The real deal began last June after the powerful couple Kelly Dodd and Rick Levental were fired from their network TV jobs.
Dodd, a former star of “Real Housewives of Orange County,” was released from a reality show concert last week after leaving his 24-year career at Levental Acesparks.
But the free time gave them a place to make an unexpected venture: In November, a year after their marriage, the couple bought a modest house and planned to turn it into a boutique hotel.
Dodd and Levental dropped $ 715,000 on top of a three-bedroom, three-bathroom Palm Desert, records show.
“I like something that’s pretty ugly at first, then you can make it beautiful,” Dodd, 46, told The Post.
Coincidentally, the project could bring them back to reality TV. Several producers have already talked about the couple being the stars of a home improvement show, reports The Post.
“Producers who want to show us a home remodeling show are already contacting us,” Dodd said. “But we’re exploring our options and seeing what the best deal is for us.”
Levental, 61, told The Post that the transaction was made in cash last November.
“We really want to keep the property and rent it out like a hotel,” Dodd told The Post. “We want to build a separate kiosk and a salt flat to get a hotel license. It has a swimming pool and we want to build a resort. We put a lot of money into the house. ”
They bought after plans for another project failed.
“We bought almost 2 1/2 acres at Polo Estates in La Quintas last spring and we hired an architect to make plans for the nearly 7,000-square-foot house we plan to use and rent,” Levental explained.
“But after the COVID shock and rising prices and the difficulty of hiring workers and problems with the supply chain, we realized that the delays in the project and the final cost would not make it so attractive for us. we changed and started looking for a house that was already finished or in need of major repairs.
“Our goal is to build a portfolio of houses,” Levental added. “I’ve always wanted to get into the home business, and when I was 19, I worked in construction.”
The Palm Desert home is located near the high-end El Paseo shopping district and has panoramic views of the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains. It is also a 45-minute drive from the famous Joshua Tree National Park.
Originally built in the 1950s, the house, built in the Middle Ages, will need many renovations to get started. But Dodd and Levental told The Post they were ready for the challenge after a hectic year.
“I love keeping the property,” Dodd said. “Many of my friends have homes in the desert, and they only earn between $ 400,000 and $ 500,000 a year in rent.”
“There are many benefits to being in the desert. So this will be our next full-time project – home remodeling. This is definitely a passion for Rick and me.
At the same time, they are renting out their home in West Hampton, which currently costs $ 4,200 a month.
“We make very good money at Hampton’s house,” Dodd told The Post. “We rent it all year round, summer and winter.”
Dodd explained that his next move after the Palm Desert project was to rebuild the Hamptons house.
And when they don’t renovate their homes, they record their podcasts and film YouTube shows.
“My dream was to work with my wife,” Levental explained. “My dream was to perform with him and now we are doing it. I don’t have the same restrictions on our network-related content. It’s a free flow. ”
“The best part of it for me is that I can work with Kelly and it’s very fun and exciting and unpredictable. It’s just an absolute pleasure. It’s a quick change from what I’ve learned.”
Dodd said overcoming the challenges last year taught him a very valuable lesson.
“One door closes and the other opens,” he said. “So I don’t want people to stop. I want them to know that you can continue to make your dreams come true.”