TV shows about house-hunting have captured the attention of viewers of all ages. Young and old alike have become entranced with the concept of buying, flipping, and renovating homes. Because of the increased popularity in these shows, people are jumping headfirst into the world of real estate and renovation. They now shop for homes in a whole new way. Though it’s not an impossible industry to break into, in reality, buying, selling, flipping, and renovating a home can’t be wrapped up in 60 minutes. From hoping to make a quick buck to hoping to find their dream home in three viewings, the world of home buying is changing.
Expectations are Higher
Reality TV shows have created higher expectations for homes that are totally livable but not necessarily updated. People are shopping and viewing homes under the assumption they will be updated and share similar appearances to the homes they view on these shows.
A prospective buyer interviewed by The Daily Item found herself getting hung up on minute details. She says she noticed every little thing that needed to be fixed because, on TV, those fixes appear easy. Additionally, buyers are expecting updated stainless steel appliances, trend-forward kitchen designs and styles like granite countertops, marble backsplashes, as well as hardwood floors throughout the home.
Buyers are Better Informed
Thanks to these shows, buyers are better informed and more educated than past buyers. This means that they’re more attuned to what’s on-trend, what questions they need to be asking, and just being more cautious overall. Sellers are being more proactive about the selling process, becoming more involved, and even completing inspections prior to placing their home on the market. Buyers and sellers alike are more knowledgeable about renovations; being able to differentiate between a load-bearing wall or not and knowing whether or not a wall can be removed.
Size Matters… Big Time
Master suites are very popular right now thanks to reality TV. Everyone wants these grand rooms and 9+ foot ceilings. However, you’re unlikely to find a master suite in an older home. Such high ceilings aren’t all that common in older homes, either. Newer homes are more likely to have these features but they may not be in the neighborhood or area of town you want to live in. So, buyers are having to choose location vs. home design features. For many buyers, this means building the custom home you want with the features you want and ceilings as high as you can dream.
Buyers today are looking for homes that are essentially magazine perfect, move-in ready. Because these shows, along with magazines and websites, that display these grand and beautiful homes, buyers are expecting the same. Buyers can now view hundreds of homes online in seemingly nearly perfect condition before deciding to visit one. This means what they view online or on television vs reality is often grossly distorted.
Buyers are Negotiating More
In the past, buyers would place their offer on the asking price and that was that. Now, because of reality TV’s portrayal of the buying process, buyers are more likely to negotiate the asking price. The power has shifted from seller to buyer and it’s not letting up any time soon. In fact, buyers are negotiating prices and asking for help from the seller to make renovations. Buyers are becoming bolder and using all their savvy bestowed upon them from television.
What does all of this mean for you? Well, if you’re a fan of HGTV, DIY, or similar programming, you probably know what you want in a home. Remember, real life isn’t exactly like television, but the more you know about homes in general and the buying process, the better suited you will be to make a smart investment.