“Property Brothers: Buying and Selling” stars Jonathan and Drew Scott understand sibling drama, which may explain why they try especially hard to help a brother and sister living under the same roof part ways.
In their latest episode—titled “Oh Brother!”—Jonathan and Drew meet Jessica and Jason, siblings who bought and moved into a Nashville, TN, home together 16 years earlier. Yet since then, Jessica met and married her husband, Taylor, and they had three kids!
It’s no surprise, then, that Jason wants his own house now, but Jessica is reluctant to see him go. For starters, family ties are hard to break. Besides, Jason’s baby-sitting skills are in high demand!
As always in this series, Drew helps the family find a new house, while Jonathan renovates the old one so that it gets top dollar when it goes on the market. But what is unusual about this episode is how vehemently they both feel about one feature in this family’s kitchen. As soon as they lay eyes on it, they agree that it has to go.
“I hate tile counters,” Jonathan declares. “They just suck up all of the grime and the grease!”
Drew, inspecting the grouting between the tiles, adds, “That food that you see? Pick it out!”
Thankfully, Jessica is accustomed to taking flak from her brother, so she quips, “My kids will do it later.” Problem solved.
But can Drew and Jonathan solve the problem of fixing up the old home so they can sell it for at least $600,000? And can they find the family of five (sans Jason) a new home with at least four bedrooms—all for about the same price?
Undaunted, the Scott brothers come up with all sorts of interesting tips and advice on both buying and selling as they attempt to help these siblings go their own ways. Here’s what we learned.
Don’t ignore the front door
In truth, the exterior of the home they’ve lived in for 16 years—and are planning to sell—looks fairly nice as is. But there is one tweak that Jonathan thinks will really help sell it for top dollar: Instead of leaving the generic door in place, he replaces it with a door that looks like it’s made of old wood, and is just oozing character.
It’s all about the first impression, says Jonathan. “The front door is a small thing that makes a big difference.”
Keep bedroom furniture to a minimum
“When you have too much bulky furniture in a room, it makes it feel small,” says Jonathan. Especially in bedrooms, he adds, where you can’t help but have one of the bulkiest pieces of all: the bed.
So he cuts furniture in the smaller bedrooms down to the bare minimum: a bed, a nightstand, and a small dresser. If there’s still room, maybe add a slender chair.
White counters can add light
Jonathan wants to install bigger windows in the kitchen to let in more light and make it feel bigger. But, alas, this neighborhood in East Nashville has been declared a historic district, and Jonathan cannot change the size or placement of the original windows.
So he employs a savvy trick we’ve never seen before: He lines the walls with gleaming white counters.
“White quartz on the perimeter bounces the light around,” he explains. It really does make a small room look bigger, without adding extra windows.
Hide the TV trays
While out home shopping, Drew shows Jessica and Jason one house that doesn’t have a dining room, although there are TV trays leaning against the wall in the living room that might have been placed there to demonstrate dining options. Instead, they only serve to emphasize the lack of space.
When you think about it, TV trays do nothing to sell a house—it’s not like they’re elegant or essential design features. It’s best to put them in a closet when showing your home.
Dark floors are not ideal for kids (or pets)
Next, Drew ushers Jason and Jessica into another house within their price range—a gorgeous, brand-new, two-story house with dark wood floors.
“Dark floors and kids don’t mix,” Jessica remarks. Kids’ toys and shoes would leave ugly scratches everywhere. And don’t even think about pets! Everyone agrees that lighter, more variegated floors would be much better for a young family.
Want a wood-burning fireplace? Look for old homes
Jessica and Jason are also disappointed to see that there’s a gas-burning fireplace in the new home they’re considering, because they prefer the look and feel of a real wood fire.
“Nobody puts in wood-burning fireplaces anymore,” declares Drew. “They just don’t do it.”
So what he means is this: If you want a wood-burning fireplace, you’re going to have to go with an older home.
Do Jonathan and Drew Scott deliver?
In the end, the old home that Jonathan renovated looks fantastic, and Drew decides to list it at the lower end of its price range, $600,000, to “create a buyer frenzy” and let the demand drive the price up. Sure enough, it does, and the family accept an offer of $615,000.
That extra money will help, because the owners of the house they’ve decided to buy—an older home that’s move-in ready with plenty of land out in the country—have rejected their offer of $610,000, and will come down only to $620,000, which Taylor and Jessica now believe they can swing.
And even though there’s room for Jason in the new house, he’s more than ready to move out on his own. This is a bit hard for Jessica to accept, but she knows that she needs to let her baby sitter, er, brother, go.
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