Tarek El Moussa and Christina Hack tackle an expensive flip

On “Flip or Flop”, Christina Hack and Tarek El Moussa Know that open floor plans are preferred over cramped spaces, but what if you can’t knock down a wall that gets in your way?

In the Season 12 episode “Surf City Flip”, El Moussa and Haack purchase an $825,000 home in Huntington Beach, California. The four-bedroom, three-bathroom home is in fairly good condition, but the floor plan is clunky and needs work. Still, with a limited budget and time, they will have to choose their upgrades wisely in order to make a profit on this round.

Find out which renovations this team deems are worth the investment, as well as which ones are too expensive to pursue. Haack and El Moussa’s smart choices might also help you prioritize your next renovation.

Can’t knock down a wall? Give it a purpose instead

This wall gives the impression that the house is closed.


When El Moussa and Haack first enter this house, they are surprised to see a wall in the entrance. They soon find out that it will cost $25,000 to take it down.

Although El Moussa knows that knocking down walls is a popular upgrade, in this house it would be a waste of money. So he tries to convince Haack that they can make the wall work, suggesting building it out of stone or turning it into a drink center or keychain.

“You and your keychains,” Haack said. “Anybody wants a keychain.

bar area
After: Now this obstructive wall has a purpose.


Still, it looks like a beverage center is just what this space needs, so flippers add lower cabinets, open shelving, as well as wine racks to this wall. When the house is complete, Haack still thinks removing the wall altogether would have been more aesthetically pleasing, but makes peace with the beverage center as the best thing to do.

“This bar area makes a huge difference when you first walk in,” says Haack. “Otherwise that wall would have looked really weird.”

Use color and texture to highlight a home’s best features

This fireplace was small and dated.


To the left of the entrance, Haack and El Moussa find a living room with a fireplace. Although the room is a good size, the space feels smaller because of that pesky entryway wall. So the fins paint the back wall of the living room blue-gray to draw the eye in that direction. They also update the fireplace, adding tiles up to the ceiling, drawing attention to this feature.

When Haack shows El Moussa her choice for the fireplace tile (a large white tile with a wavy look), she explains, “Because of the texture, we can grout quite tightly and look like textured wallpaper.” .

After: This living room is now an ideal meeting place.


It costs $3,000 to build the fireplace and add tiles to the ceiling, but the results are beautiful. Tiling and painting are a great addition, showing how easy it can be to divert attention from a negative feature to a home’s best assets.


Watch: Out of space and out of your mind? Here’s how much it will cost to add to your home


If the layout isn’t great, make sure the finishes are top notch

new kitchen
Since the fins do not remove the wall, they must make this kitchen elegant.


The entrance wall closes not only the living room but also the kitchen.

“It’s a small kitchen,” Haack says when she first sees the space. “It’s very, very dark and the ceilings are very low. It is also the tile. It feels like a hospital here. »

Since Haack and El Moussa do not open the layout, they must compensate with stunning finishes. Haack shows El Moussa two different options, one modern and one contemporary, but it’s clear she’s leaning towards the modern look with gray cabinetry and a brown tile backsplash.

“We don’t normally do something like that,” says Haack. “I think it could be very pretty. We spent all that money on the kitchen, might as well be a little bold.

kitchen design
After: The “Flip or Flop” stars gave this kitchen a stunning look.


Although this look is a bit riskier than usual, in the end, it’s clear that Haack and El Moussa made the right call. Although the kitchen is enclosed by the entry wall, it’s so stunning that buyers probably won’t even notice the tight space.

There’s more than one way to add light to a home

kitchen lighting
With under cabinet lighting, this kitchen doesn’t need another window.


With the kitchen finishes installed, Haack and El Moussa are happy with their design decision. However, they realize that between the brown tiles and the wall, the kitchen seems a bit dark.

their contractor, Jeff Lawrencesays adding a window will only cost $1,000, but this change would need to be approved by the city, which would take about three weeks.

Haack and El Moussa decide to skip the window and make the kitchen brighter by adding more lights.

“Let’s do under cabinet lighting, extra lighting. Let’s make it as shiny as possible,” El Moussa told Lawrence.

This addition is only $600 and does not delay these fins.

When the cooking is done, Haack approves.

“It’s a bit dark, but I think adding the under cabinet lighting definitely had a huge impact,” she says. “It looks cool.”

It’s one more smart solution to that dated layout that proves homeowners don’t have to knock down a wall, or even create a window, to make their home look great. Sometimes all it takes is a creative design choice.

Dual showerheads give the bathroom a luxurious feel

large shower
This light cement-colored tile makes this large shower feel even bigger.


Upstairs, Haack and El Moussa find a large bedroom and an adjoining bathroom with another another one odd layout, with lots of wasted space and a vanity in front of the bathroom door. Unlike the entry, these fins decide to fix the floor plan of the bathroom, creating an extra large shower.

“It’s the biggest shower I’ve ever seen in my life,” says Haack.

Haack and El Moussa choose a lightweight tile with a cement look and add two showerheads, one for each side of the massive feature. When the bathroom starts to come together, Haack and El Moussa love the luxurious shower.

“It’s so big that there are two shower niches,” says Haack. I’m “really glad we made dual showerheads. Otherwise it would have just appeared to be a changing room with a shower head on one side.

Is it a flip or a flop?

Haack and El Moussa buy this house for $825,000 and invest $182,000 in the renovation. After factoring in closing costs and commissions, El Moussa says the house has a breakeven price of $1,067,400.

They decide to put the house up for sale for $1,299,000 and are shocked when they receive 13 offers in less than a week. They end up in receivership for $1,450,000, which means a profit of $382,600. It’s an incredible bargain that proves that a home doesn’t need a perfect layout to look good or land a buyer!

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