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September 2013

 

Do you love the feeling when you find a $5 bill or $20 bill an old purse or jacket that you haven’t used in a while?  Did you know you can find some extra cash during your renovation?  Twenty-seven percent of household water is used by the toilet - think of all the money that you are losing down the drain and won’t find again!

 

Renovations and upgrades can be costly.  However, there are some options available to you as a British Columbian by way of municipal rebates for upgrading your older toilet to one that is more efficient.  At Splashes Bath & Kitchen Centres, we want to help you save money and, in this case, even find money.

 

What is the building code requirement regarding low-flow toilets in BC?

 

Effective October 3, 2011, the British Columbia Building Code regulation was amended to require the installation of high-efficiency toilets and urinals in all new residential buildings and renovation projects involving toilet replacements in British Columbia.

 

Where do I apply for a toilet rebate?

 

Each municipality manages their own toilet rebates with various rules – and there are communities that do not offer any rebates.   In the past, there were federal rebates for toilets but they have since expired and many municipalities are limiting the length of their rebate programs so we recommend that you ACT TODAY!   

 

What communities offer toilet rebates?

 

To find out if your community offers a toilet replacement rebate, please review their municipal website directly.  Make sure that you read all their rules closely to ensure that you qualify for the rebate as each municipality has slightly different rules or approaches.  The process for getting your rebate can vary as well including providing receipts and taking pictures, so please consult your municipality for the details.

 

As a helpful reference guide to you, here is our list of BC communities currently offering rebates to homeowners:

 

VANCOUVER ISLAND

  • Comox Valley - $75 rebate for 4.8L or dual flush toilets
  • Cowichan Valley - Toilet Replacement $75 rebate per toilet
  • Duncan — low-flush toilets $60-100 rebate
  • Ladysmith – low-flush toilets $75 rebate – until Dec 31, 2013
  • Lake Cowichan — low-flush toilets up to $100 rebate
  • Lantzville — low-flush toilets up to $100 rebate
  • Nanaimo — low-flush toilets up to $75 rebate  - until Dec 31, 2013

 

LOWER MAINLAND


Good luck with your renovation and we hope you find some of those extra dollars!

 

Ask your Questions

 

Are you finding this expert advice helpful?  Submit your questions to us and we will feature them here to help you and others with your bathroom and kitchen fixture decisions

 

 

August 2013

 

In planning to renovate your bathroom or kitchen, most people will tell you that you’ll go over budget and get frustrated. Many online sources will give you tips on knowing your preferences, but our Ardele Warren from Splashes Bath & Kitchen Centres helps to answer your specific timeline questions on how to get it done!

 

I know my bathroom needs an update; I’d like to arrange it all and get the job done quickly. 

 

Some jobs are possible to complete quickly, for example, if you would like to swap out a showerhead as a small upgrade.  However, a bigger update where you may require plumbing, furniture or redesigning how your bathroom or kitchen operates, then you will definitely need to allow yourself a complete timeline for planning.

 

If you don’t want to just grab the random fixtures that might be in stock, but instead wish to pick out the exact finish for that faucet to match your décor, or the bathtub that has the exact orientation – left hand/right hand or seating – then you will need to at least allow yourself 4-6 weeks delivery for just the fixtures.  And this timeline doesn’t even account for the time it might take to make the decision on the right faucet or tub (let alone sink or toilet) that you prefer. If you come by one of our showrooms, you’ll understand how picking out what you want is also a huge undertaking.

 

I want my bathroom done right.  How long should I allow myself to complete my full renovation?

 

Many people think that the time it takes to do the renovation is the time your bathroom or kitchen is torn apart.  If you haven’t planned well, the time your bathroom or kitchen is unusable can be extended and will likely create stress.  However, if you plan well, you can considerably reduce the time you are inconvenienced and reduce your stress and frustration. 

 

Ultimately, your renovation from planning through completion will typically take six full months (longer if it is a major overall such as moving walls). 

 

Have you heard the saying “measure twice, cut once”?  This carpenter’s principle applies to the planning of your renovation, as most of the time should be spent in the early planning and decision making and not in the actual renovation itself. 

 

What stages should I have in my checklist?

 

1.      2-3 Weeks - Determine if your renovation will require a general contractor, plumber, interior designer, or other specialist

 

Hiring the right contractor to assist with your renovation can make all the difference.  Get referrals from friends, associations and do your due diligence.

 

 2.      2-3 Weeks - With or without your contractor, decide on your ideal design & functionality for your space

 

Do you want the full layout of your room to change?  Are you adding new functions?  Do you need anything custom built?  There are three major limitations to consider (a) the size of your bathroom or kitchen, (b) the location of existing fixtures, pipes, & wiring for measurements and (c) what you wish to fit into that space within those confines.

 

 3.      4-6 Weeks - Hire the contractor or specialist, as you require.

 

Don’t expect their schedules to be open and available as soon as you call them – the good ones typically are in high demand!

 

 4.      1-2 Weeks - Decide on your fixtures, furniture, lighting, tile, mirrors, artwork, etc

 

As you will be interacting with these fixtures many times in a day, it is worthwhile to take the time to get the functions and look that you really want. Don’t overlook key items such as ventilation for the bathroom or proper light in the kitchen.

 

 5.      4-6 Weeks - Order your fixtures, furniture, tile, etc. – 4-6 weeks

 

It is possible that some of your fixtures will be ready or available sooner, but if you are doing a full renovation project, it is unlikely.  Ordering what you want and allowing it to all arrive on time when your contractor is scheduled to install it, will allow a smooth transition time.

 

 6.      1-2 Weeks - Determine your work sequence – start at the top of the room and work down

 

This type of planning would be done by your contractor unless you are managing the project solely on your own.   Doing what can be done – like the ceiling – before the fixtures are update is important to determine.

 By this point in your project, your initial ideas of when things might come together should be solidifying as you know exactly when your walls, fixtures, tiles, flooring will all come together.

 

 7.      1-2 Weeks - Allow time for hidden problems, especially for bigger renovations

 

Depending on the age of your house and the extent of your renovation, these hidden problems can be more or less likely.  However, it is always good to give yourself a buffer of time for the unknown.

 

8.      1-2 Weeks – Construction and installation of your new bathroom or kitchen

 

With everything falling into place, your actual renovation pulling out the old and installing the new should take a smaller amount of time versus the overall renovation planning time.

 

 9.      Timeless – Enjoying your new room after a stress free renovation!

 

 

Ask your Questions

 

Are you finding this expert advice helpful?  Submit your questions to us and we will feature them here to help you and others with your bathroom and kitchen fixture decisions.