A very lucky Oregon resident is now the proud owner of highly desired piece of Knoxville, but his love of Portland and family here has led him to take the cash instead.
HGTV announced Magne Jensen, a retiree from Beaverton, Oregon, has won the renovated one-story Craftsman bungalow in North Knoxville that was given away in the HGTV Urban Oasis 2017 sweepstakes.
His name was randomly drawn from about 65 million entries.
Until this house, Jensen biggest contest win was a book, according to HGTV.
"I figured, what have I got to lose? I've never won anything before, but you never know," remarked Jensen. "Eventually you've got to win something."
When they called and said 'you won' I said 'cool' you know? Wow!'
From his small Beaverton apartment, Jensen admits he's not really an emotional guy. In fact, when he got the call, the second week of December, that he won a dream home in Tennessee, he thought it was a scam.
“She goes 'no, this is legit.' I said "whatever!”
But he has the paperwork to prove it. Jensen said his wife Irene was the one who heard about the sweepstakes that launched in October.
“For a month you can go online, and enter twice a day, so I did, almost every day, because I got nothing to do,” he said. “And I figured 'what the heck' you know?”
While the home is beautiful, Jensen lived in North Portland for 40 years and in his apartment in Beaverton for six years. His family, including grandchildren, are in the area. So he's taking the money, not the home. He wants to move out of this apartment, into his own home in the Beaverton area.
He wants to donate money to his church, and at the same time, says this is also a big birthday present.
“I'll be 60,” he said. “So this is a blessing, and with my wife's disability, it's going to help pay some medical bills. It's going to hit me when the money comes in, and I can pay off every single bill we got, and not have to worry about things!”
“We can live happily ever after.”
For the past five years, the Home and Garden network has highlighted contemporary residences in luxury, high-rise buildings in major U.S. cities. In 2017, they changed gears, featuring a historic neighborhood near an "up and coming urban downtown" in its corporate hometown of Knoxville.
The transformation of the three bedroom two bathroom house in the Fourth and Gill neighborhood began in March 2017. It features an outdoor space with a screened porch, outdoor patio, and a fire pit. One addition is an asymmetrical freestanding garage.
This year's grand prize is valued at more that $600,000 and includes the furnished residence and $50,000 .
The online sweepstakes started October 2 and ended November 22. HGTV's Urban Oasis special premiered on October 4.