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Home Our Story BLOG: The Story S2 Ep19_The WHO Behind HOW We Furnish Quality Floors & Backsplash Products! (Southwestern Interiors)

S2 Ep19_The WHO Behind HOW We Furnish Quality Floors & Backsplash Products! (Southwestern Interiors)

Tuesday October 5, 2021

It's time for your design studio appointment and decisions have to be made.. what kind of backsplash do you choose?? Should you go with carpet or wood flooring?? On this episode we bring in the experts from Southwestern Interiors - our flooring and backsplash suppliers for over 12 years! President Bob Burton and Sales and Account Manager Jim McCaddon share their wealth of knowledge about these products as they give advice on what things really need to be considered before choosing the flooring and backsplash product that's right for your new home.

S2 Ep19_The WHO Behind HOW We Furnish Quality Floors & Backsplash Products! (Southwestern Interiors)

S2 Ep19_The WHO Behind HOW We Furnish the Best Floors and Backsplash Products! (Southwestern Interiors).mp3

Intro: [00:00:03] Welcome Home, a podcast brought to you by John Houston Homes. Join hosts, Chelsi Frazier and Whitney Pryor, as they walk you through the exciting adventure of your home buying and building journey.

Whitney Pryor: [00:00:19] Thank you for joining us on the Welcome Home Podcast, I've got Chelsi here with me and I'm Whitney. Today we've got some special guests. They are one of our suppliers and vendors, so excited to talk with them. Chelsi, why don't you tell us who we've got on the show today?

Chelsi Frazier: [00:00:35] Yes, I would love to! Today we're talking to Bob Burton, he's the President, and Jim McCaddon, Sales and Account Manager, at Southwestern Interiors. Southwestern has been a partner with John Houston Homes for many, many years. They could tell me better than I know how many years, because longer than I've been here. They provide the flooring and backsplash product for our homes. That's a huge, huge piece of what we do, but really, they're so much more than a supplier. We have an amazing relationship with their team. As a company, they're very relationship focused similarly to how we are. They're very focused on that with their home builders and the families they work with. Their goal is to be exceptional from the inside out and to be an indispensable partner. That's absolutely true in our relationship with them and then also just really aligns with with what we believe in, as well. We decided to have an episode to cover flooring and backsplash because we do talk about that a lot and it's a huge decision for your house. There was no question to bring in our wonderful partners at Southwestern. We were so excited they said yes, so welcome to the show, Bob and Jim!

Jim McCaddon: [00:01:44] Thank you.

Bob Burton: [00:01:45] Thank you very much.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:01:46] Tell us a little bit about yourself. We can start with you, Bob. How long have you been with Southwestern and what is your job?

Bob Burton: [00:01:52] We are "Jacks of all trades," right, Jim? Every day is different. I've been with Southwestern for 7 years. Before that, I worked for Shaw Industries in multiple facets there, but mainly dealt with product, so I know a lot about carpet, unfortunately. It's kind of a dying breed. Carpet seems to be going and fewer, fewer rooms, but it's still a great flooring option, so we can talk a little bit about that today. I've been in the flooring business for 25 plus years.

Whitney Pryor: [00:02:27] Wow. I used to be in the roofing business. I was constantly looking at roofs. I'm like, "oh yeah, I've seen that roof."

Bob Burton: [00:02:36] I'm constantly walking into a restaurant and looking at the floor. My wife is always making fun of me like," great, they put the seam in the wrong place, we get it."

Chelsi Frazier: [00:02:49] She's probably learned a lot over the years as well.

Bob Burton: [00:02:51] Sure, for sure, yeah. She actually leans on me to say we should put this in the master bedroom or we should do this, but maybe not the color so much. She is the color queen. Over the years, we've given some good pointers on why people should upgrade their flooring.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:03:13] Jim, what about you?

Jim McCaddon: [00:03:15] I've been with the company 16 years, just about 16 years. We've been doing John Houston Homes for 12 years, I think.

Whitney Pryor: [00:03:25] Wow!

Chelsi Frazier: [00:03:25] Almost the entire time.

Jim McCaddon: [00:03:28] When we started, I think you were at 75 homes. It was John.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:03:37] You could just name the whole staff.

Jim McCaddon: [00:03:39] Yeah, plus five.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:03:39] Wow.

Jim McCaddon: [00:03:45] Yeah, it's been a great story to watch grow and see all of the changes over the years, as we all have done. We were a different sized company and had a different focus a dozen years ago. It's good success stories on both sides.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:04:05] Yeah, for sure. Tell us, who is Southwestern Interiors? How long have they been in the industry? I know you do more than just flooring and backsplash. I think those are the big things we partner with you guys on, but if you were to tell people about what you do.

Bob Burton: [00:04:19] Southwestern Interiors, we're a full turn key installation partner with a lot of builders. We do all flooring and window coverings, which we also do window coverings with yall, as well. We also have our own design center for those builders that don't have a design center that maybe want the design consultants. Jim was actually very involved when you guys built your own here because we've built several ourselves and 99% of what we do is new home construction-single family. It's been 20 years since Jim's brother, Bill, bought the business. We were an apartment replacement business. We would replace carpet in apartments before Bill bought it, so our business has changed quite a bit. Obviously there's a lot of demand for new homes, so we really value what you had said earlier about the relationship. That's the most important thing to us. That's why most of our partners, like John Houston, are 12 year+ relationships.

Whitney Pryor: [00:05:31] You mentioned that you're a turnkey business, right? You guys actually supply the flooring, tile and all of the different products, but you also install the products in our homes, as well.

Bob Burton: [00:05:43] Right, that's correct. Basically, your buyer comes in design center and they make the selections. Those selections come to us. We order from the multiple vendors, they come to our warehouse and then we install it when it's time for that, because of course, they don't all go at the same time, right? Wood goes in before carpet and so forth. Yes, that's what turnkey is, basically, from start to finish.

Whitney Pryor: [00:06:07] It makes it a lot easier for the builders to manage to0.

Bob Burton: [00:06:10] It does and they can manage it from their schedule. They can kind of work from a template knowing, okay, now it's time for me to tell Jim. We've got to get the carpet because we're closing this house in three weeks.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:06:23] You mentioned Jim helping out with the design studio. I don't want to just breeze by that because that was, from what I've been told, a huge undertaking and you were such a great partner in that. I just want to recognize and thank you for all that work. Thank you for helping Laura, Darren and that whole team design the studio and lay it out. We're really proud of it. It's kind of our little crowning jewel.

Jim McCaddon: [00:06:45] It's what the home buyer sees and the image that you present, you know? This is actually your second studio.

Whitney Pryor: [00:06:52] Mm hmm.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:06:53] Oh, you guys helped with the first one, as well?

Jim McCaddon: [00:06:54] Oh yes.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:06:56] I know helped is completely an understatement.

Jim McCaddon: [00:07:00] We don't tell you what you can sell. The designers get to pick the products they want to show based on the kind of customers. You have production and you have custom, so you have to have a good mix right of products to cover all the demographics.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:07:24] I think the way that the studio is laid out, there's so much thought that came into that. I could see the hand of Southwestern in that, just based on looking at your studio in Coppell, some of those influences that we see in our studio and how well it works. It was just really taking the many years of experience and knowledge that Southwestern had and helping your builder really integrate that in their studio. I think that just speaks volumes about Southwestern.

Bob Burton: [00:07:55] Thank you.

Jim McCaddon: [00:07:56] Thank you.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:07:57] It won an award in 2017 as Best Design Center in Nationals, not ours, yours, but maybe one day!

Whitney Pryor: [00:08:06] Maybe one day.

Bob Burton: [00:08:06] A lot of that credit goes to our Director, Demi Rice. I would be remiss to say that it was Jim and I that had anything to do with the Coppell Design Center, but you guys have a shining star here. What I like to say is, "South of the Downtown area, they're second to none," so John Houston should be very proud of that.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:08:27] We love it! It's a great space. We utilize it all we can. We're always trying to think of Marketing events or ideas we can do in there.

Whitney Pryor: [00:08:33] Our old studio was, I don't even remember how much square footage.

Jim McCaddon: [00:08:37] It is 1,800 square feet.

Whitney Pryor: [00:08:39] Yea, 1,800 square foot.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:08:39] I knew you would know.

Whitney Pryor: [00:08:39] Yea, now we are at almost 6,000 square feet.

Bob Burton: [00:08:39] Yes, and it's much more open. It's so much more inviting for some sort of Marketing event, like you said or, some sort of reception for potential buyers.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:08:54] The big things that we get asked, especially when we would have our Open Houses in the Design Studio. We would open the doors up for people to come in and browse because we thought it was important for people to see what the potential for their homes were before signing a contract, so we wanted them to come in, touch, feel and see. What are some of the more common types of flooring for homes?

Jim McCaddon: [00:09:13] I think right now, obviously, you're seeing a lot of L.V.T. in the Marketplace. It also is called Luxury Vinyl Plank or Luxury Vinyl Tile. It's really the next generation of of vinyl flooring, so to speak. A lot of that has to do with just marketing by your mass merchants- your Lowes and Home Depots. Nebraska Furniture Mart has made it a prevalent product. It's not good for all options. It's just kind of a hot trend. It's great for young families that may have dogs. It's more resistant to scratches and those kind of things, than maybe an engineered wood, but then there's advantages to engineered wood too. Right now, we're getting a lot of calls for it. Any time anything is new in the market, there's a lot of misinformation sometimes,. There's a lot of advertising around waterproof. It's not necessarily waterproof. It's water resistant, meaning if you spill water on it, you can clean it up. If it is inundated in water and gets underneath it, it will still mold like anything else would, so there's advantages and disadvantages. If you're just asking what the hot trend is right now, that seems to be, and a lot of that has to do with age groups. I don't know what the the demographic is of every single buyer that you guys have. Right now, the younger buyer, they may have lived in a multifamily environment where they're use to that product. Whereas maybe someone like myself that's owned six or seven homes, I wouldn't necessarily use that because I've lived on engineered wood or tile. A lot of times it just has to be where they came from. The millennials, I hate to use that because I don't like to put people on boxes, but the reality is that their choices in the way they shop is much different than the older generations.

Whitney Pryor: [00:11:17] I think of of my mom and she doesn't really like the vinyl or the laminate. I think it has to do with the fact that she grew up in a kitchen in the 70's that had that avocado green laminate flooring.

Bob Burton: [00:11:29] Yeah, exactly, and that was sheet vinyl.

Jim McCaddon: [00:11:32] The looks are so good looking now, you can't tell the difference. Some people when you walk in say, "that's a nice wood floor," and it's not.

Whitney Pryor: [00:11:42] Yeah, they are beautiful now. It's definitely come a long, long way.

Jim McCaddon: [00:11:46] It is 50% of your vinyl and wood business. It's 50/50 now. 50% of the homes do L.V.P. and 50% of the homes to refinished wood.

Whitney Pryor: [00:11:58] Wow!

Chelsi Frazier: [00:11:59] L.V.P. or L.V.T I guess, is kind of the same thing. Is it less expensive?

Bob Burton: [00:12:04] Not necessarily.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:12:07] Okay, so it's not necessarily a price point.

Bob Burton: [00:12:09] Yeah, you can sometimes get one that is less expensive, but I think the biggest pros are durability. It's a better floor for large dogs and it is more water resistant. Engineered wood is a wood it and it's going to absorb water, but it has its advantages too. I still love real wood, but I also feel like a homeowner has responsibility. When you buy a product, there's a certain amount of care that the owner of that product has to have ownership of. It's just like a car doesn't fill itself up with gas and oil. A homeowner should take care of their floor.

Whitney Pryor: [00:12:57] It doesn't it? Oh my gosh!

Bob Burton: [00:13:00] That's why people are buying Teslas.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:13:02] Right, you just plug it in, like your phone. Is there a lot to care for on wood flooring?

Bob Burton: [00:13:10] I don't know if it's more care. I think that it may scratch a little bit easier and water will damage it a little bit easier. Then again, it's also a glued down product, so there's more stability. Whereas a L.V.P/L.V.T. is a floating product, which means that there's an attached pad, so occasionally you can hear kind of a tapping noise because it is not glued to your slab.

Jim McCaddon: [00:13:41] The baseboards hold it down.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:13:44] Oh, okay.

Bob Burton: [00:13:44] It's supposed to be able to move. You may have noticed you're in Texas, but we have pretty wide temperature swings between February and December, so that product has to be able to move. There's some construction challenges there, as well, but I think there's a great application for both. To me, it still doesn't look 100% like real wood, L.V.T. doesn't, but if I had a young family that had a big dog, two kids and they were probably not going to sweep the floor twice a week, I'd probably put L.V.T. in.

Whitney Pryor: [00:14:23] I personally have engineered wood. I love the warmth that it creates. It is much more stable and solid. It doesn't make that sound that some vinyl's can make, but you're absolutely right. My sister's dogs come over sometimes and that first time they came to visit my house, I had tears in my eyes after she left because I saw little nail scratches from the dog. It was like, "oh, that hurts me." I think it definitely depends on everyone's situation. I have a little dog, so it's not a big deal for me, but for some people that have those big dogs, it might be a bigger deal.

Bob Burton: [00:15:02] You up brought up a great point. The thing about L.V.T. is that every plank is the same size. whether that's 7"x 48" or 9"x 60" X or what ever, it's going to look very regimented, right? Whereas, engineered wood has varied lengths and widths, so you have a little more variety, style and color. That's just another advantage and difference. I wouldn't sit here and downplay either because they both have great applications.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:15:36] I think it goes back to what Jim just mentioned, definitely lifestyle. What stage you're at and what do you have going on inside your house from day to day, for sure. Porcelain Ceramic, what do we know about that?

Bob Burton: [00:15:47] I mean really, Red Body, which is what ceramic is, is a builder based grade kind of product, right? That's where you see the edges are red. It's not as strong as a porcelain. It's an entry level product. If someone's asking you, "what should I go with?" I mean, if your budget only allows you to go with the standard, then that's the case. We all have a budget we have to live within, but porcelain is a stronger product and it's going to chip less easy. If you were to drop something really heavy on the tile, you can chip it as well. I'm sure we've all dropped a bottle of wine or something. Porcelain is fired at a much higher temperature. which makes it harder. It has a higher absorption rate for showers and stuff like that. It's not as porous as the red clay.

Jim McCaddon: [00:16:47] The composition of porcelain is stronger as stronger.

Whitney Pryor: [00:16:50] That's nice.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:16:51] When I hear the word porcelain, I think of something very breakable, like a little China doll or something. I don't know, the name association is off for me.

Whitney Pryor: [00:17:00] I know that the the latest trend, of course, is having engineered wood or some type of wood type flooring or tile flooring, but we still like carpet in our bedrooms, our game rooms and media rooms. Can you tell us a little bit more about the different carpets that you guys provide or offer?

Bob Burton: [00:17:22] We offer almost anything. We do all major brands, but I still am a big fan of carpet for the bedrooms. I also feel like the dollars are small per square foot to upgrade your carpet. Jim and I were talking this the other day that, not that you should be thinking about the next owner of your home because it's your home and you should make it your home and beautify the home the way you want it, but, if you upgrade your carpet when you're going through the design center, that's the best time to do it. If you were to have to resell. it's going to resell much better, and you're not going to have to replace your carpet. Patterned carpets are big right now. It's always nice to have a pattern carpet in the master. I could see maybe going with the level two or three in the kids rooms because you're going to get higher traffic and you're going to have things that may happen there.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:18:22] Yes, like spills.

Bob Burton: [00:18:23] Yeah! Master bedrooms are big, right? It provides a great opportunity to have a nice upgraded floor and that's something to be proud of. If you put your standard carpet in your master bedroom, you missed a great opportunity to impress your guests and actually enjoy it yourself, as well.

Whitney Pryor: [00:18:45] Yeah, definitely.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:18:47] What would be a carpet upgrade? Is it the the type of fiber or how it's woven?

Bob Burton: [00:18:53] I think a lot has to do with construction and the weight of the product. A standard base grade carpet is a 25 ounce FHA. It is whatever the minimum that's allowed by FHA, right? That's pretty standard with all builders, not like someone does this and someone does that. That's what is built into the standard price of your house. What's really hot, I said before, are looped and patterned carpets because you see that visual difference. It's kind of hard to see weight from the top, right? You get something that weighs 25 ounces or weighs 40 ounces. It's kind of hard to tell by looking at it, but you can tell if you have a diamond patterned carpet or some sort of basket weave. I always say, that's a visual upgrade vs. an actual apparent value upgrade. Some people touch and feel the carpet. They're like, "oh, yeah, I really like how that feels," but really, you're looking at it from standing view. When you buy things, it should have visual value.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:19:59] Yeah, that makes sense because you're going to be looking down at it.

Whitney Pryor: [00:20:02] Yeah, so kind of a hidden upgrade that I think people don't always look at is the padding, too. Can you tell us a little bit about what a big difference that makes to you?

Bob Burton: [00:20:14] There's a lot of different ways to look at carpet cushion, but I think that you should do it based on comfort. While there are some pads that will elongate the life of the carpet, you should do it based on how you like it and your lifestyle. If you spend a lot of time on the floor and maybe you want a little more comfort underfoot, then I would go with a thicker pad. There's also pads that are more dense that provide more stability for a pattern or Berber. I would always upgrade my pad. it's a simple upgrade. Honestly, if you're rolling in upgrades into your loan, all upgrades and designs are really inexpensive, if you think about the life of a loan. Money is cheap when you're borrowing it on a 30 year mortgage. If you're thinking about $4 for every $1,000, it's kind of crazy. Why wouldn't you do it when it's over a 30 year period. You know, 5 years down the road, you're like, "God, I really wish we would have upgraded our carpet", and now you're paying for it all out of pocket

Whitney Pryor: [00:21:27] Also, you're having to move all of your furniture. It's such a pain to do after you move in.

Bob Burton: [00:21:33] A lot of people talk themselves out of it.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:21:35] It's not worth it.

Bob Burton: [00:21:36] Yeah, exactly.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:21:38] We'll do it on the next house.

Whitney Pryor: [00:21:41] Yeah.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:21:41] Are there locations that you should and shouldn't put certain types of flooring?

Jim McCaddon: [00:21:45] You wouldn't put wood or L.V.T in wet area. Now, you are seeing more L.V.T. going into bathrooms. We still recommend against that just because there's a lot of moisture in the bathroom. if it does get behind a freestanding tub and those kind of things, it's hard. No one's putting carpet in bathrooms anymore. I mean, that was our grandmother's house, right? I would definitely stay away from hardwood in bathrooms if at all possible, with exception of maybe a down stairs powder.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:22:25] As I was researching getting ready for today's episode, I came across something on yall's frequently asked questions page on your website, which is amazing. Everybody needs to go check that out. It blew my mind because I've always thought this, carpet and allergies is their connection?

Bob Burton: [00:22:42] What did the website say?

Chelsi Frazier: [00:22:43] It said, "no, it's a myth!"

Bob Burton: [00:22:45] Yeah, I'm sure a low pile carpet is better for someone that has allergies, but mainly that's because the carpet is grabbing the dust and whatever someone is allergic to a little bit more frequently than the hard surface. We can see dust, dirt and mold on the top of a hard surface, but you can't necessarily see it in the carpet. I know we're all good stewards and we vacuum a couple of times a week.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:23:16] Sure.

Whitney Pryor: [00:23:17] Yeah.

Bob Burton: [00:23:17] Yeah, but if you don't, that's what people are allergic to, it's not the carpet.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:23:24] It's the stuff getting in there.

Bob Burton: [00:23:24] Yea, stuff getting in there. That was a myth. Now there are carpets out there that are better for odor, but that's really more pet related. They make carpet out of a solution dyed polyester now that is really great for pets that may have mistakes in the house, but the allergy thing is a myth.

Whitney Pryor: [00:23:51] All right, with you guys supplying tile, we know tile is a big part of the design package when homeowners are looking through a design studio. It can really change the aesthetic of our homes. Can you kind of go into some of those design trends that we're seeing and give us a little more information? I know, especially with what we see on HGTV, maybe different grout colors and things like that, we get asked that question a lot. Can you kind of talk us through what your knowledge and advice is on that?

Bob Burton: [00:24:22] Yes, definitely. You mentioned it perfectly because HGTV is one of our challenges. While they do create some beautiful product, we don't recommend contrasting grout for numerous reasons, but mainly because a complimentary grout will hide any imperfections in the tile and there are minor imperfections in tile. That contrasting black grout on white tile, up close, you'll see all the little imperfections in the tile. It'll look like it is a bad grout job, but it's filling all those voids in the in the tile, which are fine by standard of the tile, but you wouldn't see that with a grout that's the same color. It's recommended when you see it on TV, we're seeing it from 20 feet. When you're next to your stovetop, it's right there and you're like, "okay, they they didn't grout this right." You could still do it, it's just building that expectation that you may see some of the imperfections in the edge of the tile.

Whitney Pryor: [00:25:33] Okay.

Jim McCaddon: [00:25:33] There are products out there that are rectified, but they're also extremely expensive to make.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:25:40] I don't think that we are even offering the darker grout with tile in our design studio right now. Is that something that you guys see with other builders, just completely staying away from? We're just not going to touch it.

Bob Burton: [00:25:54] Right, you're not going to see that. That is more of a remodel trend that you see on TV. For the most part, new construction is fairly conservative with warm tones because people want their home to be presentable because they can't wait to show it off. Most of the shows that you see are re-doing a 30, 40, 50 year old home. Every room is very unique and they can do those kind of things too.

Jim McCaddon: [00:26:25] It's a different price point.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:26:26] Yes! They get it done in an hour and it looks perfect, because it's from 20 feet away.

Whitney Pryor: [00:26:32] Yea, sometimes those design trends they just don't stick, right?

Chelsi Frazier: [00:26:37] You'll hate it.

Bob Burton: [00:26:39] Right.

Whitney Pryor: [00:26:39] It's kind of like the mauve tiles back in the day. No one's really doing that anymore, but it looks good at the time. It probably is not going to stick around. You talked about grout. A question that we get asked a lot whenever homeowners move into their home is whether or not the grout is sealed? Why should they seal it or should they not seal it? What is the importance of that?

Jim McCaddon: [00:27:07] The grout we use has a sealer in it.

Whitney Pryor: [00:27:12] Oh, okay.

Jim McCaddon: [00:27:13] No grout is impervious to any stain. If you push red wine on it, it's going to go through.

Whitney Pryor: [00:27:21] Mm hmm.

Jim McCaddon: [00:27:22] Grout should sit for at least 60 days before you even considered sealing it. If you seal it, it's not a cure all. If you have any repairs, it's going to be a different color because with that sealer, the grout is still porous.

Whitney Pryor: [00:27:45] I gotcha. If you were to come in and do a repair, afterwards, that sealers probably changed the color of it, made it a little bit darker and it's not going to look the same.

Jim McCaddon: [00:27:54] The repair will be lighter, it will be the same.

Bob Burton: [00:27:58] Things happen, I mean, when we say repair, it could be, they're moving in and the movers crack a couple of tiles moving the refrigerator. You name it, things can happen. If the homeowner ,after a couple of months, they want to seal it themselves to help for any staining that may happen, then that's their choice. I's really not something that I would do on a yearly basis.

Jim McCaddon: [00:28:22] It's not a complicated process. You put it on, brush it on like a toothbrush and wipe it off.

Whitney Pryor: [00:28:29] Any cleaning or maintenance recommendations on that front?

Jim McCaddon: [00:28:37] For wood especially, nothing has a polish, soap or anything.

Bob Burton: [00:28:47] The issues that we have right now is, the two things that do the most damage to flooring, wet jets on the wood floor.

Whitney Pryor: [00:29:00] Really?

Bob Burton: [00:29:00] Yea, because you're putting just a lot of moisture on the wood floor and that doesn't always come up. It may stay in some of the joints that can create some cracking and peeling on an engineered floor. The other biggest maintenance challenge we have is that some of your vacuums, I hate to use a brand name, the beater bar, is very tough on the carpet itself. A lot of times, it's better to use a suction back or the suction mode of a vacuum vs. the beater bar. Also, make sure that you're sweeping carpet vs. beating it. If you're on a very low setting, it could just be grinding it and you're crushing those tips of the carpet.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:29:49] Oh!

Whitney Pryor: [00:29:50] I didn't know that!

Chelsi Frazier: [00:29:50] Yes, that's interesting.

Bob Burton: [00:29:50] A lot of carpets are super powerful, like the Dyson and stuff, but it can be negative if you're grinding on the carpet. If you're just sweeping and staying on top of it, it's doing all the work.

Whitney Pryor: [00:30:04] Okay.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:30:04] That's good to know.

Whitney Pryor: [00:30:06] Would you recommend a Bona type product for engineered wood, where it's made for it and those are safe to use on wood floors or engineered wood floors?

Jim McCaddon: [00:30:18] There's Bona or there's another one called Pro Care, that you can buy off of Amazon. It's very good.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:30:24] Whitney needs to know for her new flooring.

Whitney Pryor: [00:30:26] I have the Bona wood care and I'm just making sure I'm doing the right thing.

Bob Burton: [00:30:30] You're doing the right thing.

Jim McCaddon: [00:30:33] The one thing about all those products, a little goes a long way. You're not going to shine your floor with Bona. You're not changing the color, everything is matte.

Whitney Pryor: [00:30:44] Okay, good to know.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:30:47] I know certain tiles can't be used on the floor like subway tile or things like that. What's the reason for that or what's to consider in that?

Bob Burton: [00:30:54] Floor tile is at minimum of 3/8" thick. The way it's made is for weight. A subway tile is very thin. The way it's fired and made, it's not made for weight or pressure. There's even some bigger tiles in the showroom that we put a sticker on there says, "wall, only," because the manufacturer has said that it can't handle weight.

Bob Burton: [00:31:23] Yea, all floor tiles for the most part, can be used on the wall, but all wall tiles that are made for wall cannot be used on the floor.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:31:32] Okay.

Jim McCaddon: [00:31:32] If it' got traffic, it maybe pretty, but it will crack.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:31:37] It won't look pretty for long.

Bob Burton: [00:31:38] No.

Jim McCaddon: [00:31:40] For example, a woman in a pair of high heels, every step is 400 pounds of pressure.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:31:46] Oh, wow.

Whitney Pryor: [00:31:47] Wow!

Jim McCaddon: [00:31:47] That's what you put on a high heel.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:31:50] Interesting. What about backsplashes? Is there a thickness or anything that you should consider there?

Jim McCaddon: [00:31:59] No, I think with the mosaics and subway tiles that are trend today, they're made that way.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:32:06] Oh, okay.

Jim McCaddon: [00:32:09] They're up to a 1/2" thick but, any cutting around plugs and things like that, you've got to take that into consideration so the plate can fit over something.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:32:20] Right, makes sense.

Bob Burton: [00:32:21] I just think for backsplashes, the most important part is for the buyer to just understand that the visuals may look a little different in the house underneath the cabinets vs. in the studio. The pattern is going to look the same, but remember you have natural light and you have light reflecting different things going on in a house. It just makes products look a little different when they get the 3D effect going and maybe under cabinet lights, so just set expectations for yourself. "Okay, this is the same product, it just looks a little different.

Whitney Pryor: [00:32:53] Mm hmm.

Jim McCaddon: [00:32:54] To add to that, if it's a stone product, stone comes out of a crown. The range of color varies based from one piece to the next.

Whitney Pryor: [00:33:06] Sure.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:33:07] Yeah, we see that a lot in our exterior stones, too. It's hard to see that range in the variation in a sample.

Whitney Pryor: [00:33:15] Yeah, I think going back to the the color differences, it's kind of like when you go to Home Depot and choose paint colors, right? It's so hard to know what the difference is and how it's actually going to look in your home. It's really almost an eye trick. You do have to keep that variation in mind that it's going to look different in your home, depending on how much natural light you have.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:33:39] Yeah, for sure.

Jim McCaddon: [00:33:40] As we all have said during this process, it's setting the expectations, the correct expectations.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:33:47] It goes a long way for the end result. Well, is there anything else you would recommend homeowners really think about or consider before selecting their flooring, backsplash or anything in their home? Any just kind of final words of wisdom?

Bob Burton: [00:34:00] I feel like this is your best opportunity to make your home a dream and make it your dream home, so don't hesitate. This is the time to do it because you won't go back and do it. Unless you're buying an existing home that needs to be redone, when you're buying a new home, do it then and do it for yourself. A lot of people buy houses and they're worried about what it's going to look like when they resell it. Well, you've got to live in it first, raise a family or whatever the case may be. It's like, do it for you, you know? This should be a fun experience, not stressful.

Jim McCaddon: [00:34:40] Yeah.

Whitney Pryor: [00:34:41] Definitely. Yeah, like we've said, it's so much easier to do it before you move in, than when you've got all your furniture and family living there.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:34:49] Yeah, I think we represent both ends of that spectrum. Whitney bought a new home and I bought a home built in 1984. It is not fun to remodel and it's work every time it happens.

Jim McCaddon: [00:35:01] It's the little things that you're not looking at. Somebody comes in and puts the floor in, but you don't have to put the baseboards back up or you've got to touch up paint, so remodel is an animal in itself. It's completely different than new home construction.

Whitney Pryor: [00:35:18] Definitely.

Chelsi Frazier: [00:35:19] Bob and Jim, thank you both so, so much for coming. Y'all have been a wealth of knowledge and so informative to our to our listeners. For us to, I think Whitney's making sure she's doing all the things right and I just want to go build a new house now. Thank you very much. We appreciate both of you, your partnership and the long time relationship we've had with Southwestern.

Bob Burton: [00:35:41] We appreciate you guys.

Whitney Pryor: [00:35:43] If you would like to learn more information about Southwestern Interiors, you can visit their amazing website at for design, inspiration and more answers from the experts. You can also call them at 469.444.2030.

Chelsi Frazier and Whitney Pryor: [00:36:02] Welcome Home!


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