“Property Brothers” Jonathan and Drew Scott have to be two of the hardest-working guys in the TV home-renovation biz. As if they weren’t busy enough filming “Property Brothers” and its various spinoffs—”Property Brothers: Buying and Selling,” “Brother Vs Brother,” “Drew’s Honeymoon Home”—they’re producing yet another series: “Property Brothers: Forever Home,” which premiered this week.
The show’s premise? They take the unremarkable houses that people already live in, then make them over into dream homes that will last a lifetime.
In the first episode, “Food and Family,” the brothers meet Nora and Diego, a young couple who have a large home that accommodates Diego’s parents, grandmother, and the children they are planning to have in the future. The Bros. feel strongly about gathering multigenerational families together, and are moved by the couple’s plans.
Nora and Diego’s home has lots of bedrooms, but the problem lies in the fact that the family space is cramped, awkward, and dated. “What’s not working is the heart of the home,” says Drew, referring to the kitchen, family room, and dining room. The Scott mission is to make that space more accommodating for cooking, eating, and hanging out together.
In this series, they show the couple renovations that have been made to other similar homes, then they come up with two plans—one luxury, one budget.
Diego and Nora opt for the budget version, reasoning that anything would be a vast improvement, and that they could use a nest egg for their (hopefully) growing family. As the Property Brothers attempt to meet their needs, they reveal some great tips for the rest of us. Here’s what we learned.
Never enter a home right into a kitchen
A big house needs a big front entry, and this one is so small there’s hardly room for two people to stand in it at the same time. Not only that, but it leads directly into the kitchen—from the front door. Yikes! The first order of business for Jonathan is to remove the walls around the entryway, and reposition the kitchen, so it’s not the first room you come to when you enter.
Watch: Nothing Gets Between the Property Brothers—They’re Now Neighbors!
Wall-to-wall mirrors are so last century
Once upon a time, long, long ago, wall-to-wall mirrors that extended from floor to ceiling were popular because designers thought they made a room look bigger and reflected more light. That may be true, but they’re so outdated these days! Jonathan removes the mirrors, sands down the drywall where they once hung, and uses both paint and wallpaper to cover them. It makes the home look much more refined and up-to-date.
Old TV antennas must also go
TV antennas look awful sticking up spikily from the roof, and even if they’re hidden, no one uses them anymore, so why keep them around? In this case, while Jonathan is working on the ceiling, he finds an old TV antenna tucked up inside, between the ceiling and the roof. Out it goes.
When to fire the fireplace
Jonathan is usually into keeping a fireplace in a home, but in this case, “It’s not functioning, it’s kind of off-center, and it doesn’t provide a focal point,” he says. He’s relieved when the couple tells him it’s OK to remove this, too.
And he has a money-saving method for accomplishing this. “The fireplace renovation would cost a fortune if we were going to take it out brick by brick,” he says. Instead, he covers it with drywall, and it magically disappears.
The latest/greatest fixture and hardware colors
Jonathan’s luxury plan includes an imposing kitchen faucet and other hardware in a color called “satin gold,” and Nora and Diego are dazzled. But the budget plan calls for solid black fixtures, and they look fantastic as well, with the green counters and white quartz countertops Jonathan has selected.
Reality: Black is probably more practical than satin gold anyway.
Layer the landscaping
The front of the home is not very inviting, so Jonathan and Drew clean it up by adding fresh new paint and all-new lawn and landscaping, where before there was nothing but a bed of gravel and weeds. Drew notes that “layering the landscape” with color, texture, and height looks best, with the taller plants around the perimeter and by the walls and fence. It makes a huge difference.
Do the Property Brothers deliver?
Once the entire project is finished, Diego and Nora are so grateful that everyone, even Drew and Jonathan, are in tears.
“This is the perfect family home!” the happy couple cries.
And there are even more tears of joy when Nora and Diego reveal some big news.
“This all happened just in time, because we’re having a baby!” says Nora. Multigenerational home, here we come.