Many of us are guilty of plopping on the sofa and binge-watching reality TV home flipping shows. The allure of buying and selling homes for big profits with no boss looking over our shoulders has major lifestyle appeal.
Shows like “Love it or List it,” “House Hunters,” “Flip or Flop” and others make it look incredibly simple. Even when they face adversity such as rotted wood or bad pipes, the way the reality TV stars overcome adversity is more of an inspiration than a deterrent. And plenty of everyday people do manage to succeed in the house-flipping industry.
But many of the myths these ratings-driven shows perpetuate could use a little busting.
Consider these four common house-flipping myths and the true facts behind them.
1: Three Viewings And A Closing
Reality TV shows tend to show viewers the industry professional looking at no more than three homes before making a flipping decision. That may play into the limited time slot they have but it’s far removed from reality.
True Facts: It’s not uncommon for potential home buyers to fall head over heels for the first property they view. After all, buyers often already like the neighborhood, school system, and home style. But the National Association of Realtors reports that the average person looks at about 10 properties before making a decision. Home flippers are additionally tasked with developing a return on investment plan. Three and done is not reality, it’s just TV.
2: Homes Linger On The Market
TV shows follow home flippers who seem to have all the time in the world before making an offer.
True Facts: Most of the purchase and sale process is simply staged for television. The homes have been pre-purchased before filming. Today, we are experiencing a seller’s market, meaning there are more buyers than inventory. Homes move quickly.
3: Open Houses Are A Sure Thing
On real estate reality TV shows, the fully renovated home is amazingly staged and sells during the first open house. Multiple offers are often floated.
True Facts: Only in a perfect world or on TV does this happen. Matching properties with potential buyers requires hard work from real estate agents. They must align purchase limits, pre-approved house shoppers, family size, school systems, location, and other expectations. Most homes are sold by real estate professionals setting up appointments and making multiple showings.
4: Homeowners Make Fast-Sell Decisions
On real estate reality TV, homeowners seem to take just moments to decide whether to love it or list it. This certainly doesn’t mirror the process of ordinary homeowners.
True Facts: Homeowners sell their properties for a wide range of reasons. These may include downsizing, retirement, relocation or an expanding family among many considerations. The vast majority of people mulling over a sale also take a long look at their next home options. It’s completely unrealistic to think someone made such a major life decision in five minutes or less.
Reality real estate TV shows are wonderfully entertaining to watch. So is science fiction. Enjoy your binge-watching and speak to real-life mortgage and real estate professionals before making any major decisions.