Jasmine Roth of “Help! I Wrecked My House” knows that a little renovation can turn a starter house into a dream home. But what if the new homeowners are always comparing their place with the house that got away?
In the episode “Toilet Is Still in the Hallway,” Roth helps Martine and Scott fix up their Long Beach, CA, home in the wake of Scott’s failed DIY home renovation. The bathroom is in shambles, and the kitchen needs work, too. Furthermore, the couple seem uninspired to renovate because they’re still obsessed with comparing their home to another house they liked more, but didn’t buy.
So, Roth must pull out all the stops to make this house feel less like a runner-up and more like the real prize—all with a meager $71,000 budget. Here’s how she pulls it off with some simple decor hacks you might be inspired to try yourself.
No kitchen island? A large table can work just as well
Martine and Scott have a small kitchen, which includes a small dining table and very little counter space. The space is tiny, but they’re hoping that Roth can give them a more functional space.
So Roth comes up with a space-saving idea: She builds a large dinner table that could also work as a kitchen island. The surface is big enough for lots of guests at dinner parties, but also close enough to the appliances to be handy as a secondary counter space.
When the kitchen is finished, Roth is proud of the design.
“This table is the perfect answer because if they want to use it as a workspace they can,” she says. Or “if they want to have people over, they can all sit here and have that space that they need to just gather.”
Install your shower curtain higher
Roth spends a good chunk of her budget on Martine and Scott’s bathroom. She redoes the tile, gets a new vanity, and even replaces the toilet.
When the work is all done, she doesn’t have much money left to fix up the shower. So she decides to do one small change that makes a big difference: She installs a new shower curtain higher than the typical rod would be, then adds extra-long curtains for a luxurious look.
“I have these really beautiful, all-the-way-up-to-the-ceiling curtains that make this space feel a lot bigger,” Roth says. “It accentuates this height of the ceiling, and it almost feels like the ceilings are vaulted without vaulting the ceiling.”
Cover up unsightly appliances
With the bathroom and the kitchen requiring the bulk of Roth’s budget and attention, she still wants to put some work into the living room. She notices a large heater on one wall and knows that she has to do something about this eyesore.
While she can’t get rid of the heater, she decides the next best solution is to cover it up. So, she orders a custom two-door cabinet that will cover the heater on one side and provide bar storage on the other.
When the cabinet is finished, Martine and Scott love it.
“This is awesome,” Martine says, opening the cabinet doors.
Add plants to surprising places
Even though covering up the living room’s eyesore of a heater helps, Roth realizes that her work in this space is not done yet.
“The interesting thing about this living room is that there’s nothing interesting about it,” Roth says.
So she comes up with a plan to bring some color and style to this plain room. As part of her plan, she adds a planter to one surprising spot: above the window.
The planter gives this living room a burst of color and personality, and it makes the room feel larger.
“By adding things like this planter, it’s going to add something that your eye can go up to,” Roth says. “It’s going to make the ceiling feel higher.”
Turn a table into a dog bed
Roth wants to make Scott and Martine feel completely at home in their new house—which means she also needs to make sure that their dog feels comfortable, too. So at the last minute she decides to create a dog bed that doubles as an end table. It’s a perfect way to add a dog-friendly feature that Scott and Martine can still enjoy.
“I love how Jasmine figures out ways to make things more functional,” Scott says.
Does Jasmine Roth help unwreck this house?
With just $71,000 to fix up Martine and Scott’s kitchen, bathroom, and living room, Roth knows she’ll have to get creative to fix up everything on their list.
In the end, Roth manages to stay on budget by using a few simple home decor hacks. And best of all, Scott and Martine seem so impressed by the results, that they appear to have forgotten about that other house—proof that a few simple upgrades can turn any house into a dream home.