canada: Ontario inspectors at least 2 years away from licensing - 03/11/18 12:25 PM
In February, Allan Spisak, Chair of The Professional Home & Property Inspectors of Canada (PHPIC) along with 4 other Inspection Associations met with the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services (MGCS) to discuss Licensing and Regulation of Home Inspectors in Ontario.
The draft Regulations will be available for public input in the fall of 2018, and once licensing is announced Home Inspectors will be given 18-24 months to meet the minimum standards.
This means that we are still 2 years away from all inspectors becoming licensed!
The most important agreement was that all inspectors will be required to pass a written exam, pass … (0 comments)

canada: How do I get my fireplace WETT certified? - 01/18/18 08:14 AM
Clearing up common misconceptions
Source: Wood Energy Technology Transfer
One of the challenges WETT (Wood Energy Technology Transfer) faces is trying to help homeowners understand what WETT does. Most often homeowners ask about WETT because their insurance company has asked that they have their appliance WETT certified.
WETT is a training organization. As such, WETT trains people who wish to get involved with the sale, installation, inspection and maintenance of wood heating appliances. Once people complete the training program and acquire enough experience, they become WETT certified in the specific area for which they sought training. WETT certification implies that they have met the … (0 comments)

canada: Flue season is here! - 01/11/18 11:47 AM
Furnace flues and chimneys are often neglected. Many homeowners presume that the utility company or their fuel supplier is monitoring them, and don't realize this isn't necessarily true until something goes wrong. As a result, bird's nests and other debris sometimes cause soot and gases to drift back into the house, causing a potentially dangerous situation.
All types of chimneys should have regular, professional inspection and maintenance. Most chimney sweeps service all kinds of flues, not just masonry chimneys or those attached to wood-burning appliances.
The build-up of soot and creosote on flue walls can loosen and fall over time, aided by moisture … (2 comments)

canada: Small investment renos that pay big returns - 01/02/18 04:48 AM
(NC) Knowing where to invest to get your home in tip top shape to sell or enjoy can be a daunting and expensive task – but, it doesn't need to be. Christopher Alexander of Re/Max has seen what makes potential buyer's eyes light up and what sends them walking. Here are his tips on renovations that pay big when it comes time to resale:
Improve your curb appeal. First impressions make a lasting impression. You want buyers and guests to be drawn in immediately and excited to see the rest of your home. These renovations could include painting the exterior, replacing old … (1 comments)

canada: Deciding who to hire for your renovation - 12/30/17 09:01 AM
(NC) You've been planning your home renovation for months, attended all the home shows and spent countless hours online looking at inspiration boards and photos. You've also interviewed numerous contractors, checked their references and received written price quotes from those you are interested in hiring. Now it's time to decide who will be doing the job.
Once you have met with the contractors who are bidding on your job, you should review each set of bid documents carefully. Compare every aspect of their bids — the description of the work, specifications (materials and products), price and allowances, deposit and payment milestones, project … (4 comments)

canada: Wet Basements - 12/23/17 01:20 PM
Technological advances in recent years now allow most modern basements to be made into comfortable living space. However, all basements are vulnerable to some water penetration during their lifespan.
Drainage tile, damp-proofing and moisture barriers all assist in preventing moisture from entering the structure through the foundation walls. Even with all these in place, if the area experiences an unusually high level of precipitation and the ground becomes saturated with water, the tile system may not be able to handle the volume and the hydro-static pressure that builds up along the foundation wall may force some of the water through hairline cracks … (2 comments)

canada: 5 facts you need to know about heating your home - 11/14/17 10:10 AM
(NC) As Canadians, we rely on heating systems more than most nations in the world. But our need doesn't necessarily translate into knowledge. If you're unhappy with the comfort or cost of keeping your home warm in winter, here are some things to consider.
Insulation is key. While the kind of energy source and heating equipment you have can affect annual costs a lot, don't even think about upgrading your system until you've optimized insulation levels in your home. For most places in Canada, 22 inches of batt or loose-fill insulation in the attic makes sense. This is more than many homes have, … (2 comments)

canada: Should you forgo a home inspection? - 11/13/17 03:31 PM
(NC) Inspections play a very important role in any home purchasing process. While many people in highly competitive markets are choosing to skip this crucial service, assessing a property's condition helps you make an informed decision. With this in mind, there a few things for buyers and sellers to know about the process.
“Because home inspections are often one of the most influential factors guiding a deal, everyone should be aware of what they typically cover,” advises Royal LePage Network Realty Corp.'s Norm Jensen. “Defects found during an inspection can influence a property's pricing or stall a deal altogether. However, if used … (0 comments)

canada: What to know when shopping for an all-season cottage - 05/09/17 04:52 AM
(NC) Wouldn't it be great if you didn't have to wait for cottage season and could spend all winter on your dock? A four-season cottage is ideal because it is accessible yearlong.
“It is no surprise that a growing number of cottage-goers are looking to enjoy these benefits year-round by converting their summer homes into all-season properties or purchasing four-season cottages,” explains Ettore Cardarelli, president of the Ontario Real Estate Association.
According to research conducted by OREA and Cottage Life magazine, 83 per cent of cottage owners in Ontario who purchase a summer home end up converting it to year-round space.
If you're shopping … (1 comments)

canada: How Geothermal Heat Pumps Work - 05/08/17 12:51 PM
Watch this informative video from the WaterFurnace company, to learn how a ground source heat pump can provide energy-efficient heating and cooling for your home.
Geothermal system operate more efficiently than ordinary heating and air conditioning systems and can deliver an astounding five units of energy for every one unit of electrical energy used, saving you up to 70% for heating, cooling and hot water.
WaterFurnace is thebest-known geo-thermal equipment supplier in Canada. Visit the WaterFurnace webstie to learn more about geothermal systems available for your home.

canada: Occupational Profile: Home Inspector - 04/30/17 07:11 AM
Ontario Network for Internationally-trained Professionals OnlineA home inspector does a thorough examination of a house, both inside and out to determine the home’s condition, habitability and safety. Home Inspectors check the condition of the roof, foundation, floors, walls, insulation, plumbing and electrical system. They look for evidence of deterioration or safety risks like faulty wiring and gas leaks. The inspection will determine where repairs will be needed and where there have been problems in the past. These inspections generally do not include opening walls or pulling up carpets.
Each home inspection takes approximately two to four hours, depending on the size and … (4 comments)

canada: Tips to open your cottage safely for a worry-free season - 04/25/17 01:20 PM
(NC) As a cottager, your next few months will likely be spent rushing up north on weekends to enjoy warm weather by the lake. There are a few things that you can do when you open your cottage for the season, to ensure the next few months are spent relaxing and not working around your summer property.
1. Upon arrival, do a circle check and inspect the power line feeding your cottage. Take note if there are any tree branches that have grown too close to the power line — they could cause a power outage. Hire a qualified contractor to prune … (2 comments)

canada: A Closer Look: Qualifying Ontario's Home Inspectors - 04/25/17 10:38 AM
The Ministry of Consumer Services asked a volunteer panel of experts to review home inspector qualifications in Ontario. This is the panel’s report to the Minister. Currently in Ontario, anyone can call themselves a home inspector. This report takes a closer look at Ontario’s home inspector profession and recommends that it should be regulated. It also explains the rationale behind the need for regulation and recommends additional considerations for the government to strengthen the profession and consumer protection for home buyers and sellers when purchasing home inspection services.
A Closer Look: Qualifying Ontario’s Home Inspectors

canada: What are renovation shows not telling you? - 04/19/17 08:41 PM
(NC) Renovating a home can be a wiser investment than moving and popular makeover shows are certainly inspiring. However, these shows can also leave viewers with mistaken impressions.
If life was like TV, we could dream up an addition on a Friday evening and be drinking coffee in it on Monday. While most of us know that's unrealistic, some may have to experience living through a renovation to understand how complex and time-consuming construction can be.
If a project is worthwhile, time and effort shouldn't be deal breakers. Instead, careful planning and patient execution can be signs that the job is being done … (2 comments)

canada: Spring Into Home Maintenance - 03/30/17 05:50 AM
(NC) Renovating is great for increasing the value of your home, but regular home maintenance is the easiest way to preserve your investment.
As the weather warms, it is a perfect time to do a quick inspection of your home and catch up on simple seasonal chores. With a little effort, you can keep your home looking great and functioning well for years to come.
Here's a few tasks you should check off your to-do list:
Clean out the gutters and remove any debris. Repair siding and peeling paint. Inspect your chimney and roof. Replace or repair loose or damaged shingles. Trim overgrown … (1 comments)

canada: Split Ductless Heating & Cooling Systems - 03/22/17 09:55 AM
Energy efficient ductless heat pumps are an excellent upgrade choice for homes with older, inefficient ducts, or no air ducts - or as a new cooling system for homes with in-floor heating.
Here's an excellent video from Mitsubishi Canada, explaining how their Mr. Slim ductless heating and cooling systems work.
Mitsubishi Mr. Slim:  How does it work?

canada: Vermiculite Q & A - 01/21/17 05:03 AM
Questions and Answers About Vermiculite Insulation
What is vermiculite?
Vermiculite is a volcanic material compound that expands when it is heated and has the unusual property of expanding into worm-like or accordion-like pieces. They are usually the size of a nickel or dime. Vermiculite has been used in various industries for more than 80 years. It is used in the construction, agricultural, horticultural and industrial markets.
Where are vermiculite reserves?
Vermiculite is found throughout the world. Countries that hold commercial vermiculite mines include Australia, Brazil, Kenya, South Africa, Zimbabwe and the United States. The vermiculite commercially available today comes from deposits that are not considered … (7 comments)

canada: Here's to all of us in 2017! - 01/20/17 12:03 PM
Here's to nailing it for another year.
Let's fill 2017 with success!
All the best,
Gil Strachan


canada: Growing health risks fuel rise in fresh air systems - 01/18/17 09:57 AM
(NC)-Respiratory disease is steadily on the rise in Canada. In fact, asthma has increased by 160 per cent over the last 15 years according to the Asthma Society of Canada. One household out of four has a family member who suffers from asthma, allergies, or another chronic respiratory disease.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) points to poor indoor air quality as the culprit for this increase. Did you know the air inside your home and at work can be up to 100 times more polluted than the surrounding outdoor air and people spend up to 90 per cent of their time indoors?
These … (0 comments)

canada: Modern oil heat makes a convincing case - 01/18/17 07:58 AM
(NC)-The fuel used to heat your new home is a personal choice, so don't hesitate to request exactly what you want from your builder.
"In a lot of instances, new homes are automatically built with the intent of heating with natural gas and without input from the homeowner," says Dave Frittenburg, president of the Canadian Oil Heat Association (COHA) Ontario Chapter. "Homeowners should know that they have options when it comes to their heating fuel, and that oil heat is considered a premium choice for comfortable, efficient heat."
According to COHA, oil heat offers homeowners a safe, dependable, environmentally friendly and economical alternative … (0 comments)

Gil Strachan, Inspiring Confidence Since 1994 (Electrospec Home Inspection Services)

Gil Strachan

Inspiring Confidence Since 1994

Brighton, ON

More about me…

Electrospec Home Inspection Services

Address: Brighton, Ontario

Office: (888) 394-6954

Mobile: (613) 391-8515

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