Although the bursting of the housing bubble hasn’t kept me from watching marathons of House Hunters episodes, these and other real-estate shows—with anxious buyers rushing to stretch their budgets and pull the trigger on houses—increasingly seem like remnants of a lost, prosperous time, artifacts of some ancient civilization dug from the rubble of a foreclosed home.
HGTV is not unaware of the change in times itself, and today it announced Bang for the Buck, a new show that acknowledges homeowners’ straitened circumstances, while holding out hope that they can increase their homes’ value with thrifty renovations. Or just enjoy their houses more while they hunker down in them and await the apocalypse. From the release, after the jump:
Knoxville, Tenn. [For Immediate Release–March 17, 2009] Increasing a home’s value is the ultimate goal of home renovation, and HGTV’s Bang for Your Buck will help homeowners find concrete answers to ensure a return on their remodeling investments. In the new weekly series, premiering Friday, April 3 at 9:30 p.m. ET/PT, homeowners will gain valuable insights when an HGTV designer and a real estate expert tour their newly-remodeled spaces and point out the design successes and missteps.
Each week, viewers will see how three different homeowners – all living in the same city – renovated the same room of their house for the same amount of money. HGTV designers Monica Pedersen, Sabrina Soto, Lisa LaPorta and Lytel Young, will work in tandem with real estate experts to assess the value of each home’s renovation and reveal the actual return on investment. The designers, who each specialize in makeovers that increase a home’s value, will help determine which homeowner has earned the most “bang for their buck.”
Participating homeowners will be watching the critique from their laptops, giving them the chance to hear candid, unfiltered feedback and an opportunity to justify their own design choices. Along the way, viewers will receive advice on what choices to avoid and which elements to incorporate. To see how each makeover stacks up, the real estate experts will crunch numbers and compare the homeowners’ design choices to nearby houses that have recently sold, while the HGTV designers judge material choices and overall design quality.
“In these tough economic times, many homeowners are focused on improving rather than selling their homes,” said Freddy James, senior vice president of program development and production, HGTV. “New series, like Bang for Your Buck, equip viewers with the proper tools they need to make the right choices when looking to add value to their homes and make their living environments more enjoyable.”
You might as well enjoy those living environments. Because you may not be selling them for a looooooong time.