As entertainment media advanced, home design trends also evolved to adapt to the change. Nowadays, even low-end abodes have facilities for high-quality entertainment, like a projector TV or a whole Smart Home system. Gone are the days when console televisions or jukeboxes were the focal points of a living room.
If you’re fond of home makeover reality shows, you would notice how entertainment media play a big role in the design. Almost all mid-range and high-end homes tackled in those shows boasted a home theater after being renovated. If not, then they’d be equipped with new appliances and electronics. No home will be left behind without a smart TV.
As such, many people became hooked on home makeover reality shows. Even if they have no plans to renovate their abodes, they still found the drastic transformations entertaining. On the other hand, people who are planning to revamp their homes found the shows inspiring and rich in ideas. One of the things that make these reality shows so popular is the fact that they cater to clients of all budgets. Whether you’re a young professional who just earned your first million, or a veteran acquiring a promising VA loan, you can have a beautiful abode styled by a renowned interior designer.
That said, let’s go through the evolution of entertainment media as seen in interior design shows:
Interior Motives (later The Christopher Lowell Show) Taught Practicality
Interior Motives was one of the best home makeover reality shows of the late 1990s to the early 2000s. Interior designer Taylor DeBartola praised the show for teaching practical and actionable things people could do to spruce up their homes. Christopher Lowell, the star of the show, empowered homeowners and made the idea of working with a designer approachable.
Indeed, the 90s and early 2000s stressed practicality more than aesthetics. If you’d look at homes today still bearing the design trends of that era, you’d hardly see theater-quality seats, gaming rooms with neon lighting effects, let alone a home theater, unless the house is a mansion. Desktop computers were placed in a corner of a living room, and the same TV you use for watching is used for video games.
This Old House Stuck to Reality
Home makeover shows can sometimes provoke thoughts such as “Is this really real?”If your home has already been renovated, and you have witnessed the whole process, you’d know that the project didn’t go as smoothly as the TV shows like to portray.
But This Old House didn’t filter a home renovation project. The show received praise for that, and for featuring realistic timelines and budgets. They educated their viewers on the processes, products, and technologies involved in redesigning a home. For that reason, the show is still running 42 seasons later since 1979. It also placed second in Insider.com’s Home Makeover shows ranking.
Extreme Makeover Drama
Extreme Makeover has been a popular show since its premiere in 2003. But despite the dramatic transformations they aired on TV, the participants of the show didn’t have a lot of good things to say about it. In a Reddit thread discussed in aBuzzfeed article, multiple users recounted their unpleasant experiences after their time in Extreme Home Makeover. One person claimed that heavy rain and cold damaged their home that the show’s team had completed in one week. When they reached out to Extreme Home Makeover again to have the damages fixed, they were apparently told that they have to fix everything themselves, since they got the house for free.
Another user also shared an unfortunate experience with Extreme Home Makeover. She said that even though she got the house for free, she couldn’t afford it after a year or so because of the taxes, utilities, and upkeep.
On top of all that, an Extreme Home Makeover former intern him/herself revealed that the property tax increases associated with the show left tons of families struggling. Hence, they end up selling everything they got from the show.
Despite these stories circulating all over the internet though, Extreme Home Makeover remains popular. It’s still airing on Netflix and accumulating high ratings. Though it became harder to watch after the controversies, people remained intrigued by it.
Home Makeover Shows Aren’t as Glamorous as They Appear
Thanks to sites like Reddit and other platforms where you can post anonymously, some secrets of home makeover shows have been spilled. Insider.com released an article about those secrets, such as needing to take time off work to be able to shoot, scripted scenes, increasing taxes, and unfinished homes after the show. Being in a reality show isn’t as glamorous as you think, apparently.
As with anything you see on TV, you should also take what you watch on a home makeover show with a grain of salt. Good design is always attainable, sure, but some TV shows don’t reveal the ugly side of it, such as maintenance costs. So at the end of the day, trust the real pros when it comes to design inspiration.