Get it in Writing

If you pay under the table for repairs, construction or home
renovation – than you’re paying more than you think.

Due Diligence

The industry is unregulated in Prince Edward Island, so it is up to the consumer to conduct due diligence when hiring a contractor.

Here are some tips to protect yourself:

 Write, in detail, the job you want or need done.

 Get informed. Do you need a permit?

 Research contractors in your area. Ask your friends and neighbours for names.

 Get a list of qualified professionals from your local Home Builders’ Association or Better Business Bureau.

 Get estimates from at least three different contractors and ask them for customer references.

 Call the references from the contractors you like. Be sure to make a list of questions you want to ask them.

 Hire a professional contractor. Ask for written contracts and proof of Workers’ Compensation or private liability insurance for injury or damage to your home.

 Agree on the work you want done, budget, and the timeline.

 Don’t accept offers for cash deals without a receipt. Paying under the table is no deal – it can leave you with no warranty, no recourse for poor workmanship and no liability insurance if an injury takes place on your property.

 Get it in writing! If you pay under the table for repairs, construction or home renovation, you are participating in the underground economy – and you’re paying more than you think.


Contracts don’t have to be complicated but they should include:

 Contractor’s name, address, and phone number

 Full description of work to be done and materials and products to be used

 Timeline – when the work will begin and be completed

 All costs that you will be charged and when you will have to pay (deposit)

 Amount of payment you will hold back as required by the lien legislation in your province – The contractor’s warranty

 A certificate from an insurance company providing proof of the contractor’s business liability insurance

 A letter of clearance from your province’s Workers’ Compensation program confirming the contractor is registered

 The contractor’s Business Number or GST/HST number

 The contractor’s business license number (municipal)

The Better Business Bureau (BBB)

To properly complete your due diligence when hiring a contractor, it’s a good idea to check their rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) for the Atlantic Provinces. The BBB helps people find and recommend businesses and brands they can trust.