Posted July 23, 2017 by pmcalary
Reality shows can actually make our jobs as designers and renovators more difficult.
Some of their shows on kitchen renovations involve fantastic storylines, ridiculously low construction costs, and bad construction advice. I’ve watched numerous episodes of the kitchen remodeling shows below and rated them. Over all, the remodeling shows on HGTV are the least authentic and in some cases are more than just misleading. Is your favorite kitchen show on our list?
Shows are rated from 1 to 4 stars.
Flip or Flop 2 stars
Tarek and Christina El Moussa two unsurprisingly photogenic California real estate speculators buy homes to resell. Remodeling costs on this show are ridiculously low even by Pennsylvania standards. Misinformation other than the unrealistic renovation costs are not as common as on other HGTV shows. Christina’s ‘vocal fry’ makes the show hard to watch.
This Old House 4 Stars
The show that started it all. While all the construction information is accurate the show isn’t intended to be cost effective renovation. Instead the show has morphed over time into a showcase for new construction techniques and to give some interesting back story to remodeling and design. Because of this I prefer the early episodes that were more about practical renovations and featured the granddaddy of the genre Bob Villa.
Rehab Addict 2 Stars
Nicole Curtis is an attractive former Hooters waitress with little construction or design experience. Nichole hosts Rehab Addict a show about restoring historic homes. The show does not give any bad advice as far as I can tell. But historic homes can be so fascinating it is a shame this show isn’t more engaging.
Property Brothers 3 Stars
Twin brothers Jonathan and Drew Scott and potential home buyers go through a formulaic process of pretending to select homes and designs. In reality houses and designs are all selected before the homeowners are found, and while everything about this show is staged the renovations and designs are creative and tasteful. Each episode also has unexpected problems arise that real professionals would know about in advance.
Fixer Upper 1 Star
Chip and Joanna Gaines renovate central Texas using a complete lack of realism. The show is as much a fantasy as are the walls that Chip crashes through that never have any studs in them. Finding space aliens would be easier then finding walls without framing. Watching this show if you know anything about remodeling or design is painful.
Kitchen Crashers 3 Stars
Alison Victoria and her show while completely staged at least doesn’t seem to be misleading. I’m sure that the only time Alison is ever in the kitchen being remodeled the cameras are rolling. And while the design ideas are simplistic and not particularly inspired, they are also not bad, which is refreshing. This show could actually be much better with just a little more input from some real design professionals.
Hometime 4 Stars
Dean Johnson has gone through a series of female co-hosts over the years but since 1986 the show has retained it’s realism and it’s simple straight forward explanations for how construction and renovations are done.
Kitchen Cousins 1 Star
HGTV’s cousins Anthony Carrino and John Colaneri are contractors that specialize in renovating kitchens. The show is accurate and is not misleading. However, these two contractors know absolutely nothing about kitchen design nor apparently do any of the shows advisers. Nearly every kitchen they design breaks fundamental rules for well designed kitchens.
I hope the reviews above have given everyone some food for thought. Please continue to enjoy these shows but keep in mind that they are entertainment and not reality…
…and of course…