Charlestown couple will be on ‘House Hunters Renovation’

Buying Home Improvement News Boston Charlestown
Alexa and Gregory Costa with the film crew in their kitchen.
Alexa and Gregory Costa with the film crew in their kitchen. Courtesy of Alexa Nicholls Costa

Alexa and Gregory Costa and their cat, Sasha, lived on the second and third floors of their Charlestown home without a functioning kitchen for a few months during their home renovation, but the inconvenience was worth it.

And the nation will see why.

On Saturday, Nov. 4, at 10 p.m., you can watch the Costas transform their home on HGTV’s “House Hunters Renovation.”

“The first half of ‘House Hunters Renovation’ is set up the same way as regular ‘House Hunters,’ ” Alexa Costa said. “You tour three homes and pick the house. [In] the second half of the episode, they document the renovation process.”

Alexa, a nurse practitioner who runs a boutique dermatology practice in Beacon Hill, and Gregory, who works in financial consulting in Back Bay, wanted to remain in the city. Problem was, they wanted to buy a single-family home in a seller’s market.

“We looked for a year for single-family homes and hadn’t found another house,” she said. “We lost a bidding war [on one home]. When we came upon this house, we knew it was going to be a lot of work.”

The Costas found a single-family from the 1800s in need of serious updating only two blocks from their previous Charlestown residence. They have lived in the neighborhood eight years.

The couple had applied to be on “House Hunters” when looking for their last home in 2011. Alexa said they had been chosen, but declined because of scheduling issues. They kept in touch with the producer and thought it might work this time around.

“We reached back out when our offer was accepted in December,” Costa said, regarding the home that ended up on the show. “We [thought] we may never do it again, so it might be fun to document it.”

Confused? House Hunters sometimes chooses people who have already closed on a house before the show begins.

“It was a long audition process, from January through mid-to-late February, with Greg and I shooting our own video documentary, having multiple Skype sessions with producers in LA. Then they do a site visit,” Costa added.

Costa and her cat, Sasha. —Courtesy of Alexa Nicholls Costa

After they were chosen, filming and construction started in March and went through early August.

“We lived the first few months on the second and third floor without a kitchen,” Costa said. “It was like city camping. It was an interesting experience. We managed with a lot of Whole Foods, takeout, and food from my mom.”

The Costas did a full gut job of the kitchen, which she said is the focal point of the renovation. They did a lot of cosmetic updates on the second and third floors. The home now offers three bedrooms, two baths, a two-car garage, and 1,500 square feet of living space. Another 400 or so square feet will be added once the basement is complete.

The renovation is nearly done.

“We needed a break from construction,” she said. “It is never truly done.”

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