From concrete to contractors: Calgary offers home improvement tips for the building season – Calgary

Despite snowfall and cooler temperatures across parts of Alberta late this week, many Calgarians are spending the summer in the brain and yet back home and improvements in the yard.

The hardest part of these projects can be navigating the necessary permits and regulations.

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The city hopes people will do their homework before they dig in – paper is cheap after all. Concrete is not.

“I have a plan to renovate my basement,” said homeowner Gurmukh Jhatta. “I need to ask a few questions to make sure I get all the right information here.”

Dozens of people attended an information session with experts at the Genesis Center in northeastern Calgary on Friday, applied for permits on the spot, and even brought their own plans to make sure they were complied with.

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“We want to make sure that people don’t have to take out anything,” said Jennifer Crack of Calgary. “For example, there may be electricity that may not be conducted quite correctly. This costs people money to have to take it out and put it back. If they know the code beforehand, they only have to do it once, which saves time and money.”

Safety is the top priority, but experts say it’s important to focus on electrical, plumbing, building codes and land use requirements.

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Making the Most of Your Home Renovation – January 8, 2019

Even small objects in the height of the deck railing should be checked before construction.

“I’m now finding things in my house that I’ve lived in for 20 years which is a bit surprising in terms of the quality of the work that has been done,” said homeowner Cindy Heselton. “My house was built in 1988. Fortunately nothing really big, but I do find quite a few surprises and learn along the way.”

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The city is also trying to make this information easier to access online, even for people who don’t plan to do the work themselves.

“We want to make sure that people can do some work themselves, and work that they are not comfortable doing, they hire the right person,” Crack added. “We even have our licensing inspectors here to make sure that if you actually hire a contractor, you’re trying to hire a good one.”

The city will hold two more similar sessions this year in the hope that Calgary residents can make sure their home improvement projects get done right the first time around.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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