Consumer Protection: Building Communities One Home at a Time
Tarion is committed to protecting new homes for Ontarians — but more often than not what we consider our ‘tools of the trade’ would be computers and phones, not drills or saws. Last month however, a team of Tarion employees showed what they could do with hammers and nails as they helped build homes for two deserving families in London, Ontario.
The construction project, sponsored by Habitat for Humanity, was the 10th build that Tarion staff have helped support over the past decade. This year, we were helping to build homes for the Kassa and Cooper families.
The Kassa family — a mother and two adult children, one of whom is in a wheelchair — currently live in an apartment that was never built to accommodate someone with disabilities. The Kassa’s new home will be equipped with accessibility features that will enable the daughter with cerebral palsy to move more freely and allow her mother to more easily care for her.
The Coopers are a family of seven that fled a civil war in Liberia and came to Canada in 2005. They have been squeezed into a tiny, cramped apartment ever since. Their new home, while still modest in size, will provide them with a lot more space to grow and thrive together.
Most of our volunteer team had never worked in construction nor had they participated in a Habitat build before. I was able to catch up with a few of the employees who took part and ask them about their experience. Despite being tired and a little achy, all of them said they would do it again.
One employee told me he now has a better appreciation for the hard work and craftsmanship that goes into building a new home.
Another said she felt honoured to play a part in these families’ homeownership stories.
Tarion’s relationship with Habitat for Humanity began over 20 years ago when the organization first registered as a new home builder in Ontario. Since that time, we have waived enrolment fees for over 1,000 of their homes, which amounts to more than $520,000 in savings! Enrolment fees are what builders pay to register every new house or condominium unit in Ontario’s new home warranty program.
Volunteering for Habitat for Humanity is a rewarding and educational experience for staff and a crucial part of Tarion’s culture as a caring organization that is committed to building better communities across the province.
The Coopers and Kassas will soon be able to move into their new homes and we are very proud to have helped change the lives of these two families.
HOWARD BOGACH is president and CEO of Tarion Warranty Corp., a private corporation established to protect the rights of new homebuyers and to regulate new home builders. Tarion.com