Is the HGTV Hype Unrealistic?

Friday, April 17th, 2020 by Starcom Intern

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For many of us, HGTV shows are a guilty pleasure or not-so-guilty pleasure. Renovation shows are a great starting place to learn about different styles or get inspiration. However, current and future homeowners should take these shows with a grain of salt. HGTV can sometimes paint unrealistic ideas of the remodeling and home buying process.

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Reality Drama
HGTV shows are shot just like reality tv. These shows focus on dramatic or funny moments rather than the actual remodeling process. Some HGTV shows can be informative about topics such as types of styles or materials. However, they are less informative about how remodels actually happen. They don’t show you how much time, money, and work go into creating these beautiful home designs.

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Beware DIY Projects
Watching TV hosts work on home renovations with ease may inspire some to start a DIY project. Hosts make it seem easy because they are trained professionals who are exceptional at what they do. Some projects these hosts take on may be far too advanced for the average homeowner. If you’re not experienced, you could damage your home or hurt yourself.

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Watching a house transform within a forty-five-minute time slot can be a bit misleading. TV remodels happen significantly faster than the average remodel. In fact, planning for these renovations begins before they even start filming. This explains how the hosts seem to already have a clear vision of how to alter the space. Major things like permits and procurement of materials have already taken place in advance. In reality, permits can take a day or up to 4 weeks- depending on the size of the project.

For real-life remodels, things will not move as quickly. Homeowners are much more involved in the design process. Materials aren’t acquired beforehand and sometimes can be back-ordered. It takes time for various separate inspections such as plumbing, electric, structural, etc. Real remodels also don’t have huge construction crews working around the clock.

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HGTV shows typically reveal the total costs of their renovations, including labor and materials. However, these costs don’t reflect the reality of remodeling costs. Remodeling TV shows, especially those on a popular channel like HGTV, often get discounted rates for materials and labor. These discounts are usually in exchange for televised brand recognition, similar to a sponsorship. Average homeowners don’t have this luxury. Because of this, remodeling shows should not be used to determine a realistic renovation budget.

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Real Estate
Besides creating unrealistic remodeling expectations, shows like House Hunters can be misleading to those looking to buy or sell their homes. Most people don’t find their dream homes after looking at only three houses. Finding the perfect home for you takes time and a lot of research. The buyer also shouldn’t put too much stress on cosmetic things like countertops or faucet, which can easily be replaced.

HGTV is a great place for entertainment and inspiration. However, these renovation shows shouldn't be used as a template for your home remodel. If you're considering a remodeling project, it's important to seek the help of trained professionals.

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