Look Inside The Historical Mansion That Sold For Just $US1 Before Being Transformed Into A Dream Home

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A couple who had been searching for a property in which they could open their own bed and breakfast got extremely lucky when they found the enchantingly beautiful but rundown James Lee House in Memphis.

So Jose Velázquez and his wife, Jennifer, bought the house.

For a buck.

The James Lee House is a farmhouse that was built in 1848. It’s the birthplace of the Memphis College of Arts. The home stayed in the Lee family until 1959, and then was turned over to the city with a 50-year lease to turn it into a museum. It never happened, so the house just kind of sat there, collecting dust, rotting away.

In 2011, the lease ended, and the city of Memphis made a call for proposals from those who wanted to restore the grand home in a way that would benefit the community at large.

Jose Velázquez told The Huffington Post he submitted a report on plans to invest $US2.1 million in restoring the 165-year-old mansion and turning it into a fully-functioning bed and breakfast in just under one year.

He and his wife posted tons of before and after photos on the James Lee House Facebook page showing how they turned a beautiful disaster into an amazing bed and breakfast.

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title=”This is what the James Lee House looked like before the renovations started.”
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title=”You can tell the 165-year-old house has tons of charm.”
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title=”But the inside really needed a lot of work.”
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credit_href=”https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-James-Lee-House/167165240041348?sk=photos_stream”
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[slide
permalink=”likea-lot-4″
title=”Like…a lot.”
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[slide
permalink=”this-is-what-it-looked-like-when-the-velzquezes-bought-it-5″
title=”This is what it looked like when the Velázquezes bought it.”
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credit_href=”https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-James-Lee-House/167165240041348?sk=photos_stream”
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[slide
permalink=”in-under-a-year-it-looks-like-this-6″
title=”In under a year, it looks like this.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/538f3d106bb3f7cd19b5dd82″
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[slide
permalink=”meet-jose-velzquez-who-always-wanted-to-open-up-a-bed-and-breakfast-with-his-wife-jennifer-here-he-is-scouring-through-original-moldings-from-the-house-7″
title=”Meet Jose Velázquez, who always wanted to open up a bed and breakfast with his wife Jennifer. Here he is scouring through original moldings from the house.”
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[slide
permalink=”after-buying-the-house-as-is-for-1-he-invested-21-million-to-create-an-enchanting-space-8″
title=”After buying the house as-is for $US1, he invested $US2.1 million to create an enchanting space.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/538f3d0beab8ea3274b5dd74″
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permalink=”it-wasnt-just-about-painting-walls-and-updating-the-decor-though-they-even-had-to-overhaul-the-entire-irrigation-system-9″
title=”It wasn’t just about painting walls and updating the decor, though. They even had to overhaul the entire irrigation system.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/538f3d05ecad044835b5dd74″
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[slide
permalink=”the-bathroom-that-once-looked-like-this-10″
title=”The bathroom that once looked like this…”
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permalink=”now-looks-like-this-11″
title=”Now looks like this.”
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[slide
permalink=”you-can-rent-one-of-the-five-suites-12″
title=”You can rent one of the five suites.”
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[slide
permalink=”the-rooms-start-around-245-a-night-13″
title=”The rooms start around $US245 a night.”
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[slide
permalink=”velzquez-said-the-couple-lived-in-a-rental-house-a-few-blocks-away-as-the-house-was-being-worked-on-14″
title=”Velázquez said the couple lived in a rental house a few blocks away as the house was being worked on.”
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[slide
permalink=”now-they-live-in-the-james-lee-house-in-a-private-owners-quarters-that-was-part-of-the-original-structure-15″
title=”Now they live in the James Lee House, in a private owner’s quarters that was part of the original structure.”
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[slide
permalink=”the-kitchen-is-awesome-16″
title=”The kitchen is awesome.”
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[slide
permalink=”which-reminds-us-dont-forget-the-breakfast-part-of-the-bed-and-breakfast-17″
title=”Which reminds us, don’t forget the ‘breakfast’ part of the bed and breakfast.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/538f3d056bb3f76b19b5dd75″
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permalink=”these-photos-are-on-the-james-lee-house-facebook-page-where-lots-of-fans-oooh-and-ahh-over-the-tasty-treats-18″
title=”These photos are on the James Lee House Facebook page, where lots of fans ‘oooh’ and ‘ahh’ over the tasty treats.”
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[slide
permalink=”a-number-of-unique-pieces-from-the-original-house-were-salvaged-like-this-mirror-19″
title=”A number of unique pieces from the original house were salvaged, like this mirror.”
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[slide
permalink=”can-you-spot-that-same-mirror-20″
title=”Can you spot that same mirror?”
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credit_href=”https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-James-Lee-House/167165240041348?sk=photos_stream”
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[slide
permalink=”and-now-the-place-just-lights-up-21″
title=”And now the place just lights up.”
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[slide
permalink=”now-check-out-the-guy-who-is-selling-his-incredible-star-trek-themed-house-22″
title=”Now check out the guy who is selling his incredible Star Trek-themed house!”
content=”

For $US35 million!


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credit_href=”http://senadaadzembernard.elliman.com/florida/3682-princeton-place-boca-raton-qnigvnu”
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