Moments of Reality on HGTV

Real Estate Agent with Evers & Co. Real Estate Inc.

I've been on HGTV's show "Get It Sold" a couple of times and apparently wasn't too dorky, so they recently asked be to be a "featured agent." Now, being a "featured agent" means that I appear to be the agent a homeowner chooses from several to list his or her property, one that has been on the market "too long." In actuality, the properties are frequently listed by other agents who haven't yet been vetted by being on the air in a lesser capacity to demonstrate they do well on TV.

"Get It Sold," like many others on the cable network, is one of those staging shows, where a home stager, in this case the lovely Sabrina Soto, comes in and turns an ordinary, or in some cases, dreadfully dreary home into a gem that buyers will fall in love with.

So this week I was a featured agent at a very pleasant house in the Brookland neighborhood of DC. And today was the day to shoot the “open house.” In this set-up, people posing as “buyers” are supposed to walk through the house, nicely staged at this point, and make positive comments, like how beautiful the place is, or what a lovely paint color, or how much they love the drapes.

So I’m standing out in front of the house watching a shot get set up when Jim Delgado comes over to see what's going on.

Now Jim Delgado is a home inspector extraordinaire and quite a character with a very colorful past. He was a DC housing inspector for many years and use to have to wear a bullet-proof vest under his shirt when working in the more notorious parts of the city. There are indications he may have been an undercover cop in an earlier life. And as it turns out, Jim lives only four houses away.

I invited him to participate in the open house. Jim is such an special and funny guy that I know his comments when walking through this house are going to be a lot more interesting and unusual than your average person. And he doesn't disappoint.

Others who had  come through the living room had complimented the fireplace and moved on. Jim, however, glances at the fireplace and declares, “Looks like a working fireplace!” But instead of heading for the dining room like everyone else, he picks up the brass fireplace screen and moves it aside. Then he gets down on the floor, sticks his head in the hearth and stares up the chimney. “Yup,” he says, “a working fireplace all right.” It was totally unexpected and pretty hilarious. I hope it makes it onto the show.

Producer Breanna Hoepner-Cowe was won over by him and thought it would be funny to have Jim walk through a room, peek over his shoulder, then slip some piece of brick-a-brack in his pocket and walk off. Or he could pick up one of the apples in the decorative bowl exactingly prepared by Sabrina, and take a bite. Sadly, we didn't shoot either, but damn, that would have been some fine “reality” TV.

Maybe next time.


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Catarina Bannier
Compass - Chevy Chase, DC
DC Real Estate The Smart And Fun Way

Hi Ed, that's too funny.  If the producers fake just about everythig else, though, it's hard to imagine that they would allow some footage that might depress the audience they're trying to cheer up!  I mean, well, people who ruthlessly replace the hardworking actual Realtors in their show want this to be perfect, not reality... 

May I suggest that if they had a sense of humor, they would pick their agents randomly  (how about from the GCAAR roster?) --that would make for a very entertaining show...

Dec 05, 2008 09:35 AM #1
Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

Ed, I love this!  And I'll bet you are totally fabulous on camera!  Hey!  I wanna be on TV, too!

And Cati, they only pick the good looking ones!

Dec 05, 2008 10:27 AM #2
Ed Schneider
Evers & Co. Real Estate Inc. - Washington, DC
Washington DC Real Estate Specialist

Pat - If they only pick the good-looking ones, I never would have made the cut. But thanks for the compliment.

Cati - Random picks from the GCAAR membership would make for an entertaining show. The way they do it now, though, allows for some measure of certainty that the show will come off as planned. A listing agent who hasn't been in front of a camera can easily be uncomfortable, overly talky, jittery, perhaps even unable to take direction. If that agent were to be the lead on the show, it would be unfair to the show's producers and perhaps embarrassing to the agent. So what they do with a situation with a LA who hasn't done it before is appoint a designated driver to be the alleged LA, but have the actual LA be one of the walk-through agents to see how they perform in front of a camera. If they do well, they get invited back and eventually can be asked to be a featured agent. But on one of the shows I participated in, the LA was a very fidgety and unfocused person, who in her walk-through became even moreso in front of the camera.

Dec 06, 2008 01:16 AM #3
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Ed Schneider

Washington DC Real Estate Specialist
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