9 Illusions Created by Home Buying Shows Which Simply Aren’t True
Updated: Jan 23, 2022
If only buying and selling houses were as easy “as seen on TV”!
It’s probably not all that shocking to you to find out that “reality” real estate shows are pretty far off from actual reality. But how they are different from reality may surprise you…
1. Buyers look at exactly three properties before making a decision
In reality, there is no set number of homes you need to see before making a decision. Some people find the perfect property right away, while others look at dozens before making an offer.
2. Decisions are made after a brief conversation
While there are people who can probably make big financial decisions after a thirty second chat over a few drinks and an appetizer, for most people, it takes at least a little more time and consideration before deciding on which house to buy.
3. Most couples in their 20s and 30s are buying expensive properties
The people you see on TV are the exception to the rule. Most young people start with starter homes, and there’s nothing wrong with that. As badly as most twenty-somethings want a fabulous penthouse, it’s usually not in the cards (yet).
4. Sellers always get offers after an open house
In reality, an open house does not guarantee an offer, though it can help drum up interest. If you watch enough HGTV, though, you might think otherwise.
5. Every property is perfectly staged
Staging isn’t uncommon, but it’s usually dependent on the seller’s living situation, their budget, and the particulars of the property. However, not all homes for sale are perfectly staged with pristine mid-century modern kitsch, and some are completely empty.
6. Renovations are fast, easy, and cheap
TV makes it look like a full remodel can happen in less than half an hour. In reality, renovations can be time-consuming, complicated, and—with some exceptions—fairly expensive. That being said, in many cases they can be well worth it.
7. After an offer has been accepted, it’s smooth sailing through closing
In reality, there is plenty of work to be done after an accepted offer, including the purchase and sale agreement, financing, inspections, title search, and taking care of anything else that might go awry.
8. The weather is perfect during every open house
As much as we want to, we can’t control the weather, and if it happens to rain or snow or be gloomy during an open house, the show must still go on. If you’ve only seen open houses on TV, however, you’d never believe it.
9. The real estate agent doesn’t have to do much
Agents on home buying shows look like they do little except show houses and call with good news. In reality, there’s so much more they have to handle, and plenty of behind-the-scenes, and in front of screens, that agents do to get you to closing.