EllisPiper Homes

Making Home a better place to be
EllisPiper Homes is a 
proud member of 
The Chilliwack
Chamber of Commerce

              EllisPiper Homes is a BBB Accredited Business. Click for the BBB Business Review of this Home Improvements in Chilliwack BC


Frequently Asked Questions. [FAQ's]

Q. Where do I start if I want to get some renovations done?

A. Don't rush in; your renovations will be with you for a long time so you need to get it right. Firstly, take a long look at your home, determine what you want, then what you need, sometimes they are very different. Determine your budget, if necessary speak with your financial institution to ensure funds will be available and know your limitations to avoid disappointment. If the renovations are for a special needs person or for the elderly, explore whether any grants may be open to you. Prioritizeyour requirements in consideration of how much they will improve your lifestyle or the value of your home and its salability if that is your aim. Then, contact EllisPiper Homes.

Q. What can I expect when I first contact EllisPiper Homes?

A. If you contact us by email at ellispiper@ellispiper.ca or by the easy submit form on the contact us page of this site we will contact you back as soon as we pick up your message. Or if you can phone us on 604 824 8134 or 604 316 6158 and 604 316 6159, either way, we will take your contact details, and ask for a basic description of the work you are thinking about having done. We will answer any questions or worries you may have and then arrange a time to come to your house and discuss in detail your project.

Q. What happens at the first meeting?

A. Both Clive and Bridget attend this first meeting, We will listen to your ideas for the remodeling and any problems you might have which may be forcing you to renovate. We will look at any photos, magazine clips, samples you might have already found or that have inspired you. We talk in detail about the project and may offer other or additional suggestions to further enhance your  ideas, or achieve the look you want at the budget you can afford.[Sometimes our clients have fully formed ideas for their project, but on occasion clients have no idea what they want, what can be done or even a color and rely on us totally for inspiration, each client is an individual and we like that] We will inspect the project site, identify any problems that we can see or we may think might be there, measure and draw a plan of the existing room or rooms. We will also ask your permission to take photographs, these are of great benefit when working on your proposal as we can't possibly remember the fine details such as socket positions for example.

Q. What is the process of doing a renovation project?

A. Basically there are three steps in this process, they are:- 1, Concept. 2, Design. 3, Build.   This is better described on The Renovation Process page of this site.

Q. What can EllisPiper Homes do for me?

A. EllisPiper homes is a full service company, we do everything required for your renovation to be successful, from concept and design, to finish and sweep up. We take the worry and stress out of your project so you don't have to.

Note: EllisPiper Homes is a renovation and remodeling company only, we do not construct new houses or do roofing.

Q. Do EllisPiper Homes do Financing?

A. No, sorry we do not offer that facility.

Q. Do EllisPiper Homes take Credit Card payments?

A. No, sorry we do not offer that facility.

Q. Why do EllisPiper homes need/like to know my budget right away? 

A. The figure you give us as your budget is used as a guideline only, it gives us a basis upon which to determine the feasibility of the project, whether your expectations within that budget are realistic and saves us time and worry in ensuring we do not offer a renovation that is out of your reach and cause disappointment or one that is below budget and does not meet with your expectations. It does not always mean your renovation will cost your full budget, or that we will make sure it does, we do not work that way. It provides the limitations within which to work and plan. We do not want to offer 'gold' if your budget is for 'silver' so to speak.

Q. Do EllisPiper Homes give free estimates?

A. Yes. We give you a full, no obligation quote for the work required with no 'hidden extras'. Additional or unforeseen work will be discussed and agreed with you before undertaking so there are no nasty surprises at the end of the project.

Note: Obviously we cannot see inside walls or behind baths, so on occasion we do find mold, electrical cables, support posts, pipes or ducting etc. where we least expected it. We keep our clients informed at all times and advised of such findings, we then discuss and agree how these can be overcome and any additional costs involved.

Q. Do I have to contact the city first before beginning a renovation? 

A. You may, but not all renovations require a permit, it is dependent on the content of the project. As a full service company, EllisPiper Homes or their certified trade subcontractor can do this for you.

Q. Who will actually be working in my house?

A. Clive and Bridget of EllisPiper Homes work together in your house throughout the project. When certified trades or specialty trades are subcontracted to work in your home, only trusted trades are used and a member of EllisPiper Homes is ALWAYS present for your peace of mind.

Q. How long will my renovation take?

A. This is a hard question to answer. Each renovation is as individual as each client, no two houses are exactly the same. The challenges and the products used differ each and every time. Another governing factor and out of our hands are lead times on delivery of fixtures especially if they are coming from the USA for example. However, we ALWAYS plan your project so the actual time taken for your completed project is as short as possible, and we work on your project consistently from start to finish until it is done. We do not disappear from site for days and leave you wondering. We are not that kind of company.

Q. Why is there so much planning required? All I want is a simple reno?

A. Just as a successful renovation precedes a happy client, a well-planned and co-ordinated project precedes a successful one. There is a lot of work you, the client, is unaware of and that happens prior to start date. The product research, the design work, the purchasing, the sequencing.

Q. Can I make changes during the construction?

A.  Yes, this is never ideal, but usually possible. Speak to us immediately; sometimes it is not until you see things underway that ideas or concerns come to mind. Better to voice a thought early so that we can incorporate it or change things than to wait until we are beyond that part and have to backtrack or deconstruct. You are the boss. It is your renovation. If things need to be altered, we can do that.

Note: Please be aware that changes to the agreed plans for your project MAY [sometimes, but not always] incur additional costs dependent on the severity of the modification, the cost of new materials or different fixtures, the re-stocking charges of returned goods, etc.

Q. How many projects do EllisPiper Homes have on the go at the same time?

A. We are a small family business and pride ourselves on offering a personal, friendly and comfortable service for you. We usually only work on one project at a time. Once work begins, we concentrate solely on that project until complete. However, on rare occasions, if we have some small but time consuming projects or weather dependent ones, we may work two or three at the same time so that we are efficient in our use of time and cost effective for you.

Q. Will I have a house full of tradesmen one day and than not see anyone for weeks?

A. Certainly not. This is where all the planning comes in, when we work on your house we schedule ourselves, our subcontractors and suppliers so that work progresses day to day until the project is fully completed. There may be days, particularly mid project where the work day is short, or we can't work due to drying times or weather [for outdoor projects] but you will be fully informed if that is going to happen so you know why we are not there and importantly when you can next expect to see us on site.

Q. Who do I contact if I have questions or concerns?

A. You speak directly to Clive or Bridget on site or by phone. We will try to give you a satisfactory answer or explanation. If you are dissatisfied or worried with the work or sub-trades being used in your home, inform us immediately and we will address the situation. Our, and their, reputation depends on satisfying our customers.

Q. Can I stay in my home during renovation?

A. Yes, although some clients choose not to and of course it depends on the type and extent of the work. EllisPiper Homes always tries to keep disruption and mess to a minimum. We inform you in advance if areas of your home will be out of service, and if possible for how long. Whether power or water will be turned off and again for how long. We cover or seal off areas if we can to stop mess migrating throughout the home, not always possible but we try.

On some projects where the kitchen is removed or there is only one bathroom it may be prudent if the home owner makes other arrangements for eating or living accommodation during the time these areas are out of action. In the case of allergies or sensitivity to dust for example, it may be necessary to vacate the property for a period too.  

Q. Can I buy my own materials and just have EllisPiper Homes install them?

A. Yes, but we prefer not to do this, it is not ideal for several reasons.

EllisPiper Homes fully guarantee the work and materials we buy and install in your home, it is extremely important that we know and are confident in the quality of the products we fit. We know our suppliers and what parts we need for the job. If we fit an item and it is found to be faulty it will be replaced or repaired at no extra cost to the client.

Please note: It is not fair or reasonable to expect EllisPiper Homes [or any other company] to take responsibility for, or guarantee products purchased by clients for us to install. We will guarantee the installation, but not the item. We do not know the items origins, their quality or even if they are complete and undamaged, or what additional fittings are required We have to view them as "open box". Problems with supplied items are for the clients to sort out, or if EllisPiper Homes are asked to speak technically with manufacturers, suppliers, shippers or shops regarding such items, this time may be at an additional cost to the client. The removal for return of faulty supplied products after installation will also be an additional cost, as will the installation of the replacement item. If progress on the project is stopped because of the time taken to replace a faulty supplied item and we cannot reasonably divert and continue with another part of the project either, we may charge for that lost time.

Q. I have a disabled [Special Needs] member of my family, how can EllisPiper Homes help me?

A. EllisPiper Homes is a male / female renovation team, this helps enormously when helping special needs clients of any age. We treat the person with dignity and confidentiality, having a female designer / renovator in the team it is often easier for clients to speak candidly about their medical and physical needs.

We work privately or with your Occupational Therapist to assess your home, your necessities, your difficulties and arrive at a solution to your access and assistance problems. We will submit quotes to you and for grant applications if required. We then form a plan to help not only the special needs individual, but to make the lives of those who care for them and the other members of the family better.

We do everything from wheelchair access ramps to bathroom with roll-in showers and even whole house adaptations. Our policy is, wherever possible to keep the facilities as 'normal' as possible so as not to highlight the limited ability of the client or make it too 'hospitalized' as can easily happen. We always keep in mind the other members of the family who are not special needs, but have needs of their own.

Q. Can I do my own painting and finishing?

A. Yes, however we are reluctant to do this because EllisPiper Homes work to a high standard of finish, with known and trusted paints. The finished look of a renovation can be let down by a poor paint job. The good reputation of EllisPiper Homes can then be damaged as it is the finished look that we are judged by.

Q. Can I complete some of the work myself?

A. If you are a certified tradesman such as an electrician or a plumber, or framer for example, we would certainly entertain that idea. However, we would include in our contract a disclaimer for any of the work undertaken by you in your home and would not guarantee any of that work, fittings or fixtures you have done. Nor would we be held responsible for damage that may be incurred to work we have done following a fault in elements done by you. Such as water damage to drywall following a leak in a plumbing fixture you have fitted.