Q&A: Mina Hawk On Her New Spinoff, Good Bones: Risky Business

Mina stands in the framing of a victorian house she is renovated
Mina Starsiak Hawk, host of HGTV’s Good Bones: Risky Business poses for a portrait.

TWO CHICKS and a Hammer keeps adding on to its brand as an HGTV juggernaut. For the first time in seven seasons of the hit show Good Bones, the network has added six episodes (for a total of 20). The next six weeks are devoted to a single house, rather than one house per episode. Titled Good Bones: Risky Business, the show-within-a-show focuses on Mina Hawk’s passion project, a 23-room Victorian in Fountain Square that she hopes will become Two Chicks’ legacy in Indianapolis as an event space and vacation rental.

We caught up with Hawk to discuss Season 7’s theme of growing the Two Chicks business, leading up her biggest renovation yet.

In the preview, you say, “No one thinks this is a good idea.” Who cautioned you against this and why?

Pretty much literally everyone because it was a bad idea. It was a super-risky investment. I didn’t have the money figured out. I didn’t really have anything figured out. I just knew I could figure it out, I guess.

What were the risky parts? The investment, the shape of the house?

The cost, for sure. The general scale of the house is so much bigger than anything I’ve ever taken on, and it was in really rough shape.

When something looks risky, how do you decide to walk away from purchasing it?

I don’t. The only reason I wouldn’t is because I get outbid. We’re used to dealing with the worst houses, so there’s not a lot that scares me away.

What are you most excited about with Risky Business?

I’m excited that it’s a more comprehensive look at our business, at me and my family, and really the entire home renovation process. With six episodes being about one property, you just have the ability to go so much more in depth.

Growth has been the theme of Season 7. Last week’s episode, when you built the new Two Chicks headquarters, was called “Two Chicks Forever Home.” Is it going to be enough space as the company grows, or do you already wish that the building had a third story?

In terms of office space, yes. Storage is always a different beast. Our warehouse space in HQ is pretty full, but things move in and out of there regularly enough that the size works well for us.

The episode got a little emotional because HQ shows how far you’ve come. Do you get as teary as we do when your husband expresses his pride in you on camera?

My sweet, sweet husband is much more in tune with his emotions than I am, and it probably takes too much to make me cry. Usually my tears are out of physical pain.

The episode also made us wonder how big your team really is, beyond what we see on TV. 

We have our construction and design teams, our management team, and marketing. That’s people you know, like Austin, MJ, and now Finley, who’s been on Season 7 a lot more, in addition to the people that aren’t in front of the camera, like Danny, our foreman, or Brittany, who’s the head of our construction team. We’ve also got our District Co. store team team that is always working hard to take care of our retail customers. 

You said you want to take on more client renovations, like Episode 5 this season, renovating former Pacers player Justin Holiday’s mansion in Zionsville. What kind of projects are you looking for? 

Comprehensive, whole-home projects are awesome because you get the best flow by being able to tackle the whole property. But a little girl’s room or bathroom is fun as a little bite-sized project.

Do you want to branch out from the style of homes common in Fountain Square, Bates-Hendricks, and Old Southside?

I love the style found in those neighborhoods, and the character that those houses have, but we have new construction going on as well.

What really gets you fired up from a design and work perspective?

Other people being excited and passionate about a project is contagious.

Are you looking at other areas of Indy—or even Indiana?

I’m not. Downtown is where we live and work, and we love the communities here.

The home in Risky Business is right in Fountain Square, where Two Chicks was born. Will each room have its own theme?

In a way. We have different spaces within the house with different purposes, so they each have their own unique moment.

Why take this big project on with a growing business and family? 

Because I’m crazy.