Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Rehab Addict Nicole Curtis: Restoring Homes to Their Former Glory

In the early 2000's, before all the popular house flipping shows, I told someone that I was self-employed buying and renovating run-down houses.  "You can make a living doing that?" the person asked surprisingly.  I didn't know how to answer back except to shrug and say, "I don't know, but I'm doing it."

Then, not too long after this I started hearing about the people on TV that bought, renovated, and quickly resold houses in a 30 minute episode.  Folks would learn a little about me and ask excitedly, "Oh, are you a house flipper?"  However, I'm really not a flipper.  To me that's always a quick turnaround kind of deal that takes a few weeks or months.  That's not what I do.  Taking on properties that no one else wants is my thing.  These are houses that need seriously reworked.  Realtors, other general contractors, investors, dreaming DIYers, or want-a-be house flippers pass on the properties I take on because their wrecks.  Houses that are really bad have been really good for me.

In the last year and a half, others have started to compare what I do to Nicole Curtis' projects and what she does on Rehab Addict.  For me, this fits better than the house flipper comparisons.  My wife was the first to make this link.  We'd have RA on, Nicole would start preaching her wisdom and my wife would say, "That's what you always say."  Or it would show the freelance renovator salvaging something that had been thrown out and it was like my wife started to get me a little differently as she said, "That's something you'd do."  Maybe it looks better on camera than the way I explain at home, covered in dust and dirt at the end of the day.  I don't know, but I appreciate the way Nicole Curtis has helped people understand what we do. 

Nicole Curtis in Action on
Rehab Addict (HGTV, DIY)
In the Rehab Addict intro, Nicole explains how she restores homes to their former glory. I've loved all of my projects, but I don't really think they've had much former glory.  So in that way I guess we're a little different.  My Pig's Ears have all pretty much been jacked up messes with nonconventional or unorthodox additions that have people shaking their heads and questioning my sanity.  When someone's really being nice they might say something like, "What are you gonna do with this thing?"  I recently tried to explain how the Rehab Addict and I differ like this: 'I don't restore homes to their former glory, but I do make them better than they've ever been before,'  However, to be clear, these houses are beyond fixer-uppers with no where to go but up.  (See my Projects.)

So when I get mentioned with Nicole in a blog like Mom and Her Drill or someone hears me describe what I do and says, "Hey, that sounds like what Nicole Curtis does,"  I like it.  We're saving houses that others don't want or can't save, showing people it can be done.  I'm proud of that.  It feels good and a lot more natural than being called a house flipper, that's for sure.

See Rehab Addict Nicole Curtis on DIY

1 comment:

  1. I agree, you are not a "flipper" !! That is a cuss word! :) Nicole is on a mission and has a goal in mind for others as well - I have no crusade I just like to build beautiful things. :) You should call your business Ugly Duckling Surgery. lol

    did you get my last email??