Back in the day, I was an HGTV junkie.
I would binge-watch before “binge watching” was a thing. For hours and hours, I’d watch every home improvement show and every flip this house episode.
Wherever House Hunters went, I was not far behind.
I knew all the hosts and would attend any event that ever had anything to do with someone from that wonderful television invention known as “Home and Garden TV”.
That was then.
Now that I live and breathe this crazy industry on a daily basis, you couldn’t pay me enough to sit and watch even 5 minutes of what I term as “non-reality” in the realty world.
Sure it’s great to watch people buy million dollar homes and dream of doing that someday yourself. It’s wonderful to see someone take on a weekend project of redoing a bathroom that really does take a weekend to complete.
But it’s not real.
And like most things on TV, it’s fantasy.
My big gripe is that you don’t truly see the blood, sweat and tears that go into all of the renovations or all the roadblocks that go into buying or selling a house at any price point.
Of course they can’t show all of that in a 30-minute segment. But always showing the “wonderful” with maybe some “minor” hiccups along the way, gives true buyers, sellers, and renovators a false sense of what is really going to happen.
And then when regular people take on such tasks they are disappointed to know that it wasn’t that easy to do or that closing didn’t go as smoothly as it did on TV. They wonder why and look to you for the answers.
When Bravo came out with its “Million Dollar Listing” series, it was the buzz in the real estate community. While some thought it was great to see how the “big guns” in real estate operate with such high budgets, more agents that I spoke to thought it truly hurt us as fellow Realtors.
I am sure that marketing a multi-million dollar property with a catered event serving Dom Perignon champagne is on every agent’s bucket list. But it came across with so much drama from the chosen agents that it left a sour taste in people's’ mouths.
Here were agents making six-figure commission checks, driving expensive cars and wearing designer clothing, who were more concerned about what was going on in their personal lives than showing what it takes to market and sell these exquisite properties. Anyone who has ever had a luxury listing can tell you that there’s a lot of stress to fulfill such extraordinary demands of your high-level sellers.
These “TV agents” might have known stress - but most of it was caused by their own actions.
Perhaps people want to see fantasy when they watch such shows. Maybe they want to get lost in all the dreams and hype of the ultra rich.
In that case, I suggest watching old episodes of “Dallas”.
It’s when clients start mimicking things that they saw on any one of the plethora of home shows, that there is cause for alarm. Just ask my seller who now regrets missing out on a solid cash deal for her condo.
And why didn’t she take it?
Because on HGTV, “they always tell you to negotiate and never take your first offer.”
HGTV forgot to tell you, Ms. Seller, that buyers also walk away.
Hey TV executives – if you want a show that really does show “Reality Realty” that can help teach everyone about real estate and what is involved, then give me a call.
I’ll be happy to talk to you about what it really takes to make the deal close.
Kay Conageski is a professional Realtor® with The Keyes Company based in Plantation, Florida. Check out her RESAAS profile ›