Everyone fondly remembers the start of the DIY/Home Improvement TV craze, TLC’s “Trading Spaces,” and now are anxiously awaiting the reboot, airing next month! But they’ll have to move over and make way for the new, hunky carpenter of “Trading Spaces,” Brett Tutor!
This Renaissance man has truly had his hand in everything from the military and SWAT training, to being a stuntman, singer-songwriter turned survival specialist on Discovery Channel’s “Treasure Quest”. Add in philanthropist, thrill seeker and golfer, and you have almost covered it all!
Yet, at the core of it all, he is an Austin native, skilled carpenter and doesn’t shy away from the camera; and that is what makes him the perfect pick for his new gig! If you would like to meet Brett and hear this story first-hand, head down to the Palmer Events Center THIS WEEKEND for the Austin Spring Home & Garden Show. Meet Brett, while finding everything for your home & garden and get ready for Spring!
We wanted to dig a little deeper as we waited to meet him at the show, so we asked him a few questions:
In reading your bio, it sounds like you have lived multiple lifetimes, to fit all that in! Can you tell us the highlights of your career, that led up to becoming the carpenter on the new trading spaces?
It has been a wild ride! Well, carpentry started for me when I was young. My grandpa was a builder and lived across the street and would bribe me to come over with food in exchange for labor and come help him work on home renovations that he was doing and helping him do home inspections. I moved to Hawaii after high school which was obviously incredible, I was a white water rafting guide and a rock climbing guide in Oregon for a bit, went to SWAT school after the Air Force and who would have thought all of those things would have come together to help me get into doing stunt work for film and commercials?! That led to being a survival specialist for Discovery Channel's ‘Treasure Quest,’ which actually led to my meeting for ‘Trading Spaces.’ But ‘Trading Spaces’ is a dream come true, I just hope we get to keep doing this for a long, long time!
Austin is glad to have you back, how did we get so lucky, what brought you home?
HA! No, I am the lucky one. Austin will always be home. I have been to a lot of places and Austin is a tough place to beat for so many reasons. My family is here and my home inspection business Property Doctors is here. Plus if you live in Austin and ever leave, you will soon realize that the rest of the world has absolutely no clue how to make a proper margarita or breakfast tacos!
Can you tell us why you started your non-profit, Off The Grid International, and a little about it?
I started the non-profit Off The Grid International about three years ago. We are a very small organization that is for the most part self-funded. I spent a summer in the slums of Kibera Kenya when I was 19 and that time there changed my life. Seeing kids go without basic needs will change anyone who sees it and you just want to do something that might be of service. So me and two guys who work for my company Property Doctors in Austin, doing home, septic, well and rainwater inspections, figured we would do what we know best and apply our skills overseas.
Our mission with OTGi is not to change the world but to just try and change the world for a small group of people in need of clean water and/or sanitation systems. Right now we build clean water systems and sanitation systems alongside the Peace Corps in highly remote areas. One day we hope to be able to build fully self-sustaining schools that run completely on solar power and use only rain water to help educate and employ local people groups. That is the dream at least for now!
We love that Trading Spaces nearly began the ‘home improvement show craze’, and is coming full circle for a reboot! It is definitely highly anticipated by DIY junkies and fans, what is it that you look forward to about it?
I am so unbelievably excited for people to see the upcoming season! I honestly didn't watch the show a ton when I was younger but after we started filming I immediately realized exactly why so many people love ‘Trading Spaces’! The time and budget constraints create a fun and crazy dynamic and sometimes a little drama. It really forces creativity and when you get some of the most talented designers on the planet in that wild and crazy two-day environment, amazing things happen. And amazing things did happen! With so many other home renovation shows that have followed ‘Trading Spaces,’ I think people will really appreciate coming back full circle and seeing the quality of design that is truly possible in two days with only $2,000! It is going to be a ton of fun and very inspiring for us normal people who don't have huge renovation budgets and a lot of extra time, but still want a beautiful home!
If you want to hear the rest of Brett’s story and get a jump on Spring projects, visit the 13th Annual Austin Spring Home & Garden Show, THIS WEEKEND, March 23-25 at the Palmer Events Center. Save time with everything for your home & garden under one roof. Save money with show only discounts and get ideas and inspiration. Plus, tour a tiny home and see adorable pets that are ready for adoption. For more info visit austinhomeandgardenshow.com and look out for the Trading Spaces reboot, airing April 7 on TLC!