Tuesday, July 23, 2013

HGTV Brother vs Brother Episode 1

So did you watch HGTV Brother vs Brother this past week? Drew and Jonathan Scott, the twins from the Property Brothers have a new show, they are mentoring two teams who are competing for a prize of $50,000. The goal is to renovate a house and increase its value. Each week the losing team will have to let a team member go.

This past week Drew's team won by adding $50,000. dollars worth of value compared to Jonathan's team that only added $40,000. dollars of value.

Let's take a look at Jonathan's team work first. They spent $12,163. dollars on their renovation. The kitchen needed a complete redo and it looks fabulous. All new cabinets, new 5 burner stainless steel stove top and oven, new ceiling lights, mosaic tile backsplash, an unknown countertop material that looks great, new floor tile, and some unbecoming paint color.

Jonathan's team - Before Kitchen
Jonathan's team - After Kitchen
Jonathan's backsplash $300.00 for mosaic glass tile 
The laundry area and pantry area was in desperate need of help. The team built a wall and created a walk-in pantry and relocated the laundry area to another area of the house.

Jonathan's Team - After Pantry and the Laundry Room was relocated
The Master Bedroom floor was coming up and so it was repaired, new bedding was added as well as a fresh coat of paint and some new furniture.

There is no before photograph of the bathroom which is unfortunate because other than the kitchen this was the most drastic change.
Jonathan's After - Bathroom

Now onto team Drew's work. Drew's team spent $11,489. dollars and was the winner of this challenge.

Here are two pictures of the renovated living room. A neutral paint color was added, new furniture and accessories as well as drapes.

The fireplace glass mosaic tiles were a major improvement that added value.
I think the most drastic change in Drew's house was the kitchen renovation.

All new cabinets, new lighting, countertops, stainless steel appliances, hardwood flooring, and a neutral paint color created a bright and welcoming kitchen. There doesn't seem to be any backsplash added to the kitchen.

Here is the renovated bathroom. The new flooring tile is stick down laminate tiles which didn't bring any value to the renovation.

The bathroom includes glass mosaic tiles around the tub which added the largest value to the bathroom.

Drew's team de-cluttered the master bedroom and added some new accessories.

So the point of this show is to ADD VALUE through specific renovation. However, what is questionable is whether the specific change brought about value and how much value it is estimated to have. For instance team Drew's team added stick down tile in the bathroom which was deemed to have no added value. The paint color in Jonathan's team's kitchen was deemed to be unbecoming to the majority of buyers therefore not improving the value.

Obviously the furniture and accessories are not included in the cost of renovation, nor is any value given to the cost of labor. So, we are just looking at the cost of materials, which could not have included the kitchen cabinetry, which they stated had already been ordered prior to the competition. But we are still comparing one renovation against the other.  Do you think proper credit was given to the specific changes that they installed?  Also the appraiser, "Mike Aubrey," commented on poor staging but they aren't selling these homes, so it didn't make any difference as to the value of the home, and what about the decorating of the spaces, why bother with this at all, except for the sake of prettiness. Did any of the participants do any decorating, or was someone outside of this show responsible for this task?

So have you renovated your home in hope of improving its value? What specific upgrades have you made that you feel are the most valuable? What did you think of this show? Will you be watching this show again?

Linking to:  Savvy Southern Style
Linking to: Worthington Court
Linking to: From My Front Porch To Yours 


  1. Thanks for your impression of the show--I didn't see it, although I love all the Canadian DIY shows--but the questions you ask regarding it are valid. Every house we've purchased has been lacking, and we fix it up while we live in it in order to make a great (hopefully) profit. Our last house was a huge money-maker for us, which allowed us to buy the house we're in now---which is probably the most difficult and expensive house we've ever owned. In all of our renovations, we've wanted to get the most bang for our buck, and kept our renovations "neutral" so that the house would appeal to a large number of buyers. The house we're in now, we're doing for ourselves...we are older and this is where we'll sty unless something unusual happens. Maybe that's the difference in this show--if the folks don't want to sell, what's wrong with personalizing it with color and finishes?

    1. Hey Kirby: Brother vs Brother is actually taking place in California, not that location really matters. I think you should make "your" house work great for you, however, unless we pass away in our homes, at some point we do need to sell and therefore we do want it to be saleable, having said that I still would make it "my" house. It sounds like you have been very successful at rehabbing houses and now you got your prize. Enjoy Your Home! Oh, and I know exactly what you mean about being older and not planning on leaving - I am right there with you. As far as I can tell on this show, the owners don't have any plans on leaving, and so I am sure they must have "some" say in what is done in their homes but they also probably have to agree for there to be alot of latitude on what is done. Although I wouldn't have chosen that vibrant green color it did make that kitchen POP!
      Thanks, Patty

  2. Hi, Patty. I enjoyed looking at your pics of the show and your thoughts. I didn't see the show either but definitely understand you point. The "cost" of renovations on these shows never seem to be entirely accurate. For the most part though, I liked their choices especially the tile.

  3. Patty, I am really enjoying the show so far. Not sure I believed they did all that work in a few days, but it does make for good TV. There were many misses in the designs but both homes were vastly improved. Looking forward to the next show!
    Thanks for your visit today and for leaving such a sweet comment. Glad you enjoyed my little tour,

  4. Where did they get the drapes in the living room for team Drew? Love that pattern and color palette!

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