Received a call yesterday from a frustrated homeowner who had just found out that the power couldn’t be restored to his home after it was disconnected at the request of his General Contractor to facilitate the addition of a second storey to the home. Hydro One Lines Crew technicians recognized the proper permitting procedures with the Electrical Safety Authority had not been followed and there was to be no reconnection.
Turns out Mr. General Contractor decided that despite all the media attention (billboards, radio ads, Mike Holmes’ show and such) about hiring a licenced electrical contractor being the law in Ontario that it would be okay if his retired Dad did the modifications to the electrical service and wired up the addition. No need to bother with trivial details like licences, permits, inspections and a knowledge of basic electricity.
Apparently Mr. General Contractor and Dad had been doing this for years, and circumventing the inspection department by encouraging their clients to take out a “homeowner’s permit”. This takes advantage of a loophole in the legislation that allows the registered owner of a single family residence to do his own wiring as long as a permit is pulled and ESA inspection is obtained and passed. Only problem with this is it’s fraud and leaves the homeowner open to criminal prosecution, and no insurance if any happens to the home because of faulty wiring.
There was no reason for this. The homeowner just wanted his nice project completed in a professional manner, by professionals, with no hassle or frustration. Mr. General Contractor made the decision for the homeowner that saving a few dollars would be better.
I wonder if Mr. G. C. would come to the plate if his stupidity burned down the building or killed someone? I doubt it. And how many homes has he done this in?
The real shame of this is Mr. G.C. had come highly recommended by several professionals in this homeowner’s circle. He had cheated and endangered them as well.
No wonder people have a negative perception of all trades.
Shock Doctor Nation: Please, please, please educate yourselves before undertaking these projects. Even if all you do is rent a few seasons of Holmes on Holmes. Or call me and I’ll give you the information you need. It won’t take long. Certainly much less time than finding out the hard way.