Why is it that we love home renovation shows so much?
It’s a question we’ve asked ourselves countless times, but it was our friends at Apartment Therapy who finally sought answers from real experts.
From Fixer Upper to Flip or Flop, it turns out that there are a number of reasons we feel so drawn to HGTV’s never-ending lineup of home improvement shows.
As DIY Expert and Liberty Mutual Insurance Consultant Chip Wade explained to Apartment Therapy, it all starts with the formula. Though it might seem counterintuitive, predictability is a big reason why these shows are so popular. Basically, they’re perfect for passive watching.
“Renovation shows combine two very relevant topics to most people… overwhelming aesthetic inspiration and the know how to do it successfully,” Wade explained. “Often referred to as the background soundtrack in most homes, renovation programming finds its way into staying on for endless hours because it is typically appropriate for kids, inspirational for mom, and tolerable/informative for dad.”
And then there’s the psychological aspect. “Watching home renovations satisfies both the voyeuristic urges normal to humans and enhances their own fantasy life about their own home,” Dr. Gail Saltz, Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the NY Presbyterian Hospital Weill-Cornell School of Medicine, said to Apartment Therapy.
“Humans also have a desire to be generative and creative, and making a home is a place to feel both,” she continued. “Watching others’ ideas for being creative is enjoyable but yes, it also is a menu of possibility for you and your home.”
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But at the end of the day, it’s simply escapism. While our to-do lists mount and our own home projects remain on the back burner, it’s oh-so satisfying to watch someone re-do their whole house in 60 minutes.
We can’t argue with that!