You want to remodel your kitchen or add another bathroom in time for summer, and now’s a good time of year to start planning it. Your budget is limited, however, and you really don’t want to spend more than you have to—especially not on labor. So it’s tempting to go with the handyman down the road who’ll set you back half of what a professional plumber would cost.

Not so fast! Here are 5 reasons why you should invest in a qualified contractor, even at a higher cost.

Reason #1: You Know What You’re Getting

Remodeling companies and contractors are two a penny, and not all of them are as good as they should be. When you contract a qualified plumber in Toronto to do a job such as a water installation or upgrade, you know what you’re getting. Or you have a better chance of doing so, anyway, than if you take on the guy down the road who perhaps doesn’t have a business license and might not even hold the necessary WSIB clearance that Ontario contractors need to have.

Reason #2: They’re Officially Qualified

To become a plumber in Toronto, candidates are required to complete 4 years of secondary school, followed by:

  • an apprenticeship of 9,000 hours
  • on-the-job training
  • some classroom instruction through one of the Toronto colleges
  • a provincial certification exam

The home handyman, regardless of how good he is, most likely doesn’t have these qualifications. He might be capable of doing the work, but when there’s a problem such as a basement flooding your insurance might refuse to cover your claim if you can’t provide proof that any former work was done by a professional.

Reason #3: They Work to Code

Building codes are very important to Toronto homeowners. The City can send an inspector out to check your water and electrical installations pretty much any time they want to, and often they do so if they know you’ve had work done. How do they know? Anyone of a number of ways – because you applied for a permit, because someone drove past your house and saw it happening, or just because your name is on a list somewhere. The point is if they conduct an inspection and the work isn’t done to code you’ll have to remove it and redo it, and possibly even pay a fine. It simply isn’t worth it. Your home handyman might work to code, but he doesn’t have a license to lose by cutting a few corners. A Toronto plumber, on the other hand, can’t risk his livelihood by doing so.

Reason #4: You Have Recourse

Sure, there are no guarantees, ever. Most registered and licensed plumbers provide upfront assessments, as well as some sort of assurance about the work they do, however, and if something goes wrong soon after they finish they’ll come back and fix it. They have a reputation to upkeep, after all, as well as preferring to avoid the inconvenience of a battle with Toronto Water or the City. This means you have a degree of recourse in the event of shoddy workmanship, which is the protection you just don’t have with a private contractor.

Reason #5: It Protects Your Investment

When you pay peanuts, you get monkeys. Many home handymen are superb craftsmen, take pride in their work and deliver a great job on time and within budget. Is it worth risking your biggest investment in life to find out whether the one you choose falls into that category? Probably not. By spending a bit more you can get top quality work at a market-related price and all the benefits that go with hiring a qualified plumber in Toronto instead of an imitation.