Saturday, December 03, 2011

Can these properties be saved?

kw: tv shows, real estate

It seems whenever I am at the YMCA in the fitness room, one of the TV's is showing Property Brothers on HGTV. In the past I haven't paid much attention, but today, while crunching on the abs machine, and later creaking with the back machine, I did pay attention. The hosts show a couple house after house with the aim of finding one they can buy and fix within a budget they have stated at the outset. The show's web site states the aim is to reclaim "extreme fixer-uppers", apparently in a less comprehensive way than the ABC show.

This morning's couple was two men whose budget was $450,000. That is about $150,000 more than I've seen in most past shows. They were shown a few homes that I would not take money to take possession of, all priced "as is" in the $400,000 range. You could not fix any of these for $50,000, so they were all out of budget. When the men asked to see a house that would not need so much repair, they were shown one priced at $850,000. At that point, I'd have fired the "brothers" in favor of a more honest realtor.

I began to think, "Where is this? Palo Alto?" That is about the only place such crummy homes are priced so high. Even in the current real estate market, median asking price is about a half million (Median asking price in my Zip code is $300,000).

I didn't find out where the show was taped, but it doesn't really matter. The houses I've seen being flogged on the show are mostly better replaced than repaired.

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