Think buying a house—particularly on the cheap—is downright impossible these days? The stars of a new HGTV show beg to differ.
On “Bargain Block,” house flippers Keith Bynum and Evan Thomas buy homes in Detroit, where this couple moved in 2017, figuring they could make a better profit here than in their old city of Denver.
In the series premiere, “Desert Modern and Museum,” Bynum and Thomas have bought two houses on the same block: a two-bedroom, one-bathroom home for a mere $1,000, as well as a three-bedroom, two-bath for $32,000. These two homes need a lot of work, and Bynum and Thomas do the entire renovation themselves. It’s a lot of elbow grease, but the profits they make when they sell (with the help of real estate agent and friend Shea Hicks-Whitfield) prove they’re on to something.
Here’s how Bynum and Thomas turn cheap old houses into gorgeous new homes—which might inspire some budget-friendly upgrades around your own abode, too.
Lean in to the chipped paint look
When Bynum and Thomas first walk into their two-bedroom house, they’re horrified. The house is filled with junk and has been abandoned for so long, the peeling paint on the wall seems to have a mind of its own.
Once they scrape the walls, though, Bynum likes the rough look of the remaining paint. While Thomas isn’t necessarily in love with the look, Bynum wants to keep the walls as is.
In the end, Bynum gets his way and they keep the colorful character in the dining room, but they also whitewash the room so that the colors seem a little softer. Then, to finish the look, they install wainscoting around the room, made of simple plywood.
“It’ll be, like, our little affordable version of shiplap,” Bynum says.
When the house is finished, the room looks amazing. The paint gives the room a completely unique look, while the paneling gives it some classic charm. Who knows—maybe Bynum and Thomas just started the next big trend with paint!
The right tile can make all the difference
Bynum wants this house to feel like an ancient desert oasis, so he chooses colors and textures that have a warm, antique feel. Still, he wants to include some brighter, modern features, too.
“A lot of the design in the house will have a timeworn and rugged look,” Bynum says. “So I wanted to counterbalance that with a little luxury in the kitchen, and I found this gorgeous emerald tile that will make the space look like a sparkling gem.”
Bynum also gets creative in the home’s bathroom, giving the tub an ombre tile feature that looks great.
These two tile designs brighten the home and add rich color. It just goes to show that while paint color is important, the right tile tones will also stand out to buyers.
Don’t be afraid to personalize your space
Bynum and Thomas try to stick to a strict budget for this two-bedroom renovation, so sometimes they need to get creative. One budget-friendly way they do this is by creating a unique headboard out of thin pieces of wood that are looped and affixed to the wall.
While Thomas points out that the piece is a little wild, Bynum loves it.
“Most people fixing up old houses choose neutral contractor-grade finishes, but I’m an artist at heart,” Bynum says. “Each house needs its own style and character. Sometimes this means making outlandish choices, but it’s way more fun that way and I believe it makes our houses more valuable in the end.”
It seems Bynum is right, because after listing their house for $75,900, they get a full-price offer in just two days. It just goes to show that sometimes a creative design feature is great for a sale.
Pour concrete countertops for cheap
Meanwhile, in the three-bedroom house, Bynum and Thomas work hard to update the kitchen. They install white counters and decide to save money by pouring their own concrete countertops.
“Countertops, even in a kitchen this size, can cost thousands of dollars,” Bynum says. “All the materials we need today only cost a couple hundred bucks. And concrete is just as durable and could look just as high-end with the right finishes.”
In the end, it turns out home buyers love the kitchen, proving that counters don’t need to be made from pricey marble to look great.
A wall mural makes a statement for cheap
Bynum wants to make sure his designs stand out, so he makes a big impression in this three-bedroom house by creating a modern mural and a moody black-and-white bathroom wall.
His multicolored, geometric mural looks great, and it’s done cheaply with paint and painter’s tape, but Bynum admits that these features won’t impress every buyer.
“Art can be pretty personal so it’s a gamble, but hopefully my vision will resonate and a buyer will love this as much as I do,” he says.
In the end, Bynum and Thomas find the right buyer. After listing this house for $99,900, they received a full-price offer after just five days. That leaves them a profit of $27,900, and when combined with the $29,900 proceeds from the other two-bedroom house, Bynum and Thomas make off with a whopping $57,800.
Here’s to hoping these two continue their winning streak to make over Detroit one house, and block, at a time!
The post ‘Bargain Block’ Reveals Where To Buy a House for $1K: Can You Guess? appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.