John and Jane Homebuyer just found their dream property for $100K and fixed it up in three weeks. It now looks like a palace when less than a month ago it resembled a bomb site.
Stories like this have skewed viewers’ expectations of real estate reality.
TV shows about home buying and renovation projects can be fun to watch, but we may not realize that they rarely depict the realities of buying, selling, and owning a home.
Here are three common real estate myths popularized by today’s (HG)TV lineup.
“Three Homes Will Do.”
On TV, a couple looks at three homes and is able to find the property of their dreams. This isn’t how things work in the real world.
The number of homes buyers must look at before finding the right one for them differs in each situation. It’s not uncommon to look at 20 homes. It may even work out that you look at just one (but it’s not likely).
Buying a home is a huge purchase for most people, and not something to be rushed. Or decided upon in the short amount of time it takes to drink a cup of coffee, which always seems to be the timeframe on TV.
“I Can Afford That.”
Shows that depict real estate purchases and renovations rarely reflect prices that are realistic for viewers. We may witness a bargain deal on TV and assume we could get something similar.
The fact is, markets vary greatly. The price of a home or a remodel in the area where the show is filmed may be completely different from what we can expect in here in the Waterloo region, either much higher or much lower.
Before you look at specific homes, take a little time to ‘cost out’ average home prices in the area(s) you are considering so you are not unpleasntly surprised by the pricing you find out there when your home search begins.
“This Will Be a Cinch.”
While some DIY projects can be completed quickly, the time most renovations take is far longer than TV would have you believe. Homeowners shouldn’t expect to dive into a basement remodel on Friday and wake up Monday morning with the project behind them and a brand new home gym. Even if you hire professionals, they may encounter unexpected delays or need more time to do the renovation right.
And speaking of professionals, that’s another way TV distorts reality and spreads real estate myths; most DIY projects are not as easy as they seem on TV (or on YouTube) Before you tackle any DIY project make a realistic assessment of your skills, before you waste both your time and often expensive materials.
If you’re considering buying, selling, or renovating a Waterloo Region home the more information you have, the better prepared you can be. Contact us for some professional input–we’re happy to help.