HGTV’s Cristy Lee Transforms a Plain Home on ‘Steal This House’

HGTV star Cristy Lee is the host of Steal This House. She helps homebuyers snag the home of their dreams at a bargain-basement price. With her help, homebuyers purchase a home that needs a lot of TLC, then she renovates it to make it exactly what they want. Here’s what happened last time and how Lee made a couple’s real estate dreams come true.

Cristy Lee helps a couple find their new home at a great price

A white and grey house on a green lawn.
A white and grey house | Todd Kent via Unsplash

During this episode, Lee shows homes to Alex and Paulina. They’re from Chicago and are looking for homes in Michigan. Their budget is $450,00, but they haven’t found a house that meets all their needs. Alex and Paulina’s main concern is having a home with a functional layout. Having more space isn’t a big wish list item for them.

Alex says he really needs Lee’s help because he’s ready to move out of Paulina’s parents’ house. Alex and Paulina like the first house Lee shows them, but they aren’t happy with the size. They feel the home is too small. Alex also isn’t fond of the paneling in the living room and the outdated kitchen.

Alex and Paulina are concerned about the house hunt

Cristy Lee on HGTV's Steal This House
Cristy Lee | HGTV

Alex and Paulina had a conversation about their house hunt. Paulina is concerned about surprises that could come up during the renovation of an older house.

Paulina also isn’t sure if Lee understands their vision for the house. However, Alex says he would rather have someone like Lee do the renovations because she has a lot of experience. Paulina is still nervous about the process.

Lee decides to take Alex and Paulina to a home she renovated so they can see her work. Paulina’s concerns are laid to rest once she sees what’s possible with Lee’s help. She moves forward with their plan but lets Lee know that she really wants to stay within the budget.

Alex and Paulina decide to go with the second home they saw. It’s a little more expensive (and a bit plain) but it has more of what they’re looking for in a home. They like the open space and the possibility to add a bathroom.

Alex and Paulina buy their new home

Alex and Paulina purchase the home at its asking price of $375,000. This is $75,000 less than their original budget, so it leaves them with money to do the renovations.

Lee says the best part about working on this house was that there wasn’t a lot of demolition that needed to be done. After working on the kitchen and bathrooms, the couple has about $68,000 left to put toward the renovation.

Lee was happy that she was able to keep the original cabinets because it saved the couple $17,000 in updates. However, when Alex and Paulina requested the fireplace, this added to the renovation, putting them about $2,000 over their budget.

Although they’re over the budget, the renovations will pay off because Alex and Paulina have increased the value of their home. Says Lee, “The amount of equity that they’re going to gain with all of these projects on this house is definitely going to keep them happy.”

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