|Accredited Broker | 19 July, 2011
Several economists have the belief that televised Property shows played a large role in the 2001 to 2003 Australian property boom. Every channel had some sort of “be a Property Owner Show”. As the property market declined the number of these shows on television also dropped.
However we have seen a resurgence of lifestyle and DIY reality programs flooding television in Australia. Some of the notable entrants are “The Block”, “The Renovators” and “Top Design” adding to the genre stables of “Better homes and gardens “ and “Hot Property”. The consistent theme to these shows are similar: “If you don’t own property you’re not a normal Australian.”
“The block” returned in 2010 after a six year hiatus and with an increased budget has returned again this year. The Nine Network is obviously pleased with the way this reno-reality series is tracking, so pleased it has already started planning for another series in 2012. The call has already gone out from the network for applicants wanting a chance to win more than $100,000 in prize money. Channel nine has so much faith in the property interests of the average (Television viewing) Australian they have relaunched Jamie Durie in “Top Designs”. The nine programming team are looking to directly compete against any new entrants within this space.
“The Renovators” is the ten networks reno-reality offering. Aiming to recreate the success of “Masterchef” the show is purported to be “Masterchef” meets “Grand Designs”(the internationally syndicated British renovation program with constant reruns on ABC) . Contestants aim to impress a panel of judges and hopefully survive the weekly eliminations.
“Top Designs”, is similar to “The Renovators” with weekly eliminations and packaged up with family favourite TV personality “Jamie Durie”. The nine programming team are looking to directly compete against any new entrants within this space. Even the ABC is not being left out with the continuous reruns of Grand Designs and the long running Gardening Australia. If you channel surf you can find a property show at any time, especially if you have fox.
While the shows are primarily produced for entertainment value and many would argue that the renovation/design profits purported by such shows are widely exaggerated, the impact of these programs can be hugely beneficial to consumer confidence. Lack of consumer confidence has been the main factor in the weak Australian property market as Australia does not have the same fundamental problems that some overseas markets experienced. The American and UK “crashes” were primarily caused by under regulated banking policies and in the US a huge oversupply of new properties.
Certain groups currently calling for the public to boycott the property market may also need to call for a boycott of television as these media giants seek to spur the industry on. It will be interesting if history remembers a property boom of 2011 long after all these shows are forgotten.