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Love It or List It


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#31

Elph

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Posted Sep 7, 2011 @ 2:52 PM

I've been enjoying this show for a few years in Canada. It is formulaic as ppl have said, there's always some 'big' problem that comes up that's a 'surprise' for Hillary which makes is necessary to lop something off the must have list. But it's the banter between she and David that I like, the producers have somehow struck a good balance with those two as co-hosts.

One complaint that's come up for me is that the show participants seem to be more scripted with each passing year. The HO's used to be largely likeable and would come up with good responses to the reno/real estate issues that inevitable arise. The past couple of seasons, almost every HO that's been on comes across as overly demanding, sour jerks who spend the whole show complaining, yelling at Hillary or David or at each other. I prefer the re-runs to the new shows because the relatable feel is gone.

For ppl who started watching, see if you can spot the newer shows from the olders ones ... I'm curious to see if anyone else can see what I'm seeing.
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#32

Shermie

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Posted Sep 7, 2011 @ 4:16 PM

It's like anything that is successful - stick like glue to the formula. In the first season, the producers probably let the HOs tangent off a bit, but once the dynamic was set, it was set: bitch and moan about Hillary's need to eliminate the spa bath so she can use the cheapo budget to keep the house from falling in; or bitch and moan that David is showing houses that have absolutely no redeeming virtues.

Then at the end, miracle of miracles, David finds the perfect house almost within budget, just down the street - while Hillary creates a complete redo of an entire floor in addition to keeping the house from falling in. What to do, what to do...

I just watch the intro and the reveal of Hillary's reno; the rest is so predictable. I prefer the highly edited half hour version actually.
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#33

Trey

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Posted Sep 7, 2011 @ 4:25 PM

I wish they would mix up the formula just a little bit...like, say, the second house could be the one the HO's like, instead of always the third.

I like the banter between Hillary and David too, and Hillary's reveal. Also love looking at the houses David finds.

And I agree that the HO's have been getting shriller and nastier all the time...I have to mute them.
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#34

Orton

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Posted Sep 8, 2011 @ 2:27 AM

Article on a Canadian style blog based on an interview with Hilary, including tips on where she sources some of her stuff (if you happen to live in the TO area). If you scroll down to the comments, Hilary responds to some of the questions and comments readers have about the show.
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#35

Elph

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Posted Sep 17, 2011 @ 9:36 PM

Yup Shermie, you pretty much nailed it. I guess they figure if it worked for Law and Order, it'll work for them too! LOL.

It's really too bad because it's just gotten a hair too rigid. Their formula would still work if they slackened the reins just a bit ...
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#36

birdface

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Posted Sep 19, 2011 @ 1:27 PM

I saw two episodes back to back where David took the homeowners on each episode to the exact same house. It was during a marathon, I think.

One episode's homeowners hated the house (WHY DID DAVID BRING US HERE?!?), the other episode's homeowners loved the house. Everything that was "small" for the first couple was "cozy" to the second. It was interesting to see and made me wonder how these episodes are filmed if the same house was used for both episodes.
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#37

mushypeas

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Posted Sep 19, 2011 @ 6:15 PM

Then at the end, miracle of miracles, David finds the perfect house almost within budget, just down the street


I've only seen about 10 shows, but it seems like he's a fairly formulaic realtor in that he shows them a few things within their budget, irritates them in his "inability" to give them what they want, and then ends up showing them something they love approximately $100K outside of their budget.

I do like the show, though. And I really like Hillary's style - wish I could afford her.

My only <yawn> with the show is the uniform style of the homes they redo and look at. They are largely similar in style and architecture, which is a little boring in its uniformity (turn of the century, row house, traditional style, finished basement apartment, etc.) I know it relates to the urban center they are focusing on, but it would be nice to see Hillary tackle some different styles of architecture.
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#38

Shermie

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Posted Nov 2, 2011 @ 1:00 PM

My only <yawn> with the show is the uniform style of the homes they redo and look at. They are largely similar in style and architecture, which is a little boring in its uniformity (turn of the century, row house, traditional style, finished basement apartment, etc.)

How is that uniform? You've described four different types of homes.

Interestingly, for all the flack that McMansions get, you rarely see them on this show as being unsuitable for the homeowners' needs. They don't have the problems of being too small, or closed in, or a warren of tiny rooms, or crappy basements that older homes have, which is what is usually the existing home. I only recall one McMansion, with the Muslim family with several grown daughters who still lived at home and the older ones wanted a separate living space in the basement, plus they wanted a worship area.

Reading that linked article, I'm surprised that Hillary has won more "loves" to David's "lists". I guess the reruns I see are heavy on the "David wins". The article also says that they're starting to film season four and have committed to season five as well.

I'm tired of the Toronto-centric-ness of this show (and almost everything else on Canadian HGTV). It's not that long a drive out of town to film some house shopping or reno show in smaller centres. You'd think every house in Canada costs over half a million dollars to start watching these shows.

And I've said it before, but I think Hillary wastes her budget on pointless fancy extras. She doesn't have enough money to add a closet, but puts in a $750 toilet when a $200 toilet will do. Same with faucets, sinks, appliances, and so on. That kind of unnecessary luxury spending easily adds up to thousands, which could be used for that extra closet or something.

Another thing is that the upgrades automatically add value+ to the original home. In real life, it doesn't always work that way. You put in a $50,000 kitchen, doesn't mean you can just add $50,000 to the price of your home, much less $65,000 the way David does.
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#39

MissMally

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Posted Nov 5, 2011 @ 10:54 PM

I've been addicted to this show for a little bit. I finally saw the episode with Desta's house makeover and wow. I think homeowner from hell doesn't even begin to describe it. My mom and I were watching the show with I think the Renton family. It was the one where Hilary ended up putting the walk in closet in the basement. It was so apparent that they were looking to sell and using the show as a vehicle to add value onto the house. EvilMally hopes that they didn't get nearly as much as they hoped for the house. My mom kept on popping in and every time the wife complained about Hilary cutting something, my mom went "Do your own damn renovations then!"

So far it's 40 Hilary victories to 30 David victories. I think it's on the official site.

Edited by MissMally, Nov 5, 2011 @ 10:54 PM.

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#40

wyndham

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Posted Nov 14, 2011 @ 9:19 PM

Just caught this show for the first time - the musical family in old house with squeaky floors, dangerous furnace and illegal sewer pipe connection.

They decided to "list" their house and go for the "builder's house" just down the street. However, I believe I spotted a MAJOR flaw in the new place. If you are in the street looking at the house, the overhanging porch has a white pillar support on the left side with a big crack and hole in it. And the right side of the porch is held up with what appears to be only ONE support beam, that looks way too small for such a heavy load! Calling Mike Holmes!!! Having such a large overhanging porch without proper support is a disaster waiting to happen. If that is a sample of the work that the owner/builder thinks is acceptable, I shudder to think where else he's cut corners and/or done substandard work.
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#41

LurkerNoMore

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Posted Nov 23, 2011 @ 4:15 PM

I just discovered this as well and may have to set a TiVo "season pass" for it, although if all of the homeowners are as annoying as the ones I saw, I don't know if I'll be able to handle it. It was a couple who bought a house with potential and they developed a list of things to do to it in their "five year plan". However, then they had 2 kids, and they totally junked up the house over the course of 7 years, so the wife wanted to move. They were so negative and miserable. The real estate guy showed them a new home that met every one of their needs ... was it $150,000 over budget? They decided to move even though they really liked the renovations. I would have done everything in my power to buy the new house as well.
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#42

LuckyBitch

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Posted Nov 25, 2011 @ 12:07 AM

I just discovered this show also, and it was that same episode (with the five year plan that never happened). I agree, the homeowners were negative and miserable. However, I just read this whole topic and I see that's part of the formula for this show, along with there being a snag in the renovation which has the designer not delivering on all her promises, and the realtor not pleasing the homeowners with his first two choices, but finally finding their perfect home although it's far out of their budget.

I was surprised that couple listed the house and bought the new one which was priced so much higher than their budget. I think the budget was $800,000 and the new house was $950,000. Crazy! It left me wondering how much of this show is real and how much is fake. I'd love to know if the homeowners really do end up buying the much more expensive house, or if they just keep looking.

Yet, I do agree that as improved as the kitchen was, not being able to have the basement done as planned really left them with a house that wasn't meeting their needs. Also, the designer's idea to enlarge the upstairs bath at the cost of the two closets in the daughter's bedroom would not have made me too happy. She acted as if adding those shelves in the kid's room was helpful, but that seemed to be a huge waste to me, and certainly did nothing to make up for losing a wall of closets.

Btw, I see that episode airs again on Friday 11/25 at 10 am.

Edited by LuckyBitch, Nov 25, 2011 @ 10:12 AM.

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#43

Shermie

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Posted Nov 28, 2011 @ 9:21 PM

The thing is, just because David says that the $40,000 worth of renovations have now added $60,000 to the value of their house, doesn't mean they'd get that out of it when they sell. Maybe they will, but if they use that as a basis to get an even larger mortgage, then they're dumb as socks.

And the family that junked up their house in 7 years, will just junk up the new house. If they didn't find the time or money to do any fixups in 7 years and actually made the house worse, then they'll have no ambition to maintain the new one. And who will want to buy their crap shack with a beautiful kitchen?
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#44

Paula in Playa

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Posted Dec 6, 2011 @ 2:51 PM

I've only just discovered this show (in the US) and have seen three eps. All were "list it."

And 3 shows were enough for me to get tired of the formula.

Both Hilary and David seem completely fake and all their banter seems scripted (if it's not, that's even worse!).

But my sister and I both had a question about an episode (can't remember who the HOs were) where Hilary couldn't redo a basement because a neighbor's tree was within a "no dig" perimeter. Does anyone know why Hilary couldn't have redone the basement up to the limit of that perimeter? It seemed like she would have had a good 75% of the basement outside the perimeter.
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#45

LakeGal

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Posted Dec 18, 2011 @ 2:09 AM

I was addicted to this show at first. But after awhile it does get repetitive. How many houses can David find with the backyard on the ravine? I swear the minute he goes outside their area he ends up with a yard that looks out on the ravine.

And every episode one half of the couple want to stay and the other wants to move. I suppose if they both want the same they would not use them on the show unless one pretends to want the opposite.

I always think they know in advance what they want. They get alot of the labour done cheap and just pay for the material. I expect alot have no intention of moving. They want a cheap remodel so they pretend they might move and look at a few houses with David. Then go home to their newly designed house by Hilary.

Edited by LakeGal, Dec 18, 2011 @ 6:34 PM.

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#46

queasy

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Posted Dec 18, 2011 @ 8:31 AM

I've thought so, too, about the homeowners just wanting their place renovated for a somewhat reduced (I assume?) price. But a lot of them do end up moving, so it's strange. I guess the Canadian real estate market hasn't crashed like in the U.S., but still. The "after" appraisals on the houses are wildly inflated, especially considering a lot of the money goes to furniture and other items that wouldn't be staying with the house if sold.
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#47

mushypeas

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Posted Dec 18, 2011 @ 9:05 AM

The "after" appraisals on the houses are wildly inflated, especially considering a lot of the money goes to furniture and other items that wouldn't be staying with the house if sold.


Does the money go for new furniture, too? I've always assumed that the renovated homes were staged with new furniture/decorative items just for taping.
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#48

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Posted Dec 20, 2011 @ 6:14 PM

I only saw part of a show last night and it annoyed me. Cranky homeowners -- I wanted to slap them. Is David really a realtor or is he an actor -- he seemed very fake and scripted too. Didn't care for the "oh no! Another problem we didn't foresee -- now we'll have to scrap running water to your house. Sorry!" It just made me stressed, angry and anxious -- don't need to add more of that to my life!
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#49

chessiegal

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Posted Dec 20, 2011 @ 7:47 PM

Is David really a realtor or is he an actor


Appears he is a real estate agent, among other things.

David Visentin
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#50

mich9

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Posted Dec 20, 2011 @ 10:41 PM

The episode last night showed a couple headed for divorce court. The wife was terrible to the husband.
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#51

Shermie

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Posted Dec 20, 2011 @ 10:55 PM

Nah, no divorce court. This show is very scripted, much like House Hunters. The couple knows in advance what they're going to do (and possibly have already done it, i.e. sold their house or never even wanted to move). Although David is really a real estate agent and Hillary is really a decorator, the show is just for entertainment.

But a lot of them do end up moving, so it's strange. I guess the Canadian real estate market hasn't crashed like in the U.S., but still. The "after" appraisals on the houses are wildly inflated

Three things:
- The list it vs. love it is pretty even after a while. When I started watching a couple years ago, I thought it was all "list it" too, but after a while it balances out.
- Yes, the Canadian real estate market has not crashed, and the Canadian economy is one of the strongest in the world, including relatively low unemployment.
- And yeah, the appraisals after the renovations are very inflated. Sure, a brand new kitchen will add value, but just because you put $50,000 into a house, doesn't mean it's going to add $70,000 to its value. Especially if it's eliminating walls or painting rooms.

But like I said, it's all fake. The producers come up with a theme (she wants to move because she wants more space for a guest room; he wants to stay because it's the neighbourhood he grew up in, for example) and then script the ep to achieve that storyline. Sometimes the participants are more into it than others, in that they argue and bitch and moan about stuff very rudely; other times they're not too bad. Just like House Hunters, where some are super critical of every little thing while others don't say that much.
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#52

MissMally

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Posted Dec 21, 2011 @ 3:01 AM

Does the money go for new furniture, too? I've always assumed that the renovated homes were staged with new furniture/decorative items just for taping.


I wonder about that too. There are quite a few companies that are listed in the credits and I assumed a lot of them donate some of the furniture or decorative items.

I do think the majority of people have their minds made up. There are some that are more obvious than others. I still enjoy it though.

I've posted this before but it's 41 victories for Hilary and 30 for David. So pretty evenly split.
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#53

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Posted Dec 21, 2011 @ 8:15 AM

But like I said, it's all fake. The producers come up with a theme (she wants to move because she wants more space for a guest room; he wants to stay because it's the neighbourhood he grew up in, for example) and then script the ep to achieve that storyline. Sometimes the participants are more into it than others, in that they argue and bitch and moan about stuff very rudely; other times they're not too bad. Just like House Hunters, where some are super critical of every little thing while others don't say that much.


You know I am telling myself this but it's just not getting through. I won't be watching this again because the format just seems to encourage (scripted or not) twice as much whining as House Hunters. "Ooh this house is all 70's and it doesn't have granite countertoooops! How will we survive?" "Oh noooooooo the contractor found a severe defect in my old ass house that would have cost me a lot more had it not been discovered in a timely fashion. But that means we can't spend as much on the maaan cave! Why?! Why must life be so cruel!"

Shut. it. Seriously. I am very peripherally involved in starting up a new homeless shelter due unfortunately, to the overwhelming need for one, and some of the families we're dealing with would love to have their "problems".

Edited by monty9, Dec 21, 2011 @ 8:19 AM.

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#54

Shermie

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Posted Dec 21, 2011 @ 9:50 AM

The renovation budget often makes me roll my eyes. The homeowners will tell Hillary, with a straight face, that they want three walls moved or eliminated, their kitchen completely redone, an extra bathroom added and the basement finished. Oh, and maybe more closet space and a nicer deck. And here you go, Hillary, do it with this $45,000 we're giving you. Snerk. Even without the obligatory "unforeseen" problem, it seems impossible.

In one episode, I remember a couple insisting that they wanted a third bedroom upstairs but they didn't want to lose space in any of the existing bedrooms or closets. Buh?
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#55

MissMally

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Posted Dec 21, 2011 @ 6:23 PM

The one I watched last night, the homeowners had a reno budget of $18 000 and a laundry list of things. Like an open concept main floor, finished basement and renovated second floor. That's an average of $6000 per space. I've watched this show before, $18 000 is only going to cover the cost of one of those. And I was right, they only got the second floor done.

It's almost as if the homeowners have no idea what renovations really cost.
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#56

Duckie30ca

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Posted Dec 22, 2011 @ 6:06 AM

The one I watched last night, the homeowners had a reno budget of $18 000 and a laundry list of things. Like an open concept main floor, finished basement and renovated second floor. That's an average of $6000 per space. I've watched this show before, $18 000 is only going to cover the cost of one of those. And I was right, they only got the second floor done.


Was that the woman who told Hilary that if she couldn't do EVERYTHING on the list, she had to get custom made furniture from local artists? I'm all for supporting the local community, but there was something so...grrr...about her. I wanted to slap her.

The people seem to be getting more and more demanding and scripted as the seasons go on. I much prefer the 30 minute version to the drawn out 1 hour version.

Edited by Duckie30ca, Dec 22, 2011 @ 6:37 PM.

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#57

Paula in Playa

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Posted Dec 22, 2011 @ 4:20 PM

All I've seen are the hour versions (I'm in the US), and I FF through most of it. And even at that I don't think I'll be watching it anymore. It's even more formulaic than House Hunters, and I don't care for either Hilary or David, so I don't have that incentive. I actually find it actively annoying.
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#58

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Posted Dec 26, 2011 @ 8:56 PM

Seeing it for the first time tonight I hate it. I'd be happier to see a legitimate rehab versus legitimate shopping. It would certainly give you an idea of what your rehab money buys and what you get negotiating in the open market, which would be more interesting to me.
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#59

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Posted Dec 27, 2011 @ 10:13 AM

Even thought I keep telling myself these people are acting, I still find myself hating the owners, and wanting to slap them. Last nights couple were really irritating. They wanted an open concept main floor, two bathrooms remodeled, their bedroom (which by the way, how lazy can you be to not put a door on your bedroom, with your mother staying in the room next door) fixed, and their basement renovated with a MIL suite installed and all for 50,000, than kept complaining because they couldn't get it. They bought a fixer-upper and than didn't do the repairs themselves. The husband kept yelling at Hilary, and I thought why don't you two lazoids pitch in and help with the reno. I know that's not how this show works, but it just bugged. This show bothers me as much as the PB
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#60

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Posted Dec 27, 2011 @ 3:29 PM

Watched this show for the first -- and last -- time last night. I can't decide what I hated more -- the incompetent douchebag realtor, the incompetent douchebag designer, or the hideous homeowners. They did nothing the homeowners wanted.

The one I saw was the married son whose mother lived with them. Daughter-in-law seemed kind of an all-around bitch (at one point saying that even though she was the daughter-in-law, even she wouldn't put the woman in a moldy basement). The son wanted an apartment/suite for his mother. The designer didn't do any of that, finally settling on fixing one room in the damp basement so the old lady could go there when the couple was having a party. They should have called Scott at "Income Property." For $50,000, he would have done up a beautiful apartment for the mother-in-law. None of the houses the realtor showed them had anything approximating a mother-in-law suite, but then he got pissed off because they didn't roll over loving the over-budget houses that didn't met their needs.

If this show is scripted, these people are the worst actors I've ever seen. Which doesn't really matter, because it was excruciating to watch. I fast forwarded through most of this crapfest; I won't be back.
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