Tarek El Moussa and Christina Haack’s First Flop of Season

Lately, the hosts of “Flip or Flop,” Tarek El Moussa and Christina Haack, have been raking in the cash. With California’s real estate market booming, it seems every house they renovate is selling fast—and for top dollar.

But alas, the latest episode of “Flip or Flop” suggests that their winning streak may be at an end.

In the Season 11 episode “Enamored by the View,” Haack and El Moussa purchase a house in San Clemente, CA, for $1.05 million. It’s a steep purchase price, but the ocean view is well worth the money.

However, these flippers run into big problems when they find out the house has foundation issues. They spend $60,000 on structural improvements and a total of $333,200 on the renovation. It’s a ton of money to tie up in a single house!

Although this may be their first flop in a while, their renovation does include plenty of cool upgrades you might want to try on your own abode. Check ’em out and see whether you think they’re worth the expense.

A roof can make or break how a home looks

house
This red roof doesn’t fit the house.

(HGTV)

While the exterior of this home is in good shape, El Moussa and Haack agree there’s just something off about the curb appeal.

“It’s a Spanish-style roof,” El Moussa points out. “That’s not a Spanish-style house.”

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Watch: Christina Haack Is Ready to Flip Her Home, Turn Over a New Leaf

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El Moussa estimates that replacing this roof will cost somewhere between $16,000 to $18,000, which is a lot to pay to replace a perfectly good roof. Still, they know they’ll never be able to sell this place to a high-end buyer if it doesn’t have a high-end look.

house
With a new roof, this beach house has a more modern vibe.

(HGTV)

They replace the red roof with a modern black one, and sure enough, it looks much better.

Upgrade from sliding doors to bifold doors

sliding glass doors
These doors needed a fresh look to show off the winning view.

(HGTV)

El Moussa and Haack really want to emphasize the stunning ocean view in the backyard, so they take out the existing sliding doors to make room for two sets of bifold doors. However, El Moussa is concerned about the cost.

“I’m pretty sure it’s at least 50% more for the bifold than it is for the slider,” he says.

Still, he and Haack decide to spend the extra money, knowing that the doors will really impress buyers.

glass doors
With more glass, this view packs an even greater punch.

(HGTV)

While the flippers are technically splurging on the doors, they haven’t forgotten what their budget is. They end up buying the white bifold doors, at $14,000 for the pair, instead of the black ones, which cost $18,000.

It’s still a big price tag for doors, but if simply going with a different color can save $4,000, they know it’s worth the trade-off.

Extend your kitchen counter up the backsplash

kitchen
This old kitchen was tired and dated.

(HGTV)

In the kitchen, Haack wants an upscale look. “In a price point like this, design is so important,” she says.

She comes up with the idea to do floating shelves instead of upper cabinets. Then, she skips the traditional backsplash.

“We carry the countertop all the way up the back wall, so this entire back wall would be slab,” she says.

kitchen
Christina Haack loves this kitchen design.

(HGTV)

At first, El Moussa complains that the slabs will be too pricey. However, he comes around when he sees one with touches of gold, which perfectly matches the wood flooring. It’s just too good to pass up!

When the kitchen is finished, Haack is rightfully proud of her design. The open shelves show off the elegant slabs, and the kitchen feels beachy but chic.

“I think this is my favorite kitchen we’ve ever done,” she says.

Use tile to look like wainscoting

bathtub
A great view gives this bathroom serious appeal.

(HGTV)

For the bathroom, Haack shows El Moussa an off-white, textured tile that she proposes to put around the new bathtub.

“Sort of like a wainscoting type design, but with this,” she says.

This tile isn’t cheap—at $14 a square foot, it’s certainly an extravagance. Still, El Moussa agrees to the look, since the tile wainscoting breaks up the plain white bathroom tile with a little touch of something different.

Get a glass shower, especially if the bathroom has a view

shower
This shower was surprisingly small.

(HGTV)

While the master bathtub looks great, El Moussa and Haack run into trouble with the shower. They demolish the original shower, and their team puts up a wall between the shower and the bathroom window, which El Moussa knows is a problem.

“This shouldn’t be a wall, this should be glass, because the view’s right there,” he says.

There’s no sense in blocking a multimillion dollar view, even from the shower!

So, the flippers dole out another $1,000 to put in a glass wall. The new shower is elegant, however, and the open feel of this bathroom will be a serious selling point for buyers.

shower
This glass wall lets in the ocean view.

(HGTV)

Is this house a flip or flop?

When the house is finished, it’s gorgeous. However, after spending $1.05 million to buy the house and $333,200 to renovate it, they have a break-even price of $1,505,200.

They list the house for $1,999,000. Should they find a buyer at that price, they stand to make a profit of $493,800.

Unfortunately, by the end of the episode, no buyer has come forward, suggesting that this beachside retreat may be the first big flop of the season. It’s a hard lesson that expensive flips may not always pay off.

Janelle B. Smith

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