Tarek El Moussa’s Flipping 101 returns to TV tonight, kicking off four new episodes as a continuation of his successful first season. But a few things have changed since the solo series premiered earlier this year. Namely, El Moussa is off the market! In July, he proposed to his girlfriend (now fiancée) Heather Rae Young of the hit Netflix real estate series Selling Sunset. So, naturally, we couldn’t wait to pick El Moussa’s brain about the new stretch of Flipping 101… and how much fans can expect to see Young.
Well, good news, gang. As you might imagine, the next four episodes show El Moussa guiding rookies to success as they learn the flipping business. However, the back-half of season one will be decidedly different from the first for a very special — read: romantic — reason.
“One thing that is completely different than the other episodes is the inclusion of Heather in one of the Flipping 101 episodes,” El Moussa exclusively told SheKnows Thursday. “We’re actually going to be showing the engagement, where I get down on one knee at Catalina Island and ask her to marry me.”
And don’t worry; this won’t be a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it moment. Revealed El Moussa, “We’re going to do the whole thing. I was able to capture the entire thing on video. I had tricked Heather into thinking we were just filming for Flipping 101, and she had no idea she was filming her actual engagement. So, it all worked out perfectly. The sun was setting. The beach is lit up with candles and roses, and it’s just gorgeous. I can’t wait to see it.”
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Ready for some more Flipping 101?! Tonight we’re back with all new episodes! This season you’ll see me tackle lots new projects with rookie flippers, who love to do the opposite of what I suggest 🤣 And even better… You’ll get to see me ask the beautiful @heatherraeyoung to be my wife!! Take some guesses… what do you think was going through my mind before I got down on one knee?! 👇🏽 Be sure to set your reminders and tune in to the first new episode premiering tonight at 9|8c on @HGTV!
While El Moussa and Young dated for a year before he popped the question, the couple moved in together after only a week. But if you ask El Moussa, it wasn’t so much impetuous as it was recognizing a good thing when he saw it.
“I was single for almost four years, and I wasn’t expecting to find anyone. But I’m the type of guy when I see an opportunity, I jump on it — just like real estate. So, the day I saw Heather, I just knew right away she was the one,” he said. And, well, things progressed quickly from there.
Within two weeks, they went on their first date. One week after that first date, they decided to cohabitate. “I brought her home; she met the kids, she met the family. It was a very scary experience going into it, but once it happened I realized it was just perfect,” he told us. “We just became a family immediately.”
Of course, it’s no secret that El Moussa shares his children, Taylor and Brayden, with ex-wife Christina Anstead. Despite a split that initially seemed like it might be contentious, they’ve remained friends — even continuing to film Flip or Flop together. Basically, they’re co-parenting goals.
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We’re back with more Flip or Flop!! Can you believe we’re on season 9 already, sometimes it’s crazy to look back and see how far the show has come since we first premiered back in 2013! Well just in time to get you through the rest of this crazy year, we have 15 new episodes that premieres Thursday, Oct. 15 at 9 pm ET/PT on HGTV with more excitement, design and risky house flips! For those of you who have been watching since the beginning, and yes, I see all of you guys in my comments, thank you so much for your support over the years!! What has been your all-time favorite episode so far?!👇🏽
Still, these types of transitions can be tricky in the best of situations. So, El Moussa is grateful for how seamlessly his new fiance became a self-professed “bonus mom.”
“It’s gone really well. To be honest, Heather is Stepmom. She runs the household. She helps take care of the kids. She’s part of the family,” he gushed. “And it was just a great transition. I don’t know what else to say other than I couldn’t be happier because, as a father, you just want your children to be happy. And Heather really makes them happy.”
Refreshingly, Young keeps it real when it comes to adjusting to life in the parenting lane. In a recent interview with Daily Mail Australia, she admitted that becoming a stepmom is the hardest job she’s ever had. How do she and El Moussa handle parenting stress together? They reframe the tough stuff.
Laughing, El Moussa confessed, “You know, we try to stay positive. But there’s no book on parenting, so we just do what we think is best. It’s tough — raising kids is really tough! As I said, there’s no manual for it. We just try to keep things happy, positive, fun, and remind the kids that they need to enjoy life and just be happy. Like, that’s the biggest thing I tell my kids: Do things that make you happy.”
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Not one single person in the WORLD is immune to stressful, challenging times. We all experience down cycles in life, it’s just a part of the process! Those times can either make or break you, depending on your ability to control your mind, and continue pushing yourself. I’ve been through some really dark times, and remembering those times is great reminder to be so grateful for what I have now! The thing is, life is a lot like business… They are both cyclical. Meaning they come with lots of different cycles and seasons! This year particularly has thrown a wrench in the plans of many, many people, so how can you stay focused and motivated if you’re in a down cycle in business or life? For me, it is always those daily moments of being grateful for what I do have, and remembering why I do what I do! I’ve talked about finding your why before, and this is a perfect example of why it is so important! If you’re experiencing challenging times in life that you really need to be able to tap into that passion and excitement!! It will keep you going, trust me!! So let’s start here!! Tell me one thing you’re grateful for! 👇🏽 Off the top of my head, I can name 3… and they are all in this picture 🤗
Kind of sounds like their blended family would make for some killer reality TV, yeah? Well, don’t rule anything out yet. El Moussa definitely isn’t. When we press him about a possible reality TV wedding, he lets us down easy, saying, “Right now, we’re leaning towards not televising the wedding just because we want to keep it private, intimate and small.”
But — and it’s a big one — he also teased that “there are no guarantees in life.” And, when we asked whether the fixer-upper he and Young just bought could be the start of their own spinoff, we definitely got some strong possibility vibes.
“Yeah, yeah! Well, Heather and I are obviously both in real estate, and we’ve been actually working together over the past year on different things. I’ve been teaching her a lot about the investing side, and she has a great foundation for design,” he said (or maybe hinted?). “We just bought this really cool beach house here in Newport Beach with this gorgeous ocean view — we actually start the remodel next week. It’s going to be a four-month project, and we’ll be moving in. So, we’re going to have our very first family home together… we’re really excited about it.”
It’s sort of a full-circle moment for El Moussa. In the opener for Flipping 101, he alludes to the fact that he was so broke when he started flipping houses that he lived in his mom’s garage. Now that he has a family of his own, those early days push him to keep leveling up.
“I would say I keep myself busy, I keep myself motivated, and I’m more motivated right now in my life than I’ve ever been. My kids, Heather, and my family — it’s what motivates me and pushes me. I know it’s my job to take care of them and provide for them,” he said. “As a dad, I feel like the best gift I can give my children is the gift of opportunity so they can live a life they love.”
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What does success look like to you? We all have our own measures of what happiness, success and wealth mean. For me, of course there are financial goals, and achievements that I push for but the way I measure my success is like this 👆🏼 Being an incredible father, and making sure my kids grow up happy, fulfilled and loved! Being the best fiancé that I can be! And being able to spend time, enjoying the little moments! If you know my story, you know that life hasn’t always looked like this! But I am so grateful for every moment, because it taught me that success is more than just nice cars, houses and trips! What does success look like in your eyes!?
The journey obviously hasn’t always been a proverbial walk in the park. But speaking to El Moussa, you’d never know he’s struggled. His attitude is infectiously optimistic.
What’s his secret? “For me, for about six years of my life, I was really miserable. Starting in 2013, I got hit with testicular cancer. Then, I got thyroid cancer. Then I had a terrible back issue. Then I went through a public divorce. People ask me all the time why I’m so positive today and why I’m so happy today. And the truth is, it’s all about perspective, right?”
He continued, “I remember how sad and lonely and depressed and miserable and sick and weak I was for so long… and I compare it to today. That comparison makes me realize how much has changed and how amazing my life is.”
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