HGTV's Bryan Baeumler

If you follow our blog, you know that it’s no secret that Kes & I are HGTV fanboys (or fanboy and fangirl, lol). So when Jennifer Flores recently approached us to ask if we’d be interested in interviewing Bryan Baeumler on behalf of BlogPodium, our reaction was something comparable to a teenage girl at a One Direction concert. I seriously had to re-write my email response to her three times to tone down the number of “OMG”s and “that’s amazing”s!

Kes & I attended BlogPodium for the first time last year and had a fantastic time connecting with so many other like-minded bloggers. This year, we’re excited to be attending again, and with the theme of this year’s BlogPodium being “there is more than one road to success”, entrepreneur, family man, philanthropist, & tv personality Bryan Baeumler, is kind of a perfect choice to speak on the subject given his experience with different home design styles, and just about everything else really!

Here is the transcript for our candid 35 minute chat! Grab a coffee, it’s a bit of a long one – but there were just so many nuggets of gold that I couldn’t bare to edit it down.

Talking life, business and DIY with Bryan Baeumler

Tash: As you know our blog is about us documenting our journey as we build our Dreamhouse. We’ve kind of watched you go through a very similar process twice now on ‘House of Bryan…What would possess you to do it a third time??? [laughs]

Bryan: Umm…I would do it again right now & we’re not even finished the first one, er…the second…third one. Gosh..which one is it? [laughs] Yea, I mean for me it’s just something I love doing and I think everybody has that desire to improve the place that they live in and add some value. I grew up and all I heard from my Dad was ‘a rolling stone gathers no moss’ so I find it very difficult to sit in a finished house… in a finished yard and just look around me and have nothing to do. I have a hard time not doing anything. Plus you know our needs have changed as well. Our first home was a bungalow and then we had one kid, and then we had two…you know, then there were three…and now there’s four.

Tash: Now there’s four!

Bryan: [laughs] Yea…now we’re done. The next thing we have is gonna be either a cat or a horse, but… we’ll see about that. But yea, I mean needs changed and our goals and priorities changed a little bit. And this latest place – you know, we finished the house in Oakville and lived there and it was great, and prim and proper and tidy and then we found this incredible place up in the country and decided – you know, I grew up in the country and it’s a great way to raise kids and we don’t have to worry about people – cause we have different concerns of people pulling up in front of the house and lining up to take pictures and all kinds of stuff and…yea it just feels better to be somewhere and have a little privacy where the kids can go out and play on the playground, and we don’t have to worry about them being run over by a car or, you know thrown in a trunk or something like that.

Tash: Yea that makes sense – especially with all the craziness going on in the world right now.

Bryan: Yea, we just, we like it out there. It’s quiet and I find we spend time together differently as a family when you can’t just walk or drive everywhere in five minutes.

Tash: Well yea – I mean you’ve got a crazy schedule, you’re the host of multiple tv shows, you’ve got successful businesses… How do you strike that balance between home and work life?

Bryan: That’s a good question, you know I get that question asked a lot – kinda, how do you balance it – how do you make everything work – and I think the truth is the same for everybody. You know, anyone you see out there that seems to have it figured out, and seems zen calm on the surface and everything is either a good actor, or they’re holding it together for the public. To be honest there’s great times, and there’s very stressful times, and there’s time when I’m traveling a lot and I miss a lot of important things with my wife and kids. But there’s also times when I’m not working for a month or a month and a half and I can drive the kids to school, or we can go out for dinner… So, it really is kind of feast and famine and I think anybody in a situation where you’re working hard, and have a bunch of kids, and you’re building a home, or renovating, and you have all these demands on your time, as all of us do – I think you just kinda find the groove and you have to decide everyday when something’s stressing you out or you’re too busy, you just have to keep your eye on the prize and remind yourself why you are doing these things. And most importantly, if you’re doing something that’s not making you happy and things aren’t working, you have to be ready to make a change. I think a lot of people get comfortable in our hamster wheels and very few people will say “Stop the bus, I’m gettin’ off, and I’m gonna get on a new bus.” I’ve never had a problem doing that. I’ve been a serial entrepreneur all my life and I’ll try something and put the effort in, but if it looks like it’s not gonna happen, not gonna work, I’ll try something else.

Tash: That’s great advice.

Kes: Yea, awesome. Very appropriate for us.

Bryan: Yea! It’s just…keep goin, you know? There’s no sittin down on the floor, and cryin the blues – it isn’t gonna get anything done.

Tash: Well yea, I mean, just even looking at our own experience going through this reno, you know, opinions clash – especially when you’re a couple, or living together, and raising kids, and stuff like that. So, what kind of advice would you give to other couples going through a large renovation project?

Bryan: Well, you know I’ve seen couples that have broken up during renovations, and divorce, and all kinds of nastiness, and discourse, and all kinds of things. And I’ve heard people say “Oh geez, yea, it was the renovation that tore them apart….” or “It was the build that tore them apart…” You know, honestly, at the end of the day, if building a house together is gonna rip your relationship apart then not building a house together would rip it apart too.

Tash: That’s probably true.

Bryan: Yea…it’s one of those things. If you can’t handle something and if an outside influence is gonna ruin your relationship, then your relationship isn’t that strong to begin with. But there are certain, rules, I would say… Kind of, rules the battlefield when you’re married… and people have to remember. Sarah and I, we kinda go through the house, and I guess we figuratively have different colour pens. And some rooms are circled with the blue pen and that’s my domain, I make those decisions. And some are circled with the pink pen and those are Sarah’s and she makes the decisions. And then we kinda lay out the battleground. And we’re both very opinionated and we’re both always right, as are most people. And, um, we just have to decide ahead of time which rooms have no bearing. If the basement’s really important to me and Sarah doesn’t really mind then she knows to just not dig her heels in and, you know, have a bit of an opinion but not take it to the mat..

Tash: So you pick your battles?

Bryan: Yea! We really do lay out our battlefield and if there’s things we’re really passionate about we both put our ideas on the table. We both tell each other that they’re horrible ideas and we find something that works in the middle there. But you can’t let the fight lose the war, kinda thing.

Tash: Yea definitely. So, in House of Bryan 1, I found it was a lot more focused on you and in House of Bryan 2 we saw Sarah take a bigger role and kind of get her hands into the design side of things… will we see more of that in House of Bryan 3?

Bryan: Definitely! I mean, Sarah’s become more and more involved as we’ve gone along. And certainly, once we sold our ballet school she’s been available a lot more to work with some of our companies – our construction company, and development company, she’s running the Baeumler Family Foundation for kids now, that’s kind of her main focus. But 10 years ago, when Sarah started getting involved in the construction side and kinda dipping her toe in, her idea of construction was as watered down as my idea of running a ballet school. You know, she thought, “he gets up early in the morning, he leaves, he comes home & he’s filthy, he’s got a handful of money and someone, somewhere has got a house to live in.”

Tash & Kes: [laugh]

Bryan: And that was her take on the construction industry. And, you know mine for ballet was “a bunch of kids go in in tights, they come out all sweaty, and they know how to dance”…and that’s pretty much it…

All: [laugh]

Bryan: We both over simplified each other’s roles, but as she got more involved – obviously the first season she would get involved and say “Well, just do this…it’s simple!” and I’d say “Well, if we do this it changes the structure there, and the mechanicals here and it’s a cascade effect” and I think the more builds she’s been involved in and the more of our retail job sites that she’s been to, she’s starting to understand how the façade, and the design, and details of the home, really can affect things 3 or 4 or 5 levels down, and how important it is to pre-plan. We just ran into a situation where the hardwood floors were being installed, and all the floors had been ordered and showed up on site and we’re installing them, and cutting out the vents, and the week after she said “Oh – I got these great vents that are the drop in kind that are flush with the floor” and I said “Well – these are the kind of vents that you need to have before you install the floor, so you can install the floor around the flange…you know you can’t just go and – I mean you CAN go and retrofit them, but it’s a major pain in the butt.” And she said “Well it’s not that big a deal…” and I said “No, it’s actually 2 or 3 carpenters for a week to do all of the vents in the house!”

Tash & Kes: [laugh]

Bryan: “And…you know, we’re looking at 2 or 3 thousand dollars worth of work here…” So that was one of those things where she said “Oh, ok. Mental note. I’ll know for next time”

Tash: We’re finding little things like that too – things you don’t think about…Like, ‘let’s order our hardwork and have it delivered on site and get set to install it & forget to check the humidity in the house in the middle of summer – which probably isn’t a good thing…’

Bryan: Exaaactly! You wanna make sure you’ve acclimatized everything…and there’s so many little tips & tricks to know and it really does come with experience. Is this the first house you’re building together?

Tash & Kes: Yea.

Bryan: Yea, so you’re certainly not gonna master it by the end. But you’ll get through it, you’ll figure it out. But there’re so many variables, and every house is slightly different. There’s different challenges with different soil types, and different municipality by-laws, and different materials working together with them…

Tash: …building by a lake and realizing you’re living on top of it… [laughs]

Bryan: Yea…yea [laughs] There’s that too… I mean there’s so many, so many things. It just takes time and experience to get them all, and you know, truth be told there’s things that I occasionally overlook because I’m focused on something else. It’s just all a matter of time and money, right. The more things you overlook, the more time you waste, and the more money you spend…

Kes: That’s for sure! [laughs]

Bryan: That’s usually the best lesson right? When you lose a bunch of money I think you pay attention to the lesson a little closer! [laughs]

Kes: Definitely.

Tash: Oh yea, definitely!

Kes: So switching gears a bit – we’re huge fans of ‘Leave It to Bryan’ and we’re curious about how you go about choosing your projects. What factors do you consider to help you make that final decision?

Bryan: That’s a good question too and I get that a lot. But…a lot of times it’s just a gut feeling based on my experience and type of home. I mean, I ask the homeowners a lot of questions – and some of the really important ones are – How long do you plan to stay in the house; What’s your budget, I mean that’s a huge factor; Do you have kids, how many kids do you have; Do you like to entertain… All these things kinda factor into it. So I take all that stuff and balance it against the shape of the house itself and just kinda look at it. If we’re in 90 year old home and they want to pull out a bunch of walls, I know from experience we’re gonna spend a lot of money just in engineering and permits and structural work. If we’re in a 1980’s home and they wanna do something really crazy – you know getting rid of a bathroom, or reducing the number of bedrooms, and they’re only planning to be there for a few years, stuff like that doesn’t make sense. But a big part of it really is, I find a lot of people have a devil on one shoulder and and angel on the other. And the devil is whispering, you know “Big screen tv…man cave…granite countertops…” And the angel is whispering, “Well, you’re roof leaks…and there’s moisture in the basement…and your bathroom is out of the ‘60s.” So I think most people down deep know what they should do and know what the priorities are and but they get distracted by the fluff… the big screen TVs and everything. I always go in and look at the jobs and I try and think ‘If this was my house the goal is to make it comfortable, make it user friendly, but most of all make it efficient and affordable so it’s gonna add some value.’ So that later on I can sell it and do something different. I know for a lot of people, they consider the idea of selling their home, but they are not sure how to start this process. You can’t just pack your things and leave. There is a lot of legal documentation that needs to be sorted out. If you are planning on selling your home, but are not sure how to do this, you may want to visit convey online for more information on how best to handle this situation. I’m pretty sure you want this to be as stress free as possible. But when it comes to the house, I try and go through and pick what will add the most value to not only how they live there and their enjoyment of the house, but to the home itself.

Kes: Would you ever say your decision would ever be different based on production value for TV?

Bryan: Never.

Kes: Never?

Bryan: No. And that’s funny because TV production and home construction renovations are two very different animals and they’re not friendly when you lock them in the same cage. They don’t like each other at all. I think one of the successes of a lot of the Canadian shows is that the principles in the shows, you know, myself, Scott, Mike, Paul LaFrance, we’ve all come from the dust of the construction industry and we were all contractors and builders and real estate investors long before the cameras showed up. So, we get into a job – and you’ll see a lot of other productions – normally international or south of the border – that it’s an actor hosting and they get in there, and if duck tape will hold it up and make it look good long enough to get the shot, that’s what they’ll do. You know, I have a very active and growing construction company and the last thing I need is somebody calling me saying ‘Well, you know our house fell apart even though it looked great on TV.’ But you know we do get the production crew saying ‘Oh, you know we need this, we want to do this…’ and a lot of times I’ll say no and kinda go the other route. So there can be some tension there sometimes, but they understand too. I mean, we’ve been working together for a so long and I’m a partner in the production now as well. So we’ll make it work. But I would say maybe – when I really throw a wrench in the plans is when we get to site on day 1 and we have the cameras rolling and we’re ready to film the show and I’ve decided you know, we’re doing the kitchen – and I get there and I wonder around the house a little more and I look at a few things a little more closely – and keep in mind all the cabinets have been ordered, and the counter tops have been ordered, and the tiles are on site… and I say, “You know what? Hang on here….we gotta do the basement.”

Tash: [laughs] That happens??!?!

Bryan: Oh yea! It happens, I’d say you know, 1 out of 10.

Tash: Wow!

Bryan: Yea, about 1 out of 10… and then there’s the collective gasp in the production office and you can almost hear them, you know.. “Holy S#!t!”

Tash & Kes: [laugh]

Bryan: So yea, that’s happened a few times, much to their chagrin, but at the end of the day, I’m not gonna do something for tv that I wouldn’t do if nobody was standing there looking.

Tash: That’s awesome.

Bryan: There’s even times I look at the camera crew and I’m like, ‘Okay, turn those off, you can’t watch this part.’ Because there’s always those moments where you don’t need an audience sitting on your shoulder, watching everything. People don’t want to see everything.

Tash: So we’ll switch gears a little bit again. – In your shows you always seem to be a little bit of an advocate of the DIYer…

Bryan: Yup.

Tash: Where do you suggest the average homeowner should draw the line between calling in a pro and tackling a project themselves.

Bryan: That’s kind of a line drawn in the sand and it moves around a lot, cause it really depends on the homeowner. And it depends on the project. There’s certain things that, in general, if I had to make a blanket statement, I would say stay away from the classics: stay away from electrical, from plumbing, from HVAC, from gas work, from major structural work, even roofing. For things like this it makes more sense to hire a professional in, one that knows how to Repair air conditioning & heating system, or how to fix a roof. Don’t decide to do it yourself, as this would could cause a bigger issue. Things like that I would recommend, if you’re not a professional or don’t have a lot of experience – OR if you don’t have a lot of time to learn how to do them properly and master them, don’t tackle them. Some people are willing to take the time and invest the money and the energy into learning how to do it and they’re quite successful. Anyone on the planet can learn how to build a house; can learn to be a carpenter. Anyone is capable of that for sure. At the end of the day we’re not curing cancer and we’re not launching satellites into orbit. You know, we’re banging, 2x4s together and throwing some tiles down. BUT, that being said too, there’s a lot of science involved in building.

Tash: Yea. I see a lot of that in some of the shows. Canada’s Handyman Challenge for example and last season with all of the science and engineering that went into building the palette houses. There’s so much of that that people don’t realize and don’t see.

Bryan: Yes. There’s a ton of that. And there’s an equal amount of art. You know, building, we’re not just piling up a bunch of Lego blocks, and following the instruction list and boom there it is. There’s a science in controlling moisture and humidity and heat, and heat loss, and that kinda stuff. But there’s also the art of art of applying dry wall compound, installing a tile and making it perfectly level. There’re the tips and tricks when you’re installing a hardwood floors to make sure there’s no gaps and it doesn’t tighten up, and it doesn’t loosen up and you know, you don’t get squeaks and all this stuff. So there’s a real mix of science and art. And I think most people, from what I’ve seen now, it seems like the last generation of parents decided not to pass on any hands on skills to most of their children…

Tash & Kes: [laugh]

Bryan: You know most people overestimate their own skill, and they underestimate or they oversimplify the job, they underestimate how long things will take, they grossly underestimate what things will cost and they also overestimate how much they will enjoy doing it. We’ve been in so many homes where they have every room in the house ripped apart, because they watched a show & they thought “My God, tiling looks fun, let’s rip up the bathroom and re-tile it.” And then they realize, they don’t know how to tile, or they’re not very good at it. But you know what, they saw this show where they finished a basement, and they’d love to have the basement finished, so let’s start framing up the basement. And then it’s ‘We don’t know what we’re doing, but we’d love a new kitchen, let’s rip the cabinets off the walls’ And all of a sudden their whole house is ripped apart. And…you know, it just turns into a nightmare. So what I tell them – it’s kinda like Adam, my apprentice when we were framing the first floor on our first house in Oakville, he was just fresh and new – and he said: “Are we building this whole house alone?” and I said, “Yea, it’s just you and me buddy.” And he says, “Oh my God, we’re only on the first floor, we still have to frame the walls, and the floor, and the second floor walls and the roof, and then the sheathing’s gotta get on, and the strapping, and the siding, and the brick, and the block, and the insulation, and electrical…” he went through this list for ten minutes. So then I said “Dude, all we have to do today is frame the floor. Let’s just get the floor done. You know, tomorrow we’ll get the walls built. Then, when the walls are done, we’ll look at doing the floors.” So you have to take that massive project and break it down into small steps. And then you have to look at each step and say: “Which one do I want to do? Which one do I have the skills to do? Which one can I afford to do?” and kinda go from there. Yea – the average homeowner has to stay away from the heavy lifting, but there’s the rest of it that you can certainly learn if you want to.

Kes: Yea.

Tash: Right. That’s good advice.

Bryan: Then there are some people out there that shouldn’t do anything! [laughs]

Tash: [laughs] That’s true too! What about you? Is there anything that as a pro you still won’t do yourself?

Bryan: Umm…yea I mean, minor electrical I’ve had a lot of experience, you know if I’m adding a light switch or a plug or something like that. But usually, you know I own a construction company so I usually have a lot of trades around me [laughs] to do that kind of stuff. HVAC I really, I mean I understand the engineering, as far as the install goes, it’s not one of those things I would say I look forward to doing so I don’t touch that. Gas work, we don’t do. The things I really like doing are, I love doing foundation work, I love the rough framing, finished carpentry is a big one, drywall I’m really good at, but I get bored after about an hour…

Tash & Kes: [laugh]

Tash: Is that why you always have the Leave It to Bryan couples do the drywalling? “Here’s how you….”

Bryan: [laughs] Yea. “Here, try this out I’ll see ya tomorrow” [laughs] That’s pretty much it. Yea, I mean I like doing a little bit of anything. I think if I’m at one thing for too long, I get a little bored and which is why it’s great to have the opportunity to jump around and try different things…I’m generally pretty good at everything. Tiling…I love tiling. But yea, it’s the HVAC & the gas work and that kinda stuff I stay away from. I mean, plumbing even every now and then I don’t mind playing around with. I mean I’ve done all this stuff since I was a little kid. Little bits and pieces here and there so I’ve had great experience at it. But, I think one of the important things too, even for me; I know that my electrician is better and faster at wiring up the house than I am. I know my HVAC guy has all the tools he needs and the equipment and is faster and better and understands it more than I do, so I let him do that. When it comes to tiling, or finished carpentry, I know that I’m one of the best guy’s on site, so that’s what I tackle.

Tash: Makes sense. So you touched a little bit on how there’s some people that really if they’re putting in the time and energy to learn can do things, and there’s some people that just shouldn’t. What’s your opinion of DIY bloggers? Do you think they’re good for industry or not? And do you think too many bloggers have contributed to too many ‘disaster diys’ out there?

Bryan: [laughs] No! I mean, I think the more information that’s out there, the better! I think, especially if you guys are going through it and kind of learning as you go and putting your experience out there, it’s a great human story in general. And any information you can share with someone that’s gonna do the same thing is great. I think a lot of people look at the internet, and at blogs and tv shows, and they’re looking for a specific answer. And the truth of the matter is that we’re not doing mathematics. There’s more than one answer to everything. There’s 10 ways to build a shower, so it won’t leak. There’s 10 ways to insulate a home properly. There’s innumerable ways to do everything in a house. I think people need to take all that information and mix in some common sense and take out the parts they’re not comfortable with, and basically at the end of the day they’ve got a pile of information that makes sense to them – a pile of information that leads to the desired end result, through a process that they understand and that they can afford to do. So I think, yea, I mean the more information that’s out there the better. At the end of the day, it’s all about education right – even if it’s a story about how you tried something and failed, you know the guy reading that may be thinking – “I was just gonna do that exact thing today. And now I wont.”

Tash & Kes: [laugh] Exactly!

Kes: Almost there – So, speaking of bloggers and entrepreneurs, from what I’ve gathered, you started out with Baeumler Construction…

Bryan: Yup.

Kes: …And then you kind of moved that into television, now you’ve got the Baulmer Family Foundation, you’ve got Baeumler Approved, you even have an app! Do you have any tips for blogger entrepreneurs looking to branch out from just blogging into new businesses? Cause you seem to be really good at doing that.

Bryan: Yea, I mean I’ve been a serial entrepreneur forever. I think, it’s difficult to give advice to someone specifically on growing their brand or branching out, things like that because everybody has kind of built their own path…you start at the beginning and you’ve pointed the arrow, if you will. I think the words of advice that I can give to anyone that’s an entrepreneur is that it’s all about fishing and farming. And I speak to a lot of high school kids and a lot of kids that want to get into the trade, or not, or you know are just kind of lost in life kinda thing – and I tell them that life is all about fishing and farming. And the most successful people on the planet know how to fish and they know how to farm. And the kids usually look at me and they’re all confused cause they just wanna drive Ferraris, and you know, live in big houses and have a private jet & a yacht. And they don’t understand how fisherman and farmers can do that. But, you know I explain to them – I had a friend say to me once, “Aww, you’re so lucky! You’ve got this tv show and you got this and that…” And I said, “You know, luck has very little to do with it.” It’s the same as the guy standing down at the river, and he gets in his boat, and he goes out on the lake and I’m the guy that will cast every inch of the shoreline of that lake, every day from sun up to sun down until I catch the fish that I want for dinner. And he’s the guy that will cast 3 times and go” God, there’s no fish in this lake” and he’ll leave. And I come home with a fish. And on the farming side, it’s all about getting up at the crack of dawn, and going out, and tilling the soil, and planting the seeds, and then watering the seeds, and all that kinda stuff – metaphorically of course – unless you’re a farmer.

Tash & Kes: [laugh]

Bryan: But a lot of people expect to plant the seed and they go back the next day and they harvest it and have a great feast. But, the truth of the matter is, I spent 10 or 15 years pounding the pavement. I handed out tens of thousands flyers door to door, house to house to get the ‘I need my fence fixed.” It was pounding pavement and that farming and fishing that, you know eventually the plants do grow and you’ll have a great feast. It’s also – if you’re banging against a wall for a while and you realize that the wall’s not going anywhere, try going around the wall, hang a right, hang a left – try something different. The key though, is to find something that you really love doing because, I can get up at five o’clock in the morning and I can work 18 hours a day, and apart from, you know, I enjoy being at home & seeing my wife and kids as well, but work isn’t work to me. I’m never staring at the clock wanting to know when I clock out and get out of here. I have fun every single day, and it’s easy to put the effort in when you love what you are doing.

Tash: That’s definitely true.

Bryan: Yea, that’s a big one.

Tash: What would you say is the role of Social Media in the success of his businesses.

Bryan: The role of social media? That’s a tough one because for me – it’s been great for branding, and it’s great to interact with fans, with the shows & stuff like that. Social Media I think though is good and bad for businesses and it’s important for everyone to manage it properly because we really have turned into the Borg.

Tash: [laughs]

Kes: Mmm hmmm..

Bryan: You know, I can see something terrible, and I take a picture and post it online and all of a sudden, millions of people have posted and commented and weighed in on it; when, back in the old days, I would say to the guy beside me, “Hey look at that!” and he’d go, “Oh wow!” And that’s it, that’s the end of it. So, for us in our business, it’s been a blessing and a curse, depending on what side we’re on. You know, every contractor, every business has had an insatiable client that refuses to be happy. A day in my life, I’ve never gone to work thinking, “I’m gonna screw this guy out of money and I’m gonna give him something he didn’t want.” That’s never happened, but everybody has the ‘two-percenters’ we call them – the two clients out of a hundred that just will not be satisfied and you know, they want a Lamborghini, but they want they payments of a Hyundai.

Tash & Kes: [laugh]

Bryan: And they’re happy to get online, and just rip you a new one, and get their friends on board and you know, misery loves company, and that’s one side of social media. On the other side, it’s great to connect with fans, and we can answer some questions and keep things interesting and that kind of thing. But certainly if it’s not managed properly, it can definitely be a double-edged sword. I was on a flight to Australia years ago, long before I was on television, and the guy beside me we were talking and he asked me what I did and I was talking about construction and he said “Oh my God! I had this contractor once…” and he went into this story for half an hour and couldn’t say enough evil things about this contractor. And he told me all the terrible things, and how he was just the worst guy in the world and all this kinda stuff. And I thought that’s interesting because never in my life, or very rarely have I had someone come up and say “Hey guess what I had my bathroom done, and the guy was amazing! It was clean and it looked great, and it was a decent price, we’re very happy!” So a rule of thumb that I’ve carried with me forever is that – you can do a thousand perfect jobs and you’re lucky if one of your customers mentions you in passing. But you screw one up, people on the other side of the planet will know your name!

Tash: [laughs] Exactly.

Kes: Especially now with social media, because people seem to gravitate to social media for the negative side as opposed to someone did a great job.

Bryan: Oh yea! That’s for sure, and we try specifically – especially with our Baeumler Approved program – we try and show case the good stuff as well because let’s be honest, there’s enough bad news around the planet – and there’s enough trolls out there starting drama and things. I mean we get very, little and very infrequently does anything negative come through. But its funny I told Sarah, after the first House of Bryan I said, “Don’t…don’t read all the comments on things.” I came home one day and she was in tears, she said “I read the comments…” and you know, what people don’t realize is that Sarah might walk in, or even I might walk in and say “Oh my God, what’ve you done, I hate those tiles! I can’t believe you did this to me!” and then, half a second later one of us will say, “I’m just kidding, I like them.” Well in the tv world, they’ll edit that out.

Tash: Yea. Cause it makes for good tv.

Bryan: Yea, you don’t hear the ‘just kidding’ part. You know, it really happened, but you don’t get to see the full picture. Whereas people on the internet – you know I had to say to Sarah, “This is someone who’s taken the time to say some very mean things and you have to realize that that’s kind of a reflection of their own unhappiness and nothing to do with you really, it’s to do with pixels on a screen somewhere in the world.” That’s kinda how I look at it. You know, take it all with all with a grain of salt because you never know – 32 year old Mary who loves your show might be 65 year old John who’s sitting in his house coat downing a bottle of wine. [laughs] So you just never know…

Tash: [laughs] You just never know.

Bryan: Yea, its certainly something that’s gotta be managed. There’s lots of times I want to comment on things…I made a comment during the US election about one of the candidates and some of the stuff that was in the news…and I got a few comments like “Why don’t you just shut up and stick to what you’re good at!”

Kes: [laughs] Wow…

Bryan: And I thought….now do I reply to this guy and mention that I have a degree in political science and business or do I just, you know, ignore it? And my production team and my office, and publicist and everybody said, “Just ignore it.”

Kes: Probably best. [laughs] You really cannot win with trolls. You can’t.

Bryan: Yea…that’s the thing. You can’t convince an idiot that you’re right. That’s for sure.

Kes: Exactly

Tash: Yea…I find even in the blog world, you see that all the time. People forget that these people are letting you into their lives and posting about their homes and will leave comments like “That is the ugliest couch I’ve ever seen! You have no taste whatsoever.” or ” I hate that. You suck at design!” and it’s like, wow…people that’s someone’s home.

Bryan: Yea….well it’s funny we got a comment once – somebody commented on the show and it was like “Oh God, I hate your show! I can’t stand your face and your voice” and all this kinda stuff. And I responded and said, “Hey! Thanks for watching. If you hated the show that much this week, wait until next week, you’ll hate it even more. Tell all your friends to watch it!”

All: [laugh]

Bryan: It finally got to the point where it’s like, you know what…our GOP said there’s a factory where they make @$$holes, and they work 24/7.

All: [laugh]

Bryan: And they’ll NEVER shut down…

Kes: It’s the truth..

Tash: So we only have one more question for you, before we let you get back to your very busy life…

Bryan: No worries.

Tash: What are you most looking forward to about coming to BlogPodium (aside from meeting us obviously)?

Bryan: [laughs] I think, whenever I do appearances – I’m a people person – I like meeting people and kind of, hearing their experience with things. I like answering questions and when I do answer questions, usually if I’m getting up to speak, I like to make people think. I can usually get people to answer their own questions with information that they already know just by, nudging them away from the trees. It’s funny I always do that with my kids – the thing where you kinda move your hands back and forth on either side of their face and then tell them to close their eyes, and when they do you smack them in the forehead. And they say “What are you doing?” and you say well “When you’re running through a forest, don’t close your eyes.”

Tash & Kes: [laugh]

Bryan: You know it’s the same thing with construction. I like having fun with people too, so sometimes if someone asks a silly question, my answer will be ‘Google it.” [laughs]

Tash & Kes: [laugh]

Bryan: But yea, just meeting people, talking to people, answering some questions, and getting a different perspective from other people’s lives and experiences. That’s what I’m looking forward to. And lunch I’m sure…never turn down free lunch! [laughs]

Tash: [laughs] Well I know that I’m definitely looking forward to meeting you in person, now that we’ve had this great chat. And…yea, thanks again for your time and we’ll see you on September 13th!

Kes: Yea, thanks and nice chatting with you!

Bryan: Sounds good, well good luck with the rest of the project guys and we’ll see you there!


If you’re attending this year’s BlogPodium on September 13th, you can catch Bryan Baeumler at the DRIcore booth from 1:15 – 2:45 pm.
You can also watch him in Season 3 of Leave it to Bryan, Mondays at 10PM ET/PT and look out for Season 3 of House of Bryan later this fall.

  • August 28, 2014

    What a wonderful interview! I have to admit, I’ve never seen the show… I know, under a rock. But this interview has really made me want to watch all he does. I can’t wait to see your TV show too! 😉

  • August 28, 2014

    Woah, very cool!! I love Bryan too and watch his shows all the time. What a great interview with him, well done – he seems so genuine and has a great sense of humour!!

  • August 28, 2014

    That’s awesome! Great job! I’m a huge fan of Bryan Baeumler and can’t wait to see the new show.

  • September 3, 2014

    This was a great interview post! Can’t wait to see Bryan at Blog Podium 🙂 His responses seemed so genuine. Great work, Tash!

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