70% complete,” Winberg noted in March. “We replaced all the windows, all the doors, created a park area and used two shades of granite as a foundation for trees and planters.” The former Postal Station K will house a 20,000 sq. ft. Terroni and Cumbrae’s food emporium and restaurant, scheduled to open this summer. Terroni is a popular Toronto eatery and Cumbrae’s is a Queen St. West butcher and sandwich shop. ohba.ca


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Old Buildings, New Life The United Building: The former Maclean-Hunter building on the northeast corner of University Ave. and Dundas St. West in Toronto will be redeveloped as the United Building, incorporating a 55-storey high-rise with the historic structure. The redevelopment by Davpart Inc. represents the tallest architectural heritage retention in North America. The building is an iconic presence on University Ave. and is designated under the Ontario Heritage Act and listed on the City of Toronto’s Inventory of Heritage Properties. From 1910 to the 1980s, it was home to Maclean Publishing and later Maclean-Hunter, the largest Canadian publisher of trade journals, magazines and the Financial Post. It is a commercial building from the interwar era and has several design influences, from Beaux-Arts to Modern Classical. The redevelopment will incorporate commercial and retail space to the 10th floor and 759 new condos above the heritage structure. The exterior will be restored, while the interior will reflect the highest standard of contemporary office and retail space available currently. It’s a massive undertaking that starts with preserving and restoring the existing building, says Davpart Inc. president and CEO David Hofstedter. “The complexities are enormous and it has taken lots of teamwork and patience to make it happen.” Architect Mark Berest, principal at B+H Architects, the prime consultant and design architect, says the building design draws energy from its location at the intersection of the city’s primary cultural, institutional and retail anchors, as well as its preserved architectural cultural heritage. “It is a tribute to Toronto›s cosmopolitan character and considers a new convergence of live, work and play.” Heritage consultants include ERA Architects Inc.

The post office and its forecourt was a neighbourhood gathering place. The building is set back 40 feet, allowing for a new 4,000-squarefoot park that will be one of the largest public spaces in the area. A public art piece, consisting of two stainless frames representing the doors to Montgomery’s Tavern, will grace the park, along with standing and fallen granite blocks, representing soldiers who fought in the 1837 uprising. Keeping the old building 4 4

ontario home builder reno 2019

and Tomas Pearce Interior Design Consulting Inc. Baker Real Estate will manage sales. Westinghouse HQ: The former Canadian headquarters for electrical manufacturer Westinghouse on Sanford Ave.in Hamilton is destined to become a commercial and cultural hub in the city and blaze the trail for revival of the east end neighbourhood. The 1917 seven-storey building will be converted into 80,000 square feet of Class A commercial space, with a 10,000 sq. ft. event space and auditorium. Electric City Developments is spearheading the adaptive reuse project, co-funded by local investors. Numerous architectural features, including marble flooring, crown mouldings, mosaic tiles and steel trusses, are being restored and preserved while modern finishes and systems such as photo sensors, solar panels and heating systems are being incorporated. Y-Lofts: Atria Developments is repurposing the former home of the Peterborough YMCA in a landmark 1895 building at George and Murray Sts. as a luxury apartment building with a modern glass structure around the old building. However, several challenges have delayed the project by about 18 months. The building has been partially demolished, the historic portion of the structure gutted, asbestos insulation removed and architectural elements salvaged to be reused in the apartment building. The delay is partially due to time required to get structural engineering reports completed and to secure parking for 136 apartments, as the original plan to build an underground parking structure required too much demolition of the heritage building.

was “a nightmare,” admits Winberg, and it was Rockport’s first experience with integrating a heritage structure into a new development. When a one-storey distribution centre attached to the original post office was demolished, it was discovered that it supported the limestone structure, so six months was spent underpinning the old post office. Plans to excavate under the building for part of the underground parking structure had to be scuttled, and two

Several architectural features are being retained at the former Westinghouse headquarters in Hamilton.

In Peterborough, a one-time home to the YMCA is being transformed into luxury apartments.

planned levels of underground parking had to be expanded to four elsewhere on the site. “It’s not cheap, it’s not simple, but it was worth it,” Winberg says. “The building is going to be amazing and it’s going to be a better development as a result. It was a profound lesson for us—if you do something for a community, you get it back.” Winberg is less enthusiastic about Rockport’s obligation to save an 80-year-old building on a site it owns at

Yonge St. and Manor Road. In January 2017, another developer was issued a demolition permit and quietly took down a 110-yearold Beaux Arts bank building nearby without notice. It had been recognized as having historical value but had not yet been listed as a heritage site. The community outrage prompted the city to heritage-designate 258 buildings in the neighbourhood, including Rockport’s. “This site doesn’t have a park, it’s not as important a ohba.ca


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Old Castle Renovations has made a name for itself by giving new life to century homes.

site as Montgomery and the building doesn’t offer the same depth of history and character,” says Winberg. “I think preserving heritage is wonderful—if a building has a story and character and something to offer the community.” But in this case, he says, the building has little character and the stores are of more value to the neighbourhood than the actual structure. Charters says with Canada’s extensive aging housing stock, there is a tremendous opportunity for renovators to update existing buildings, but there needs to be more education, especially about moisture management. “Nobody wants to create a building fraught with issues,” says Charters. “It’s detailing how envelopes are put together, it’s educating trades and homeowners (about HRVs, for instance). As an industry, it’s our job to firmly to stay abreast, to test products and understand them and develop 46

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clean and precise details about how they are to be installed in various types of buildings.” Charters says being proficient at renovating older houses comes with hands-on experience. “When I walk into a house built before 1900, I have a good sense of how it’s built. And right up through the ’70s and ’80s, as well, because I’ve done more than 400 projects,” he says. “I’ve opened them up and seen how houses were built through various eras. You don’t get that in classroom learning. It’s the experience of opening up a house and seeing it.” Tarion and Condo Conversions

It’s hard to get used to the red tape, though. As of January 1, 2018, Tarion extended warranty protection to new condos in converted old buildings—a measure forced upon the warranty coporation by the former Ontario Liberal government.

Marz Homes president Dan Gabriele, who has sat on Tarion’s board for eight years, was not in favour, however, and says it’s going to discourage builders and developers from taking on such projects. For condo conversions, the vendor and builder must provide a property assessment report, a capital replacement plan and a pre-existing elements fund study before sale of any condos units to Tarion at least 90 days before construction. The documents have to be approved by Tarion before the project will be enrolled, and that enrollment fee is currently double the standard fee. Once the units are enrolled, the vendor must provide evidence to Tarion that a pre-existing elements fund with a required amount has been established with an authorized escrow agent. “It’s not so much the cost, but the complexity,” says Gabriele. “It’s such a poor initiative and so Toronto in its idealism.” Gabriele says most old industrial buildings in cities outside the GTA are in poor shape and are located in fringe or challenging locations. In Toronto, condo conversions tend to happen in desirable or up-and-coming neighbourhoods with many amenities, where condo lofts in converted buildings command premium prices, thus offsetting the added cost of the Tarion warranty. Conversions of old buildings helped spark the gentrification of former industrial neighbourhoods in Toronto, such as King Street West 20 years ago. But that was due to the city encouraging adaptive reuse, so it relaxed zoning rules and permitted virtually any use that wasn’t noxious; density limits were removed and parking and loading

standards loosened. Rules are far more restrictive now. Gabriele believes builders will be disincentivized by the Tarion condo conversion warranty. “These type of buildings are not in great shape, are usually are full of hazardous materials. And on top of an already complex scenario, you are layering on the newhome warranty,” he says. “It’s counter-productive to saving old buildings that likely have cultural or historic context.” Gabriele notes that in cities such as Sarnia, Chatham or Thorold, rejuvenating old factory buildings could be the key to revitalizing downtowns or neighbourhoods, but builders will be even more hesitant to do so if they have to add Tarion coverage. Gabriele is, however, forging ahead on a new project in Hamilton with Starward Homes: Chedoke Heights, a bungaloft and townhouse community on the 17-acre site of the old Chedoke Hospital. The builders will be saving one structure on the property, a 15,000 sq. ft. 1930s building used to treat tuberculosis patients. It was riddled with asbestos and will be gutted, then rebuilt into a rental apartment building with 15 units. There was no obligation to save the building, but the builders did it to encourage cooperation from the city for the project. “It’s a very nice area on Hamilton’s West Mountain,” Gabriele says. “If it was a less desirable area, we wouldn’t be renovating that building.” There would have been a good market for condos in that location, Gabriele accepts, but the builders opted to convert the old building to rental units. Why? So they wouldn’t have to go through the rigours of having to provide Tarion coverage. OHB ohba.ca


Barking Up the Right Tree

From engineered decking to safe flooring, here are a few woods of advice By T e d M c I n t y r e

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I

t’s sometimes hard to see the forest for the trees when it comes to deciding which wood is best for the job. Apart from the aesthetics, there is wear and tear to consider. What type of application will it have? Is there likely to be an army of pre-teens scurrying back and forth in a high-traffic area, or will it be a private den for an adult couple? If an exterior treatment, how will the wood weather? Will it splinter? Is fire-resistance an issue? Does your client want the most environmentally friendly choice? And, of course, there is the cost to consider. One thing we know for sure, though—wood is a plentiful, sustainable product in this province. Ontario has an estimated 56.1 million hectares of productive forest area, although just a tiny fraction of that—0.243%— is harvested annually. And more is actually planted than cut down. “Wood is the only major building material that grows naturally, is renewable and has third-party certification programs in place to verify that products originate from a sustainably managed resource,” notes the Ontario government’s Ontario Wood program. “Ontario’s Crown forests contain an abundance of spruce, pine and fir, which comprise the majority of structural building materials. These Crown forests are managed through some of the strictest standards in the world. Responsible forest management has resulted in more than 50 consecutive years of net forest growth. The deforestation rate in both Canada and the U.S. is virtually zero.”

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Assorted hardwoods at Monaghan’s Lumber Specialties near Peterborough.

From an environmental standpoint, it’s an easy choice, suggests Kathleen McFadden, Assistant Deputy Minister of Ontario’s Forest Industry Division. “Ontario wood generates less air pollution and has a lower carbon footprint due to decreased transportation. (It) also requires less energy than other materials to manufacture.” Further, the Ontario forest industry

directly or indirectly supports an estimated 150,000 jobs, contributing $16.6 billion to the Ontario economy in 2018. “By buying locally, you’re supporting the local economy. And it’s a more green way to build than sourcing materials that are manufactured overseas,” says Ben Convery of Monaghan Lumber Specialties, which has served Peterborough and the Kawarthas for more than 30 years.

Why you Wood… or Wood Not? Want to know a little about whether you’ve got the right wood for the job? The National Wood Flooring Association provides two charts for common species: one for hardness (Janka scale) and one for dimensional stability. And just because a wood is harder, it doesn’t mean it’s really stable, hickory being a prime example. Here’s the skinny on some of the most common woods that builders and contractors will run into, with quotes and estimated pricing from wood expert Ben Convery of Monaghan Lumber Specialties. 50

ontario home builder reno 2019

There’s also something to be said for selection. “Many do not appreciate the availability and diversity of wood species found in Ontario,” McFadden notes. “You can source everything from dimensional lumber for structural applications in building construction to value-added appearance products for interior and exterior applications, all of which have been sustainably harvested from managed

Ash

Beech

(Flooring is $5 per sq. ft. and up; rough lumber around $3 per board ft. for an FAS grade)

($6 per board foot for 1”)

Pros: Its large, swirling grain shows off

stain very well. “Very stable and quite durable, it can be used outside or inside.” Cons: The Emerald Ash Borer has made this

a rare species, and available board lengths are often now shorter.

Pros: A tough, heavy wood traditionally

used for flooring and furniture. Dent-resistant with a straight grain and few knots. It can work well in indoor climate-controlled areas. Cons: Vulnerable in humid areas. “It swells when it gets wet,” cautions Convery. “Not much demand from a retailing standpoint.”

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Vintage Flooring’s Sculpted Sahara shows the ability of maple to mimic more expensive hardwoods. But if you’re looking to hide scratches and pet hair, their Wire Brushed White Oak (below) is ideal.

Crown forests. Most home improvement retailers carry 30-60% Ontario lumber in their inventory without even knowing it.” Builders are well aware of the advantages, including cost savings and the speed of installation. Further, its relative light weight means it requires less foundation capacity, which results in lower associated costs. And since it is readily available in Ontario, orders can often be filled

more quickly than for other materials. “It allows us to be in direct contact with the people at the mill, who in turn are sourcing the wood; and so we can all gauge the quality of the material and ensure sustainable forest management,” notes Jacob Antoni, an award-winning designer and architect based in Toronto and Berlin. There’s also a marketing edge to be gained, including membership in the Ontario Wood program (see sidebar), suggests Antoni. “The use of Ontario wood has definitely grown, as contractors see the advantages of locally available and certified varieties, and as clients are asking about sustainable solutions and want to know where the wood comes from,” Antoni says. “The ecological footprint of natural wood is so much smaller than any other industrial material.” What other considerations should renovators consider before deciding which product is best for the job? “When it comes to flooring, you have to understand the client’s lifestyle when recommending a product—do they have an active family with younger kids? Do they have bigger dogs? In those cases we usually recommend a harder floor such as hickory, with a low-sheen finish,” Convery says. “A bit of wire brushing or, even better, a hand-scraped texture, will help hide marks, scratches and pet hair, providing a floor that’s easier to live with. It’s mainly about educating your clients so they can make an informed decision and won’t have any surprises down the road.”

CLIMATE CONTROL And don’t forget about our local climate, reminds Convery, whose company is

By the Numbers 56.1 million Hectares of productive forest area in Ontario

150,000 Number of people who depend on the Ontario forest industry for their livelihood.

$16.6 billion Amount the forest industry contributed to the Ontario economy in 2018.

0.243% Percent of Ontario’s productive forest annually harvested (approximately 130,000 hectares)

3 Number of trees planted for every tree harvested in Ontario

*Numbers courtesy the Province of Ontario

also an Ontario Wood member. “In Ontario we have huge fluctuations in temperature and humidity. From a flooring standpoint, that matters a lot since wood floors typically shrink a bit in the winter and expand a bit in the summer. If there’s a conversation our sales staff are having out on the floor right now, it’s about humidity and flooring—making sure the humidity is kept up in the winter and down in the summertime. That’s a good reason why stable hardwoods like ash and oak are popular in our area.” Flooring manufacturers stress precise environment controls prior to, during and after installation, with humidity

Eastern White Cedar

Western Red Cedar

Pros: A fast-growing plant that is readily

($5 board foot)

available. Provides a clean, contemporary look.

Pros: Plentiful in Ontario. Very lightweight

($3.50-$4 sq. ft. for a decent deck board)

Cons: “I don’t know why you’d want to

but quite resistant to rot and insect infestation. Its many uses include cedar shake shingles, fence posts and decks. Holds stain and paint well.

Bamboo ($4-$4.50 sq. ft)

cut grass down in China, glue it together and ship it to Canada. They sell it as a sustainable product, but what about the resins they use in the glue? And refinishing a piece of gluedtogether grass is tricky. In the past, we’ve seen from people that a string would pull up, and the more you sand, the more strings you get.” ohba.ca

Cons: Often brittle, it’s prone to breaking if not carefully cut and applied. Woodworkers often complain of respiratory problems and rashes, as this is among the more allergenic of woods. Requires regular maintenance.

Pros: “Great for nearly everything—inside

and out,” says Convery. “Decking, railings, screened-in porches, wall cladding, trim and doors. It’s stable and resistant to rot, which is why it does well with decking.” Cons: Requires annual maintenance.

Cherry ($4.50-$5 per board ft. for a rough, decent-grade FAS 1”) Pros: Easy to shape and polish. Great for fur-

niture and cabinets with a straight grain ranging from blonde to the more common reddish-brown. “A pretty wood that gets better with age. We sell a lot of live-edge slabs for coffee tables, desks, etc.” Cons: “More expensive than red oak, but less than walnut. It’s on the softer end of hardwood, although that does make it easier to work with.”

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The Making of Kebony Wood cells before treatment

1. Impregnation Furfuryl alcohol Produced from a bio-based liquid

Wood cells soaked in liquid

2. Curing & drying

Wood cells after treatment significantly thicker

3. Kebony wood

Stable, locked-in furan polymers in the wood cell walls give: Outstanding stability Maximum hardness Guaranteed long life

resting between 30% and 50%. In winter, if there is no humidification in place, a newly installed floor’s moisture content is diminished by its dry environment. Then when it picks up moisture and grows, it puts undue stress on the fasteners trying to hold it to the subfloor.

Cork ($5-$10 sq. ft.) Pros: “Great product. It’s soft and warm

and more durable than people think. The cork we have here has the same wear rating as most laminate. In places you have moisture, such as basements, it’s a great fit. And it’s a pretty renewable source. The same cork tree can typically be harvested up to 10 times.”

Engineered hardwood ($2.60 to $10 sq. ft.) “There’s a huge range in quality.” Pros: “It’s more tolerant to changes in

temperature and humidity. After that it depends upon the quality of the engineered floor.” Cons: Rarely a good idea if the client

expects to refinish their floor.

Cons: “It can’t be refinished. And if you have very heavy furniture, it will leave a dent that may not rebound.” 52

Conversely, consider a floor installed in the middle of May. If a builder doesn’t want to run the HVAC while it’s under construction, the wood can expand and bump up against its perimeter and try to lift up from the subfloor to relieve pressure. And then come September, when

ontario home builder reno 2019

the homebuyer moves in and turns on the system for the first time, there’s a drying effect. Expansion followed by contraction results in noisy floors. The problem has been exacerbated by the popularity of wider-plank floors, suggests Drew Kern, a Hard Surface Flooring Specialist and certified National Wood Flooring Association inspector. “In the past, we have installed 2 ¼” or 3 ¼” widths. But now many of the products on the market are 5” to 7” or over 9” wide,” Kern notes. “But I see some professionals installing these products the same way they’ve always done with the narrower widths. Generally, most manufacturers require the fasteners to be much closer together, such as 3” to 4” apart, instead of 8” to 10” apart. As well, these wider products need to be installed with a glue assist that many installers just don’t do.” “There is a real-world versus perfectworld challenge when it comes to newhome construction,” observes Colin French, Technical Services Manager at Metropolitan Hardwood Floors East Inc. and a National Wood Flooring Associationcertified inspector himself. “Timelines and scheduling sometimes makes it difficult for builders to always have climate controls fully operational prior to the installation of hardwood, so we as manufacturers continually work with them to develop products that perform in those instances. We have a technical division that works directly with the flooring subcontractors that are installing hardwood for both low-rise and high-rise to find solutions and work through these challenges. To varying degrees other suppliers are doing the same.

Hickory

IPÉ

(From $5/sq. ft.; rough lumber around $4.35/bf for FAS grade)

($11 sq. ft.)

Pros: “A very hard wood with lots of colour

lifetime of 25-50 years). Virtually impervious to fire, rot, decay, insects and mould—all without the use of toxic chemicals. Accepts nails, screws and other fasteners without splitting.

variation. Wide-plank hickory flooring is very popular.” Cons: Brittle. Its dense grain can make

it look busy with narrow planks. One of those woods that really needs time to acclimate to its surrounding, so it’s prone to warping if the installation process is rushed.

Pros: Extremely hard and durable (with a

Cons: “It’s expensive and it requires a lot of maintenance to hold the original colour (otherwise it will turn from brown to grey over time).” It’s also heavy to work with and will wear out regular cutting blades.

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“Engineered hardwood floors are the best example of the type of solution I’m talking about,” French says. “It’s still a living floor, but when you design products that utilize multi-layer construction, you create dimensional stability that limits the boards to a great degree from expanding or contracting due to moisture gain or loss. As a result, speaking industry-wide, given the amount of hardwood flooring that is installed across the province in new-home construction, the complaint ratio for hardwood flooring is very low.” Kern is also an engineered wood fan, but notes that how the wood is cut can make a world of difference. “If the face cut is sawn, instead of rotary peeled, it naturally looks like a solid wood floor.”

WOOD ALTERNATIVES As far as exterior decking is concerned, Convery notes a growing push to composite materials. “A lot of people aren’t so keen on staining their decks anymore,” he says. “Companies like Trex are coming after the wood market with more affordable entry-level products. We had some on sale for $1.99 a linear foot. For the true wood fan, it’s hard to get over the plastic appearance, though. Composites mimic wood, but they’re not the real deal. If contractors have wood lovers looking for a low-maintenance option, they should check out Thermory Pine or Ash, as well as Ipé decking. Both are great options free of chemicals that can be enjoyed for decades to come with minimal upkeep. And there is always Western Red Cedar, grown, milled and sold here in Canada.” Ipé, it should be noted, “requires some extra steps during installation to protect

While it lacks the reality of hardwood, composite decking is gaining popularity for its maintenancefree attributes, notes Monaghan Lumber.

your joists, whether with hard plastic caps or butyl tape, because you’d hate to spend all that money to have a maintenance-free deck on the top side only to have your subframe rot on you,” explains Convery. “And because of the weight, the lengths don’t tend to be as long as many contractors are used to. If you’re used to working with cedar—buying straight 16’ or 20’ lengths—that’s not going to happen here. And you’ll want to pre-drill when you’re working near the edges because of its density.” (Carbide-tipped blades are highly advisable.) The weight also makes it difficult to lug around and put into place.” One engineered option using a Canadian formula for the pressure treating and heat treating of Southern Yellow Pine is a product called Kebony. Utilizing a patented process that enhances the properties of sustainable softwood with a bio-based liquid—permanently modifying the wood

cell walls to give it premium hardwood characteristics and a rich brown colour, Kebony is highly durable and requires no maintenance beyond normal cleaning, the company says. “It also comes with a 30-year warranty and 60-year life cycle, as compared with 20 years for clear Eastern White Cedar,” explains Yuill McGregor of Toronto-based North on Sixty. McGregor, a noted wood expert, argues that such products get a bad rap in terms of their environmental friendliness. “Engineered wood is real wood and usually uses undesirable growing species (UGS) to make the panels or posts, beams, or CLTs,” he says. “Whereas the ‘show wood’ is used where it makes sense—cabinetry, flooring, furniture, doors and built-ins.” “It’s just a better use of resource,” echoes French. “From the same log, you can produce four to five times the square

Maple

Oak

Pine

Walnut

($5-$6 sq. ft. on average)

($3.30 sq. ft. for a high-grade four-quarter red oak)

($1.55 per board foot for rough 4x4 white pine 1&2 grade)

(Flooring is in the $10 sq. ft. range, vs $9.50 for rough walnut)

Pros: Very durable, easy to work with and

Pros: “Readily available in many sizes,

Pros: A very strong and stable hardwood

typically resistant to warping. Its wavy grain gives it a distinctive look—something a clear finish can nicely highlight.

shapes and grades. Very easy to work with. Very light—can be made to look very contemporary if you go with a clear pine, or rustic with a knotty pine. Paints and stains well. You can trim out your whole house with it.”

that can take intricate carving. “Very beautiful and very rich. Very popular right now for those doing feature walls.”

Pros: Affordable and durable. Ideal for

heavy-use items such dressers and kitchen cabinets. Since it takes dark stains well, it can mimic a pricier wood, such as cherry or mahogany. Cons: If not first properly sealed, staining can look blotchy. “For flooring, it’s slightly less stable than ash and red oak, so if a home gets too dry in the winter, the boards might shrink a bit and have a tendency not to move back in the summer like an ash board would.”

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Cons: Stain should be applied carefully, as

it can exaggerate the grain, leaving a two-toned look. “I wouldn’t use it outside. And it has a reddish tinge, which some don’t like for contemporary looks. You’re seeing more white oak now.

Cons: “Softer, so prone to scratching and denting. And not as rot-resistant as, say, western red cedar.”

Cons: Among the more costly woods. “It does change colour over time, starting off a rich brown and going more amber over time, which people should be aware of. But you can mitigate those effects with a darker stain.” ontario home builder Reno 2019

53


footage of finished material by slicing it into veneers rather than cutting logs into slabs that are planed down to ¾”-thick boards. With solid hardwood, only the top third of the board is usable before you sand down to the tongue. In the past, you maybe got four or five sandings out of the floor before you hit the tongue, then the service life of the floor was over. The other 2/3rds becomes wasted material there to create board thickness. “In the past, we used to see more cupped and gapped floors with solid wood,” French notes. “You can bend the rules a bit more with engineered hardwood than solid wood, because it handles fluctuations in humidity better. It’s not bulletproof, but it’s better suited for new-home construction and day-to-day living. “But when it comes to design, there are all kinds of compositions being offered out there—different thicknesses of the finished layer, from 0.6mm to 6mm,” French cautions. “And they’re laid up on a number of different substrates—lumber core, fillet-type construction, plywood construction, HDF core. At the end of the day, some simply perform better than others. “Provided the hardwood is fixed properly to the subfloor, most companies with a sliced 2mm veneer will tell you that it can be professionally sanded and refinished at least once,” French says. “Thicker-veneered products might be able to be sanded multiple times, but there are a number of things to consider. Prefinished floors with urethanes that contain aluminum oxide are designed to not wear. They become problematic because it takes a lot more effort to sand them down in order to refinish them. And then you’re faced with additional challenges like the texture of the floor— many are brushed or scraped. They’re also micro-bevelled, not square-edged, so if you start sanding those floors, you’re going to alter their appearance. “But today it doesn’t seem to be about sanding and refinishing floors anymore,” French notes. “Designs and trends change so quickly now that people would rather switch their floors out for a new look rather than invest money on refinishing.”

TREAD CAREFULLY While there are excellent brands available, builders and contractors should be wary of similar products with low price 54

ontario home builder reno 2019

Its forgiving nature in changing humidity makes engineered hardwood flooring a desirable option.

Become an Ontario Wood partner Everyone likes an environmentally friendly company, and Ontario Wood provides members of the residential home building industry with the opportunity to show their greener side to consumers. Builders, contractors, distributors and manufacturers can secure the use of Ontario Wood’s official leaf logo to show support for locally grown, locally made wood products and to encourage Ontarians to buy local. The logo identifies wood products as being harvested under some of the highest environmental standards in

the world. But Ontario Wood partners also benefit from promotional efforts, including receiving information on market research and connecting with other partners in its network. To qualify, at least 75% of the wood used in an Ontario Wood product must be from trees that are indigenous to, or are commercially grown, in Ontario, and which are harvested from sustainably managed forests in Ontario. Up to 25% of the wood may come from sustainably managed forests in the rest of Canada, as long as that

tags, French cautions. “I’m seeing new suppliers entering the market trying to make a move into the residential construction engineered hardwood business,” he says. “They race to get something copied from an existing manufacturer who currently has samples in the design centres, and then offer it for less money. We’ve seen before the danger when a product hits the market that is unvetted. At Metro, we have our own quality control people who work at the mill to ensure that our products are properly constructed and that we’re compliant with numerous environmental requirements. It’s all part and parcel of why claims ratios are so low.”

wood is from tree species that are also indigenous to or are commercially grown in Ontario. Further, all processing associated with the manufacturing of the products must take place at Ontario facilities. The program also helps differentiate Ontario products and the logo assists consumers and contractors in identifying official Ontario Wood products at the retail level. The cost of joining is free. For information on becoming a producer or distributor partner, visit Ontario.ca/page/ontario-wood).

“Even a ‘Made in Canada’ sticker is no guarantee of purity,” French says. “There are examples where the wood was milled in Ontario, but shipped somewhere else to be finished, then brought back.” And while Metropolitan sources its wood from outside the border, it vets its materials at every point, French assures. “And we’re the only company I know of that doesn’t ship a piece of material without knowing when and where it was made—I mean right down to the day, and in some cases the minute,” he says. “Our supply chain is tracked so in the event there is any issue with our products, I can pinpoint when and where it was made.” OHB ohba.ca


C

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ontario home builder reno 2019

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f o t r A The t n e m n i a t n Co s an d s e m e h t anag e m o t w o H j ect o r p r u o y p r ot e c t By M a r c H u m i n i l ow yc z

C

ontractors know about client stress. They’ve all seen how having one’s home torn apart for weeks on end—even by choice—can sometimes test the bounds of rational thought and behaviour. But if you really want to send your customers over the edge, try leaving tools lying around for the kids to find or muddying up their carpets in an already tense environment. Now you’re just asking for a thermonuclear-type explosion. It’s not just shoddy reno work that helps fill the internet, after all; it’s the preventable sloppy treatment of a customer’s home during a project. So in a world where word-of-mouth references reign, contractors who go the extra mile for the sake of safety, cleanliness and efficiency tend to be remembered for all the right reasons. Specializing in water, smoke, fire and storm damage, among other tasks, Shane Bradley, president of Highland Restoration in Orangeville, appreciates the stress levels of his clients. Consequently, minimizing mess and disruption while preserving the functional use of the rest of the home so that occupants can continue to live normally is the top priority of his company. That entails containing the work area, protecting other living spaces, removing and storing furniture and using specialized “negative air” machinery during reconstruction to prevent dust from circulating through the house. Highland adheres to a set of standard operating procedures according to job type, which guides the flow of work (including cleanliness) and communication with homeowners. ohba.ca

On the home renovation front, many OHBA contractors have similar procedures and best practices in place to minimize mess, damage and homeowner disruption, swearing that the extra effort and cost is worth it when weighed against the possibility of having to re-do completed work, repair damage, keep a good rapport with customers and maintain a solid reputation. “We spend a lot of money on protection and coverings, and we always get complimented by clients for our cleanliness,” says renovator Dave Jurinic of Toronto Custom Concepts (TCC). “On day one of the reno, we cover all the floors—not just with construction paper, but with a foam underlay and hardboard (masonite) to protect the floors, then paper on top to capture the remnants of drywall mudding and dirt, which we replace regularly. Depending on the job, we will also wrap stairs/runners in clear adhesive plastic.” To block off work areas and access points for dust and dirt control, Jurinic installs vertical sheets of polyethelyne (supported by extendable poles) with zippered exit and entry points, “sticky” mats at entranceways on rainy days to remove dirt from boots, and filtration cloths in ductwork. His trades are instructed to always clean up the waste they create and sweep their workspace regularly. And in case they forget, TCC also hires a general labourer for overall cleanup and to tidy up missed areas. Additionally, a cleaning company is hired to come on site at least twice during the project: after drywall is finished and upon completion. “The challenge is protecting what we’re not changing,” notes ontario home builder Reno 2019

57


Jurinic. “We’re always sensitive to the fact that our clients are living there and want to see progress.” According to Randy Oke, president of Oke Woodsmith Building Systems in Grand Bend, scheduling, communication, safety and cleanliness are mandatory to a successful renovation. “Because we also design most of our projects, the challenges of renovating are always top of mind,” he says. “This means: working out the timing with deliveries of products and having each phase of the project coincide so there’s less disruption for the homeowners, securing the site with fencing and proper guards and keeping the site tidy and clean at all times, which also makes work and timing flow more smoothly.” And what do things look like when those sorts of steps are not part of the equation? Jamie Adam, head of OHBA’s Ontario Renovators’ Council and president of Kitchener’s Pioneer Craftsmen, describes an addition (by an unnamed contractor) in an older part of town. “It was spring, and an excavator on the site left mud tracks on the street and the sidewalk, and mud was continually being tracked into the addition,” Adam relates. “The homeowner was living through the project, with nails, two-by-fours and concrete all over the site. It was a messy and unsafe place—a total disaster.” How should the process commence? “We start every project with a preconstruction meeting at the client’s house, which includes our lead carpenter, our project manager, our salesperson and our client, where we go over a list of 20 points covering off, among other things, what we will do to maximize safety and minimize damage and mess,” says Adam. “That way, our client knows what to expect.” To keep the site tidy, Pioneer employs a number of techniques and products. Inside the home, foam padding (a cost-saving off-run dashboard material used in car manufacturing) protects floors from damage, such as a dropped hammer. Sticky clear plastic is laid out over carpeting and neoprene on stairs. Installed fixtures (sinks, tubs and toilets) are protected by keeping on the coverings from the manufacturer and, in some cases, painting on a temporary rubber membrane. During tear-out and drywalling, Pioneer minimizes dust and dirt in the home in several ways: cordoning off work areas with poly plastic with zippered doors for easy entry/ exit; installing strong fans and three-stage air filters, including high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA); and, if needed, placing a fan in a window to create negative pressure to help draw out dust. “We do what we can to minimize dust, but we always advise our clients to be aware that any pre-existing dust on walls and ceilings in their home will be dislodged during construction,” says Adam, adding that his company’s policy is to broom-clean the site at the end of every day and vacuum each Friday. And what about outside the home? “When we’re excavating, we cordon off and secure the site with snow fencing or security fencing to keep it contained, making sure that we designate what’s in-bounds and what’s out of bounds for debris,” Adam adds. “To keep mud and dirt out of the home, we install heavy-duty track mats on lawns and leading up 58

ontario home builder reno 2019

Protect A House During A Remodel by Harrison Kral One of the most important tasks of any remodelling project is protecting the parts of the house that are not being worked on. And that’s not easy considering the hundreds of trips back and forth with tools, materials and debris. And then there are the muddy boots, billowing clouds of dust and the occasional dropped tool (which always seems to drop sharp edge down on a finished surface). Construction Pro Tips tool expert and long-time remodelling pro Josh Risberg provides the following 10 tips. Wrap window treatments Most window openings that will be exposed to dust should be entirely covered with plastic. But for windows you need to open, cover the window treatments in plastic instead of removing them. Removing window treatments is risky business: Parts disappear, metal slats bend, fabric rips or gets dirty. And replacing damaged treatments can get expensive—if you can even find one that matches, that is. Tape plastic to the top of the casing, then tuck the plastic up underneath and behind it. Open the window to tape the plastic on the back of the treatment to the top jamb. Cover registers with furnace filters Covering registers will keep dust out of the ducts and furnace. But don’t cover them in plastic, since blocking airflow to and from the

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furnace can put an excessive load on the blower motor. Instead, tape inexpensive furnace filters over the registers. The filters will maintain airflow while containing the dust. It’s still a good idea to shut down the entire HVAC system while performing super-dusty tasks like demolition and drywall sanding, though. And regularly check and replace the actual furnace filter as needed during that dusty work. Friction-fit dust barrier Every remodeller knows that building a temporary wall covered in plastic is a great way to keep dust from migrating to other parts of the house. But here’s how to do it in a finished room without damaging the surfaces. Wedge strips of R-11 insulation (3-1/2” thick) between the framing and the ceiling and the walls. The insulation creates a friction fit and holds everything in place without fasteners. The insulation also allows a little air to flow but acts as a filter.

Start by setting the bottom plate on the floor where you want it. Hold up the top plate with insulation on top of it. Have a helper wedge a couple of studs between the top and the bottom plates every 4 ft. or so. Cut the studs 3-3/8” shorter than the wall. That allows for the thickness of the plates and leaves a 3/8” gap to squish the insulation. Install the plastic with a staple gun rather than a hammer tacker so you don’t knock the wall over. Double up the plastic at the top for a more secure hold. Write “Don’t Lean on Wall” with a marker to prevent unfortunate accidents.

seems to sink into mud and eventually becomes as dirty as the ground around it. Try laying down a path of wood chips. Many times, when you’re done you can spread them around an unfinished yard and sod over them. When the wood chip paths get muddy, you can just lay down another layer. Wood chips work better than stringy mulch, and some varieties cost less than $4 per bag.

is easy enough, but fixing a bent corner bead can be a real pain. Protect outside corners with strips of cardboard. You can cut them out of thick shipping boxes or buy a FlexCorner box of 10 at protectiveproducts.com for less than $30. Be sure the cardboard extends at least 4 ft. high, and hold it in place with painter’s tape, which won’t ruin the paint when it’s removed.

Cover the countertops

Booties are cheap and easy

Any flat surface in a work zone inevitably becomes a workbench or storage shelf, even if that surface is an expensive countertop. Protect countertops from nicks and scratches by covering them in cardboard. Use clean cardboard and wipe the counter before laying it down. Tape the edges to keep out debris and to keep the cardboard from sliding around.

Avoid tracking filth all over the house with a pair of protective shoe covers. It’s easier than untying and retying your shoes or boots when you need to run to a part of the house without floor protection in place. Booties are cheap; you can find them for as little as 30¢ each at some home centres.

Paint-on tub protection Marring a beautiful bathtub with a big, ugly scratch is not a good way to showcase a bathroom remodel. Protect a tub by covering it with a thick, tough rubbery coating. Tub protection products like this are brushed or rolled on, and then peeled off when the job is done. You’ll usually need two coats. The product costs about $50 per gallon, and one gallon will handle two standard-size tubs. That sounds expensive, but it’s cheap insurance to protect a tub that might cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars. You can find several manufacturers by searching for “tub protection paint” online.

Threshold shield

Lay down a wood chip path Some remodelling projects involve walking back and forth across a muddy yard that has no pavement or grass, so keeping that mud out of the house is a challenge. Temporary plywood walkways are one option to keep the muck at bay, but plywood ohba.ca

Make pathways all over Protecting the floor that leads from the work area to the outdoors is a no-brainer. But don’t forget about the paths less travelled, like the one to the bathroom or to the room where the electrical panel is located. Rolling out plastic floor protectors is easy. It doesn’t offer heavy-duty protection but it’s good enough for the occasional trip. Self-adhesive carpet protection film like this costs about 20¢ per foot. Similar protection is available for hardwood floors.

Protect corners with cardboard A daily parade of building materials, tool belts and tools is hard on finished walls. Even the most careful worker is going to bump one now and again. Fixing wall dingers

Sure, all thresholds will get beat up eventually, but why not avoid the wear and tear until after the work is done. Some new doors come with plastic threshold protectors. Keep those in place until the end of the project. Use tape to protect those doors that don’t come with a protector, as well as existing doors that will be used a lot during the remodel. A couple layers of exterior painter’s tape will hold up great. Reprinted courtesy of Family Handyman (familyhandyman.com). All rights reserved. ontario home builder Reno 2019

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Keeping a tight seal at entranceways and “negative air” machinery help Highland Restoration (left) keep dust and dirt to a minimum. Above, a neoprene stair covering from Pioneer Craftsmen. Below, Toronto Custom Concepts employs a foam underlay and hardboard to protect floors, then paper on top.

to entranceways over the work week, removing them on weekends.” Does Adam see the payoff in such precautionary measures? “Definitely,” he declares. “You’re saving money in the long run. It’s better spent versus having to refinish work and deal with a homeowner who’s freaked out.” Amsted Design-Build in Ottawa has earned numerous honours for its reno and building projects over the years, including multiple awards from OHBA, CHBA, Greater Ottawa Home Builders’ Association and Guildmaster (nine years in a row), the latter a trade association that celebrates service excellence in building, remodelling and contracting based on customer satisfaction surveys (Amsted consistently scores 60

ontario home builder reno 2019

100% for cleanliness and safety.) According to president Steve Barkhouse, Amsted has earned its many accolades by adhering to strict worksite principles. “Starting from the outside of a project, there’s a fence around the site and everything is stored and tarped, so that it all looks nice and clean from the street,” he says, adding that the company’s own branded roll-off bin on site reads: “94% of materials will be recycled.” Inside the home, Amsted employs a host of containment measures, including plastic enclosures, vacuums and HEPA/ exhaust fans. But they also make sure their project partners are all on board. “Every year, we invite our trades to breakfasts, barbecues ohba.ca


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Pioneer Craftsmen takes damage prevention seriously, from its countertop wraps (above) to floor coverings that range from Ram Board (left) to a cost-saving off-run car dashboard material (below).

and tailgate meetings to talk about accountability on the job,” says Barkhouse. “We want to make sure that everyone takes the extra time to pick up debris, re-tape, etc., because a clean workspace is a safer place. We also post signage on the jobsite to remind everyone about our core values, including cleanliness. Our staff are trained on Ministry of Labour safety standards, which cover things like guard rails and extension cords. And every week, we talk about safety. “There’s 100% accountability and there’s 200% accountability. That’s what we strive for,” Barkhouse adds. “It means being responsible not only for your own actions but also the actions of co-workers. Everybody watches each other’s backs.” Barkhouse cites the story of a hospital in the U.S., where 62

ontario home builder reno 2019

patients were dying of unrelated infections at an alarming rate as a result of staff passing on diseases from room to room. A policy promoting personal responsibility (100% accountability) for diligent hand-washing was initiated by the hospital, but after two months, there was little improvement. So the hospital went a step further, encouraging all staff to faithfully wash their hands and remind other staff, even doctors, to do the same. The infection rate dropped dramatically. “Practicing that 200% accountability on the jobsite means that the guy pushing a broom can call the electrician on a safety or cleanliness issue,” says Barkhouse. “There’s a consciousness of someone always watching to make sure things are done right. It’s a culture where everyone understands.” OHB ohba.ca


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Making a Splash If you want to know what’s trending in the world of kitchens and bathrooms, the National Kitchen & Bathroom Association’s annual Design Trends Report is a good place to start. Released Feb. 19, this year’s edition looks at current trends, but also attempts to identify how styles and products will evolve over the next three years. Surveys were provided from 583 Canadian and American industry experts, including designers, contractors and 64

ontario home builder reno 2019

manufacturers. With bathrooms, transitional and contemporary will be the most popular styles in upcoming years. As technology solutions go, controls for lighting, music, water temperature, leak detectors and steam control are all trending. Over the next few years, key tech solutions will include temperature control, water conservation, internetconnected products, leak detectors and

NKBA report reveals current and coming kitchen and bathroom trends By J o n at h a n O k e

occupancy sensors. On the kitchen front, panellists expect to see transitional and contemporary styles leading the parade. “We were surprised to see that the Farmhouse-style kitchen (which was the most popular style in last year’s study) is not projected to be among the top two styles in the next three years,” notes NKBA Market Research Analyst Tricia Zach. “Conversely, it was interesting to see ohba.ca


our respondents predicting that Industrial-style kitchens, which are raw, edgy and techsavvy, will grow in popularity and have multi-generational appeal.” The most interesting new products included major appliances, with improved appearances highlighted by the colour white (ones that don’t look like mom’s), black stainless steel and bright colours. Trending on the technology front are appliances that connect to smart phone apps and video screens, touch sensors, full wifi connectivity, steam and convection ovens and induction cooktops. Hidden handles are tops when it comes to cabinetry. LED interior lighting, vertical-lift doors in wall cabinets, and touchor knee-activated motorized opening and closing are gaining momentum. When it comes to countertops, look for matte finishes, new materials like largeformat porcelain slabs, a resurgence of laminate, soapstone, Corian, concrete looks, Quartzite, lots of texture and exotic granites with lots of movement, thickness and colour options. Illuminating the kitchen, pendant lighting has a more modern look, with improvements in LED technology offering better colour rendering and dimming ability. Integrated LED fixtures and LED strips provide all kinds of applications moving forward. But there is still room for improvement, the report observes, with further need for innovation in cabinets and ventilation/hoods, different materials for doors and drawer fronts, more affordable modern designs and lower-cost cabinetry with greater flexibility and customization options. ohba.ca

KITCHENS Kitchen size after remodel Most designers who are remodelling increase the size of the kitchen.

4% Significantly larger (50%+ increase)

23% About the same (<25% increase)

29% Larger (25–49% increase)

45% Somewhat larger (<25% increase) 0% Smaller

RESIDENTIAL Kitchen size Most designers’ residential kitchen projects were between 150 and 350 square feet in the past year.

5% Small (<150 sq ft)

22% Large (350+ sq ft)

73% Medium (150–350 sq ft)

Most interesting new products

32% 16%

Designers and specifiers are seeing the most interesting new products in appliances. Cabinets, countertops and lighting are next on the list for providing innovations.

13% 11% 8% 6%

Appliances Cabinets Countertops Lighting

Technology Solutions Flooring

4%

Faucets

4%

Ventilation/hoods

3%

Sinks

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Transitional Kitchen Style Look & Feel - Timeless look - Natural light and relaxed feel - Open to living area - Smooth features that blend in - Clean colours: whites, greys, beiges, bones, blues Visual Impact - Cabinets - Hood - Countertop 66

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APPLIANCES

- Light or medium painted wood or woodgrain or mixed materials - Recessed panel facing - More drawers than doors - Integrated storage - Matte decorative hardware or integrated hardware

- Integrated with other surfaces - Induction cooktop and wall oven + microwave - Dual-fuel or gas range - Updraft hoods - Fully integrated French-door fridge (stainless or cabinet finish) - Standard-door dishwasher

- Brushed stainless finishes - Some matte, polished or satin finishes - Touch, manual or motion-control

Southwestern

Tropical

Victorian

8%

7%

6%

Asian/Zen 17%

Mediterranean

Shabby-Chic 17%

Glam

LIGHTING

- Recessed lights/pendants - Under-cabinet and interior-cabinet lighting - Dimmer and traditional switches - Some keypads, motion sensors

12%

20%

Cabinets

Faucets

29%

32%

46%

50%

55%

% that ranked it top 2 on a 7-point scale

Transitional and contemporary top the list of anticipated popular kitchen designs. Farmhouse, industrial, traditional, mid-century and eclectic will also be popular in the next few years.

Transitional

Popular Kitchen Styles over the next three years

Scandinavian

Technology that allows for remote meal prep via smartphone

Rustic

30%

Coastal

Technology to track food inventory and recommend menu ideas

36%

33%

Organic

Wall-mounted touch-panel interface

37%

43%

Craftsman

Smudge-proof touchscreens to assist with meal ideas & recipes

37%

49%

Eclectic

Entertainment enhancements

40%

53%

Mid-Century

Tech that alerts cell phone of safety situations

41%

58%

Traditional

Voice-enabled home-automation platforms

Industrial

58%

Farmhouse

Mobile-device-friendly

Contemporary

76%

80%

Mobile device integration and voice-enabled platforms are very popular technology used in the kitchen.

% that ranked it top 2 on a 7-point scale

88%

Popularity of Technology Solutions Over the Next Three Years

COUNTERTOPS, SINKS, Quartz, quartzite, some granite

- Traditional and waterfall edges - 1 Âź inch thickness - Contrast with cabinets - Long narrow rectangular tile, subway, small tile/mosaic backsplash - Stainless steel single-bowl or apron sink FLOORING

- Hardwood or engineered wood plank - Large-format tile: ceramic, porcelain, stone - Some luxury vinyl

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For bathrooms, transitional and contemporary will be the most popular styles in upcoming years, the report predicts. The most interesting trend we see in the bathroom is the desire for a relaxed, spa-like experience,” explains Zach. “We expected that in Coastalstyle bathrooms, but were surprised to see that relaxed feel finding its way into Transitional, Mid-Century and even Contemporary styles. Whether the focal point is a luxurious soaking tub or an oversized steam shower, designers are using smart technology, lighting and soothing colours to create an oasis for relaxation and rejuvenation.” The most interesting new products include offerings in showers/shower surrounds and vanities/cabinetry. As tech solutions go, controls for lighting, music, water temperature, leak detectors and steam control are trending. Over the next few years, key tech will also feature water conservation, connectivity and occupancy sensors. Bathroom categories needing more innovation include hardware/accessories, sinks and vanities/ cabinetry (more style, colour, material and storage options), respondents note. Among new products generzting buzz are solid-surface walls, touch controls, open showers, no curb at the pan and no shower door. In that respect, wet rooms (with tubs and showers in the same room and a drain in the floor) are zooming in popularity. To purchase the 2019 NKBA Design Trends report, go to store.nkba.org or call 800-THE-NKBA. OHB ohba.ca

BATHROOMS Most interesting new products The most interesting new products for bathrooms include offerings in showers/ shower surrounds, vanities/cabinetry and technology solutions.

interesting new products New products are available for showers, vanities and technology solutions for the bathroom.

Designers want more... Designers want more innovation in hardware, sinks and vanities/ cabinetry.

20%

Showers/Shower Surround

17%

Vanities/Cabinetry

10%

Technology solutions

8%

Flooring

8%

Countertops

8%

Faucets

7%

Bathtubs/Sensory-deprivation tanks

7%

Hardware/Accessories

12%

Toilets

12%

Lighting

SHOWERS & SURROUND

Vanities/ cabinetry

Technology Solutions

- Solid-surface walls, touch controls - Open showers, no curb at pan, no shower door - Wet rooms: Tubs and showers in the same room, drain in floor, easy and pretty styling - Architectural shower door’s black frames as beautiful focal points

- Floating cabinetry - New finishes, washes, fun new pops of colour - Different materials such as MDF, recycled material and laminates - High-gloss and textured melamine looks - Different heights, reduced depth, open shelves

- Controls for lighting, music, water temperature, leak detectors, mirrors with TV and steam control - App-enabled control (radiant floors, digital shower valves) - Lights, shower speakers, in-floor heating, light-up mirrors, colour therapy for showers and bathtubs

HARDWARE/ ACCESSORIES

SINKS

VANITIES/ CABINETRY

- Integrated grab bars, toilet paper holders, decorative towel bars - More finish options for linear drains as well as residential grab bars and safety products - More selection of ventilation products with heat

- New materials, different shapes - New installation innovations - More innovation in material and shape/style for undermount sinks - More interest and detail but not over the top; easy to clean, but lending some interest

- Better solutions for smaller areas and storage of jewellery, hair products and other essentials - More style, colour options and materials - More wall-hung and separate cabinetry - More attractive and waterproof wood looks

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Transitional Bathroom Style Look & Feel - Natural light and relaxed feel - Timeless look - Smooth features that blend in - Minimalistic Visual Impact - Shower - Cabinets - Lighting

68

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Victorian

Southwestern

5%

5%

Tropical

Mediterranean

Shabby-Chic

Scandinavian

Asian/Zen 33%

Rustic

Glam

9%

13%

19%

30%

30%

48%

% that ranked it top 2 on a 7-point scale

Transitional and contemporary are expected to be the top bathroom styles in the next few years. Traditional, industrial, coastal, mid-century and organic show potential in the next few years as well.

83% Transitional

POPULAR MASTER BATH STYLES OVER NEXT THREE YEARS

34%

Voice-activated controls for faucet/tub/shower/toilet/lighting

Craftsman

28%

36%

Wall-mounted touch-panel interface

Eclectic

29%

37%

Occupancy sensors

Organic

38%

39%

Leak detector

Mid-Century

42%

39%

Internet-connected products

Coastal

44%

44%

Water-conservation technology

Industrial

48%

44%

Temperature control/ Thermostat smart control

Traditional

57%

Contemporary

Key bathroom technology solutions include temperature control, water conservation, internetconnected products, leak detectors and occupancy sensors.

% that ranked it top 2 on a 7-point scale

79%

Popularity of Technology Solutions Over the Next Three Years

FLOORING

Tile

Countertops & Sinks

- Heating, large-format tile - Plank - Ceramic/porcelain/stone tile - Luxury vinyl, ceramic wood, marble

- Large-format tile - Rectangle, square, hex, arabesque - Seamless tile designs

- Quartz - Quartzite, granite or marble - White porcelain/cast iron - Under-mount sinks

SHOWER/TUB

- No door or swinging door 2-person shower - Clear glass and linear drains - Panel shower system - Free-standing or soaking tubs

- Free-standing, built-in or floating - Recessed panel facing - More drawers - Painted wood, woodgrain, mixed materials - Decorative hardware

Wall COverings

Faucets

- Paint or tile - Wallpaper

- Nickel, chrome, stainless or rose gold - Various finishes (polished, matte, brushed, satin) - Manual, motion or touch-control

Cabinets/Vanities

LIGHTING

- More chandeliers, large pendants - Recessed, sconces, shower, vanity, mirror lighting - Dimmers, traditional switches, motion sensors

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Building Buzz

KITCHEN

LAUNDRY ROOM

LIVING ROOM

Budding Genius

Koben Systems is helping home breaker panels smarten up By J o n at h a n O k e

If going green means using renewable sources, as well as reducing energy consumption and GHG emissions, Koben Systems is trying to cover all the bases. Although the Mississauga-based company operates the largest electric vehicle-charging network in Ontario, Koben System’s Genius Smart Panel is also making life easier on the home front. An electronic, computerized breaker panel that replaces the mechanical panel in a home, the Genius features all the same functionality of an existing electrical panel, while providing both real-time energy consumption data and control of a home’s energy consumption on a circuit-by-circuit basis, as well as the convergence of renewable sources and the integration of EV charging. The panel updates and modernizes a single piece of equipment a home already needs and provides it with ohba.ca

energy management capabilities without inundating the home with multiple gadgets and apps. “The Smart Panel informs what is driving a monthly electric bill and when electricity is being used,” explains Koben President and CEO Vic Burconak. “Once they’re armed with real-time usage data, homeowners can see and learn where and how to change their habits to use less electricity based on priorities in accordance with their lifestyle. Few residents understand the specific cost of operating their clothes dryer during peak time.” By setting the system with timers, alerts, use rates, among other details, the Smart Panel lets homeowners think once and then forget about it. But it also allows them to analyze all the data and determine what they want to change. The unit can integrate renewable

energy sources, such as grid, solar, wind, battery or a back-up generator, and has the intelligence to automatically switch loads based on time, price and availability, also in the event a source goes down. You can also program circuits to draw from a designated power source. For example, you have the ability to guarantee your electric vehicle runs on solar power. And if the utility power goes down, you can have the fridge prioritized and programmed to switch to the appropriate back-up to keep it running. Designed and manufactured in Israel and used internationally, the Genius panel has both a North American version and a European version with a smaller footprint for condominiums. Notes Burconak, “With units in operation throughout the world, it is the only proven smart panel product on the market.” ontario home builder Reno 2019

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TOO L S

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Do you feel uncomfortable in tight spaces? DeWalt is rolling out its new Atomic Compact Series over the next year. The new line combines performance and durability in a compact format and is optimized for tight spaces, overhead work and for long periods of use. For general contractors, remodellers, electricians, mechanical and HVAC tradespeople, plumbers, and cabinetry and furniture builders, these tools serve users in a wide variety of applications. The line will include everything from a compact drill/ driver (launching this spring) to a circular saw (summer) and oscillating multitool (fall), among other tools. The lineupâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s cutting tools also offer efficient brushless motors and long runtime. The 20V Max Compact Circular Saw, for example, has the power and depth-of-cut to complete 2x4 dimensional lumber at 90 degrees. With its extended reach, the rear-handle-design is maximized to rip sheet goods such as 3/4-inch OSB (oriented strand board). The reciprocating saw (coming early next year) also includes a bright LED worklight and quick-change blade holder. The tools will come standard with a three-year limited warranty, one-year free service contract and 90-day moneyback guarantee. Business

New Resources for Renovators Three new resources are now available at chba.ca. Exclusively for members, 72

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The Sample Renovation Contract and Residential Renovation Contracts: A Guide for Renovators provide contract basics to help renovators protect their business and give peace of mind to their clients. A Homeowner Guide to Renovation Contracts explains to homeowners the key elements of renovation contracts and outlines the benefits of hiring a RenoMark member. CHBA members must be logged in to the website to access exclusive content via the Members’ Area. SKI L L S

Good math skill adds up to better jobs Count Skills Ontario among the groups supporting the provincial government’s announced changes to address the math challenges faced by Ontario students. “We are pleased that the government is facilitating more information and awareness to students about opportunities in skilled trades and technology careers,” says Skills Ontario CEO Ian Howcroft. “Many students are unaware of how rewarding and beneficial careers in the skilled trades and technologies can be. For 30 years, Skills Ontario has been promoting apprenticeships, skilled trades and technology opportunities to youth, and we look forward to building on our partnership with the government to engage more students. “Math skills are essential to skilled trades and tech careers that are in very high demand,” Howcroft added. “Strengthening math curriculum and making it more relevant will only help people find good quality jobs in trades and tech.” P R EDICTIONS

Houzz Canada Predicts a Rosy Year Ahead Houzz Inc., the world’s leading platform for home remodelling and design released the 2019 Houzz Canada State of the Industry last month. The report ohba.ca

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Iron Black

provides an outlook on 2019 and a review of 2018 performance for residential renovation and design businesses, including architects, interior designers and contractors, based on data reported by more than 150 professionals in the Houzz Canada community. The study revealed that a majority of firms across the industry are optimistic about business growth in 2019, following positive 2018 results. More than two-thirds of the industry (70%) anticipates that gross revenue will increase in this year. In fact, half of businesses expect that revenue will grow by more than 10%. Interior designers and decorators have the most confident view of 2019, with 84% of firms anticipating an increase in gross revenue, followed by home builders and building designers (73% and 47%, respectively). To support revenue growth, firms plan to increase marketing and sales efforts and bring in larger budget projects (52% each). “Residential construction and design service professionals in Canada are gearing up for another robust year,” says Nino Sitchinava, Houzz principal economist. “Positive expectations follow overall revenue growth in 2018 despite headwinds in managing consumer concerns over cost and difficulty hiring and/or being understaffed.” Those sunny expectations come in the wake of a successful 2018 for firms across the industry, with nearly twothirds of businesses reporting that gross revenue met or exceeded expectations. In fact, actual gross revenue increased by 10% or more for nearly half of businesses. Interior designers and decorators saw the largest increase, with nearly half reporting that gross revenues grew by 15% or more from the year prior. Revenue growth was not without its challenges, led by managing consumer concerns over cost, difficulty hiring and/ or being understaffed and increased costs of doing business (28%, 26% and 25%, respectively). That said, one in four businesses was able to expand and hire new employees. General contractors were the most likely to increase headcount (29%), followed by architects and interior designers and decorators at 15% each. The full 2019 Houzz Canada State of the Industry report can be found at houzz.com. ohba.ca


S ta n da r d s

SERVING

A new report from the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction (ICLR) and the Standards Council of Canada (SCC) recommends a new national standard on wind resilience to mitigate residential and small building property damage resulting from natural disasters in Canada. High winds contributed in part to most natural catastrophes recorded by the Insurance Bureau of Canada between 1983 and 2016. The May 2018 windstorm, for example, in southern Ontario and Quebec, followed by tornadoes in the National Capital Region in September 2018, caused close to $1 billion in insured losses, according to Catastrophe Indices and Quantifications Inc. Specifically, the report proposes measures for four major categories: roofs; walls, and upper and lower-storey connections; anchoring of the building to the foundation; and additional construction details such as garage doors. Both groups hope that such measures “could form the basis of a new National Standard of Canada...which could subsequently be integrated in the National Building Code or to which builders could adhere voluntarily, thus raising the bar for construction in Canada.” “Protecting residential structures will be aided by measures that have the biggest impact on structural safety,” says Paul Kovacs, executive director of the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction. “For example, roofs are particularly vulnerable to high wind. Keeping roofs sound and well-connected to walls helps reduce structural failure and property damage, like that associated with intrusion of water.” “New guidance in this area is a muchneeded enhancement to the infrastructure and building safety toolbox,” notes Standards Council of Canada CEO Chantal Guay. The report is available for download on ICLR’s website (iclr.org) and on SCC’s website (scc.ca). OHB

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Product Focus I de a s for B u i l de r s & R e n ovat or s

Napoleon’s award-winning Napolean’s Clearion and Clearion Elite earned CLEARion is the first truly a 2019 Vesta award from the Hearth, Patio see-through electric fireplace. and Barbeque Association.

HOT STUFF

Fire features highlight interior trends for the coming year By jONATHAN OKE

Fire is hot this season! OK, fire has been hot since the beginning of time, but from a figurative standpoint, flames are coming into their own—particularly on the electric and water vapour front. It’s providing a never-seenbefore flexibility that enables homeowners to create the attractive and alluring illusion of fire without the safety concerns—something

builders can also appreciate when it comes to decorating everything from condominium lobbies to sales offices. Things like watching a fire seemingly emanate from the middle of Dimplex’s Opti-myst countertop creation and attendees laying overtop the faux flames of Nero Fire Design’s display at Toronto’s Interior Design Show in January tend to get your attention. New technology, meanwhile, is

also making electric fireplaces more efficient and realistic than ever, a cost-saving measure not lost on new-home purchasers and existing homeowners looking to upgrade. But the first step for many renovations continues to be, well, that first step—from floors to tiles. And we’ve got all the trimmings covered as well—from stone walls to startling stairways—in this glance at what’s exciting for interiors in 2019.

Featuring

Nathalie Chouinard

Jane Bradley

Kim Hammill

Sean Cilona

Lee Whitaker

Bob Sanders

Design First Interior

Dimplex

Napoleon

Anatolia Tile

Barrie Trim & Moulding

Shouldice Stone

ohba.ca

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Product Focus Are you seeing fire features trending? Nathalie Chouinard, Design First

“Definitely. Some clients come to us specifically for a fireplace surround. The trend of linear design is often created by massive wood panels or stone slabs surrounding a rectangular fireplace—creating a great focal feature in the home.”

Interiors:

Jane Bradley, Dimplex: “It’s still early, but yes, we’re seeing it—mostly in custom homes. We’re definitely seeing an increase in the number of designers who recognize the opportunities to do really interesting things using our unique technologies like Opti-myst—things you could never do with combustion fireplaces.”

“A fireplace has always been a focal point of a room and it’s where people gather and memories are made. With electric fireplaces they can enjoy the ambience all year round, with or without the heat. Fully recessed wall mounts are what is selling now. Linears that are featured in a stone wall with the TV mounted above it is trending. Because we have a complete hearth division, we take what is trending in the gas category and apply that to our electric products—hand-painted logs, linears and vertical wall mounts, multi-colour ember beds. Consumers are willing to pay more for a realistic flame and realistic logs.”

Dimplex’s Opti-myst technology provides a variety of low-cost but safe and eye-catching applications. Below, mixed materials are in, highlighted by this Fusion Stone (Silverado) oven vent framing.

Kim Hammill, Napoleon:

What makes your technology unique? Jane Bradley, Dimplex: “With Opti-myst, ultrasonic technology is used to create the flame and smoke effect. As the mist rises up through the logs, the light reflects against the water molecules, creating a convincing illusion of flames and smoke. And since it’s water mist, not steam, it’s completely safe. It produces a relatively small amount of humidity, which is welcome in the winter and negligible 78

ontario home builder reno 2019

in the summer. Otherwise there is no combustion and no venting, so nothing to worry about. In terms of flexibility, if you can imagine it, you can make it—from long linear installations to two- and three-sided, to 360-degree installations. The technology has been available for a while, but is just now beginning to receive traction in residential applications.” “With growing concerns about the environment and legislation around North America with net zero, the electric fireplace category has grown substantially. With the CLEARion and CLEARion Elite, we’ve developed the first truly electric see-thru with a privacy screen, and just won a Vesta award from the Hearth, Patio and Barbeque Association. It’s being used

Kim Hammill, Napoleon:

between bedrooms and bathrooms, living rooms and kitchens. Our new Stylus Wallmount model has been one of our most successful launches ever. Small spaces require multi-function furniture pieces and this hit the mark. In bedrooms and condos is where the Stylus is going to win. You can charge your phone in one of two USB ports; there’s a nightlight; modern trim surrounds the 32” wallmount; there’s a crystal and birch log ember bed; four flame colours; six ember colours; touch controls. It has really caught people’s attention, not to mention the affordable price point.”

What about ease of installation? “Builders and renovators love the ease of

Kim Hammill, Napoleon:

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Product Focus installing electric fireplaces. It simply gets hardwired when the electrician is there. Consumers love that they can bring it home and plug it into any 120V outlet and it is ready to enjoy. The cost alone makes it more attractive. People also think that because it’s electric, it costs more to run. That’s not true. It is very efficient and we have a cost calculator on our website. On average, it will cost $42/year to run. And instead of looking at a black box most of the time, the dancing flame can be viewed in all four seasons.” “The only thing we occasionally see is that the installer has not made allowance for airflow coming into the unit as described in the installation guide. Opti-myst units do need airflow in order to produce their best flames. Otherwise, it’s really just 120V power supply and a ¼” PVC water line, similar to a refrigerator, assuming you want the unit plumbed. It’s a very simple installation. And you can then apply the savings you gain by eliminating the gas lines and venting to the finish materials.”

Napoleon’s Stylus fireplace

Home Is Where the Hearth Is

Jane Bradley, Dimplex:

Ironically, the stone cladding that used to be popular for fireplace surrounds is now trending elsewhere. Bob Sanders, Shouldice Stone:

“We’re seeing a lot more stone adorning feature walls, islands, bathrooms, bedrooms, kitchens…pretty much wherever it can enhance the room. It brings warmth and highlights a room. Very popular today is to expose old brick/stone walls from century homes where they may have been covered over in the past, and this influence has been carried forward to renovations and new construction. What we see with Shouldice is the exterior stone, such as our Estate Stone, is carried through to the interior, which creates a really nice flow. Just as popular today is the use of Fusion Stone, a mechanically fastened thin veneer that can easily be installed on any wall. We already know that 80

ontario home builder reno 2019

Earlier this year in Las Vegas, Hanley Wood, the premier information, media, event and strategic marketing services company serving the residential, design and commercial construction industries, announced Napoleon Fireplaces as the 2018 Brand Builder Awards Marketer of the Year. Napoleon, based in Barrie, was highlighted for its Hot Spots campaign and the research that fuelled it. With the goal of better understanding how to maximize impact when designing specific spaces in a home, the Hot Spots Research Study explored what makes those rooms more meaningful. A “Hot Spot” is a room or space associated with positive emotions and memories. When designed right—by overlapping key room dynamics—a Hot Spot can increase the overall satisfaction with one’s home. The most beloved rooms are designed to accommodate a balance of functionality, relaxation and socialization. Rooms qualified as a Hot Spot when at least 50% of respondents checked at least two of the following emotional categories to describe that room: welcoming/social, cozy/warm, relaxed/ peaceful and fun/enjoyable. The more the emotional categories overlapped, the hotter the Hot Spot. Based on the above criteria, the following three rooms rose to the top of the ‘Hot’ list: living room, bedroom and kitchen. The living room was the hottest of the Hot Spots, ranking at more than 60% in all four categories. The study found that Hot Spots can be created. A room’s ability to evoke positive emotions and memorable moments is directly related to the design and amenities of that room. For example, when research participants were asked to create poster boards representing what they wanted in their next home, they, as expected, gravitated toward living rooms, bedrooms and kitchens. However, fireplaces and outdoor spaces also stood out, demonstrating the potential for other spaces to reach Hot Spot status. “There are countless design strategies to increase a room’s appeal,” notes president of Visbeen Architects Wayne Visbeen, who worked with Napoleon on the study. “From creating a focal point and rearranging furniture to incorporating different textures and patterns or adding more seating for socializing, even small changes can have a big impact.” When evaluating the rooms in their current home, homeowners were much more likely to associate positive emotions with the areas that had fireplaces compared to rooms that did not. When the 900 participants were asked where they currently have fireplaces in their home and where they’d like to have them in their next home, the largest discrepancy was found in the bedroom and outdoor space, revealing an opportunity for homeowners considering remodelling to add a fireplace to these spaces. Furthermore, when they were exposed to pictures of rooms with and without certain amenities, including fireplaces, participants’ desire for rooms with fireplaces increased 41%! “We are actively presenting the research to builders and architects around North America,” says Napoleon Director of Sales Kim Hammill. “It’s giving them a fresh outlook on where to incorporate fireplaces in their designs and to help set themselves apart from the cookie-cutter homes that consumers are tired of.”

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ONTARIO HOME BUILDER RENO 2019

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Product Focus when masonry is part of the exterior, there’s an increase in the home’s value. And this holds true when stone is used within the interior as well—more so than other wall materials. “Installation-wise, heavier masonry products such as Shouldice require a mason. But Fusion Stone is a lightweight product that is screwed onto a plywood-backed wall—no mortar, no mess. So it can be contractor-installed.” Nathalie Chouinard, Design First Interiors: “From walls to cabinets,

mixed materials are definitely trending, like stone with brick, wood, metal. People are looking for less flashy materials and moving away from a ‘busy-ness’ look. Less is more. Even lighting has an industrial or vintage look in the home. That said, we have seen people have more fun with vibrant colours being used in secondary rooms—greens and blues, bright reds and yellows—but in matted, more toned-down versions. Even textured, three-dimensional wallpaper has become popular. Instead of people being loud with colours, the trend is to be loud with textures and materials— inviting those accents of wood and metal, as well as tiles.”

Speaking of tiles… Sean Cilona, Anatolia Tile: “We

see marble looks driving the product trend. We have natural stone products, but are focused on porcelain. We have a few collections that showcase marble looks, including the Mayfair collection—eight different colours of natural stone across the spectrum. Anything with that Carrera look, white marble with grey or beige veining.”

And size matters. Sean Cilona, Anatolia Tile:

“Large formats continue to grow. With Mayfair we have 24” x 48” in both a natural matte and polished finish. In terms of sales volume, the rectangular 12” x 24” is probably the most popular size. But many of our 82

ontario home builder reno 2019

Clockwise from top: Anatolia Tile’s large-format Mayfair Calacatta porcelain collection; Barrie Trim & Moulding notes the popularity of shiplap and stair makeovers; and Design First Interiors highlights vintage-style lighting and textured wallpaper as trending.

high-end builders are forgoing that and going straight to 24”x24”, 32”x32” and 24”x48”. The Ontario market tends to be much more contemporary and trendy than other areas. “We see our 24”x48” in a lot of backsplash applications. But really where it shines is in a bathroom shower or a large-format floor installation. “The growth of polished format is something that’s really popular as well. It tends to be a more expensive product. The larger formats tend to be

higher-end—rectified, with a polished finish—things the luxury builder looks for, compared to entry-level builder grade with a natural finish and pressed edges. Premium products coming from Europe and Spain are 50-80% more expensive, or even more than that.”

Any words of advice for installers? “The settings materials companies have

Sean Cilona, Anatolia Tile:

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C.R.A.F.T. Pre-Apprenticeship June 24, 2019 - September 27, 2019

C.R.A.F.T. Pre-Apprenticeship June 24, 2019 - -September 201927, 2019 C.R.A.F.T. Pre-Apprenticeship June 201927, - September C.R.A.F.T. Pre-Apprenticeship June 24, 2019 September 27,24, 2019

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(Creating Real Apprenticeships For Toronto) This fourteen week, PAID pre-apprenticeship program in the construction trades is available exclusively to residents of Toronto Community Housing Communities.

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This fourteen week, PAID pre-apprenticeship program in the construction trades is available exclusively to residents of Toronto Community Housing Communities.

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4 Weeks of PAID In-Class Training 10 Week PAID Job Placement Travel Subsidy Basic Hand Tools and Safety Equipment Provided

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4 Weeks of PAID In-Class Training 10 Week PAID Job Placement Travel Subsidy Basic Hand Tools and Safety Equipment Provided

This fourteen week, PAID pre-apprenticeship program in the construction C.R.A.F.T. trades is available exclusively to residents of Toronto Community Housing Career Potential and Advancement (Creating Real Apprenticeships For Toronto) Every young person who successfully completes Communities. the C.R.A.F.T. program will have the opportunity to 

This fourteen week, PAID pre-apprenticeship program in the construction Career Potential and Advancement trades is available exclusively to residents of Toronto Community Housing  Every young person who successfully completes Communities. the C.R.A.F.T. program will have the opportunity to

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June 24, 2019 - September 27, 2019 Interested in Participating?

 4 Weeks of PAID In-Class Training Week PAID Job Register for10and attend one ofPlacement the following information sessions: Travel  May 8, 2019 at Subsidy 6:00 P.M. in Regent Park (246 Sackville Street) Hand Safety Park Equipment ProvidedStreet)  May 14, Basic 2019 at 1:00Tools P.M. and in Regent (246 Sackville  May 22, 2019 at 6:00 P.M. at the YMCA Centre (4580 Dufferin Street, Suite 200)

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May 8, 2019 at 6:00 P.M. in Regent Park (246 Sackville Street) May 14, 2019 at 1:00 P.M. in Regent Park (246 Sackville Street) May 22, 2019 at 6:00 P.M. at the YMCA Centre (4580 Dufferin Street, Suite 200)

 4 Weeks of PAID In-Class Training Register for your preferred session by text: 647-459-6568 or by email: epahl@theccat.ca  10 Week PAID Job Placement  Travel Subsidy Register for your preferred session by text: 647-459-6568 or by email: epahl@theccat.ca Interested participants MUST be able to provide the following documents if they are selected for  Basic Hand Tools and Safety Equipment Provided an interview: Interested participants MUST be able to provideCareer the following documents they are selected for Potential and ifAdvancement an interview: * Photo ID

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* High School Diploma or Transcript (min. 16 completed credits)

Every oryoung person successfully completes * High SchoolDiploma Transcript (min.who 16 completed credits) the C.R.A.F.T. program will have the opportunity to pursue an apprenticeship in the construction trades

Interested in Participating? Register for and attend one of the following information sessions:  May 8, 2019 at 6:00 P.M. in Regent Park (246 Sackville Street)  May 14, 2019 at 1:00 P.M. in Regent Park (246 Sackville Street)  May 22, 2019 at 6:00 P.M. at the YMCA Centre (4580 Dufferin Street, Suite 200)

Career Potential and Advancement

Every young person who successfully completes 2019-05-02 the C.R.A.F.T. program will have the opportunity to Gettinginthe Job Donetrades Right! pursue an apprenticeship the construction Interested participants MUST be able to provide the following documents if they are selected for 

CRAFT_01.indd 1

The Best Fireplaces for the Best Builders

Register for your preferred session by text: 647-459-6568 or by email: epahl@theccat.ca

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an interview: * Photo ID

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Register for and attend one of the following information sessions:  May 8, 2019 at 6:00 P.M. in Regent Park (246 Sackville Street)  May 14, 2019 at 1:00 P.M. in Regent Park (246 Sackville Street)  May 22, 2019 at 6:00 P.M. at the YMCA Centre (4580 Dufferin Street, Suite 200)

CLEARion Register for your preferred session by text: 647-459-6568 or by email: epahl@theccat.ca The first truly see-through electric fireplace 16783 Thorndale Rd. Interested participants MUST be able to provide the following documents if they are selected for Thorndale, Ontario, N0M 2P0 an interview: * Photo ID

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ONTARIO HOME BUILDER RENO 2019

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Product Focus

HeliFire’s flame (left) can be mounted and propelled in any direction. Below, Nero Fire Design’s Creax displays employ water vapour technology to emulate real flames.

become much more aware of the larger-format products (and their heavier weights) and have developed very specific setting materials that are modified with polymers and other types of products to make adhesion to walls quicker and easier. And with larger-format products you have to be more careful of uneven surfaces. The larger the product, the greater the tendency to have uneven edges and gapping. There are a few products like floor levellers that will really help installation to keep edges flat and smooth.”

What other interior upgrades provide good bang for the buck but keep life easy for contractors? Lee Whitaker, Barrie Trim &

“Tread caps on stairs is huge in the reno industry for retrofits. If you have a 1990s house with a carpet on the stairs, you just rip off the carpet, leave what’s existing and then add new caps. “And a lot of people are changing up their stair spindles in renos. If you just want things to look better without spending a lot of money, changing the railings and posts can makes a huge impact. “On the custom side, you’re seeing more modern mono stringers, and simple square railing profiles. Wrought iron spindles with style and colour choices are really trendy—not your traditional knuckle spindle. “Shiplap has also been a very popular trend—something we’ve been selling a lot of on the renovation side, especially with things moving toward more contemporary, square, simple, clean lines. Very popular for accent walls or smaller spaces like bathrooms to add some character. And it’s fairly easy to install. We have done some projects where a client has used shiplap instead of drywall. It may take the installer a bit longer versus drywall, but it reduces the mess of drywall dust!” OHB

Mouldings:

Both are Hot! One is Cool! As architectural fire features go, it’s hard to beat the drama of the HeliFire 360 from Town & Country Luxury Fireplaces. Dramatic and eye-catching, the product’s long, luxurious flame makes a bold design statement wherever it’s installed. And as the 360 name suggests, there’s a myriad of configuration possibilities to its installation, from horizontal to vertical, one-sided to see-through, indoor to outdoor. Fuelled by natural gas or propane and featuring Cool Glass technology, the HeliFire’s flame length may vary up to 30% depending on vent length, fuel type and orientation. “They’ve become very popular with high-end architects and designers,” says Cory Iversen of Town & Country’s parent company Pacific Energy. “They are commonly featured in multiples on walls as windows or at entrances, and also make a stunning outdoor living area fire feature.” Prefer something that only looks real? Nero Fire Design launched the Creax at this year’s Interior Design Show in Toronto. Specially designed for the Dimplex Opti-myst burners, the realistic watervapour ‘flames’ give off no heat and therefore require no venting or chimney, opening up no end of possibilities for the use and physical positioning of the units. An ideal condo lobby feature (since they’re completely safe and therefore require no insurance issues), units can be custom designed from 40 inches to beyond 12 feet. Options include front-facing, see-through, corner, bay and peninsula, with Nero offering custom finishes.

8 4

ontario home builder reno 2019

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As the voice of Ontario’s residential construction industry, OHBA informs members and subscribers of the latest news and events relevant to home construction and professional renovation in the province. Subscribe today to receive updates on housing data, expert columns, relevant industry events, awards and advocacy work. Stay current. Sign up now. WWW.OHBA.CA/SUBSCRIBE

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Words to Build By

“The value of belonging to larger associations is in the relationships we build with one another. And that experience of seeing the bigger picture is invaluable.” Stefanie Coleman, Owner, Pretty Smart Homes

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ontario home builder reno 2019

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BUILDING ONTARIO SINCE 1903

WE Build Communities And Careers. When a community is built from the ground up, there is no labour force on the planet, better skilled to get the job done right the first time. LiUNA members and retirees made a commitment to their careers, which means a commitment to our communities. A commitment to build the BEST schools, airports, hospitals, office buildings, pipelines, tunnels, power plants, roads, bridges, low rise and high rise housing in the country. When the work is done, LiUNA members and retirees continue to live, play and grow in their communities, with the guarantee of a pension that is also....simply the BEST! Jack Oliveira

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ONTARIO HOME BUILDER RENO 2019

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