A week ago, if you were to have asked me what I was planning to do for my birthday, I would have said “the usual, work and family”.  At the time, I wouldn’t have imagined I would also be chatting with the stars of HGTV’s Home to Win!

Home to Win premieres Sunday, April 30th at 10 p.m. ET/PT on HGTV Canada. It features 30 of the best-known builders, designers and real estate experts. Together, they will transform an average house into a dream waterfront property for one lucky Canadian. (Someone tell me, why didn’t I apply to win this?!)

We were excited to learn about the opportunity to chat with these experts. Many of them have become household names. Even when mentioning this opportunity with my 7 year old, she excitedly proclaimed “oh you mean, Bryan Inc.!”. Yeah, we watch a lot of HGTV in our home.

The experts were talking about how moving into a new home can breathe life into a family, bringing them even closer together. But a new home can also bring on challenges. When fixer-uppers and small spaces are becoming the only affordable option in today’s restrictive housing market, families must come together to make renovations on a budget and maximize on the space available. In comes our questions…


The Q&A:

Me: What changes have you seen over time in the availability and use of eco-friendly/sustainable products in home renovation projects?

Scott McGillivray: For a contractor, it’s always a balance between what a homeowner wants and what they can afford. It means showing homeowners the value of investing in eco-friendly products and materials that will have long term cost savings, such as efficient appliances, toilets, windows, and a furnace.



Me: Where can Canadians go to find the best sources and most variety for eco-friendly products for home reno projects?

Bryan Baeumler: As a contractor it’s not so much about where you get it from but instead building and constructing in a way that will operate efficiently for savings.  Look for local sources, manufactured, reused, recycled, ma-and-pa shops and cooperatives.

(His initial response was “Lowes!”, of course(!), guess I walked into that one;))  


Me: What tips do you have for the DIYer who wants or needs to upcycle/repurpose/reuse items in their home to ensure the overall design is cohesive?

Sarah Baeumler: The key word is cohesive.  It’s important to start with an overall plan and flow for the home.  Put together a color palette and overall vision, which will ensure functionality and allow you to move furniture pieces from one room to the next and still work. Generally, not enough time is put into planning but it makes a big difference.


Thank you to HGTV’s Bryan and Sarah Baeumler, Scott MacGillivray and host, Sangita Patel for making this year’s birthday a memorable one!

Given the chance, what questions would you ask the experts at HGTV?

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