Seven TV shows to help solve your property problems
Television isn’t just all about escapism: turning on the box can actually teach us a thing or two.
Right now, if your passion happens to be property – whether it’s buying, selling or renovating – there are a multitude of TV shows on offer that aim to educate the average person on this topic. And as a self-confessed junkie when it comes to house-related shows, I have spent countless hours researching these programs in order to point you in the right direction no matter your project or passion. (You’re welcome!)
If you are having trouble selling your home: Selling Houses Australia (Foxtel)
No matter how hot the market is, there are still some houses which languish unsold for far too long. That’s when one of the most talented trio of experts on TV arrive to save the day. Real Estate industry connoisseur Andrew Winter will not only give the owners a blunt appraisal (infused with his unique sense of humour) as to why they have failed to secure a sale thus far, but he will also call upon the doyenne of design Shaynna Blaze and garden guru Charlie Albone to weave their makeover magic (sometimes on a shoestring budget) in order to bring the property into peak selling-shape both inside and out.
Expect to: Learn how to de-clutter and style your home for sale, how to create a perfect first impression with kerbside appeal as well as a crowd pleasing yard, and how to meet the market and shelve those unrealistic price expectations.
If you’re tackling a small project with small budget: The Living Room (Channel 10)
This Logie-winning lifestyle program dedicates a special segment each week to taking on renovations on a realistic budget. Designed as a DIY master class with affable builder Barry DuBois at the reins, he’ll not only help you tackle the bathroom or kitchen overhaul your house needs, but will also ensure a hands-on lesson on home renos for the lucky recipient of his building talents.
Expect to: Be educated on how you can make over your home yourself on a small budget as well as take away many practical and handy do-it-yourself hints.
If you’re tackling a big project with a budget to match: The Block (Channel 9)
The undisputed king of large-scale renovation TV, this reality juggernaut not only works to match exquisite home decor with a first class transformation of a run down, ramshackle property but it also pairs a decadent amount of drama with the contestants who grace our TV screens. While the contestants do tend to cry poor, the reality is with a $150,000 budget and numerous sponsor vouchers at hand, the majority of us could happily take on this task and enjoy having such a big budget to play with while producing an outstanding million-dollar pad. Hosted by the lovable Scotty Cam and Shelley Craft, you’ll no doubt find a favourite couple to cheer home (and loathe at least one pairing) all while watching an amazing large-scale renovation take place.
Expect to: Discover all the latest styling trends and be introduced to innovative new ways to design and renovate, as well as how to fast track an enormous building project (so long as you don’t need a little thing called sleep to get by on each day).
If you want swap urban living for rural living: Escape to the Country (7TWO)
While this is a television show which highlights the English desire to leave the rat race behind in favour of its picturesque countryside, it can still give city-slickers anywhere cause to pause and consider if urban living is really where you want to be. You get to live vicariously through the show’s couples or families who crave a simpler life but might not yet know what this will entail. Prone to demanding a long list of “must haves” on their house shopping list, they often find these needs and wants turned on their head when the third and final home – “the mystery house” – is revealed.
Expect to: Yearn for a sea change or tree change (or at the very least a trip to the Mother Country!) and begin a mental stock-take on whether your current city location is actually where you would like to live. It will also make you question your original house must-haves as many couples on the show seem to fall for the “mystery house” – which tends to be the antithesis of everything they originally wanted!
If you want to live in an unconventional style home: Grand Designs Australia (Foxtel)
Long gone are the days of the traditional Aussie house – today’s builders want to embrace all the technology and advances on offer in the building, architecture and engineering world in order to create a talking point, not merely just a place to call home. Whether the owners are planning to incorporate a feature such as a 30-metre-high eucalyptus tree into their build, or take their cues from nature and produce a house which distinctly resembles a sand dune, each episode will leave you amazed at just what can be created when you have a vision as well as a dedicated team to help it come to fruition.
Expect to: Push the boundaries in terms of design and architecture. You won’t always require a fat wallet to create a unique and unconventional home, but you will need plenty of foresight and patience in order to steer this ship home.
If you aspire to own a multi-million dollar pad: Million Dollar Listing franchise (9 Life or Foxtel)
There’s no shortage of wheeling and dealing going on in the successful Million Dollar Listing franchises. Whether it’s the team of agents in LA, San Francisco or New York City, there are deals aplenty afoot, with even the richest buyers still trying to screw down prices in order to not have to part with even penny in their vast fortunes. It’s up to the agents to try and find a happy medium between sellers who expect a 100 per cent return on their investment and buyers who want to bag a bargain. There’s normally an entertaining agent cat fight or two for your viewing pleasure!
Expect to: Learn how to think like an elite real estate agent. It will give you a great advantage when it comes time to splash out on that next million-dollar pad.
If you just want to drool over how the other half live: Million Dollar Rooms (9 Life)
Want a window into the world of some of the most extravagant homes on earth? Then this, my friend, is the perfect show for you! Featuring grand mansions which lay claim to $3 million backyard pools, underground home theatres worth a cool $1.25 million, or a Majorcan mansion with $1.3 million worth of pure gold used (including every tile and fixture in the shower, if you don’t mind!), you’ll spent the entirety of the show drooling over the extravagances of how some of the world’s richest people wile away their days and wondering just how you can boost your income to be able to afford $750,000 in custom cabinetry alone in your own home.
Expect to: Have some serious house-envy while you covet the rare Michelangelo black marble entry ways or the million-dollar frescoes painted in the not-so-humble garage. Oh, and you’ll be completely charmed by its ever-pleasant host Carter Oosterhouse as well!
By Donna Webeck
As seen on www.domain.com.au