When Demo Day Goes Wrong.

When Demo Day Goes Wrong.

When flipping a home you have to expect that things will not always go as planned. You just hope it doesn’t cost a lot of money. The less money those unexpected things cost the better! But, what happens when you can’t just fix or replace the unexpected? You cry. Yep, you just cry. #demodaydisaster

Our 1915 farmhouse had a lot of the charm you’d expect to see in a 100-year-old home. Hardwood floors, high baseboards, old radiators, and built-ins. Built-in’s are one of our favorite characteristics of an older home.

The kitchen had a built-in pantry with drawers and storage cabinets. (We decided to remove this particular built-in due to it taking up space in the kitchen that could be better used.) The adjoining dining room had a beautiful built-in buffet. We had exciting plans to restore it and bring it back to life.

Kitchen Built In Pantry_Fotor

Built In Buffet

Demo day is usually the first exciting day of a flip or remodel. It means you have all your ducks in a row and are ready to start! Seeing walls come down and old things being tossed out into the dumpster is so satisfying.

What’s not satisfying is realizing that the demo guy you hired demoed out the built-in buffet in the dining room. Yes.  The 104-year-old buffet that’s original to the house. Cue the tears. Seriously this was heartbreaking.

We try to keep as much originality to a house as we can. And, what’s more charming than an original built-in buffet?  Somehow our demo guy didn’t notice the sign taped on the buffet reading “Do Not Demo”. He removed all of it. My first thought was, can we put it back in? That was a big fat nope. He removed it all in chunks and broke up the boards afterward.


So long, Buffet.

After getting over the initial shock, Carter called a few of our local antique salvage shops, but no one had an old built-in the right size. Luckily, a week later we were able to track down one that would fit. It wasn’t as old, and not nearly as charming, but it would do the trick.

It still stings a little knowing a special piece to this homes’ 104-year-old history was destroyed. In the end, we decided not to use the replacement buffet we found, but to use the space for something different. Check back soon for the exciting reveal! 

In addition to the buffet being removed, we also had the walls between the kitchen and the dining room knocked down to open up the floor plan.

As you can see in the picture above the kitchen was small and just didn’t have good flow.

Now that the wall between the kitchen and dining room was removed you can really feel the space opening up. You can also see in the photo above on the right-hand side that we also removed the walls in the family room to create even more of an open floor plan.

Old homes are notorious for closed off floor plans with several separated, small rooms. (And small closets!) Don’t let that scare or intimidate you though. A structural engineer can come out and determine if you have a load bearing wall. If so, he can create a plan for steel beams to go up in their place. This is the second remodel we have done that has required steel beams to go in. It sounds like a lot of work, but it is a fairly simple process.

If you have any questions about your own flip or remodel feel free to shoot us an email.

Use #thefliphousediaries on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter to share your remodels with us!

-Heather and Carter


Our 1915 Farmhouse Remodel

Welcome Back.

Before I jump right in and start posting different projects I thought I would introduce the first house I’m going to share with you, the 1915 craftsman farmhouse. It is our latest project that we just wrapped up on the renovation process. I’m so excited to share all the transformations we did, but first here’s a little information about the home and how it became ours.

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Fun story. Carter and I were looking for an investment property, but kept falling short in the luck department. We were getting outbid on so many homes. Seriously home after home. The market was hot! In mid-April while on an anniversary trip in Europe, this house pops up on MLS. This also happens to be the same weekend back in 2018 that Minnesota gets hit with 24 inches of snow around the twin-cities. Our realtor threw on his snow boots to run out and check on this house out for us. After video chatting, we decided to put in an offer sight unseen. Luckily no one else made it out to see the house in the snow storm because our offer was quickly accepted. Hey Carter, Happy Anniversary. I got you a house! 😉

So as is, this house includes 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, and 3119 square feet. Outside it has a single stall detached garage, a shed, and a wheelchair accessible ramp. The lot size comes in at half an acre. The main floor includes a full bath, dining room, kitchen, small bedroom, living room, sunroom, pantry, and washer and dryer set up in the mudroom. The upstairs level has two big bedrooms, both with a set of regular closets and matching attic storage rooms. Sandwiched between those two rooms is a third tiny room. It technically was too small to be considered a bedroom. The basement is home to a small family room, an office/bedroom, a half bathroom, and a small kitchenette. There was also another washer and dryer down there. The basement is technically considered finished, but needs lots of TLC.

Our initial plan was to get the lot split in two. Due to the size we knew we could get a better profit if we sold half of the lot to a developer. After gathering information on how to go about getting the lot split, we started to get a little nervous about how long it could take. Not to mention the possibility of the split not getting approved. After much thought and consideration, we decided to proceed ahead with the remodel as planned and not try to split the lots.

Top Items To Address:

1. Add a proper master suite

2. Remodel Kitchen and Dining Room

3. Update all 3 bathrooms and add a 4th.

4. Build new garage

5. Add AC/Heat

6. Refinish hardwood floors

7. Paint entire house interior and exterior

8. New roof

9. New windows

10. Basement updates.

Be sure to check back each week to see the progress of this flip!

-Heather and Carter

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Hi! Welcome to our blog. We are a husband and wife team living in the great Minneapolis metro with our two kids. Over the past five years, we have purchased, remodeled, and sold a few homes all for a good return. It has become a fun hobby to do in our spare time. The kids even love to help in their own little ways. We try to include the entire family in the process whenever we can.

“Flipping” homes for a profit wasn’t something we originally set out to do. We sort of stumbled into it, but after having luck in the real estate market, we became addicted to remodeling homes. As of today, we are wrapping up our 3rd remodel and will be starting our 4th very soon.

A little about us: We are transplants living in the great Midwest. Originally from Florida, we moved to Minnesota in 2012 for a job opportunity. Carter works full-time at a Twin-Cities construction company as a Vice President. Heather is a Stay at Home mom to two boys, ages 5 and 1. As a family, we love to explore new places, go on bike rides around Lake Calhoun, and eat at our local favorite family pub.

Carter is the mastermind behind all of our flips. He designs new layouts for each home. Our main goals are always to open up the homes floor plan and maximize square footage. Creating a new floor plan that is open and has good flow is Carter’s specialty! He has had to get very creative over the years while working in old homes with small rooms. As the project manager he deals with the subcontractors, permits, and everything else construction related.

Heather helps with the interior design process. She does so by doing things like choosing the paint colors and scheme, finding the right bathroom vanities and hardware, selecting the best light fixtures for the room, ordering appliances, and picking out tile, etc.

So far, all of our remodels have been 100-year-old craftsman style homes with stucco exteriors. We find ourselves continually drawn to the charm of older homes. Leaded glass windows, tall baseboards, and built-in’s are everything! Even the occasional floor creak adds to the romantic ambiance of a vintage home.

There’s something endearing about the 100 years of life, love, and loss that has happened between their dusty walls. We really enjoy turning something old that someone else may consider a teardown into a beautiful home.

Our style is a mix of modern and transitional with a dash of industrial and a smidge of farmhouse added in. When it comes to kitchens we try to create a clean timeless look. If you spot any crystal chandeliers, lights, or doorknobs you’ve found Heather’s favorite thing to incorporate into our flips. Carter is a big fan of farmhouse sinks and sliding barwood doors.

Other things we try to put in every flip is a main floor master suites. Or “Master on Main” as we like to call it. Finding homes with the master suite on the main floor isn’t easy unless you are looking at a rambler. I very rarely come across ones on Zillow, but if I do luck out and find one, it’s almost always a master bedroom, not a master suite.

We realize the importance of creating a home that grows with families. And we know that luxury isn’t something that should be sacrificed when starting a family. Some of our favorite elements of luxury to add include: wine/beer fridge, pot filler above range, dual-fuel range, microwave drawer, heated bathroom floors, and ceiling speakers to name a few.

A friend mentioned we should start a blog to share our projects so here we are! We plan on sharing tips, transformations photo’s from our projects, DIY idea’s, etc. We are excited to share our journey with you. Please like our Instagram and Facebook page! -Heather & Carter