My House Hunters drinking game

Everyone's buzzing this week about HGTV's House Hunters being fake. To that I say, "No shit! NO ONE only looks at just three houses, chooses one of them, and then closes in, what, a month? With their boxes all unpacked, ready to awkwardly chop vegetables while they talk about how much they got used to all the things they pretended to hate." Instead of acting outraged that a staged reality show is staged, I say LET'S DRINK!

I seriously watch HGTV all day long, so I've seen my fair share of House Hunters episodes. (I'm such a fan that I forced my dad's real estate agent to let us tour an ACTUAL House Hunters-featured home in Texas. The agent who showed it confirmed all those things I suspected of being true.) I've seen the show so many times that, of course, I started to become BEYOND annoyed with the constant (and generally stupid as hell) complaints. But I love the show!

So, in order to cope with the barrage of home buyer idiocy (real or not, it's still all up in my grill), I've developed my own drinking game. You know, lemons, lemonade, etc.

Wanna play it with me? Here's how…

Take a drink every time…

  • Someone mentions the lack of, or gets excited about the apparent splendor that is, double sinks.
  • Someone complains about (CLEARLY UNCHANGEABLE!) paint colors.
  • Someone complains about the backyard not being fenced.
  • Someone says, "this [blank] is dated."
  • Someone complains that they "really wanted granite."
  • The woman says some variation of "well this is MY closet… where will you put YOUR stuff?"
  • Someone says, "but we REALLY wanted stainless steel."
  • Someone complains about lack of crown moulding.

Take two drinks every time…

  • Someone complains that their furniture won't fit in a room.
  • You see their current home with an entire room devoted to, and practically EXPLODING with, their kid's toys.
  • A man mentions how he'll turn a room into a "man cave."
  • A woman contradicts that guy and argues that it'll be her "craft room."

Lightning round!

At the end of the show, all must submit their guess for which house they pick.

  • Those who guess right don't have to drink.
  • Whoever guesses wrong has to drink whatever is left in their glass, which honestly, shouldn't be all that much by this point.

Okay, House Hunter fans: what are YOUR drinking game rules? I know you have them!

  1. UGH HH is such a guilty pleasure for me, tv junk food for sure. Being from the Northeast it drives me CRAZY when a couple from Texas bitch about paying over $200 grand for a brand new 5,000 sq foot house.
    Also a drink for hardwood floors. "oh i really hate carpet, is there hardwood under here?" "I was really hoping for darker hardwood" "I wish they continued the hardwood up the stairs" and it goes on and on and on gah!

    4 agree
    • And being from Texas, it drives me crazy that couples from other areas of the country mention that they have such a tiny budget — a quarter-million dollars!

      (Actually, it doesn't drive me crazy so much as make me mentally calculate how much more our income would need to rise for us to afford to move to some areas of the States. Good thing our jobs look fairly stable right now!)

      1 agrees
    • Also, Amen to the home prices. I too live in the Northeast and I don't get fed up with people having $200K budgets and expecting the moon, I am merely jealous that is possible in other parts of the country. While $200K in Boston would not afford me the luxury of indoor living.

      2 agree
  2. Does anyone remember an HGTV show called 'Trading Spaces'?? Most would know it as the show where Ty Pennington got his start. That show was a treasure trove of unintentionally hilarious television, largely due to the efforts of one of the designers, Hildy Santo-Tomas.

    Hildi had an eclectic taste that was almost guaranteed to clash with the homeowners. Also she was insanely, insanely, insanely impractical. Classic Hildi moments include :

    — Turning a living room into a pink-and-white striped circus tent
    — Burning up a power saw trying to "hand-make" a parquet floor. (Too bad nobody thought to stop her before she ripped up the existing flooring.)
    — Spray-painting a couch pink and then leaving it outside at night where it got soaked.

    Supposedly HGTV got served with 2 lawsuits for her efforts — one for tacking hay all over a wall and another for screwing wine corks into a wall. I never saw those episodes but I do remember the look on the homeowners face when she discovered Hildy had covered an entire wall in peat moss. PRICELESS!!

    Another favorite designer was Doug Wilson. Doug had an, um, well let's call it an exaggerated sense of self. If the homeowner wanted to preserve some part of the room, that seemed to offend Doug's sensibility and he would go out of his way to remove/cover/destroy the item. I would just shake my head any time a homeowner said "We love the brick fireplace. Please don't do it anything to it." Oh honey, you might as well sledge-hammer it yourself.

    3 agree
    • YES! I was wondering what happened to Trading Spaces — law suits, of course! Man that was always a giant shit show.

      2 agree
      • The sad thing is it didn't start as shit. It started really cool — there was a time constraint, a lot of problem solving and design improvisation and of course the magical reveal at the end. I loved to see what Ty and Amy could come up with.

        Somewhere along the line it went off the rails. I think the initial hook was supposed to be mild conflict between neighbors, like "will the Greens like what the Browns did to their formerly blue living room??" Somehow that devolved into the Browns trying to prevent Hildi from turning the Greens' living room into Neptune's Closet and then to Doug denigrating both the Greens and the Browns for not understanding why grandma's rocking chair had to be destroyed to fit into his "Adams Family meets IM Pei" vision for the room.

        But it had a really long run ( like 10 years? ) and lots of spin-offs and not every designer on it was hellbent on reconstructing the stage set from Sweeney Todd.

        4 agree
        • I agree with all of this! I remember watching it when I went to college in '99. Some were hilarious, and some were awful but initially it was great! But you're right, it just became awful and awkward!

          And I am just odd enough to think having a Sweeney Todd-esque room would be awesome lol.

          1 agrees
    • Not to totally threadjack the comments…

      I used to watch Trading Spaces until it became clear to me they were just fucking with people for ratings. The last show I watched was where a woman who professed to love "country" decor was handed the worst, most blase, interpretation of "modern". She actually cried. I'm sure that show got great ratings. Jerks.

      0 agree
  3. I think Trading Spaces wasn't a HGTV show … think it was on TLC…

    1 agrees
    • You're right! All those home networks blur together in my mind…

      1 agrees
  4. The thing I'm always blown away by (and this goes for 'Say Yes to the Dress' as well) is the insane price of everything. So many of the houses cost $25K to over a million dollars. My husband and I both work full-time and are by no means poor, and there's NO WAY we could ever afford houses like that. We have what I consider to be a pretty nice place that cost us under 100K. I tried watching House Hunters when we first started looking but got nothing out of it because I didn't feel I could relate to the buyers and the eye-candy houses.

    2 agree
    • It really depends on where you live. I'm in Los Angeles and in my neighborhood you can't get a single-family home for under $500,000. Two bedroom condos start in the $300ks. That has always been my reality. But then again, the salaries are a bit higher due to the cost of living in a big city. Not that I personally could ever afford a real house, but just saying.

      I'm sort of the opposite of you – I watch House Hunters and am in shock that someone can get a nice home for a budget of $250k. It's so unrealistic in my world.

      1 agrees
      • Yup, right there with you. As a Los Angelino, I watch House Hunters and dream about the day I could find a gorgeous house for less than half a mil!

        0 agree
      • You're probably right. I'm from the Midwest. I've heard that rent and other living expenses can be crazy high in major cities compared to where I'm from.

        0 agree
  5. Take a drink whenever someone says of a space "well, it's a little small…" Seriously, I could plastered just from that with some people.

    0 agree
    • I had that on the original write up, but then I thought, maybe I'm the ONLY one who doesn't think those spaces are "small." I guess not! Eff it — take a drink! ;)

      2 agree
  6. Sorry, I'm a little tired today because I watched 3 episodes of "Love It or List It" and 2 of House Hunters last night before bed.

    I was actually a bit relieved to hear it is staged because a hard time with humanity being so picky/stupid. I love to yell at the TV while watching and this may make it even more enjoyable.

    My favorite gripe is (usually young) couples complaining about no "open concept" floor plan or no double sinks while touring a house built in the 1900s-1960s. I want to scream "IDIOTS! Those are 1980s-1990s McMansion concepts!!" You can't look at a Victorian and complain that the rooms are too closed off.

    I was happy to hear that it was TV producers bullying people into complaining over stupid stuff and conforming to gender roles and not just that many stupid people.

    I guess its not really better, just more understandable.

    1 agrees
  7. "Someone complains about (CLEARLY UNCHANGEABLE!) paint colors."

    I don't know if I've watched House Hunters, or some knock-off show, but THIS is the one that bugged me. "I have the patience and family support to live with my parents for TWO YEARS after college graduation, so I can buy a $200k house. But I do not have the $40, family support, or a weekend's worth of patience to paint the kitchen white instead of burnt orange."

    I was also annoyed by the rich, child-free couple who wanted to trade their mansion in for a bigger mansion because, obviously, 6k square feet of air conditioning with extra-high ceilings for 2 people in a desert (on a golf course…with a private pool…that has a waterfall feature) is clearly not destroying the environment fast enough.

    Though, I have to admit, I'm totally down with the child-safety people. A pool is on my "deal breaker" list, in a large part because I want my children to be able to play in the back yard without supervision, and I don't want a fence in the middle of my back yard.

    1 agrees
    • haha i know what you mean about the rich people. the other day i saw the beginning of an episode about an arizona couple (where im at) that wanted a summer home in the bahamas or someplace like that. when they showed the home they live in here i looked at my husband and said, "oh geez they live in one of the multi-million dollar homes in PV (rich area). " then they went on to talk about how they wanted a SUMMER HOME with equal square footage to what they are living in here… YOU'RE ONLY IN IT FOR THE SUMMER!! WTF DO YOU NEED LIKE 8000 SQ FT ON VACATION FOR??? and it was just the two of them! (same episode maybe?)

      on the pool thing, my husband and i are looking for new homes and we want either a pool or a community with a pool. if we're going to pay HOA fees, it's going to be for something we actually use! if it's our own pool, then we're going to have a fence AND an automatic cover. but i lean more towards the community pool :) great for letting the kids socialize with other kids too

      0 agree
  8. Double drink when the lazy mofo bitches aobut "all those stairs"

    2 agree
  9. Ok, so adding to the episodes where the couple talks about their one year old loving something, what about the ones with pets… It drives me bonkers when they're like "oh yea this room is so open I think Chichi will really love this place!!" It's a DOG. It wants food, a place to poop, and for you to play with it. It doesn't give one single shit about your "open concept" floor plan or whatnot.

    3 agree
  10. I like this drinking game. The prospective buyers also way over-use the word "nice". That is an alternate drinking game in and of itself.

    0 agree
  11. No one mentioned the couple in Vegas moving back to Michigan (she was a Rockette or something and in pageants). She rolled her eyes at so much, the scratches, the cat hair… Oh, but she found her crown <3 (LOLOLOLOLOL!!!) My other favorite most annoying couple is the banker who had to downsize. His son's bedroom had living room furniture in it, it was so huge.

    0 agree
  12. In my area, which is really affordable, a privacy fence costs at minimum $10,000, so that is something totally worth complaining about, in my opinion. I'm house hunting right now, and I won't buy a house that doesn't have a fenced-in yard, and, yes, it's because of what one commenter called "my stupid dog." I understand ripping on the show–and the paint color complaint drives me nuts–but a lot of these are legitimate concerns when house hunting, so I don't get y'all's ire.

    0 agree
    • It's not that they're not legitimate concerns — it's that when you hear the same complaint over and over and over and over… It's time to start the dranking! ;)

      0 agree
  13. The boy and I tend to find enormous glee in adding "that's what she/he said" and in taking everything that the couple says as sexual innuendo. We can't be the only ones that do that…right?

    2 agree

Join the conversation

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

No-drama comment policy

Part of what makes the Offbeat Empire different is our commitment to civil, constructive commenting. Make sure you're familiar with our no-drama comment policy.

Biz owners & wedding bloggers

Please just use your real name in your comment, not your business name or blog title. Our comments are not the place to pimp your website. If you want to promote your stuff on Offbeat Bride, join us as an advertiser instead.