The Best Episodes of Holmes on Homes
Last Updated: May 20, 2019
Construction and renovation expert Mike Holmes visits unlucky families who have been swindled or abandoned during their home improvement projects. Mike uncovers shoddy construction methods, improper techniques and down right rip-offs. You'll see Mike correct the problems, as well as explain how the homeowners could have safeguarded themselves from unscrupulous builders and dishonest contractors.
#1 - Lien on Me
Season 7 - Episode 14
In this two-hour special episode, Mike deals with a couple who had a "friend" do an addition. Although the work was originally estimated to cost just over $200,000, the "friend" later put a lien on the house for more than $500,000 and took the owners of the house to court. Mike and the crew take the house down brick by brick and stud by stud to save the family from shoddy work done under the previous contract, then design an eco-friendly home and construct it on the site. This episode is notable for employing over 100 companies and 30 months of construction work (demolition having started sometime in Season 5, and construction during Season 6) - to date the most extensive work on the show, in terms of materials, manpower, and time. The Lien on Me episodes are the ones that are shown the least on TV and are very hard to find anywhere. Almost any other Holmes on Homes Episode is aired on a regular basis
#2 - Gut Ache
Season 7 - Episode 10
Jeremy had a total kitchen renovation- or so he thought. There were new cabinets, new counters, new appliances, new paint and a new tile floor- all the cosmetic items were brand new. Unfortunately, his renovation company only dealt with the finishing items. Everything below the surface was still the same old kitchen. Mike and the crew have to completely gut this kitchen to deal with all the problems that are bubbling under the brand-new, finished surface.
#3 - Pasadena 911, Part 1
Season 6 - Episode 7
Jennifer and Abraham, expecting their first child, decided to remodel their bungalow to make room for their growing family. The contractor they hired seemed to have everything in hand, but 4 months later Jennifer and Abraham found they had paid 90% of the contract but only about 30% of the work was complete. Left with a contractor on the run, a huge new mortgage, construction bills piling up, and a worthless empty shell of a house, the sun seemed to have set on their dream home, let alone home ownership of any kind. They needed a miracle… …And they got one when Mike appeared on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” and Ellen introduced him to Jennifer and Abraham, asking if he could help. Determined to do just that, Mike and a legion of contractors team up to answer the call…Pasadena 911.
#4 - Bar None
Season 4 - Episode 5
After suffering through some painful personal troubles, Jim and Lisa planned to re-direct their focus on something positive by finishing their basement into a bar and entertainment room. A contractor came highly recommended by a neighbor, and the renovation started off quite smoothly. The contractor seemed to have a good heart, and as the renovation progressed, Jim and Lisa actually formed a friendship with him. But with the budget spent, and the job only partially completed, the contractor seemed to fall off the face of the earth. Even after befriending Jim and Lisa, the contractor abandoned them without any warning, leaving them with a half finished renovation. Upon inspection, Mike Holmes decided that the contractor meant well, but severely under-priced the job and didn’t know how to fess up to the mistake. With the help of iron, brick and bar specialists, Mike completely re-finished the basement with an incredible English Pub theme, giving Jim and Lisa the bar of their dreams.
#5 - Hit The Deck
Season 7 - Episode 1
Mike travels to Saint John, New Brunswick, to meet Marlene after her second story deck falls, seriously injuring herself and three friends. He discovers that this tragic accident was caused by incompetent workmanship. A year later, the ladies are still traumatized, both physically and emotionally. But they get a boost on their road to recovery as Mike rebuilds a rock solid deck and gives the historic home a fresh look.
#6 - Site Unseen
Season 1 - Episode 11
When Mike Holmes arrives to investigate a mysterious leak, he discovers Sandy's two-story addition is sitting on a dirt foundation and is in serious danger of collapsing. Mike and his crew quickly secure the structure and pour a proper concrete foundation, saving the house.
#7 - Exit Wound
Season 3 - Episode 4
Lynda and Joe hired a stone mason "friend-of-the-family" to construct a concrete basement walkout to their backyard. All was fine until the first winter. The wall beside the stairs started to bow out, threatening to crumble into the basement wall. The contractor returned to put in rebar supports that he neglected to do in the beginning and pour more concrete into the existing wall. The wall continued to curve and crack and Lynda finally contacted Mike Holmes to make it right.
#8 - Whole House Disaster
Season 1 - Episode 13
Dave and Ana hired a contractor to put an addition on their kitchen and renovate their house. After a year-and-a-half and over $100,000 paid out, the house is in ruins and the contractor has disappeared. Mike Holmes takes on the disaster and with many talented tradespeople renovates their entire property and moves them back into their home.
#9 - O-Fence-Ive
Season 5 - Episode 1
When a fencing contractor rips off a new housing development by taking a deposit from 52 families and working just long enough to cash the cheques before disappearing, Mike and the crew take on the challenge of not just helping one homeowner, but the entire neighborhood! Ultimately, Mike builds more than a fence; he also brings this new community together with a common purpose- and makes things right.
#10 - Twice Bitten
Season 3 - Episode 11
Carl and Amelia hired a general contractor to oversee the building of an addition to their home for their new baby daughter. After weeks of stalling and extra payments right off the bat, work began on the addition - by a subcontractor. After the first rainfall, water poured through the addition, and the homeowners called the contractor who was nowhere to be found. The subcontractor refused to send workers over as he said that he had not been paid. Feeling as if there was no other choice, Carl and Amelia signed a deal with the subcontractor to complete the work. After several months, the subcontractor took the work permit and left the job incomplete. After 6 months and a large sum of money, Mike and his crew arrived to find a rats nest of problems including condensation in the attic that lead to mold in the drywall, ducting stolen off other rooms with no return vents, dangerous electrical work- all adding up to a world of headaches for Mike Holmes.
#11 - Out of the Ashes - Part 1
Season 5 - Episode 7
A string of bad luck leads Mike to the front door of a homeowner named Franca. Her home sustained major damage from an electrical fire. Immediately afterward, Franca suffered a series of personal tragedies with the unexpected passing of her mother, and then her husband. The contractor repairing the fire damage took full advantage of Franca's fragile situation. Upon inspecting the reno-in-progress, Mike intervenes to avoid yet another disaster in the making.
#12 - Flimsy Floor
Season 1 - Episode 6
Jim and Helen had a beautiful kitchen addition built onto their house by a contractor "famous" for his finishes. It was during their first party that the kitchen hardwood started to buckle. After a quick fix by the contractor fails to solve the problem, Mike Holmes is called in to make it right. Mike and his crew secure the floor's joists, adds braces and reminds us that structure is just as important as design.
#13 - Kitchen Knockout
Season 7 - Episode 8
The story itself was all too familiar- a botched kitchen renovation. The big difference here was the person who wrote the letter - former heavyweight boxing champion, George ''Boom Boom'' Chuvalo. The three-week kitchen renovation had gone into its third month. George and his wife Joanne had lost their patience, and the contractor finally made a hasty departure, leaving behind a badly laid out kitchen - featuring dangling pot lights, no working electrical, and no countertops. During George's boxing career, he went the distance with Muhammad Ali, twice. Ali stated that ''George was the toughest guy he had ever fought.'' And now, ''Boom Boom'' Chuvalo's kitchen disaster goes toe-to-toe with the heavyweight contractor, Mike ''Make It Right'' Holmes!
#14 - Floor Fiasco
Season 2 - Episode 8
Kerry and her family loved everything about their home except the out-dated vinyl flooring in the front foyer and powder room. When the time came to renovate, Kerry had heard of a new product: a smooth, concrete flooring mixture that could be installed over the existing floor. Kerry was quite excited about this flooring possibility, as it promised a unique look and a rock hard finish. Unfortunately, the contractor installed the product incorrectly and left Kerry with a rough, sloppy looking floor. Mike Holmes arrives and he has to demolish the faulty floor and install a brand new granite tile floor.
#15 - Third Time Lucky
Season 6 - Episode 9
Kathleen, an elderly lady who lives alone in a high rise building needed to renovate her bathroom to make it handicap accessible. A degenerative illness had necessitated the use of a wheelchair. After a year of renovations and two different companies, Mike arrives to find that the bathroom is nothing but a concrete shell- the last contractor tore out all their work before leaving. Mike makes it right, and then transforms the rest of the apartment into a wheelchair friendly space.
#16 - Due Date
Season 6 - Episode 13
Lisa and Simon were preparing to have their first baby and needed to build a nursery and a bathroom. They found a reputable contractor at a home show with impressive credentials and long list of references. A contract was drafted, a substantial down payment was paid, and the 6-week job would be starting almost immediately. Over the next four months, every excuse was given why they could not start the job. With the baby due in less than three months and the realization that they may not have a properly functioning full bathroom with a new born- Lisa and Simon fired their contractor- and called Mike Holmes. Time is ticking, with a baby on the way, and the bathroom and nursery that will need to be built again. Mike and the team race to beat the Stork!
#17 - Step By Step
Season 3 - Episode 7
Debbie and Ross hired a contractor to build a new open concept staircase. They ended up with an unwieldy staircase made of particleboard and cheap spindles. Mike is called in to demolish the eyesore and install a beautiful new safe and sound staircase.
#18 - Access Denied
Season 2 - Episode 11
Jenny and Allan hired a contractor to build a wheelchair accessible addition for their six-year-old son Justin who has cerebral palsy. The addition is riddled with errors including an incorrect foundation, un-square and unfinished walls, and sloppy and incomplete eaves trough and siding. Mike Holmes and crew revamp the 260 square-foot addition from top to bottom and make it right for this family.
#19 - Country Kitchen
Season 6 - Episode 10
Nancie and Woody moved into a 25-year-old townhouse that required some updating- particularly the floors and the “tiny” kitchen space. As renovations got underway, Woody was unexpectedly hospitalized. The contractors were left virtually unsupervised while Nancie tried to manage her job, visit Woody and take care of their daughter. All of the contractors were very sympathetic to her stating, “don’t worry about the renovations- you are in good hands.” What they left behind was simply one big mistake- one that Mike and the team will correct, with the help of a Country singing guest star.
#20 - Pane in the Glass
Season 7 - Episode 9
Jon and Candice seemed to be having problems with their window installation contractor. Proof that things were going badly came to the homeowners in the form of a DVD. A neighbor across the street documented the entire contracting mess from a home security camera. For the first time ever Mike Holmes and his team get to witness a bad renovation as it happens. If a picture speaks a thousands words, this footage says, ''It's all coming down!''
#21 - Botched Basement
Season 1 - Episode 3
Geoff and Lorraine hired a contractor to lower their basement. When the basement begins to leak after just two weeks and with the contractor nowhere to be found, they turn to Mike Holmes to save the day. Mike and his team install an interior weeping tile system and fix a dangerous electrical mess.
#22 - Cabinet Chaos
Season 3 - Episode 2
Yetti and Andrew hired a custom kitchen contractor to build their dream kitchen. A late start, poor workmanship, and terrible communication between the contractor and their subs left Yetti and Andrew with a normal looking, but non-functional kitchen. To make matters much worse, as the job neared its end, Yetti and Andrew's son, Caleb, mistakenly drank some Varsol that was foolishly stored in a water bottle in the kitchen. Although Caleb recovered from the accident, the couple took the kitchen company to court to get their unusable kitchen paid for with Mike Holmes as an expert witness. After winning, due in part to Mike's testimony, Mike helped them build the dream kitchen they should have had in the first place.
#23 - Behind the Scenes
Season 7 - Episode 7
In this special episode, the Holmes crew (both construction and production) reveal the behind the scenes work during the filming from the seventh season, including the process from viewer submission to filming, how three or four episodes are produced at the same time, and the logistical issues with having a camera crew and a construction crew trying to work over each other. The episode includes behind-the-scenes footage from Additional Grief, Country Kitchen, Paradise Island, Lien on Me, and an upcoming episode titled Blind Faith, as well as a Maxwell House commercial and Mike's interview on 20/20. It also explores the origins of the series and how the Holmes Foundation was founded, as well as providing some insight into the Holmes family (all three of Mike's children work on the show in some capacity).
#24 - Ramp Revamp
Season 2 - Episode 3
Edith and Christopher hired a contractor to build a wheelchair accessible ramp at the front of their house, but he built a dangerous ramp that was not to code. Mike Holmes arrives and makes it right by building the ramp the way it should have been done the first time.
#25 - A Different Slant
Season 7 - Episode 11
Lee and Bailey bought a brand new townhouse two years ago. It came with many modern conveniences like a fridge that made ice cubes. One item they didn't ask for was an attic that made snow cones- enough snow that they had to shovel it into plastic bags to prevent it from melting into their house. After the builder showed up to do several band-aid fixes, they called in Mike Holmes to get to the bottom of things, on the top of their house.