How Remodeling TV Shows Give Us Unrealistic Expectations

Home remodeling TV shows are like fairy tales: homeowner finds perfect contractor who is handsome and rich with an entourage composed of producers, workers, sponsors with free stuff, designers and a makeup artist; the remodeling job takes a week and costs $ 30,000, and homeowner lives happily ever after in a dream castle.
But like fairy tales, remodeling shows have writers in the background who create make-believe stories.

The truth goes something more like homeowner has very little clue as to what he or she wants and changes the design a few times, driving the time and cost of the project higher; materials and labor actually cost money; and because we are living in the real world the remodeling job takes time.

No doubt that home improvement shows can stimulate the creative process, give us good ideas, and help us keep up with the latest trends, but they also paint a picture (no pun intended) that is unrealistic.

Here are some key points to consider:

A distorted view of time

1. When interviewed, some home improvement producers admitted that they adjust schedules and use creative licenses to make the show entertaining. In other words, a week-long remodeling project occurs only on TV. Don't forget that this is show business. The time-lapse is not real. Framing on the concrete that was poured just an hour ago, didn't really happen. The concrete was given proper time to cure before building on it, 1 to 3 days, a fact conveniently omitted from the story line. This being just one example how the length of the project of a remodeling shown on TV belongs in a story with Prince Charming. The real-life schedule is more like a frog that stays a frog even when kissed.

2. The crew featured by the camera is usually …

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