What started as a personal project turned into a community project, and has now developed into the inspiration we've all come to know and love on HGTV's hit show, Good Bones, which is currently screening on Foxtel.
The pair began renovations in 2007 when Mina bought her first home that needed "all the work," according to Mina. With the rehab of this home, the two not only renovated a house but discovered a passion for renovation, strengthened their bond, and made it their mission to "revitalize Indianapolis one property at a time" under the brand Two Chicks and a Hammer.
In 2014, they were completing 2-3 houses per year in between their day jobs. After they were approached by High Noon Entertainment, a pilot episode of a home improvement show was aired on HGTV in the United States in May 2015 under the name Two Chicks and a Hammer. In July 2015, after a successful pilot, they began filming the first season of Good Bones. They're now working on home rehabilitation full time, completing around 13 homes per year around Indianapolis.
We spoke with the duo about how to get started, working with family, and whether or not fixer upper homes are always worth it.
Karen (K): As Mina's mom, I want the world to see her as the talented, beautiful, hard-working, smart, dedicated person she is—which is why I correct her grammar and [let her know] when I think she is making decisions that don't flatter her. She never appreciates this commentary, so I've tried to tone it down. On the flip side, she seems to feel pretty comfortable calling me out for pretty much anything. I just roll with it.
Yes there are challenges, and each challenge helps me grow. Each challenge met and mastered makes our bond stronger.
K: Fixing things is probably in my DNA but no formal training.
K: Start where you live; start small and within your budget. Anyone can turn on a porch light to make the neighborhood safer and more inviting at night. Anyone can shovel and pick up blowing trash—if you want to start [getting the community on board], offer to paint the front of a neighbor's house or help in their yard.
K: A fixer upper can save money if you have the skill to properly assess the work that needs to be done and to do the work. Things like foundations are not for the faint of heart. Electrical work needs to be done by a professional. Don't take on roof projects if you don't like heights.
For more information : www.hgtv.com/shows/good-bones and Karen & Mina's Real Estate Education – www.kmrealestateeducation.
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Debra Beck-Mewing is the Founder and CEO of The Property Frontline. She has more than 20 years' experience in buying property Australia-wide, and is skilled in helping buyers use a range of strategies including renovating, granny flats, sub-division and development. Debra is experienced in identifying tailored opportunities, homes and sourcing properties that have multiple uses. She is a Qualified Property Investment Advisor, licensed real estate agent and also holds a Bachelor of Commerce and Master of Business. As a passionate advocate for increasing transparency in the property and wealth industries, Debra is a popular speaker on these topics. She is also an author, podcast host, Editor in Chief of Property Portfolio Magazine and participates on numerous committees including the Property Owners' Association.
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Disclaimer – This information is of a general nature only and does not constitute professional advice. We strongly recommend you seek your own professional advice in relation to your particular circumstances.