Real Estate

‘Flipping Showdown’ Reveals 3 Kitchen Renovation Mistakes

Anita and Ken Corsini, stars of the “Flip or Flop” spinoff “Flip or Flop Atlanta,” now have a new HGTV competition series, “Flipping Showdown.”

On the show, the Corsinis invest $2.5 million on three experienced flipping teams who will each renovate three homes. The team that does the best job will win a $100,000 cash prize.

In the premiere episode, “The Flipping Frenzy Begins,” Anita, Ken, and the competitors meet in Woodstock, GA, to kick off the first round of the competition. Each team is given a fixer-upper, plus $30,000 and three weeks before Anita and Ken come back to check how they’ve revamped their kitchens.

Flipping Showdown
Anita and Ken Corsini welcome the three teams.

(HGTV)

Check out these flipping teams’ most impressive kitchen upgrades—plus the mistakes they make that are well forth avoiding if you ever embark on a kitchen renovation of your own.

Thumbs-up: Add dark accents to a light kitchen

kitchen
Colin and Christina Beck knew this kitchen would require some updates.

(HGTV)

The team of Colin and Christina Beck, a married couple from Cincinnati, is excited to renovate a beautiful ranch-style home. As Anita and Ken point out, this flip is already in good condition, so it’s up to Christina and Colin to impress them with a high-end design.

For their kitchen, they update the space with white cabinets, beautiful white quartz counters, and a light stain on the floor. With all of those light finishes, Christina and Colin decide to add some definition with a black barn door to their new pantry.

renovated kitchen
After: The black pantry door adds some nice contrast to the white cabinets.

(HGTV)

When Ken and Anita tour this house, they’re impressed with the black pantry door and delighted to find a ton of storage behind it.

“They give the buyers options in terms of making the shelves adjustable,” Anita says. With a standout barn door and thoughtful storage, this pantry makes for a great addition to the kitchen.

pantry
This pantry door cost less than $100.

(HGTV)

Thumbs-down: Make sure your island is in the right spot

flooring
This island is too far from the perimeter counters.

(HGTV)

While the new pantry impresses Anita and Ken, the island gives them some concern. The light finishes look great, but the placement is a little odd.

“This feels wide to me, just from your workspace to the island,” Anita says. “Like, if I’m cooking and I need to place something, it’s far away.”

It’s an important reminder that a good island needs to be beautiful, provide storage, and be conveniently positioned.

Thumbs up: Skip the island entirely in a small kitchen

kitchen
Mike and Amy Gomez have a smaller kitchen.

(HGTV)

While Christina and Colin have tons of room in their kitchen, that’s definitely not the case for flippers Mike and Amy Gomez, a married couple from Nashville, TN.

Amy and Mike’s kitchen is smaller, which means they need to be much smarter with their layout. They end up skipping an island in favor of extra cabinets.

When the renovation is finished, Amy is happy with her design.

“You have this accessibility right next to where you’re cooking,” she says of the cabinetry. “It’s going to be a big selling feature.”

Anita loves that they skipped the island, explaining that if they had tried to fit it in, it would have been a very small one, and the whole room would have felt cramped.

“This gives you a ton more storage, she says of the extra cabinets.

updated kitchen
The Gomez team was smart to add extra cabinetry.

(HGTV)

light fixture
This light fixture was only $35.

(HGTV)

While Amy and Mike create a beautiful kitchen, Anita and Ken are disappointed with one finish: a lighting fixture.

“As much as I don’t love track lighting, we needed more lighting in this kitchen ’cause we don’t have any can lights,” Amy says. “So I did a track light so we could focus some light on the countertops and everything. It was the least ugly one I could find.”

This light was a great money saver, at just $35, but Anita thinks the team could have invested a little more in the lighting.

“That’s a missed design opportunity,” she says.

Thumbs-down: Never cut corners on prep work

kitchen
Cam Griffith and Chris Carter have a lot of work ahead of them.

(HGTV)

Brothers Cam Griffith from Pensacola, FL, and Chris Carter from Washington, DC, go all out to make their kitchen stand out, adding an island and light gray cabinetry. They even splurge on a $495 marble backsplash.

Yet once this backsplash is installed, something goes horribly wrong.

“It just looks like it’s burnt,” Anita says upon seeing the backsplash’s orange color.

gray kitchen
After: Cam Griffith and Chris Carter give this space a light and airy look.

(HGTV)

“When the tile went up, it’s a marble, so it’s porous stone and there was a glue that was on the wall from the previous backsplash,” Carter explains. “So what you’re seeing is a bleeding through of the setting material from the previous backsplash.”

Anita and Ken aren’t pleased with this mistake.

“This is on them because they didn’t put a backer board,” Ken says. “They really didn’t prep it properly.”

It’s a good lesson to never take shortcuts—even if the clock is ticking.

backsplash
This marble backsplash looks “burnt.”

(HGTV)

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