If you’re thinking of selling a home or purchasing another one, for many people that’s when a conversation about renovating begins.
In many cases these conversations are between homeowners and realtors, which is why a panel of RenoMark renovators recently spoke at the Toronto Real Estate Board’s annual conference and gave a large group of real estate professionals some helpful tips.
Engaging a professional renovator early as part of the home sale or purchase decision was a key piece of advice because it will help you understand how long it can take to get the appropriate approvals and plans in place to renovate, as well as a realistic budget.
It’s important to get a sense of timelines, challenges and budget before sprucing up to sell or investing in a rental property because it can make a big difference in the end result. You can work through a realtor to find a professional renovator or you can use a resource like RenoMark to find one yourself.
RenoMark is a program that was started by BILD in 2001 so consumers could identify professional renovators and trade contractors. There is a website with a searchable database that allows consumers to find reputable renovators who specialize in certain project types and work nearby.
The program has been endorsed across the nation and here in the GTA there are more than 250 renovators and trade contractors in it. As part of the program, they must abide a renovation-specific Code of Conduct that includes providing a written contract, carrying applicable licenses, obtaining permits and government approvals, as well as having a minimum of $2 million liability insurance and offering a minimum two-year warranty on all work and more.
Given how competitive it is to buy a home in the GTA, you may want to take a renovator with you to viewings to get a true idea of what can be done and what it will cost. For example, if there is potential for a property or part of one to become a rental unit, a renovator can help explain what it will take to make sure it is up to building and fire codes, as well as how to invest your time and money wisely.
Yet another hot topic in renovating real estate in the GTA is flipping, which is buying a fixer-upper and selling it for profit. The old adage of location, location, location still applies, but some advice from the renovator panel included working with a professional contractor and carefully considering government rules and regulations that could affect the project timeline and budget.
The real estate market in the GTA is robust and it is a good investment, but it’s not one to be made without doing some homework first and engaging a team of professionals to help you get the best return.