Worksafe insurance, for the home owner.

August 15th, 2016

Pretty mature woman shaking hands with a handyman at the door

 

Most people understand the benefits Worksafe insurance.  It protects employees from loss of income, and medical expenses in the event of a work related illness or injury.  And most know that this is required by law for all employers.  This insurance is an important part of the due diligence we verify for our customers at Easy Job Quote.

The main aspect of this product is the “bar to sue” clause.  With this insurance, employees go to Worksafe for coverage. They cannot sue their employer.  This protection also applies to homeowners, if they have “employed” someone to work in their residence.

All employers and independent businesses require coverage, but the term “independent business” is not well understood.  Independent business refers to someone who has more than one client, advertises, or works for you on an ongoing basis.  In other words, anyone doing business.

Worksafe calculates premiums on payroll costs, not total job costs.  They base the different premiums upon historical claim information industry to industry.  So, higher risk businesses pay higher premiums.  Renovations, for example, pay 6.1% premiums.

A business with a solid safety history earns discounts on their premium.  So, a General Contractor with a good record of safety will pay less for their coverage.  This is much like auto insurance safe driver discounts.

All companies usually build the insurance costs into their pricing.  You, the consumer will always pay this cost, indirectly.  This can mean you also benefit from any discounts.  If your independent business “employee” has opted not to buy their own coverage, find out why not.  You can then determine if it makes sense for you to obtain the coverage yourself. Or you can seek another businessperson with a different business model.  Worksafe coverage, and a safety discount give a contractor a competitive edge.

Homeowners can apply for a clearance letter directly from Worksafe to verify a contractors good standing.  Or you can purchase coverage for your “employee” to protect yourself with a residential policy.  Any uninsured worker can sue you if injury occurs.  The potential cost here is significant.

Worksafe coverage can apply to your nanny, gardener, house-cleaner, window-washer, or contractor.  It applies to anyone who works for you in an ongoing capacity, or more than fifteen hours weekly.  Have the conversation with your current or prospective worker about this important issue.

For those sole operators seeking employment in homes, consider the professionalism implied when you show up insured and ready to work.

Be safe out there!

Your Easy Job Quote Team.


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Innovation in Renovation – Gratitude #10toWatch

June 2nd, 2016

Easy Job Quote 10 to Watch Award Winners

A lot has happened since Easy Job Quote was named a winner in the Douglas Magazine 10 to Watch for our innovation in the renovation industry.  Many thanks to the panel of judges for their thumbs up to our business concept, to Douglas magazine for showcasing our company, and to the many clients and contractors who have called, before and after that fun April evening!

When we started out on this journey, we wanted to make a difference to home owners and contractors alike.   The response from across the country, and as far away as Australia has confirmed that we have found a market pain that we can ease.

As a new concept in the industry, there are still questions about exactly what we do.  This seems like a good time to expand on our business idea, and how we make a positive difference in this sensitive industry.

Easy Job Quote is ideal for any homeowner with a renovation project who does not know where to begin finding the contractor to do the work.  Due diligence is very important, and that is what we do.  We meet with any general contractor or tradesperson interested in being a member of our company.  We look at their work history, accreditation, insurance, awards, and we interview past clients to build a profile for them.  This information is made available to our homeowner clients to assist in choosing the team to do their work.

One of the frustrations for the homeowner is waiting for the three to five contractors to show up to estimate the renovation, to obtain the multiple bids recommended.  We make that easier by sending our team to the home, preparing a job description for our members to bid on.  All the contractors are then bidding on an identical job, rather than multiple interpretations of the same job.  The home owner has just the one appointment with Easy Job Quote to obtain their bids.  Phone us at 250-590-8182 or contact us today at easyjobquote.

For the contractor, this means they do not have to leave their current jobsite, which costs time and money.  The new jobs come to their laptop.  We also save contractors time and money on marketing, a savings that can be passed to the homeowner.  Please join our team at easyjobquote.

With our review process, Easy Job Quote gives a voice to the homeowner.  We offer an open, accountable venue for direct evaluation of the work.  And thus, we help our member contractors receive recognition for their excellent work.

Watch for our new FAQ page at www.easyjobquote.com!


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Green Renovations keep the green in your wallet!

April 22nd, 2016

Green_small

Happy Earth Day! Renovating green can also save you money…

I am impressed following the many new techniques, materials and philosophies in the construction/renovation industry. Many promote healthier options for environmentally conscientious, efficient homes. We live in exciting times.

Web searches help you find amazing materials and products for green construction. Today I would like to explore the green options for the start of your project…the demolition.

We are all looking to ways to reduce our waste in our household operations. We use cloth grocery bags and green packaging choices. Municipalities offer recycle bins and municipal composting programs. It is easy to find energy efficient light bulbs, non off-gassing mattresses, paints, and/or carpets. Just about every aspect of our home lives can be considered in earth-conscious choices.

One of the most potentially waste costly parts of a home renovation is represented by that large dumpster bin in the driveway on Day 1. Time efficiency is a definite factor to the bottom line of your renovation. However, consider the many costs of not thinking green as you tear out the old. I will start with your wallet. That dumpster is going to go to the landfill, where it will be weighed and charged accordingly. And you pay that cost. Not to mention the cost to the environment in trying to break down the mass and weight of all that wood, metal, plastic, drywall, etc.

Wood is easily recycled, if separated natural from pressure treated. Consider taking out your old cabinets intact for sale. Or as a donation to ReStore, Habitat for Humanity’s reuse/recycle store. They can reuse most materials. Your cast-offs may be another’s treasure.

Drywall can be recycled to make new drywall. Asphalt shingles are also used to make new shingles, instead of sitting in your landfill for 300 years! Old fixtures, appliances, carpets, glass can all be recycled or reused. There really isn’t anything you shouldn’t consider for a green disposal option. Check it out here.

Discuss your options with your contractor. It not only makes good environmental sense, it can save you thousands of dollars in disposal costs. Other people can benefit from your reusable materials for their projects. Cities, such as Vancouver, BC are now beginning to require environmental consideration at demolition. Check out their guide to assist the homeowner with good choices.

Wishing you a healthy, green renovation, and Happy Earth Day!
From all of us at www.easyjobquote.com.


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The Power of Reviews

May 7th, 2015

I was recently reading an article on Houzz, where they stated that 81% of homeowners use reviews of General Contractors to choose the team to do the work on their homes.  Well, this applies to almost any industry!

This also started me thinking about reviews, and how to determine the bias or lack thereof…any business is going to post testimonials on their website, and they will have control over the content.  They will cherry pick the good ones, weed out the negative ones, and take quotations out of context.  It is hard to trust this type of review process, and customers take them with a grain of salt, looking for other confirmations, such as word of mouth.  It is very easy to type the words “best in …”, but that does not mean it is true, or true any longer…

Some customers will go with a known brand or popular ad, but this can simply mean the company has a marketing budget, often based upon a successful business history, but this alone does not give the comfort of a gathered and growing body of legitimate customer experience reviews.

There are many models cropping up in the online world where neutral third parties offer a forum for ratings and commentary – TripAdvisor comes to mind.  The construction industry has not had this venue, until now.  Great reviews cover the full spectrum of the work done, with clear examples.  This is why Easy Job Quote places such importance on the reviews we collect for our clients.

“Our roofer was the best!  Great work, and not a nail left behind!”

Many qualified contractors compete for your maintenance and renovation jobs, and with the popularity of such programs as Holmes on Homes, and Deck Disasters, the perils of making the wrong choice are very clearly known!  The general contractor industry has, however, been painted with the brush of a few bad apples.  There is excellent work being done, and should be recognized.  Homeowners would benefit from to having the confidence that the reviews collected from contractors’ past customers are direct and unbiased.  Our process gives the homeowner such a voice in the industry, a very powerful voice.

I feel strongly that every contractor bidding on a job should know the homeowner will be posting a review of their completed work for all future clients to read.   This homeowner review is welcomed by the good contractors, as they know it will speak more clearly than any statement they could make themselves on their own websites.  They know they are providing quality work, and encourage this public forum.  Those who do not warrant a good review know to stay away or up their game!

When I began collecting reviews for our members, I was moved by the many conversations I had with their past clients.  It has been illuminating and fun.  The homeowners have enthusiastically embraced the opportunity to provide a review through an unbiased platform.  Any constructive information has been presented clearly, but mostly it has been the pride in the renovated homes, and the desire to support their contractors in securing more work, that has been a pleasure to share.  The many comments I have received have made it very clear to me that consumers wish to participate in a review process, and welcome this opportunity in the construction industry.

Put the Power of Reviews to work for your project!  Contact us anytime.

General Contractor Reviews

 


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