All the squirrels and chipmunks are running around, busy collecting nuts, making sure their homes are well stocked… and you? What exactly are you doing to get ready for winter? Before settling into hibernation mode, it’s a good idea to do a thorough walk around your home and see what may benefit from a little TLC before winter hits.  You may have already made it an annual ritual to turn off your outdoor plumbing and check your gutters, but there are...

by Ivan Mose A couple of weeks after last Christmas I received a phone call from a young man who told me he had a terrible smell in his apartment and could I come over as soon as possible and take a look. I am a building inspector so smells usually mean drains, mouldy basements and the odd rat or two. A little questioning and I started to build a case. Last summer Dany, his wife Lauren and baby moved into...

InterNACHI (the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors) is the world's largest trade organization of certified property inspectors. As our team has expanded to the double digits, and we've grown to provide services in multiple specializations, we have sought out new opportunities to learn and benefit from other professional experiences. A highly esteemed professional association that provides numerous tools and opportunities, InterNACHI provides testing and certification to ensure all our inspectors are up to date on all latest standards and practises,...

This year’s Montreal and area Shakespeare in the park series featured Shakespeare’s comedy, Much Ado About Nothing. The meaning of the title to this play, often misinterpreted, is about making a big fuss when there is nothing to fuss about. They play attempts to show that deceit is not inherently evil, but can be used as a means to both good and bad ends and that it is sometimes difficult to distinguish between good and bad deception. Vines / Ivy on Brick:...

Have you noticed that your bathroom fan isn’t quite sucking out the humidity quite like it used to? It might be time for an upgrade. A classic, simple DIY trick is to hold up a piece of toilet paper to the whirring fan. If the TP won’t stay in place, the fan isn’t pulling its weight (or pulling out much of anything). If your bathroom doesn’t have a fan, it’s a good idea to put “bathroom ventilation” near the top of your...

Sure, as carpenter ants burrow into wood to create their nests, your home is slowly getting destroyed from the inside out. But carpenter ants don't generally nest in nice dry areas free of food stuffs. They prefer moist, rotting wood. Carpenter ants indicate a bigger problem in the home. Carpenter Ants Like High Moisture Carpenter ants like areas with high moisture, especially wood that is in contact with the soil. Soft moist wood is easy to burrow into. They prefer areas where ventilation is poor, and...

While a ship’s captain may have a little time to batten down the hatch and get all hands on deck when he smells a storm, your deck may not give you the chance before it collapses. Your deck is where you relax, toast your daughter’s graduation, and celebrate summer. But a deck can also be one of the most dangerous areas of your home. According to the North American Deck and Railing Association, at least 30 deaths were reported between 2000...

Spring is here! The flowers are bursting out from autumn-buried bulbs and the bees are buzzing into action. Have you got your spring cleaning checklist in order? Likely, you've got the basics on the list; you may already have dusted off the barbecue and given the patio furniture a good spring cleaning… -- But you might want to think about adding a couple of items to your spring list to ensure your home maintenance systems are in ship shape too. While you’re likely fully...

Canadian investors have been flipping houses at a phenomenal rate.  As real estate prices continue to rise, flipped houses have become more common on the market. Realtytrac, a real estate hub, recently reported that 6.6 percent of all single family home and condo sales in the first quarter of 2016 in the U.S. were flips—a 20 per cent increase from the previous quarter and 3 per cent higher than the previous year. Rates in Canada are likely similar. Contractors are competing...

Did you know that a hot water tank can explode? When you combine high water temperatures and neglected pressure relief valves, you could have yourself an explosive tank that can literally blow your home through your roof. An old Mythbusters video  makes light of a hot water tank explosion, but shows how potentially dangerous this essential part of your home can be. While it’s fascinating and even funny to watch a hot water tank explosion in this context, we’d like to assure you...