WELCOME BACK, Good Bones fans! As the series draws to a close, nostalgia is setting in. One of my favorite lines in the series is from the 2016 premiere, when host Mina Hawk introduced contractor Lenny as “my father’s third wife’s first husband” who has just “always been around.”
That’s Good Bones in a nutshell. The foundation of the show over eight seasons has been Mina’s life, including her family and friends. Two Chicks started as a mother-and-daughter company, an (ad)venture of two spunky women who taught themselves to renovate houses in the Fountain Square neighborhood back when it was ripe with flip potential. As the company grew and the show became an HGTV hit, Mina’s husband, kids, siblings, and close friends became crew members and clients. Viewers felt like part of the family, too.
But on Good Bones, blood relatives get dream homes. The series is wrapping up with a two-part finale focused on Mina’s siblings, Tad and Kelsy. Tad has been on the demo crew since the premiere, and Kelsy was the business manager for a while and ran Two Chicks District Co. boutique. House Beautiful even covered her wedding.
First, Tad bought a house because he is serious with girlfriend Anna. He has snapped up a 2,900-square-foot fixer-upper on a double lot in Bates-Hendricks. He paid $212,000 for it, which elicits a big gulp from Mina. But hey, Two Chicks and Good Bones have raised property values in the neighborhood. What did she expect?
Still, Tad has to be careful with his renovation choices so he doesn’t overvalue the property. If he spends more than $200,000 on the renovation for around $410,000 all-in, he will be left with no equity. So, that’s the challenge as he tries to make the home as wonderful as possible for himself and Anna.
That starts with removing jars of old peaches from the basement. Tad, Mina, and Cory find them on a walk-through and don’t need to open them to know how absolutely vomitous they would smell. They think the jars could finally be the thing that makes Mama Chick Karen gag. She famously never gets queasy over anything, even eating bugs she finds on walk-throughs.
As mucky as the basement discovery is, the attic soars with potential. It’s one big unfinished loft, and there’s even a loft in the loft, which Tad will keep after turning the floor into a large main suite with a living room. The schematics show a ladder to the finished loft, triggering flashbacks to the same feature in Tad’s bachelor pad from Season 5.
Tad does Mina’s part by explaining the project scope before demo gets underway. Then he tells the demo crew that they are more than welcome to go absolutely berserk, but do it safely! Doing Mina’s job here heightens my suspicion that he is getting his own HGTV show. This season has spent a lot of time on Tad starting his own company, Hammer Construction. Maybe it’s just part of the Tad-centric story arc that’s going to wrap up the series as his house reno continues in the finale, but one can hope.
Tad’s house doesn’t get finished in this episode, but Kelsy’s does. She and husband Neal bought a cool 1970s house that’s best described as a ranch with some A-frame features. It sits next to a ravine and is surrounded by trees on the northwest side of town. As best we can tell based on the map the show uses, it’s in the Eagle Creek vicinity. And hopefully there are more where this four-bedroom house came from, because it’s amazing.
Kelsy’s budget is $25,000, and she wants a Nordic-cabin vibe to go along with the wooded setting. The focus of the reno is the main living space. The huge living room has soaring ceilings and windows overlooking the ravine. It has a wood-burning fireplace that needs some aesthetic love, and the kitchen will be updated with painted cabinets and butcher-block countertops.
Mina wants to take down walls between the living area and kitchen, but Kelsy isn’t on board. The idea stresses her out because she wants to be in the house in six weeks. But Mina has some free materials lying around they can use, and she believes Kelsy will want an open space to entertain. Now’s the time to knock it out, so Kelsy gives a soft yes.
She and Mina also clash over backsplash tile. Kelsy wants a “matte bone” color, a type of neutral, but Mina takes a look at Kelsy’s sample and says it’s “not nice tile.” She points out that it’s a “porcelain picket,” style and the words come out like she’s saying “nasty basement peaches.” Kelsy holds her ground, saying it will look great with the oak-moss green cabinets, black farm sink, gold faucets, and new countertops.
Pause for a puzzling shot of the Detroit skyline at the 33:45 mark. The large body of water gives it away, and credit to my husband for recognizing the Renaissance Center dominating the skyline.
Back in the right location, Mina gifts Kelsy a custom-made chicken coop that’s a miniature version of the house, with the same profile and color. It’s also referred to as the mother-in-law suite because Karen loves it so much she wants to move in.
The reveal shows a modern, dark exterior with a gorgeous hygge-inspired interior that will make you forget all about modern farmhouses. The decor definitely feels Scandinavian with a big, white overstuffed couch, Danish-inspired armchairs, light wood, and a live-edge mantle and shelves.
And the kitchen wall is down. Mina knows best.