Wasted Materials: Salvaging the unsalvageable

wasted materials demolition renovation deconstruction construction build builders

The Property "Blawg"

Wasted materials are one of the biggest headaches builders deal with, and it can happen for a number of reasons. Sometimes the owner changes their mind about design choices; sometimes the condition of the property forces builders to come up with a new plan. Whatever the reason, wasted materials are costly, especially if the materials cannot be salvaged, and can set the timeline for completion of construction back significantly.

Although the situation may look like a lost cause, Habitat for Humanity’s Deconstruction Program provides builders with a way to obtain some financial benefit from the whole fiasco.

Under this Program, Habitat for Humanity will send their own team to demolish / deconstruct a home for materials that can be used in their projects / resold at their ReStore locations. They can do the entire demolition or just portions of it, and they will take all sorts of materials — doors, windows, kitchen cabinets, flooring, bathroom fixtures, etc. This can represent significant labour cost savings, especially for projects on a tight budget.

If needed, Habitat will come to your property before demolition to provide an appraisal of the estimated value for your donation. Once the donated items are on the sales floor at one of their ReStore locations, Habitat will then mail/email builders their charitable tax receipt for the assessed value of the donations made.

Individuals, small businesses and corporations can claim up to 75% of their personal / business income in charitable donations. If your claimed donations total to over $200, you would qualify for a higher tax credit rate at the federal level, for any amount over the $200 threshold. Plus, the credits can be carried forward up to 5 years, so you can hold on to any tax credits that are less than $200 and wait to submit them when it is the most beneficial for you.1

Of course, there is the possibility of insurance, WSIB and workmanship issues to take into consideration when bringing in a new crew to work on a site. Nevertheless, the Deconstruction Program does provide builders with an option for minimizing the financial costs that come with wasted materials, and is at least worth a call.2

  1. Uncharted Legal is not a tax law firm and Maja Milosevic is not a tax lawyer. Information obtained from: https://turbotax.intuit.ca/tips/how-to-calculate-the-charitable-donation-tax-credit-5498. As always, consult with a tax professional to see how the charitable tax donations could benefit your situation.
  2. Neither Uncharted Legal Consulting nor Maja Milosevic have any affiliation, association, or relationship of any kind with Habitat for Humanity. There is no benefit to Uncharted Legal or Ms. Milosevic if a reader of this post decides to obtain more information about, or apply to, the Deconstruction Program.


Maja Milosevic

The Property “Blawg” and the above article are for general informational purposes only. The information contained in the above article is not legal advice and is not intended to be treated as providing legal advice. The circumstances of your case are unique and the above information may have no bearing for your situation.

Reading this article does not create a lawyer-client relationship with the author of this article, Maja Milosevic, or with the firm, Uncharted Legal Consulting.

Do not consider the above article, or the Property “Blawg” in general, to be a substitute for obtaining legal advice from a qualified and licensed lawyer in your home province.


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