Home improvement shows have exploded in popularity in the last few years, and while you certainly don’t want to spend 24 hours a day in front of the tube, TV can be a helpful and educational experience for homeowners – when you know the right shows to watch.
Here are 4 shows every homeowner should DVR:
1. House Hunters
While there’s no arguing that this show is heavily staged, House Hunters is both entertaining and gives insight into property values in markets across the US (and across the globe on the spin-off series House Hunters: International).
On the show, potential homeowners give their wish list and budget to their real estate agent, who then shows them three properties within their area. Typically, each property meets some of the criteria but is lacking in others (for example, the property might be exactly what the homeowners are looking for but out of their budget or might be within the budget but missing major wish list items, like a yard or garage). The homeowners then weigh the pros and cons of each property before ultimately deciding which they want to make an offer on.
Again, you’ll have to get past the obvious made-for-reality-TV scenarios, but House Hunters gives you the opportunity to see what your money will buy you in markets around the country.
2. Fixer Upper
Fixer Upper is a popular show among flippers and rehab enthusiasts. Chip and Joanna Gaines, a couple who owns Magnolia Homes, a Waco, TX-based design and remodeling company, work with homeowners to purchase and renovate – you guessed it – fixer uppers. The before and afters on this show are AMAZING and show just how much you can do with the right team and a little creativity – even if you’re working with a small budget.
Fixer Upper airs on HGTV. Full episodes are also available on the Fixer Upper website on HGTV.com.
3. Yard Crashers
While most shows focus on renovating the actual home, Yard Crashers focuses on the area surrounding the home: the yard. Having a well designed and well-manicured yard can add significant value to your home and give you an excellent place to relax, entertain and enjoy the great outdoors.
Another great feature about Yard Crashers is that it’s not your standard “expert remodels your space” shows. Host Chris Lambton and his crew (who find the participants of the show in the landscaping section of local hardware stores), don’t just show up and give these yards a makeover; they actually teach the homeowners how to landscape, design and maintain their yard. And with that kind of step-by-step instruction, it’s easy for you as the viewer to take Lambton’s tips and apply it to your own property.
4. This Old House
This Old House is the original in home renovation programming. While this show might not have the entertainment value of some of the newer additions to the home renovation genre, it offers actionable tips and advice from experts on a number of different projects for your home.
Projects covered include carpentry, landscaping, design, plumbing and electric. And if this seems out of your league, you’d be surprised: the way This Old House breaks down these projects makes them accessible to even the most newbie home renovators.
This Old House is also the most critically acclaimed inclusion on this list. Since it’s original airing date in 1979, the show has been nominated for 82 Emmy’s and won 17.
This Old House airs on PBS. Full episodes are also available on their website.
With these 4 shows, you’ll find inspiration, design tips and actionable improvement plans for your home. So set those DVRs and get ready for a good old TV binge session. Your home will thank you!