The Lower Mainland is a waaay different now from when I was growing up in Vancouver a half-century ago. Happily, you almost never hear jokes anymore about that weird, ragtag suburb on the other side of those distant bridges. I bet no one’s Vancouver boyfriend assures them, as mine jokingly did, that over there “they take Canadian money at par”. Hah hah.
Because these days, the biggest sprawling, growing, vibrant, diverse, and hustling suburb of dusty old Vancouver is none other than Surrey.
People are flocking to Surrey to find a comfortable and affordable community life, a place to put down roots and raise their kids or retire within easy access to shopping, schools and community centres. Surrey is close as well to beaches, mountains, and farmland, and close enough to commute to Vancouver’s downtown core for work without having to pay Vancouver real estate prices.
As result of all these advantages, Surrey is now the second largest city in British Columbia. It’s projected that by the middle of this century a quarter of the population of the Lower Mainland will live there.1 That’s going to mean a lot of new residential construction and a lot of new electrical installation.
It comes with suburban life, doesn’t it? You invest in a home and spend the next couple of decades maintaining and improving it to suit the needs of a growing family. It ages and old fixtures need upgrading. The city itself is growing like a weed, so you might decide to install a security system.
Your family and community continue to grow, so you want new amenities on your property to enjoy that suburban life: a home theatre, a swimming pool, a fire pit, an outdoor sound system.
Then the kids grow up and move out and you realize all that extra room could be helpful. So in comes the secondary suite or a laneway home – in Surrey called a “coach house”. Or maybe you just want to fix up the basement for when the kids and the grandchildren visit.
Add to all this the growing cost of living anywhere in BC, and you can see why more and more people in Surrey are choosing to add a secondary suite or coach house to their property to help with expenses. Considering the dearth of rental units in the Lower Mainland, either one could be a reliable mortgage helper. Do you have extra space that could be renovated this way to help yourself and your family with expenses?
Because if you’re planning new construction or renovations in Surrey, you might think of doing it sooner rather than later. Zoning requirements shift and the waiting lists for necessary permits will only get longer. And making everything safe, up to the high standards the BC Electrical code and the City of Surrey require, means getting the proper permits and submitting to thorough inspections.
I can almost hear some readers chuckling at me. Why should I hire a fancy electrician, you’re wondering. Are you thinking of maybe doing that outdoor wiring or basement suite electrical installation yourself? Well, here are some sobering numbers for you:
“Between 2004 and 2017, there were a total of 28,160 residential fire incidents in British Columbia; of which, 2,635 (9.4%) were electrical fires. These electrical fires resulted in a total of 150 casualties (combined deaths and injuries) and just over $150 million in damages…. Fires that originated from the basement accounted for 2,688 (9.6%) of residential fires and 366 (13.9%) of electrical fires.”2
I don’t know about you, but there’s nothing like the thought of an electrical fire to make me reach for the phone to hire a professional.
Despite its more recent explosive population growth, there are plenty of houses in Surrey that date back a good seventy years to a building boom in the 1950s. These are going to be located in a more historic Surrey neighbourhood like Cloverdale and will feature mature trees on beautiful older streets. If you live there or want to move there, you might be dealing with some aging wiring and fixtures. You’ll really require a professional electrician to bring your home into the 21st century.
Whether you lovingly restore a home from Surrey’s storied past, or happily move into a shiny new subdivision with your growing family, Stapleton Electric is here for you, to improve your family’s life in beautiful Surrey.
For all those electrical fixes and improvements, large and small, contact us today!