Continue reading my interview with HGTV contractor Tracy Trollier, from Brother vs. Brother…
As far as home improvements, one thing my husband and I have noticed just in watching HGTV and talking with other people, it seems like the tile floors that look like hardwood are becoming really popular?
Tracy: Very, very popular.
Is that a flooring choice that you’d recommend? Especially for people with young families?
Tracy: I would. Yeah, like you said, some of this tile now that they’re coming out with for floors, it’s crazy good stuff. There’s flooring tiles now that you can hardly tell that it’s not wood. Maintenance wise, what I like to do when we’re laying tile floors is get the minimum grout joint you can get in there. It makes for easy cleaning, doesn’t get so dirty…it’s phenomenal, this stuff. I’m down here in New Orleans and looking at some of the stuff [Drew and Jonathan are] doing in here? It’s phenomenal, the stuff they’re going to use. Yeah, tile floors have come a long way.
Me: That surprised me actually, because after tile floors in our Vegas home and dealing with the grout issue, it never occurred to me that I would want to put tile into a new house.
Tracy: Yeah, I mean, maintenance wise it is fairly easy to clean up. We have wood floors in our home but we had a flood. If I’d had tile floors, I wouldn’t have had an issue. We had wood floors and we had to replace them all.
When you’re doing wood floors, I’ve seen a couple of different methods. Depending on whether there’s a subfloor or not, as far as nailing them down or gluing them down. Is there a major cost difference between either of those, or is that something that doesn’t really matter as much?
Tracy: There’s not a major difference. It depends on the floor. When you have a wavy floor and you’re gluing down flooring – if it’s bad concrete, let’s say – you’re going to see those waves in that floor. So sometimes, if we have flooring issues on the show – on Brother vs Brother, we were actually pouring concrete the day before we’re supposed to lay the floor. Well, the concrete hadn’t cured. So we can’t glue down to it. We have to have a certain moisture content. So we ended up floating those floors. Now, you can float wood floors. They have some nice padding out, it’s very silent and you just glue the joints and it’s actually a fairly easy job if you know how to run a table saw and a chop saw. I laid a floor myself at our place in Utah, it was 2200 sq feet, I did it in a day!
Tracy: A LONG day. A LONG, LONG day. I think it was a 14 hour day. But it’s actually pretty easy. And some of these Pergo floors and laminate floors now, it’s really nice, it’s not like it used to be. There’s some stuff out there that’s phenomenal.
So maybe as long as they had someone to show them how to actually do it, a homeowner could maybe help lay some of their own flooring. . . and that helps in a renovation? Anytime you can get a homeowner to help out, as far as labor costs? Like on the Property Brothers?
Tracy: Yep! I mean, it will help on the labor costs for sure, if they want to help out. Some contractors don’t want the owners involved in anything like that at all. But you know, if they have some talent and can listen to direction a little bit and want to help? I don’t mind. Even if it’s just bringing in the flooring for me to lay or helping me lay it, I don’t mind. If they want to be involved, it’s fine with me.
Considering you have your own company, how much of the work are you actually doing vs being handled by your crew?
Tracy: Well you know how old I am now. (Chuckles) I’m not doing as much as I used to. On the show, Brother vs Brother, I was doing a lot of it myself. All the door hanging on that show, all the baseboards, some of the cabinetry, some of the DIY. . . all the wood on the walls, I did that all myself. Made it kind of tough. I have the show to do, actually physically doing the work, and I’m also running crews doing the other work. I had a couple long nights. There were a couple of nights I didn’t go home. I just stayed until the next morning, getting stuff done. That was an adventure, man. I don’t do it as much. I sub out a lot more now that I’m getting into my senior years than I used to. I used to do a lot of it myself, but as I’m getting older, I’m subbing out more.
Well, based on those sweet dance moves you demonstrated on Brother Vs Brother and that Macklemore parody. . .
Tracy: (laughing) I was showing off. You know, that’s what Drew says, he says I’m a poser. He’s out to give me a hard time. He’s all “You’re trying to get on more camera! You’re a poser!”
(Laughing) Did you choose to be on “Team Drew”?
Tracy: No! No, he knew. When he was looking at contractors and he saw me? He knew he had to have me. He came after me, I mean, it was pitiful.
Me: (Laughing) Is he listening to you say this?
Tracy: No, no, he’s just pitiful. When he saw me, you should have seen his eyes light up!
How did you get connected with Drew in the first place?
Tracy: A very good contractor friend of mine just did the home renovation at their own home, The Brothers at Home. He did that whole renovation. When it came time to do Brother vs Brother 3, they actually asked my friend to do it and he was so busy with a couple other projects that he couldn’t do it. He called me and asked me if I wanted to do the show, and I went and met these guys and…that’s what we’re doing. That’s how we met.
So you’ve done two seasons of Brother vs Brother and now you’re doing the Brothers in New Orleans?
Tracy: Nah, we’re just down here wrecking the party. Making sure everything gets done right. That’s all. Jonathan just walked in.
Jonathan Scott: Yeah, he’s a party crasher!
Tracy: (laughing) yeah. . . Have you been down here before, Megan?
Me: Actually, New Orleans is one place I’ve never gotten to. I always wanted to.
Tracy: My God. You’re lucky I’m even doing this interview right now.
Me: (Laughing) Well, I mean, if you’re inviting me, I can hop on a plane, it’s not a problem.
Tracy: (Laughing) Yeah, maybe next time. I actually have to be back in Vegas tomorrow. I’m supposed to be working right now and I’m down here.
Well, everyone needs a break now and then. So, on a final note, what is one thing you think fans would be surprised to know about the brothers?
Tracy: Some fans don’t know about their music career. Both of their songs have charted. Hold On even [hit] Billboard charts. Pretty crazy. Also, I get asked a lot if they are as nice off camera as on. The answer is yes. Genuinely very nice guys with very nice parents.
Me: Tracy, thanks again for taking the time to chat with me. I know when my husband and I are watching The Property Brothers and all the other addictive HGTV shows, we always have questions, and I appreciate you answering a few for me.
So there it is! My interview with Drew Scott and Tracy Trollier, of HGTV fame. In case I didn’t make it clear in earlier posts, you should all know that A) the Scott Brothers are SERIOUSLY down to earth and sweet. B) Tracy is incredibly sweet and funny and knows what he’s doing. (I’m totally going to abuse his knowledge later as I reno my own place!) C) This was so much fun to do, and if you have any questions for Tracy or The Brothers, let me know! I’ll see if I can get them answered for you!