Thursday, December 17, 2015

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Do HGTV Shows Renovate the Rooms You Don't See?

Are there unfinished rooms hiding behind these walls? (Photo: HGTV)

After watching an episode HGTV’s Fixer Upper or Property Brothers, I’m often left wondering about a bedroom—or even an entire floor—that clearly needed work, yet wasn’t shown in the final reveal. Did the homeowners just shell out 100 grand for a half-completed house?

HGTV is notoriously hush-hush about the behind-the-scenes scoop on its shows, but the Scott brothers, hosts of Property Brothers and Buying & Selling, do offer some answers on their website: “The homeowners decide which areas of the house they would like to focus on. We want to capture their complete experience of finding and creating their dream home and in an hour episode we can only show so much. That being said, Jonathan and his team usually finished the entire home.” 

So in the case of the twin-brother team, at least, the show is only documenting a fraction of the renovation—and the budget being discussed is only covering that part of the project. “After the viewing parts are fully renovated, the team goes back to the rest of the house to ensure buyers have their dream home,” according to a profile of the Scott brothers on Newsvine. The segment you see on screen usually takes four to six weeks to complete, though, in the real world, an undertaking of that size would require closer to 10 to 12 weeks of work, the brothers say. 

What about unseen rooms on the smash-hit Fixer Upper? In an interview with Hooked on Houses, Joanna Gaines revealed that she and husband Chip sometimes only focus on priority rooms, due to clients’ budget restraints, leaving the homeowners to make cosmetic updates—think painting and installing carpet—after the show has wrapped. “Other times, we finish the spaces for them after the reveal and this is separate from the budget shown for TV,” she said. “We help them finish their renovation even when the cameras aren’t rolling. It all depends on budget and our clients’ priorities for their home renovation.”  


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