Good Bones Recap: Season 7, Episode 2

Good Bones "Near Eastside Americana Cottage" front yard
Good Bones “Near Eastside Americana Cottage” front yard

Hi, Good Bones fans! Good Bones heads to the near-eastside, one of the areas in Indy where bargains remain. Your recappers, contributing editor Megan Fernandez and art director Kristin Sims, have both lived on the NES but fortunately have never encountered a toilet like the one in this house.

Mina bought a little cottage for $17,000 sight unseen, which surely has to be the only way someone would buy this place. It’s 1,300 square feet of deterioration. Several trees are growing right upside the house, crumbling the foundation. To make the investment worth it, the crew needs to add on to the back and up this house to a four-bedroom. They will put $200,000 into it and hope to list for over $300,000. Mina is worried because they struggled to make a profit on the last house they did on the NES.

But first, that toilet. And foundation. And much more.

Kristin: That isn’t just a little foundation work. That is a major tree growing out of the corner of the house!

Megan: I can’t believe this isn’t a teardown (yet). The saving grace is the wraparound porch with staggered cinderblock railing, which I don’t love.

Kristin: I don’t think I mind the quirky concreteblock railing on the porch. Which scares me to even think that.

Megan: That’s your former eastsider talking. In the basement inspection, you can see daylight where tree roots are coming through. Someone will come fix it, though. The Good Bones storylines usually don’t dwell on these obstacles.

Kristin: Until later ...

Megan: It’s odd to see a piano in the house, alongside trash and dirty mattresses on the floor. Mina and Karen look at a horrific bathroom, and what they see is the faded pink paint. They are totally desensitized to filth and decay.

Kristin: They just see the potential. Tad spears a bed with a demo fork and says “crunchy mattress”—not a term I’ve heard before, or ever wanted to.

Megan: I want to laugh at this, but it’s just too sad that people live in squalor like this. About that toilet Austin and Tad are going in. They lift the lid. They scream. They run. Tad says it’s a top-three nasty toilet in Two Chicks history. 

Kristin: Cory is smart. He’s helping Karen dismantle the piano instead.

Megan: He’s not sitting out a good competition, though. Usually the guys do rock-paper-scissors to determine who has to remove the swampy toilet. Given the epic stink of this one, though, Tad says it must be decided by skill. But wait, he’s saying something like “row chambeau.” What?

Kristin: “Rochambeau” is an alternate name for the rock-paper-scissors game. And on Good Bones, that means ax throwing. They paint a target on the side of the house and grab tools to launch.


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Megan: Tad’s French is better than his accuracy. He loses.

Kristin: This may have been the best toilet removal competition to date! Congratulations to Austin for the big win! Even Cory beat Tad.

Megan: No one is looking at the cute pink paint now. As Tad runs the john out of the house—the bowl is attached to a clamp-type tool—Mina keeps him away from her by waving a demo fork like a torch. She isn’t taking any chances.

Kristin: The trees have wreaked a lot of havoc. In addition to the foundation, they also destroyed the porch roof, so that’s coming off, and ruined mortar joints inside.

Megan: Why isn’t this a teardown? They can’t build new for $200k?

Kristin: Now that they’ve taken it down this far, I might be questioning it, too. But it’s good to use what you can and save stuff from the landfill.

Megan: The foundation fix is $10,000. Then another $10,000 to fix a weird problem with the meter pit holes, something no one ever budgets for. Funny, right when Cory delivered the news about the meter pit, thunder rumbled in the distance. Tad said it was Mina’s anger over the news. They shopped around and got it down to $5,000—and right on cue, they found more holes in the backyard. They are cisterns. There are three different ones on the small lot. The addition is going over it, so they have to backfill those. 

Kristin: I’d never heard of a meter pit. 

Megan: This one’s a money pit.

Kristin: And the crazy cisterns! I would have been afraid to walk anywhere in that backyard. I hope the new owners don’t have a baby named Jessica!

Megan: Mina says the house is way more of a lemon than she thought when she bought it. 

Kristin: But how can you turn down any property for $17,000?

Megan: With the cisterns filled, the framing for the addition goes up. A ceiling on the original part of the house is vaulted, which already makes so much difference. The house is starting to look livable.  

Good Bones "Near Eastside Americana Cottage" exterior
Good Bones “Near Eastside Americana Cottage” exterior

Kristin: When the main space is viewed at the end of the episode, it looks like a lot of house was added to the back end. At the beginning, it seemed as though they were only going to add one room.

Megan: It looks like a barn is attached to the back—it’s huge. Mina and MJ are having a design meeting in District Co. before it opens. Then they have to be out. They are total vagabonds. Two Chicks needs an office, but they need to refill their coffers with some house profit to afford it.

Kristin: Big sale equals a new office. The theme is light this week, subtle Americana. The exterior is dark blue, and the interior will be painted oyster-white and have a white kitchen. The decor will have some pops of red.

Megan: Somehow, the kitchen was installed incorrectly. The sink isn’t aligned under a window; it’s offset. Halfway through installation, they have to move cabinets and even plumbing. 

Kristin: Even if the plans say to place it off center (which these did not), wouldn’t you call someone to ask? Sinks are always under the window!

Megan: It’s practically a law of nature.

Kristin: Over at Karen’s Corner, her workshop, she’s composing piano art—this is her sixth piano rescue. She, MJ, and Cory took it apart (so many screws), stripped it, and reassembled some pieces into a porch bench. And she used oven cleaner to clean the legs! What a great tip. The new bench is very original. I might have also liked it as a table.

Good Bones "Near Eastside Americana Cottage" primary bedroom
Good Bones “Near Eastside Americana Cottage” primary bedroom

Megan: Mina has found potential buyers, a couple with three kids. Kyle works at a local restaurant that Mina goes to, and Laura is an artist. They love the house. I love the primary bedroom with the vaulted ceilings. They decorated with warm gold tones, which they don’t often do.

Kristin: The main spaces are nice. It might be tight for the family of five, but it has good flow. And again, it has dining space! Yay!

Megan: I usually don’t focus on the cast’s personal appearances, except for Tad’s silken hair, but it struck me this week how good they all look.

Kristin: Karen’s new hair color makes her skin glow. Maybe the Good Bones women just have good bones, because Mina is rockin’ it this season, too.

Megan: Kyle and Laura buy the house. The foundation issues increased the reno costs by 25 percent, to $250,000, so they were all-in at $267,000. With a list price of $339,000, they earned a $72,000 profit. Nothing to worry about, Mina.

Kristin: And they kept the concrete-block porch railings! It looks charming.

Megan: You win. Guess I’m carrying out the toilet. See you next week!