Meet 'Chicago Flippers' Mark and Liz Perez

Mark and Liz Perez purchase distressed houses in working class neighborhoods in the Chicago area — and frequently ones that other house-flippers might find too risky to take on. But with their building and design skills, and a lot of ingenuity, they renovate and upgrade them into gorgeous homes for resale, and at a price that new families in the area can afford.

Flippers On a Mission

In the last eight years, the Mark and Liz have renovated and flipped more than 100 homes in Chicago the Chicago area.

Work Begins

Mark takes the first swing of a sledgehammer in the kitchen demolition for this home. In this first project featured in the HGTV series, Mark and Liz made over a 1920s bungalow in the August Gresham community of Chicago. "We're buying houses from anywhere between $50,000 to $60,000," says Mark. "This is a great area. I like it. Pretty much a diamond in the rough." 

Preserving Detail

Mark works with general contractor Jason Silver, matching old and new hardwood flooring in an area that needs patching. Removing old, worn carpeting from the home's main living space revealed original hardwood flooring which was in good shape and merely needed to be sanded and refinished.

Kitchen, BEFORE

The kitchen was cramped and dated. Liz had in mind a complete revamp of this space which would become a main focal point in the renovation.

Kitchen, AFTER

Highlights in the new kitchen include all-new Shaker-door cabinets, modern appliances, natural stone countertops and a distinctive gray tile backsplash.

Kitchen, BEFORE

Kitchen, AFTER

Liz's design also included the addition of a large kitchen island with gray lower cabinets for additional storage and a trio of cylindrical pendant lights. The kitchen and living space were reconfigured and the kitchen now has an open sight-line into the adjacent dining room.

Kitchen, Demolition

In the boldest design decision, Mark and Liz opted to take down an entire wall at one end of the kitchen and expand its footprint into the adjacent space that was formerly a bedroom.

Kitchen, AFTER

Removing the wall made way for a dramatic expansion of the kitchen, including this dining nook and additional seating.

Bathroom, BEFORE

Bathroom, AFTER

Dining Room, BEFORE

Dining Room, BEFORE

Dining Room, AFTER

The dining and living rooms took advantage of the natural light from the generous amount of windows. The original sash windows, however, were replaced with newer ones with an energy-saving design. The stair to the upstairs was reworked and the transition between the kitchen and dining room opened up.

Living Room, AFTER

The color palette that Liz chose relied heavily on grays and white, offset by darkstained hardwood floors in the living space. In staging the home for the open house, she brought in lots of color accents with shades of aqua, blues adn greens.

Living Room, AFTER

Master Bedroom, Demolition

To make up for the loss of the bedroom downstairs due to the kitchen expansion, Liz suggested finishing out the attic to create a master suite. This helps elevate the value of the house by maintaining the total number of bedrooms while providing the home with a spectacular kitchen.

Master Bedroom, AFTER

An adjacent attic space, formerly used just for storage, was turned into a massive master closet directly off the bedroom.