Real estate TV shows like ‘House Hunters’ impact buyer and seller clients differently, sometimes for the worse

What consumers and agents can learn from HGTV and TLC

This post by Jason Crouch, broker-owner at Austin Texas Homes LLC, was originally published on ActiveRain.

I realized today that I owe at least a small debt of gratitude to cable channels like HGTV and TLC, which are full of real estate TV shows. They have done a marvelous job of setting expectations with buyers and sellers, and they’ve motivated prospective agents, as well. On the flip side, I recognize that they might make things seem a bit too easy. Nonetheless, I have frequently benefited from the lessons my clients have learned therein.

Agent with clients image via Shutterstock.
Agent with clients image via Shutterstock.

A few thoughts on this:

For buyers: I’ve noticed that I’ve had a good number of clients who really enjoy watching shows like “House Hunters,” “My First House,” and others. Consequently, it seems that some of them expect that they’ll look at only a few homes and we’ll get a contract in place quickly. I know that “House Hunters” features three homes, and they’re able to wrap things up neatly in 30 minutes. Needless to say, I appreciate the idea that we don’t have to visit a virtually endless number of homes to make a solid decision. I recently had a buyer who seemed to expect that we wouldn’t look at more than a handful of properties.

For sellers: Many times I can credit television programs for some of my seller clients who already have a strong understanding of the basics of home staging and decluttering, which makes my job a good deal easier. They also seem to respect that proper pricing is a critically important part of marketing the home.

For agents: I have been in expansion mode as we move closer to 2014, having recruited a bunch of new and experienced agents in the second half of this year. More than likely, we will have twice as many agents next spring as we had this past spring (roughly 30). One interesting thing I’ve noted, particularly with younger, newer agents, is that they frequently mention how much they love watching real estate shows. It would seem that these shows have inspired a whole generation of budding agents.

On a side note, I once had a very close call with “House Hunters” years ago, but it didn’t work out. The process is an interesting one. In a nutshell, the client is required to audition by submitting a video. I had only one client at the time who would have worked with regard to his timing, and he didn’t make the cut. The casting director promised me that I would get on the show, but then she ended up going on maternity leave and quitting her job. My brush with fame.