It's an HGTV World!!

Have you noticed how much more esthetically aware the average consumer is these days? Part of the reason for this is HGTV which just turned 25 years old this month. In 2016 it replaced CNN as the third most-watched cable channel in the country. As of February 2015, approximately 95,628,000 American households (82.2% of households with television) receive HGTV. I believe HGTV has impacted the world of real estate more than any other single entity.

The messages this phenomenon sends to us are important:

1. Consumers are more esthetically aware than ever. Esthetics matter. People really know the difference and are forging opinions on this subject well before looking for their next home.

2. Real estate has become infotainment. HGTV has further elevated the importance of real estate in the lives of Americans and others around the globe.

3. While HGTV is a great educator, it also teaches many unrealistic expectations, the most obvious being the cost and speed of a renovation.

4. HGTV has also propelled what 'good taste' is, and much of their esthetic is beginning to deliver excessive sameness.

5. Image is everything. As much as people used to read, today they are much more focused on the visuals. Moving visuals and tours seem to matter more than words.

6. HGTV has made the BEFORE AND AFTER obsession about homes as popular as the same concept applied to people in fashion magazines. 7. HGTV also teaches consumers to look at a tired-looking property and imagine its potential. It is fueling creative thinking.

8. HGTV often gives the consumer an unrealistic perspective on the real profits achieved with home-flipping.

9. Some HGTV is blatantly staged: "House Hunters" is a re-creation of what happened.....not too unusual for "reality" TV, yet still more palatable than some other, worse offenders.

Don't underestimate the power of imagery that is playing 365-24-7 slowly but surely resonating in the eyes and minds of the consumer in all industries. It is and has been incredibly impactful to the real estate world. If you are thinking about putting your home on the market, check out this great service to get your home up to HGTV standards: