The Daily Telegraph (Sydney) - Home - - FRONT PAGE - With edi­tor Robyn Wil­lis robyn.wil­lis@news.com.au

Deal­ing with the “af­ter” shock

There’s some­thing ad­dic­tive about makeover shows.

The dif­fer­ence be­tween the “be­fore” and the “af­ter” is al­ways de­lib­er­ately ex­ag­ger­ated so that both view­ers and home own­ers are left swoon­ing as room af­ter room goes from drab to fab.

Such is our in­sa­tiable ap­petite for the big re­veal, shows are pop­ping up in every for­mat imag­in­able, from teams pre­par­ing dud prop­er­ties lan­guish­ing on the real es­tate mar­ket for sale to or­gan­is­ing a do-over for some­one who re­ally de­serves it.

But some­times I find my­self wish­ing that they had just left the house alone, or at least been a lit­tle more se­lec­tive with what they kept and what ends up in the over­flow­ing skip bin.

In the tra­di­tion of some­one’s trash be­ing some­one else’s trea­sure, I have been known to start yelling at the TV pre­sen­ter as they talk about rip­ping out the orig­i­nal 1950s pas­tel fit­tings in the bath­room or tear­ing up the vin­tage flo­ral carpet in the liv­ing area.

Worse still, be­cause like the rest of us me­dia types, tele­vi­sion crews have fi­nite dead­lines to work to, of­ten the new look has been so hastily installed, cor­ners have been cut in both style and ex­e­cu­tion.

Some of the over­seas shows are so ex­treme, you can see the home owner try­ing to con­ceal their hor­ror as their home has be­come un­recog­nis­able.

Peo­ple in the build­ing in­dus­try tend to find these shows frus­trat­ing too be­cause they make it look as though you can com­pletely and ex­pertly re­model a bath­room, kitchen or back­yard in a mat­ter of days when in re­al­ity it takes sev­eral weeks at least.

Still, who can re­sist those mo­ments when the screen rolls over from the old room to the new?

Per­haps in the end we only have our­selves to blame.

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