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#1

Westbrooke

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Posted Apr 3, 2009 @ 2:53 PM

Did anyone watch this? New show on HGTV, follows someone looking for an apartment. Mildly entertaining but I canít help but think itís a rental, you can move out when the lease is up if it doesnít work out, it is not that big a deal if you donít find the perfect rental.
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#2

queasy

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Posted Apr 3, 2009 @ 3:10 PM

It was nice that they also decorated at the end -- sweet deal to pay for the ... gosh, not a HO now ... renter's? client's? time. I thought we got to see a good variety of rentals, too.

It must really be true that people can't envision their own stuff in an apartment -- for the unit above the restaurant, they walked into what was obviously the living room, but which the current tenant was using as a bedroom, and it never occurred to the guy that IT WAS THE LIVING ROOM until the host "suggested" he use it that way. heh.
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#3

JasmineFlower

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Posted Apr 3, 2009 @ 3:38 PM

I don't see this one lasting long. For me, the visual appeal isn't there. Like that first place they looked in? That looked worse than my college dorm, so not really something that's necessarily great to watch on TV. But maybe its just me.

I watched the entire episode mostly because the guy was adorable more so than anything else.

Oh, and something about the concept is a bit off to me. Maybe things are different in Canada with rentals, but while you can usually paint walls in most rentals, I can't say I've ever come across a rental that allows for painting kitchen cabinets and changing out hardware. So, I found this odd.
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#4

skia

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Posted Apr 3, 2009 @ 3:38 PM

Ha, I only saw about half of this show, but I loved how the host was trying to be just like the real estate agent, Sandra, on Property Virgins (except with decorating at the end). Are there really people with a job like that, like a real estate agent but for rentals, and they negotiate or whatever with the landlords?

It kind of felt like an SNL sketch. People can't afford their houses anymore and are being foreclosed, so what's next? Renting!

Edited by skia, Apr 3, 2009 @ 3:39 PM.

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#5

JasmineFlower

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Posted Apr 3, 2009 @ 3:41 PM

Are there really people with a job like that, like a real estate agent but for rentals, and they negotiate or whatever with the landlords?


Yeah, there are. But they exist more in cities where there's that kind of high demand for rentals, at least in terms of apartments. Like in NYC, most rentals are through brokers, which sucks because there are fees associated with brokers.

Edited by JasmineFlower, Apr 3, 2009 @ 3:44 PM.

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#6

RubySky

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Posted Apr 3, 2009 @ 4:07 PM

I watched but mostly I thought this was an odd, odd show. The main problem for me was that the apartments looked so horrible. There was very little that was visually appealing with the inventory. I am hoping it changes over time or at least we get a little more variety. It seemed like a strange first episode for a debut.
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#7

JasmineFlower

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Posted Apr 3, 2009 @ 4:36 PM

RubySky, I'm glad we're on the same page. Visual appeal was definitely lacking, which I think is okay to say, TV is a visual medium so that needs to be pleasing or interesting.

I'll watch again, there seems to be a couple in the next one and I am hoping that episode comes off better than this one did.
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#8

bestimw

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Posted Apr 5, 2009 @ 9:31 PM

you can usually paint walls in most rentals


I've never found that to be the case in any apartment I've ever rented.

I imagined that the TV show said to the landlord, "Will you allow us to improve your rental at no cost to you?"

Then I imagined the landlord saying, "Go for it!"
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#9

EmbiggenedSoul

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Posted Apr 5, 2009 @ 9:39 PM

you can usually paint walls in most rentals


I've never found that to be the case in any apartment I've ever rented.


I have found that to be the case, provided you are willing to paint it back to exactly the condition it was before (usually, stark white). That's the catch.

It's really a stretch of a premise for the show. Let's not go too out of the box, here HGTV. All their shows are woefully similar.

Edited by EmbiggenedSoul, Apr 5, 2009 @ 9:42 PM.

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#10

JasmineFlower

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Posted Apr 5, 2009 @ 11:01 PM

I have found that to be the case, provided you are willing to paint it back to exactly the condition it was before (usually, stark white). That's the catch.


Exactly, that usually is the catch, but many allow you to paint. And sometimes, landlords don't even make you repaint it, it always depends on the place. A few of my friends places didn't have to be repainted because the landlord's like what they did with the place.

I have found though, that this info isn't necessarily volunteered, its something that I've asked on the walk through more often than not. And some people don't ask and assume they can't paint because its a rental. I've rented, so has my sister and many friends, many of us in different cities, and everyone's rented apartment is painted.


Maybe that is what happened, that the show approached places and said, "Hey landlord, we'll improve your apartment free of charge" but then that makes me think the idea of the show is even more of a stretch than I thought. They seem to be saying, at least somewhat, look what you can do with your rental, but we don't exactly have a camera crew behind us convincing the landlord to make changes to the kitchen nor a production budget to pay for it.

Edited by JasmineFlower, Apr 5, 2009 @ 11:05 PM.

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#11

heirloomtomata

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Posted Apr 6, 2009 @ 1:56 PM

What would be the point of promoting fundamental misconceptions about renting? If most people watching this show found that the advice they offered was completely inapplicable in real life, I'd expect this show to be on the air about two months before the backlash began.
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#12

jade76

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Posted Apr 10, 2009 @ 10:18 AM

I saw this last night. Made me kind of glad I don't live in a big city, those rents were more then my mortgage. Did they say the apartment they took was only 600 sq feet?
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#13

livinggreen

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Posted Apr 10, 2009 @ 2:21 PM

Yes, 600 sq ft @ $1,300 a month for rent. That is one tiny apt.

My mortgage is $1,475 per month and I have 2000 sq ft. (Colorado)
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#14

meritas

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Posted Apr 10, 2009 @ 6:49 PM

I find this show hilarious when compared to other HGTV shows. When people go house hunting, everyone always criticises them for being unrealistic and wasting spaces, and people always begin to wax lyrical about the schlumpy houses they grew up in, and yet this show comes along that shows the crappy places you get on a really limited budget and people still don't like it because the places look horrible.

Classic!

Edited by meritas, Apr 10, 2009 @ 6:49 PM.

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#15

izabella

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Posted Apr 12, 2009 @ 3:11 PM

What would be the point of promoting fundamental misconceptions about renting?


I know you meant this with respect to painting and renovations, but I couldn't help think the same thing when the couple who rented the tiny apartment with the roofdeck told the landlord they're really noisy because they play musical instruments, and he said he was ok with that!

Really? Is he going to be ok with it when the other renters in the building complain? That Victorian was partitioned into 4 apartments, I believe, and I cannot imagine that any sound proofing was done or that those partitions were high quality. I would hate to be their neighbors, and just don't think a landlord would be ok with prospective renters in a very hot neighborhood would accept the renters who told him they were really loud to begin with.
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#16

anaximander

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Posted Apr 13, 2009 @ 3:06 PM

One thing I wish shows like this dealt with more is the vagaries of the rental housing codes in locations. While you wouldn't necessarily *want* to live next to someone who plays music or has instruments, a lot of times the housing code forbids creating a rule that precludes it.

For example: In Ontario, where this show is filmed, as a landlord you CANNOT make a rule that says "no pets." Period. The only time someone can create that distinction is if the tenant is living with the landlord and sharing bath/kitchen with them (at which point it is considered a "rooming" situation not a "rental" situation.)

The standard boilerplate lease agreement in Ontario does state that you cannot paint (It used to be available on the Housing Tribunal website, this is how I know this) , but most landlords turn a blind eye, just so long as you return it to the original state.

The other thing is that there are rules regarding the viewing of apartments that are currently occupied - you are *in theory* supposed to give 24 hours notice before a viewing, but that can be shortened to "reasonable" notice in certain circumstances. When I rented my current place they just knocked on the individuals' doors, no prior notice at all. Moreover, most landlords - especially large management companies - have cleaning / painting teams come in on the night during which tenancy changes over and takes care of all of that kind of stuff.... I'm not sure if this show states that as vociferously as they could.
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#17

biakbiak

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Posted Apr 13, 2009 @ 3:57 PM

but most landlords turn a blind eye, just so long as you return it to the original state.


That has been my experience in the States as well. Landlords will actually let you do a lot of things if you ask them and get their okay ahead of time which is why I actually don't have a problem with the changes that were made, they all appeared to be cosmetic or easily removable.
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#18

izabella

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Posted Apr 13, 2009 @ 5:23 PM

For example: In Ontario, where this show is filmed, as a landlord you CANNOT make a rule that says "no pets." Period.


Really?? Wow. In the US, you can specify no pets, or no dogs/cats ok, or no birds of prey or reptiles, anything you want. Some specify pets are ok, but require extra $$ as security deposit in case there are damages.

The lease can also specify no loud music or loud parties after 11pm, except on weekends...that sort of thing, as well as things like no barbecuing on the decks/balconies (fire hazard issues).
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#19

Beena73

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Posted Apr 18, 2009 @ 4:49 PM

I kinda like this show and especially the host. I'm surprised to hear about the different rental rules. My experience in the Chicago area is that landlords can stipulate anything they want, no smoking, no pets etc. And there are no guidelines as to cleaning or painting either.

However, my landlady, and I know people who've had similar experiences, appreciates upgrades, new paint, floor, etc. and with prior approval will deduct it from the rent. So if I want to paint and replace the floor, as long as she approves, she will essentially pay for it.

I wood guess newly renovated apartments or those run via management companies would operate differently.

I thought that little Victorian with the rooftop deck was super cute. And I could certainly imagine, depending on the neighborhood, that if all the tenants were young and artsy, like in a college or upcoming area, noise wouldn't be an issue at all. It was nice that they bothered to ask.
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#20

anaximander

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Posted Apr 19, 2009 @ 10:52 AM

Oh, another thing - You can't charge a security deposit in Ontario - you can't even ask for a key deposit. It's against the housing codel. You can, in theory, charge after the fact for damage done, but I know more than a few people who've gone around unscrupulous landlords by taking datestamped photos, getting them notarized, then mailing them to themselves and keeping the cancelled envelope sealed.
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#21

Mystery

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Posted Apr 19, 2009 @ 12:56 PM

I saw just the second half of an episode the other day and it looked like the guy had put wallpaper in every room. He said, no matter how long he lived there, it had to be his place. I didn't see if they had asked permission to put wallpaper up but I assume they did-- it was just hard for me to imagine a landlord approving of so much wallpaper!
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#22

aquarian1

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Posted Apr 24, 2009 @ 4:32 PM

I caught this show for the first time last night (or the night before, this week is blending) and I liked it. It was a mom and a daughter looking to rent near the daughter's school (university, I believe). I missed the beginning so I intially thought this was a part-time thing for the mom, but at the end they made a comment about intending on being the apt for a long time - so I don't know. They totally cleaned out their old place and moved everything. I don't know if the old place was owned or rented either. Anyway, like I said I did like it. I thought it was fairly realistic to see what you get in different areas and with different types of rentals. They looked at a basement apartment, a rental further away then they wanted and a co-op.

I've rented near Philadelphia and two areas near St Paul (I now own) and all places allowed you paint. At one place you didn't even need to paint over before you left if the color was light. They did all have different rules regarding pets. One place had a weight limit for cats but not for dogs.
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#23

Bethlyn

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Posted Apr 24, 2009 @ 8:22 PM

I'm pretty sure they said the daughter was 13 (!!). They had been living in an apartment for 6 years and the landlord sold the building and the new owners wanted their space.

I'm undecided about this show so far. The mother-daughter team was annoying (okay, only the mom) but I'll give it another couple of episodes before I decide to un-season-pass it or not.
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#24

princessesmommy

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Posted Apr 24, 2009 @ 8:46 PM

I know I am just a old fuddy duddy but I was surprised to see the 12/13 year old girl with a nose piercing.
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#25

JessieQ

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Posted Apr 26, 2009 @ 10:06 AM

The mom also had a nose piercing and kind of a hippie vibe about her.
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#26

Teague

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Posted May 11, 2009 @ 5:04 PM

The mom in the mother-daughter episode looked like she'd led a rough life. If so, it's good that she's (apparently) gotten herself together for her daughter.

That said, I didn't think any of those apartments were very nice at all. Are the rents in Ontario just that pricey?

Also, I have to say, as a parent of two girls myself, while I'd take their preferences into account when choosing a place to live? It wouldn't be my deciding factor. I'm not sure if the Mom didn't take the house outside the neighborhood only because of the daughter's complete opposition to it, but it seemed like the main reason, at least.
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#27

anaximander

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Posted May 12, 2009 @ 9:45 PM

That said, I didn't think any of those apartments were very nice at all. Are the rents in Ontario just that pricey?


I haven't seen the episode, but yeah, in downtown Toronto the average for a small one bedroom is about a thousand dollars (750 sq feet ish), and only goes up from there, depending on amenities. Once you leave the GTA, prices drop DRAMATICALLY.
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#28

Glass Ocean

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Posted May 27, 2009 @ 12:36 AM

I was blown away by the maximum wallpaper guy. I realize he planned to stay there for quite a while, but I never came across any landlords in Philly who would let you do that! It was everywhere and pretty bold to loud.

As I'm currently looking for a new house, I must admit that I hate you folks who deign to install wallpaper that I must then painstakingly remove because I can guarantee we don't share the same taste. No offense, but no stencils either, OK?

Edited by Glass Ocean, May 27, 2009 @ 12:36 AM.

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#29

Suz at Large

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Posted May 27, 2009 @ 8:07 AM

I was blown away by the maximum wallpaper guy. I realize he planned to stay there for quite a while, but I never came across any landlords in Philly who would let you do that! It was everywhere and pretty bold to loud.

Me too, Glass Ocean. I hope it's the easily removable kind; I can't imagine the landlord OK'ing it if it's not.

I still shudder to remember the work involved in removing wallpaper from bathrooms and kitchen in the fixer upper condo I bought three years ago. My own work, and finally that of the painter I hired to finish it. I was just thinking about that the other day - there's not a scrap of the stuff in here now, believe me.

Edited by Suz at Large, May 27, 2009 @ 10:01 AM.

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#30

izabella

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Posted May 27, 2009 @ 9:21 AM

I didn't understand how wallpaper guy went from wanting a condo in a cool city neighborhood in a quieter building, to moving to the suburbs. I thought the show host was crazy for taking him out to the suburbs when he very clearly said his neighborhood wasn't what it used to be and he wanted to move to a more happening part of town. Yet, that's the apartment he picked.

I know he liked the size and all, but how does that fit in with the premise of the show where they are supposed to help them find the hard-to-find rentals? Giving up on the city and its amenities and looking for a place in the suburbs is something he could have done on his own.

Edited by izabella, May 27, 2009 @ 9:22 AM.

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