James and Lisa were just starting out as homeowners. Having moved away from their families to a new town and a new house — one in dire need of renovations — they were anxious to create a home that could grow with them over the years (and that growth came sooner than expected as they announced Lisa’s pregnancy when they appeared in the second season of HGTV Canada’s Bryan Inc.).
While they had a lot of great ideas and a solid vision of what they wanted to achieve, it wasn’t until they teamed up with HGTV Canada’s Bryan and Sarah Baeumler that their vision transformed into reality.
What do you think would have happened if you hadn’t gone on Bryan Inc. and worked with Bryan and Sarah?
We would probably be sitting in the same house having done nothing! We had a pretty good idea of the basics we wanted in a new home, however we didn’t know how to bring our vision to life. When we moved here we were new to this area and didn’t know any contractors — so had no comfort level with hiring tradespeople and coordinating a big renovation. Being young and not knowing a lot, we were concerned about getting taken advantage of. So having all of this come together under Bryan and Sarah’s guidance was a huge relief.
What was it like working with them? How did they respond to your initial ideas?
They were very positive and definitely elevated our goals for the space. Our idea was to simply renovate the upstairs bathroom — this is where Bryan and Sarah’s expertise really came out — they really encouraged us to turn the one bathroom into two. They could see us being here for many years and knew how our lifestyles could change. We knew right away it was the right decision, and that it added real value to our house.
How else did Bryan and Sarah add value to your project?
We had some old wooden beams that had just came off a barn that had been in our family for over 100 years. We asked if we could do something with the wood, and the next thing we knew Bryan was sandblasting it — and now it’s a key piece in our new family room.
The other thing was just the speed in which they were able to complete the project. We didn’t have any family close by, so had to impose on some friends and live with them while the renovation was taking place. The whole project was 10 weeks from start to finish — it was so efficient, especially considering all the work permits that were required and that every living space in the home was renovated, except for the bedrooms.
What’s your favourite room in the house?
It’s definitely our kitchen/living area. The kitchen island sits 5 stools comfortably and the whole space is so open. We can cook, hang out, do work, and we can see our daughter Rosie from anywhere. The sight-lines are great.
Now that you’ve been living in your renovated house for a while, what’s the biggest benefit you’re seeing?
The number one benefit is being able to have people here. It’s a bigger house and now that it’s so beautifully renovated we can invite people around. We miss home and now home can come to us — we never had that before.
Want more home renovation tips? Get the scoop on some of the best advice Bryan and Sarah's share with their clients.
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