At this point, most Canadian home improvement businesses have reopened, resumed pre-existing projects, and started accepting new jobs. This includes pros specializing in non-essential indoor projects like bathroom renovations, kitchen projects and basement additions. These companies have, without a doubt, spent a significant amount of time mapping out pandemic precautions and protocols to keep themselves and their clients safe. That said, you may find yourself hesitant to hire a pro at this time, especially for indoor projects. If you are considering starting an interior project, put your mind at ease using these safety tips.
Finding a Pro and Hiring
As is the case with any home project, you should start your search for a pro with a trusted resource like HomeStars. HomeStars’ top-rated pros understand that their reputation depends on building client relationships. Pros with solid ratings and reviews know how to prioritize the safety and comfort of their customers.
Once you’ve found a few pros with great ratings on HomeStars, it’s time to ask a few health-related questions over the phone. Ask whether or not anyone on their team has tested positive for COVID-19 or has come into contact with someone who has. Follow up by asking whether anyone on their team has reported experiencing symptoms and what their reporting system looks like. They will probably ask you a similar set of questions and it’s incredibly important that you are honest, no matter how urgent your project may seem.
You will also want to ask about what safety measures they will be taking to ensure your safety. Don’t be afraid to ask for details — if their answer seems vague or insufficient, move on to another company who will make your comfort its priority.
One last thing to note when hiring is that pricing and pro availability have been impacted by the pandemic. Pros are in high demand right now, meaning your project may be delayed. Depending on your project, there also may be issues sourcing certain materials. Be aware that these factors will ultimately impact the timeline and final cost of your project.
Preparing the Workspace
Once you’ve signed a contract, it’s time to prepare your home for work to begin. If you will be home at the time of the service call, take the time to map out a path for the team to take to access the worksite. Clear the space of all the furniture, appliances and fixtures that might block their access to the site and surrounding areas. This will speed up the process and minimize the number of surfaces in your home they need to come into contact with.
If they don’t offer to do it themselves, you can also cover the area with plastic or a sheet, as long as it doesn’t impede their access to the work area. Don’t forget to keep disinfectant on hand!
While They’re at Work
Once you’ve prepped the area, the work can finally begin! If you’re starting a larger project and are lucky enough to have a cottage or summer home, you may want to consider heading up north for the duration of the project to limit your exposure. If you’re hiring for a quick indoor service call, go for a walk, visit a friend (outdoors) or find another way to stay clear of the work area.
If you’ll be at home, make sure to keep your distance. If the team doesn’t come prepared with masks, offer them disposable masks they can take with them and dispose of away from your home. You should also wear a mask if you will be in the same indoor area as the team or individual. Use your own pens to sign any materials that need to be signed and sanitize well afterwards.
When the Job is Complete
The last step in the process is to clean 6 feet around the area where your pro was working. Don’t forget to clean any sinks, doorknobs or materials that the pro may have used when they were working. Once you’ve thoroughly cleaned, wash your hands or take a shower.
With so much time spent at home, repairs and home improvement projects are unavoidable. These precautions will help limit your exposure and put your mind at ease. Remember that whatever your home needs, HomeStars pros are here to support you in the safest way possible.