Have you ever attempted a DIY home project, and deeply regretted it? In HGTV’s new show “Help! I Wrecked My House,” Jasmine Roth helps homeowners who’ve tried, and miserably failed, to fix up their homes.
Roth—whom you may recognize from her appearances on “A Very Brady Renovation” and “Hidden Potential”—has her work cut out for her. In this show’s premiere, titled “No More Project Manager,” she meets Heather and Kevin, who have started many little projects in their Costa Mesa, CA, home, but haven’t finished any of them. Their bathroom isn’t done, they don’t have a kitchen backsplash, and there’s even exposed wires at the breakfast bar.
Fed up with their half-finished house, they’ve given Roth an $80,000 budget to finish their renovation. While this sounds like a healthy investment, there’s a lot that needs to be done. Roth knows that she’ll have to get creative to finish everything on her to-do list.
Read on to learn how Roth fixes up the unfinished parts of Heather and Kevin’s home, and learn more about DIY projects you should—and shouldn’t—try at home.
A backsplash isn’t just for looks
Roth first focused on the lack of a backsplash in the kitchen. She explains to the couple that the tile isn’t just for looks.
“When you’re using your sink and water is running down the drywall into this crack,” Roth says, pointing to the space between the counter and the wall, “you don’t know what’s going on back there. And that’s not good. You don’t ever want water on drywall.”
Roth picks out a white and gray mosaic tile that complements both the cabinets and the countertops. Not only will this tile keep the wall safe from water damage, but it also looks great.
Don’t let your backyard be just a yard
Heather and Kevin have a big backyard, but they never use it. Heather explains that they want to turn this sparse space into an entertaining area, almost like a second living room, but they just don’t know how to get started.
“We just don’t know what to do,” Heather says. “We don’t know how we can fix it.”
So Roth constructs the ultimate backyard hangout area, complete with a pergola, dining table, fire pit, and even a bowling alley. Best of all, this entertaining space doesn’t cost too much. By installing a prefab pergola and using reclaimed wood, she shaves $5,000 off her backyard budget.
Get creative with your pets’ household needs
Another item on Heather and Kevin’s lengthy to-do list is a doggy door. The couple have two small dogs, and they want a convenient way for their pups to go outside.
While dog doors are usually unexciting, Roth uses some reclaimed wood to create a tiny house shape around the opening. With just a little imagination, Roth turns this functional feature into the living room’s most adorable spot.
A bathroom renovation is not for beginners
This home renovation includes a lot of small projects, including the kitchen backsplash and the dog door, but it also has one big item on the to-do list: the main bathroom.
Kevin and Heather had started renovating the bathroom themselves, but construction halted when they realized they were in over their heads. The entire bathroom sits unfinished, which is of course a major bummer for this family of three.
“The bathroom was such, like, a big part of this house,” Kevin says, looking at the unfinished space. “We were so excited to have a second bathroom.”
So Roth knows she has to turn this space into the oasis Kevin and Heather have always wanted. One way she does this is by finishing the tub with a marble slab to give it a sophisticated look, and finishing up the tub with convenient drawers on the side for soaps or towels.
In the end, the tub adds a refined look, and the drawers add extra function. But perhaps the most important development is that the bathroom is finally finished!
Wooden beams can add personality
Roth is able to finish every project on Heather and Kevin’s list, but she’s not stopping there. She wants the home to look both finished and fabulous, so she adds some stylistic features, including a wooden beam between the kitchen and living room.
The beam is made of poplar, so it’s lightweight and also inexpensive. Plus, it adds a lot of style.
“Having this dark piece of wood that your eye immediately goes to, it just adds that warmth,” Roth says.
Give your closet doors some style
In the bedroom, Roth surprises Heather with one more custom detail: upgraded closet doors.
“Heather had the idea to have mirrored closet doors, but I don’t want to just throw up mirrored closet doors and call it a day,” Roth says. “I want to elevate. I want to take her idea to the next level.”
So Roth takes plain slab doors, then adds mirrors and molding to give it a unique look. It’s an easy and inexpensive way to upgrade otherwise boring doors, and it ends up being a true feature for the bedroom.
Does Jasmine Roth help fix up this house?
With only $80,000 to fix everything in the kitchen, living room, bathroom, and backyard, Roth already knows that it’ll be a challenge to stay on budget. So when she runs into a major plumbing issue that costs more than $20,000 to fix, she’s not sure how the renovation can recover.
However, Roth is able to cut costs in various places—like spending only $20,000 on the backyard instead of the budgeted $25,000. With these adjustments, Roth ends up going only slightly over budget, at $83,500. Roth and her team are able to finish the renovation in six weeks.
And best of all, Heather and Kevin love it.
“It looks like a dream house,” Heather says. “Honestly I think it’s above and beyond what we probably would have done for ourselves.”
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