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SkillsPlus provides hands-on building maintenance training to BC Housing’s non-profit and indigenous partners.

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Course details

SkillsPlus is a building maintenance training program. The program is currently offered to eligible maintenance employees, building managers, and janitorial staff at all provincially-funded, non-profit housing providers, and to our indigenous partners.

The courses give staff the skills and confidence to handle minor repairs. This increased capacity improves service to tenants, and can lower building maintenance costs by reducing the need for outside contractors.

The modules were developed in consultation with the BC Housing maintenance team, our building managers, and Douglas College. Each module takes place over 2-3 days, and consists of 18-20 training hours in our classroom. BC Housing trainers deliver the sessions at our Downtown Eastside Learning Centre.

The training is hands-on, experiential and focused on best practices, and includes guides on the health and safety components related to each module.

We offer five training modules

  • Knowledge building and sharing
  • Use of tools
  • Carpentry terminology and glossary
  • Job safety assessment and material safety data sheets
  • Drywall repair
  • Caulking replacement
  • Nails, screws, fasteners and hinges
  • Troubleshooting doors (opening and closing)
  • Troubleshooting locks and deadbolts
  • Knowledge building and sharing
  • Use of tools
  • Electrical terminology and glossary
  • Job safety assessment and material safety data sheets
  • Circuit structure and troubleshooting
  • Breaker boxes, outlets, shut-offs, grounding and switches
  • Troubleshooting stoves
  • Knowledge building and sharing
  • Use of tools
  • HVAC terminology and glossary
  • Job safety assessment and material safety data sheets
  • Troubleshooting domestic hot water tanks
  • Troubleshooting thermostats and zone valves
  • Furnace sequence of operation and troubleshooting
  • Boiler room log book use and tour of working boiler room
  • Knowledge building and sharing
  • Correct use of janitorial equipment and products
  • Janitorial terminology and glossary
  • Job safety assessment and material safety data sheets 
  • Floor care and maintenance
  • Glass cleaning and repair
  • Bio-hazard and trash handling
  • Mould and pest control
  • Task-related time estimating
  • Vacant unit move-in/move-out cleaning process
  • All common area cleaning, such as restrooms, lounge areas, entrances and laundry rooms
  • Knowledge building and sharing
  • Use of tools
  • Plumbing terminology and glossary
  • Job safety assessment and material safety data sheets
  • Faucet, toilet and drainage structure
  • Troubleshooting faucets, toilets and drainage
  • Removing and replacing wall-hung sinks and toilets

One-Day training

Floor Care

  • Discuss floor care products and procedures including spray buffing and scrubbing
  • Use floor machine
  • Scrub floor area and apply sealer and finish
  • Floor stripping

Half-Day training

Safety Elevator

Apex Elevator Consulting and BC Housing are offering an introductory Elevator Safety Workshop designed to provide front-line staff of non-profit housing providers including building managers, maintenance, and janitorial workers with a fundamental understanding of how an elevator system runs.

The training aims to increase the knowledge of what front-line staff can do to proactively increase the in-service time of their elevators.

Topics covered:

  • A high-level explanation of how an elevator system runs
  • Determining when and who to call for a service 
  • How to assist the elevator contractor or fire department
  • Review a checklist of daily actions to ensure elevators are in-service more than they are out-of-service
  • Learn what to look for on a regular basis to assist in the prevention of elevator interruptions
  • On-site elevator demonstrations will be provided relating to cleaning and safety


The training is open to all maintenance workers, janitors and building managers working for BC Housing, provincially funded non-profit housing providers and Indigenous groups. Other requests will be accommodated as time and resources allow.

Training schedule

We have upcoming training for:

  • Plumbing: Jan 7-9, 2019 (waitlist only)
  • Electrical: Jan 14-16, 2019 (waitlist only)
  • Common Building Maintenance: Jan 21-23, 2019 (waitlist only)
  • Janitorial: Jan 28-29, 2019 (waitlist only)
  • Safety Elevator training: Jan 31, 2019 
  • HVAC: Feb 4-6, 2019 
  • Floor Care: Feb 20, 2019 

For a full list of SkillsPlus events and registration details, please visit our Events page.

SkillsPlus Events


There is no cost to attend the sessions for eligible employees of all provincially funded, non-profit housing providers. Travel costs and other related expenses are not included.

Additional information

We'll schedule one separate two-hour coaching session for each participant as an extension to the SkillsPlus Janitorial module. We hold these sessions at your individual buildings to enhance the learning covered in the training session. This gives participants the opportunity to ask questions about what they learned and review specific scenarios that relate to their own buildings.