Christina Anstead is all over the news of late, and it’s no wonder why.
On Sept. 18, after just 21 months of marriage, she announced her separation from her second husband, Ant Anstead. Meanwhile the 10th season of “Flip or Flop” (her show with her first husband, Tarek El Moussa) returns to HGTV on Oct.15.
Yet although so much of her personal and professional life is out there for all to see, there’s still a lot more to this home designer that many of her fans might not know.
Curious about what curveballs you might have missed? Brush up on these surprising facts about this famous house flipper.
1. Her original name is a real mouthful
Anstead was born Christina Meursinge Haack and raised in California’s Orange County, where she still flips houses today (talk about sticking to your roots). She attended a local community college when she realized she’d like to pursue real estate as a career.
2. She originally wanted to be a sports agent
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For those of you who don’t know me (or think you know me) let me reintroduce myself. I hate crowds, I love traveling, all things spiritual, the ocean and deep one on one conversations. I never thought about being on tv. I wanted to be a sports agent like Jerry Maguire. But I always loved looking at houses with my parents especially model homes and I always wanted to be my own boss… So in college when I was called (intuitively) to get my real estate license at a local community college I followed my intuition. I got started in real estate at 21 which led to selling houses which led to flipping houses which led to Tv. Now while I never wanted to be on tv, stepping out of my comfort zone and into the unknown has always been my thing. I live in a state of anxiousness and I’m so used to it that when it’s not there I tend to feel a void and hop into something that causes the feeling I’m used to. This can be good and bad. And it’s one of the things I’m working on breaking the pattern of. Sometimes anxiety and pursuit of new dreams leads me down amazing paths, other times it leaves me feeling lost and in a state of fight or flight / or crying in my closet. Tv changed my life and I am grateful for the life it’s provided, the experiences, the friends I’ve made along the way. Sometimes our calling is bigger than our plans. I never thought I would have one divorce let alone two. I never thought I would have 2 baby daddies – but sometimes life throws us curve balls. Instead of getting stuck in these “setbacks” I choose to look at these challenges as opportunities to grow. So while some may judge me and throw around rumors about me, most of you support me. And that says a lot about this world and where we are headed. I’m messy, I’m real and I’m working on healing. I’m surrounded by extremely powerful women who help me cope, build me up and push me to be better. If you’ve DM me or text me – I haven’t written back because I’m taking time to clear the “noise” and focus on myself and the kids. I appreciate the support and I hope my story inspires you to not be so hard on yourself for the decisions / choices you’ve made. We are all a work in progress. ✨♥️
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Although she shines in the spotlight, stardom was never a burning desire.
“I never thought about being on TV. I wanted to be a sports agent like Jerry Maguire,” she admits.
Yet during college, she decided to get her real estate license instead.
“I got started in real estate at 21,” she says, “which led to selling houses, which led to flipping houses, which led to TV.”
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3. She and Tarek El Moussa met working in real estate
Anstead began working at a real estate office, which is where she met Tarek El Moussa. She was 22. Things moved quickly for these two.
“The day Tarek and I officially started dating, which was Oct. 9, 2006, we moved in together,” she said in an interview with Good Housekeeping. Talk about a whirlwind romance!
In 2009, the two got married and had two kids, Taylor and Brayden. In 2018, they separated, but not before making a name and business for themselves as flipping partners.
4. Anstead and El Moussa started flipping because of the recession
In the late 2000s, the real estate market was hit hard by the recession. With both Anstead and El Moussa working in real estate, the couple had some hard times. They even had to downsize their own home, going from a house with a $6,000 mortgage to a rental apartment with a roommate.
To make ends meet, Anstead and El Moussa decided to try their hand at house flipping. The couple bought their first investment property for $115,000, with business partner Pete De Best, and split a $34,000 profit. Not bad for a couple of first-time flippers!
5. ‘Flip or Flop’ began with a borrowed video camera
With house flipping going well, El Moussa apparently thought their projects would make a good show. He borrowed a video camera to make a demo. At the time, Anstead was seven months pregnant with their daughter, Taylor.
Soon, Pie Town Productions, which produces shows for HGTV, expressed interest in the couple. Their show was dubbed “Flip or Flop,” and 13 episodes were ordered in the first run. Anstead and El Moussa were reportedly paid $10,000 per episode during that first season.
6. One hit show led to another, ‘Christina on the Coast’
In 2018, Anstead and El Moussa made headlines when they announced their divorce. Still, they continue to work together to this day on “Flip or Flop,” and they’ve both branched out with spinoffs.
El Moussa tutors novice flippers on “Flipping 101,” while Anstead has a home design show, “Christina on the Coast,” which has been renewed for a third season in 2021.
7. Anstead also launched her own line of home furnishings
While Anstead is best known for her HGTV shows, she’s recently branched out to start a furniture line.
In July 2020, she announced her new 30-piece line, Christina Home Designs. They won’t be available until the end of the year, but she’s already shown off her modern pieces on an episode of “Christina on the Coast.”
8. She announced her separation from Ant Anstead on Instagram
While Anstead and her second husband, Ant, seemed happy when they made appearances together on “Christina on the Coast,” the relationship apparently wasn’t all it seemed to be.
In September 2020, Anstead announced they were splitting up on Instagram.
“Ant and I have made the difficult decision to separate,” she said. “We are grateful for each other and as always, our children will remain our priority.”
With so much going on, both professionally and personally, there’s no telling what Anstead will do next. But what’s abundantly clear is that after more than 15 years in the real estate business, this house flipper and home designer is not afraid of change.
As she once said, “stepping out of my comfort zone and into the unknown has always been my thing.”