Listed Sisters Busted! HGTV Reality Show NOT So Real

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Franklin Homes Realty LLC

Listed Sisters Busted! HGTV Reality Show NOT So RealI was a fan of HGTV long before I became a real estate agent. Back in the day, Designed to Sell was my favorite show. Fast forward ten years and Fixer Upper has become my favorite. When HGTV announced that a new show was to be filmed in Nashville, I was excited that our area was going to be featured on national TV.

The show is a female version of Property Brothers. Literally. Twin sister, Lex, helps sellers rehab their existing home. While twin sister, Alana, helps them buy their dream home. I'm disappointed that HGTV didn't come up with an original concept. Instead, they took the success generated by Property Brothers and created a female version. But I digress.

Actually, I knew nothing about the show until I was contacted last fall by an agent representing Alana Barnett, the agent half of Listed Sisters. My client's home was chosen as a filming location for the series. My clients weren't too anxious to be put out of their home for an entire day, just so HGTV could have a beautiful filming venue. They were only interested in serious buyers.

Alana's representative assured me that the possibility of selling to these buyers was legitimate. They were pre-approved up to list price and ready to move forward with a purchase immediately. My clients reluctantly agreed and turned over their home for an entire day for filming. 

When the show debuted in March, I was anxious to see this new addition to the HGTV line-up. My client's home wasn't featured in that first episode but as a real estate agent, I was anxious to check the facts. As it turns out, the sellers in that first episode didn't even end up selling. After the renovations were complete, they decided to stay in the home. Even though, the program told viewers the home had sold for close to asking price.

Listed Sisters Busted! HGTV Reality Show NOT So RealI was so disappointed to see this. Not only as a long-time viewer of HGTV but as a real estate agent. Agents often get a bad rap. Consumers perceive that we're not always truthful and are only interested in making a sale.

While I do make my living by selling houses, it's my goal to be honest with all participants in a transaction. As a matter of fact, I have sworn to do that. So when I see real estate agents purporting that a house sold at an Open House event, when it didn't actually happen, I'm troubled by it. From what I can see, the house was never even listed.

I was easily able to obtain these facts through the public tax records and our local MLS history. After my initial shock and dismay, I immediately began to think of my clients. Remember they had been put out of their house and told that there was a legitimate possibility of a sale. This confirmed that they may have been duped by, none other than, a real estate agent. 

Since that time, I've seen other Listed Sister episodes showing buyers purchasing houses they didn't actually buy.

Back to my sellers. You've probably guessed by now that the buyers didn't purchase my client's house. Not only did they not buy it, but the show stated that 403 Letitia Drive was listed for $430,000 when it was actually listed at $484,900. Truth be told, our listing was priced much higher than the buyers were Listed Sisters Busted! HGTV Reality Show NOT So Realprepared to go. My listing shouldn't have even been shown to these buyers. I suspect my client's house was chosen because it was a beautiful home.

Curious, what happened to the sale of the buyer's home? The pre-renovation value of their house was estimated at $180,000. After $33,500 in updates, the sisters told them they could list for $250,000. As a matter of fact, they stated that the house sold at an open house event for $255,000. In reality, the house was listed for $215,000 and sold three weeks later for $205,700. The buyers/sellers took a loss on the sale of their home.

They did purchase their new home in Hendersonville as shown on Listed Sisters. It's too bad they didn't do better on the sale of theirs. Another reason why it's always best to hire an agent who knows your housing market well, rather than an agent who works the entire Nashville area or an agent who appears to be more interested in starring in a HGTV series.

As a result, I've begun to think that this may be a common phenomenon for HGTV programming. I would rather Listed Sisters be cancelled than report things that aren't true. It gives both the agent and HGTV a bad name. Not only are they deceiving the public, they are asking the participants on the show to do so as well.

Shame on you, HGTV. Viewers trust you to provide entertaining reality TV about the housing industry. Buyers and sellers are getting inaccurate information from shows like this. 

The moral of the story--don't believe everything you see on TV. It may not be true.

Listed Sisters busted! HGTV reality show, NOT so real.

Tammie White | Franklin Homes Realty LLC

About Tammie White, Franklin TN REALTOR®

Tammie White is a REALTOR® and Principal Broker/Owner of Franklin Homes Realty LLC in Franklin TN. Tammie works with relocation buyers looking to purchase a home in Franklin and the surrounding Williamson County area. She understands the way buyers search for homes making her an invaluable asset to Franklin home sellers. Tammie's website,, has become the premier search tool for buyers moving to Franklin Tennessee. She has been writing a real estate blog since 2009 and has been quoted in various publications including the LA Times,,, The Tennessean and Williamson Source. Trust your home sale to the company who has sold 100% of their listings since 2012. Call Franklin Homes Realty LLC today!

Posted by
Tammie White, Managing Broker/Owner
Franklin Homes Realty LLC
Franklin, TN
(615) 495-0752 
This posting with the content written here and photographs displayed are the intellectual property and opinions of Tammie White of Franklin Homes Realty LLC. Any party who uses this material without the written permission of Tammie White is subject to copyright infringement and possible lawsuit.

Re-Blogged 3 times:

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Mike Cooper, GRI
Cornerstone Business Group Inc - Winchester, VA
Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro

Tammie, that makes me sad, but I can't say I'm surprised. So much of "reality TV" isn't real. How could it be? There must be a script. Nonetheless, the lies told in this case are inexcusable. 

May 22, 2016 01:00 AM #63
Sam Shueh
(408) 425-1601 - San Jose, CA
mba, cdpe, reopro, pe

That is entertainment.

There was a flip property show where the actors were local agents. I read a number of  agents blasted at them claiming deceiving tactics employed. They denied any wrong doing. However, other brokers have been complaining all along. To get people to start another "Tom Vu" seminar thinking it is that easy.    Tom Vu is now in pocker business these days and he lost his accident.  He admitted it is not easy.....

May 22, 2016 02:28 AM #64
Rene Fabre
First American Title - Seattle, WA
Marketing in the Digital Age

I can see the attraction to HGTV real estate shows, but I never watch them anymore. I get irritable and frustrated. Over simplification of one's most likely biggest lifetime sale/purchase is annoying and deceptive. 

May 22, 2016 04:18 AM #65
Lisa Von Domek
Lisa Von Domek Team - Dallas, TX
....Experience Isn't Expensive.... It's Priceless!

Hello Tammie White 

I am not a big fan of many of the HGTV shows as their numbers on cost of renovations, etc...are always well off reality.  But some hosts are very entertaining (i.e. Fixer Upper).  I had not heard of this "Listed Sisters" show and I won't bother to view any thanks to your telling post!

May 22, 2016 09:31 AM #66
Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

Hey Tammie!  I included this post in today's Last Week's Favorites!

May 22, 2016 12:02 PM #67
Marti Steele Kilby, CRS
Steele Group Realty - La Mesa, CA
Broker/Owner, San Diego, CA

Ugh.  Not surprised.  For the last several years I've enjoyed watching a variety of HGTV shows not because they represent reality, but because it is always interesting to see homes in other parts of the country.  Even if the prices and deals aren't entirely accurate it's interesting to to see the different styles and what $250K will get you in some parts of the country, versus San Diego.

May 23, 2016 09:56 AM #68
Janice Zaltman
United Realty Group - Boca Raton, FL
South Florida Residential Real Estate

Was in the industry for many years. It's all about the ratings. Did not know that the lying was so blatant.  It's gotten worse since the invention of reality tv. So sad. 

May 23, 2016 10:10 AM #69
Melissa Jackson
Citiwide Alliance Realty - Weatherford, TX
Helping You Make The Right Move

I use to watch HGTV. It's entertaining. I knew all those were not real.  Thanks for sharing I've never watched this show.  

May 23, 2016 02:10 PM #70
Chuck Willman
Utah Homes - Alpine, UT
Utah Homes

None of the reality shows are "real". They're all scripted to a certain degree- some, much more than others. My advice to all agents who are tempted to go on such a show please be advised that the show has final edit. They make the show flow to their own desire. Although many may find these shows informative, the final version of the show is there to maximize entertainment value.

May 24, 2016 12:38 AM #71
John Dotson
Preferred Properties of Highlands, Inc. - Highlands, NC - Highlands, NC
The experience to get you to the other side!

Ratings, Ratings, Ratings! it's the same as: Location, Location, Location!

Actually, it's not always or even usually the Networks fault.  They are solicited with show ideas by independant producers.  If the "pilot" seems viable, they will usually do a contract for a certain number of shows and then move forward.

Shame on the PRODUCERS for not insuring an honest product.

Let HGTV know the show is bogus and it will get the attention of the folks who can pull it.

May 24, 2016 01:56 AM #72
Beth Atalay
Cam Realty and Property Management - Clermont, FL
Cam Realty of Clermont FL

Tammie, what a shame. As a Realtor, you know fact from fiction but many who watch these reality shows don't. If it's on TV, it must be true. I'm sorry your sellers were put out of their home for an entire day only to find out they misrepresented the terms of the listing. It is a shame!

May 24, 2016 07:55 AM #82
Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI
HomeSmart Realty West & Geneva Financial, Llc. - Carlsbad, CA
Presence, Persistence & Perseverance

Tammie White Just like people, if the ones behind the camera lack ethics, that will also be what is conveyed on the other side of the lens. I refuse to view any of these fluff shows, but the public eats them up and believes they are empowered to take over RE trasnactions without the assistance of professionals. Too Bad!

May 24, 2016 10:36 PM #83
Sheila Anderson
Referral Group Incorporated - East Brunswick, NJ
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133

Good morning Tammie. This is sad to read about but I am not surprised. When I was actively listing and selling in NJ, House Hunters was looking for people to feature who had already closed. My buyers were not selected but I knew that they wouldn't be featuring homes they actually saw. No reality, just hype.

May 25, 2016 12:16 AM #84
Erica Love
Brokers Guild Cherry Creek - Colorado Springs, CO

So disppointing to hear this. I love wathcing HGTV. My favorite is Fixer Upper. Chip and Joanna are adorable and she is so talented. I enjoy watching House Hunters just to see how houses compare to my area.

May 25, 2016 01:37 AM #85
Marion Irwin
EXIT Realty Homeward Bound - Vestal, NY
When you need Professional help..

Tammie, this is a great article, thanks so much for posting it. I have posted on my facebook page, as education to my buyers and sellers, who get too much information from this entertaining fiction.

Jun 11, 2016 09:03 PM #86
Tammie White, Broker
Franklin Homes Realty LLC - Franklin, TN
Franklin TN Homes for Sale

Marion Irwin - Thanks for sharing with your consumers. The more they know about these shows, the better.

Jun 12, 2016 06:41 AM #87
Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543
Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400 - Devon, PA
Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line

Had not seen your original article but realized a while ago thse shows are not what they purport and many law suits have arisen from different shows especially those where wok has been done, often not to high quality levels. 

May 11, 2017 07:59 AM #88
Tammie White, Broker
Franklin Homes Realty LLC - Franklin, TN
Franklin TN Homes for Sale

Nick & Trudy - Best to stay away from HGTV shows, especially, those interested in buying and selling.

May 11, 2017 08:30 AM #89
Tracy Santrock
Fonville Morisey/Santrock Realty Group, Inc. - Cary, NC
Raleigh - Cary Realtor/Broker In Charge

That's pretty disappointing.  I really like the HGTV shows


Jul 04, 2017 08:49 AM #90
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • Green • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

That is very sweet of you that you really expected the show to be real:)

None of them are. Just an entertaining, and often of not the best quality.  

Dec 13, 2017 11:20 PM #91
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