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Selling The Big Easy

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New show on HGTV. Real estate professional Brittany Picolo-Ramos and her team make house hunting fun as they take an enthusiastic approach to buying and selling elegant and historic properties in New Orleans.

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The Big Easy preview looked interesting, big houses that weren't cookie cutter.   

The preview was of two people looking with a really nice budget, and the house didn't look like the usual cookie cutter,    I always enjoy the HH shows in New Orleans, because even in the suburbs that really aren't in the city are interesting, so I can't wait for this one to air.   One huge house was in Metarie, and I hope that's one they show Friday.   

Edited by CrazyInAlabama
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Realtor (reclining invitingly upon a luxurious chaise longue) to house hunters: "Welcome to my boudoir".

So, that's what they mean by selling the big easy...

Edited by kirklandia
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First two episodes were listed as episode 3 and episode 10 on HGTV.com, but the first episode had the series premiere chyron. Um…what can I say? It’s not the New Orleans I know. I mean, I knew going in that it wouldn’t be shotgun cottages and modest homes in Treme. But how can grand estates looks so bland and charmless? The big box warehouse flipper gray special truly is a nationwide scourge. So many blond people, and not a single person with an accent I’d identify as the New Orleans of my childhood. This could have been set anywhere.

So…I typed that first impressions paragraph during the first episode. Turns out that in the second episode, the first house they toured was a converted shotgun in Treme. Heh. Still, I stand by my gut reaction that this show isn’t doing it for me in terms of New Orleans style. Still not a black person in sight. Still no nod to Creole culture. It’s borderline criminal to set a show in New Orleans and not do any establishing scenes highlighting what makes the city so great. I'd much rather see actual Victorians than sterile new construction "in the style of" a vintage house. I demand to see a house that looks like Anne Rice designed it. 

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My online guide lists the first 2 shows as Season 1, episodes 2 and 3. Since we have family that live in Uptown near Tulane, I wish they would have shown the street name for the Uptown house. When we visit we stay in the Garden District on St. Charles, and take the street car to State St. and walk the rest of the way. We pass all kinds of houses on the way - some grand and some very modest. I though the show was okay. I'll watch again.

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Wish that the female realtor would wear her hats correctly (they are not to be perched on the back of your head lady).

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For now I'll take this show.  It is not a Flip show; not a re-do show; not a Dream Home show; not a Brothers show.  It is a House Hunters show; but in a city that has ultimate charm and older homes.  The realtor entertains and the scenery is beautiful.  Yes, so far the house hunters are vanilla; hopefully that will change and we will get a peek into all the sites, sounds and people in New Orleans.  

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37 minutes ago, Kemper said:

For now I'll take this show.  It is not a Flip show; not a re-do show; not a Dream Home show; not a Brothers show.  It is a House Hunters show; but in a city that has ultimate charm and older homes.  The realtor entertains and the scenery is beautiful.  Yes, so far the house hunters are vanilla; hopefully that will change and we will get a peek into all the sites, sounds and people in New Orleans.  

They could lose the realtor, but looking at the different houses is my focal point for this show.

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41 minutes ago, cameron said:

They could lose the realtor, but looking at the different houses is my focal point for this show.

They could lose the "staging" segment and show another house. I'm from Louisiana (now live elsewhere due to job transfer) and so far I'm disappointed.

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For almost $900,000 I want a house with covered parking.  I was not impressed with the one episode that my DVR recorded.  The house in the Treme area looks like it might be an Air B&B, and didn't the realtor say the reason for the 2 beds in the bedroom was that it was a rental.  New Orleans is trying to get the short term rental market under control.  Prices of real estate have skyrocketed in recent years.  

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Some of the homes in town didn't look like they even had any parking.     Also, I hope they'll mention if a home is on a parade route, since that can seriously mess with schedules and access to your home.  

I liked the Metairie, house with the first couple.    I thought it was spectacular.  I didn't like the house they bought.   I wonder if they'll build a spec house on the lot next door?    I liked the couple, but not the house.   

On the second episode, wasn't there a home that had the air conditioners on raised platforms?      If that's required for the a/c units, then I wouldn't want that house.     I wondered since the platforms were the same height as the first floor, if it was because that area floods?   

I could have skipped the staging segment, especially on the college student condo.  

Edited by CrazyInAlabama
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6 minutes ago, CrazyInAlabama said:

Some of the homes in town didn't look like they even had any parking.     Also, I hope they'll mention if a home is on a parade route, since that can seriously mess with schedules and access to your home.  

I liked the Metairie, house with the first couple.    I thought it was spectacular.  I didn't like the house they bought.   I wonder if they'll build a spec house on the lot next door?    I liked the couple, but not the house.   

On the second episode, wasn't there a home that had the air conditioners on raised platforms?      If that's required for the a/c units, then I wouldn't want that house.     

I could have skipped the staging segment, especially on the college student condo.  

Raised platforms for a/c units and no parking very common for houses in historic areas in different states.  Actually have had three with raised platforms for a/c but lucked with a tiny parking space on the side in historic areas in  both South Carolina and Virginia.

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CrazyInAlabama, raised A/C compressors are now common on new construction or as replacement units even in Baton Rouge now where widespread flooding is not common.  Newer building codes require that they be raised to a certain level in case of high water.  During our 2016 once in a 1,000 year flood event, many compressors would have been saved if they had been elevated off the ground instead of submerged in flood water.

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I rewatched the first episode and noticed that the couple were only shown in the backyard and on the front porch in their “moved in” segment.  It makes me wonder if they even really bought the place.  

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I miss New Orleans and was hoping showhere would help that. Not so far. 

What was the point of the student house staging except to show the Scooby gang pulling together a hot mess into a lukewarm one? That’s selling New Orleans? 

I liked those guy buyers and I hope they enjoy their house of chandeliers.

P.S. Brittany, you ain’t that cute. But I’m tired of Drew and the Davids. Thinking your shelf life won’t be that long, but realtor on.

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It could be that the house hadn't closed yet, or the filming couldn't wait for the end of the buying process.     I didn't catch the copyright date at the end of the show.      It could be that the two episodes from this week were  rushed because they were going to shut down production.     Or the two men closed on the house, and moved in between the showing, and the filming, and the producers didn't want to show that.     I wonder if there was painting going on off camera, or while the cameras were showing relaxed buyers, the movers were moving the new owners stuff in.   

I think everyone knows that the houses are decoys shown to make it seem like the buyers are choosing, when they already closed on the house.       I loved looking at the country house, with the giant pool.      

 (I noticed some "new" shows that were on HGTV Saturday night were actually dated 2015.  The Jamie Durie (?) show was actually dated 2015).    

Edited by CrazyInAlabama
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This is from the Baton Rouge Advocate in an interview with Brittany.

Quote

When did filming start? Did you have to stop due to COVID-19?

The show has been in the works for more than two years. We filmed the pilot back in 2018, and started filming for this season in January. We did have to halt filming for COVID for a couple of months starting in March. We picked back up in June of this year.

So if they did a Pilot in 2018, that explains why my on-line guide says the shows last Friday were Season 1, Episode 2 and Season 1, Episode 3. So these shows were shot in 2020.

Here's the full interview reported Sept. 7, 2020.

Baton Rouge Advocate Sept 7, 2020 interview with Brittany

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Brittany needs to stop with the endless quips and valley girl expressions. She sounds like a drunk college girl. I assume she's a very skilled realtor, but you'd never know it by listening to her inane sound bites.

I'm mostly  disappointed thus far, but appreciated mention of the beloved old neighborhoods. A distant cousin recently unearthed and shared a photo of the NOLA home where my great grandparents and grandmother lived. It was wood frame and lost during one of the many storms. What I wouldn't do to see it.

I thought the deep blue was horrible, but I know many people love that color. Were it not for stairs, I'd gladly live in that condo in the old building. And I loved the Treme house(s). That's my fantasy - two joined shotguns, one for me, one for family and friends.

I wonder if NOLA is experiencing what so many cities have - the purchase of massive amounts of real estate by foreign investors. My family down near NOLA reported it happening after Katrina. It happened to Georgetown, in DC, in the 80s. It went from charming to touristy. I think much of LA and London are owned by foreign investors.

Edited by pasdetrois
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9 hours ago, buttersister said:

I miss New Orleans and was hoping showhere would help that. Not so far. 

What was the point of the student house staging except to show the Scooby gang pulling together a hot mess into a lukewarm one? That’s selling New Orleans? 

What do you miss?  What would you like to see?  
 

In recent times, off the top of my head, there are two other shows (episodes, really) that covered New Orleans.  Abandoned and No Passport Required.  If you didn’t know anything about New Orleans and you didn’t know that’s what these episodes were focused on, you wouldn’t know they are all about the same city.  So, what is New Orleans to you?

Totally agree about the staging.  It’s definitely NOT a highlight of this show.  I don’t even think they do a good job.  Must’ve been an hgtv add-in request.

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I'm giving this show a chance, although the real estate agent is exactly the kind I have avoided like the plague when buying or selling.  She too much "sales and marketing" and doesn't come across as genuine or that she's even listening.  She's too busy talking and faking interest.

The house porn is good, though!  I didn't love any of the homes yet but it's mostly because they have been gut rehabs instead of restorations.

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What do you miss?  What would you like to see?  

I miss being there with the food, music and lovely people (we used to go annually in the 90s, staying in private condos). The strong Spanish,  French and Caribbean influences combined with pace of life (because it's too damn hot to move fast) a lot of the time) made it feel so different--in a good way.

I know this isn't a travel show, but the way Hometown gives the feel for Laurel, I'd like to feel a stronger sense of place here. I noticed the HGTV website is featuring a range of architectural features--in New Orleans and other cities--so perhaps Show will increase time spent on that.

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The only semi-authentic scene was when Britt was melting into a puddle at the beignet cafe...makeup mop up for the talent!

Can't wait for Aidy Bryant do Brittany on SNL.

Not surprised the couple went with the chateau an hour away from NO.

The price was too good for the husband to pass up...even though water was pouring down from a vent....maybe it is haunted, too.

 

 

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12 hours ago, pasdetrois said:

Brittany needs to stop with the endless quips and valley girl expressions. She sounds like a drunk college girl. I assume she's a very skilled realtor, but you'd never know it by listening to her inane sound bites.

Since when has quiet expertise sold on TV?

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On 9/13/2020 at 7:03 AM, CrazyInAlabama said:

I didn't catch the copyright date at the end of the show. 

I went back and looked - copyright is 2020.

I did note that Brittany said the asking price was $998,000 and the buyers paid full asking plus $250,000 for the lot next door. Zillow says it sold for $962,500 on 6/18/20.

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Evidently Selling the Big Easy is Selling the Big Lie. Mr. Google tells me Kaylan and Kyle did not buy the Uptown house featured on the show. At least on House Hunters, I feel confident the buyers actually bought the house that is shown.

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On 9/13/2020 at 4:54 PM, buttersister said:

I miss being there with the food, music and lovely people (we used to go annually in the 90s, staying in private condos). The strong Spanish,  French and Caribbean influences combined with pace of life (because it's too damn hot to move fast) a lot of the time) made it feel so different--in a good way.

I know this isn't a travel show, but the way Hometown gives the feel for Laurel, I'd like to feel a stronger sense of place here. I noticed the HGTV website is featuring a range of architectural features--in New Orleans and other cities--so perhaps Show will increase time spent on that.

When was the last time you were?

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On 9/12/2020 at 3:24 AM, cameron said:

Wish that the female realtor would wear her hats correctly (they are not to be perched on the back of your head lady).

Haha! I know.  She had that one black, brimmed hat on the back of her head a la Boy George.

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On 9/14/2020 at 1:05 PM, chessiegal said:

Evidently Selling the Big Easy is Selling the Big Lie. Mr. Google tells me Kaylan and Kyle did not buy the Uptown house featured on the show. At least on House Hunters, I feel confident the buyers actually bought the house that is shown.

I also found out on Saturday that at least the first episode shown (episode 3) was a "Big Lie". It just took 3 days and a complaint to Feedback to get approved to post! Obviously using the same account name and email I used on TwoP over 15 years ago didn't help any. 🙂

Anyway, I live in South LA and follow a lot of area reporters and one documented the first episode lies.

https://twitter.com/Crimealytics/status/1304821532875722755

He found the 6/18/20 sale for $962,500 that chessiegal did. He also found that the lot next door that the guys supposedly purchased is actually "Owned by HANO (Housing Authority of New Orleans)" !!! 😄

Also in that thread he referred to this tweet that includes a link to an Instagram post on the guys' joint account to the house they purchased in Jan. 2019.

https://twitter.com/dcfhockeyfoo/status/1304594420868829191

If you look at that joint Instagram account you'll see they're still living in that same house. Also, if you look at that Instagram account tags you'll find the Instagram accounts of the guys which confirms they are the "actors" we saw in that episode.

Also, I found a tweet back in July that seems to back up what laredhead observed about the Treme house shown first in the second shown episode (episode 10).

On 9/12/2020 at 1:05 PM, laredhead said:

For almost $900,000 I want a house with covered parking.  I was not impressed with the one episode that my DVR recorded.  The house in the Treme area looks like it might be an Air B&B, and didn't the realtor say the reason for the 2 beds in the bedroom was that it was a rental.  New Orleans is trying to get the short term rental market under control.  Prices of real estate have skyrocketed in recent years.  

https://twitter.com/prokchorp/status/1288504636152979459

So I guess I'll just watch Selling the Big Easy to find out how many more lies they try to sell us. 🙄

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5 minutes ago, doublestandard said:

Also, I found a tweet back in July that seems to back up what laredhead observed about the Treme house shown first in the second shown episode (episode 10).

https://twitter.com/prokchorp/status/1288504636152979459

So I guess I'll just watch Selling the Big Easy to find out how many more lies they try to sell us. 🙄

OK, now I feel totally justified in disliking the agent becasue she seemed fake, fake, fake and the last person I would trust when buying or selling.  She'll say anything to anyone to unload a property and get her commission.

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When I told my husband Brittany flat out lied about Kaylan and Kyle buying that house in Uptown, he said he'd never hire someone who lied like that to make a buck doing a tv show.

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I'll give her a pass, because this is typical of pretty much EVERY HGTV programme. That's why they're listed under Entertainment. 

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This kind of lie is why House Hunters, and virtually every other HGTV show requires that the hunters have actually bought the home before filming.    The decoy houses are often short term rentals, or houses that aren't really on the market, but the one the person 'selects' is actually theirs.   The same with every other show.    That's disappointing to read about this show.   I like looking at houses, but not when the whole thing is totally fake.   

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I found one thing they said about the Uptown house was true - it's listing price of $998,000. It went on the market July 8, 2019 for $1.049 million, dropped on September 19, 2019 to $1.025 million, with a final price drop on December 13, 2019  to $998,000.

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Watched the episode featuring the couple from California.  Found it interesting the female buyer was the one driving them around the different areas of Nola.  Think that this was another play actor involvement in this scenario.  Who drives their realtor around in a strange city to look at property.

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On 9/15/2020 at 4:13 PM, Pegasaurus said:

Haha! I know.  She had that one black, brimmed hat on the back of her head a la Boy George.

That's funny.  Forgot about him and his hats.

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Cameron, I noticed that the HH was driving as well, and thought that was odd.  While I like looking at the houses, I really cannot stand the realtor.  If I showed up at an open house and was very interested in buying the house, but she was the selling agent, I would leave and go find another realtor to handle the sale for me.  OMG, I find her mannerisms, and cutsie little comments very hard to take.  

As for the house that the former Californians bought, it has only a one car garage, and the house is very close to the street (as are most houses in the area), so their cars, or at least one of them, will be parked the driveway all the time.  Pretty sure those buyers have had a culture and weather shock moving from southern California to New Orleans where a heavy dew equals a rain equivalent in California - lol.  Wonder what they do to make all that $$ to buy a million dollar house?

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Just watched the wrap up of the California couple on the next episode.  Completely staged episode.  House sold back in 2018.  That's all their furniture in place when they visited the home for the first time and showed their youngest by the front door and that child is certainly not five.  Just a bunch of fill.  Wonder how much the couple got for appearing on the show or were they actors from the get go.  Now I know why she was driving them around instead of the realtor.  House sold November 2018.

Edited by cameron
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At least this time the buyers were really the owners, even if it was a couple of years ago.     I couldn't believe anyone would spend that money for a house right next to the railroad tracks, with a short driveway, and only a one car garage.       I wouldn't have touched that house.   I loved the other house, but the railroad track house was awful.    I wonder how that huge glass door did during the hurricanes?     That kid was not five.    

Edited by CrazyInAlabama

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7 hours ago, cameron said:

Watched the episode featuring the couple from California.  Found it interesting the female buyer was the one driving them around the different areas of Nola.  Think that this was another play actor involvement in this scenario.  Who drives their realtor around in a strange city to look at property.

They bought that actual house November 2018.

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If you go to HGTV's House Hunters web site, you can find a link to the production company that tells you how to apply to be on the show. No such links for this show that I can find. It could be HGTV isn't sure there will be another season as this season is in the can. However, if it's all made up hooey, all production has to do is find willing participants. I'll have to check out who the production company is.

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My guess is that on the early episodes, the 'star' finds the home 'buyers', made up of people she knows, friends of the other staff, and anyone who volunteers to be on TV.   You would think that the show would follow what the other shows do, but I guess not.     I'm puzzled why anyone would buy that home next to the railroad track, and with inadequate parking too.      

I pay so little attention to this show, after finding out how fake it is from last weeks episode, that I don't even know which house the second family looking for more space 'bought'.   

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after finding out how fake it is from last weeks episode, 

I took a hard pass.

Not particularly liking the realtor didn't help, either. My test? If Richard the HHI agent was touring fake homes, don't think I'd mind so much. He's entertaining.

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13 hours ago, Blueberry Snobal said:

Imagine my surprise when I recognized the Lakeview house on last nights episode as belonging to a friend of mine. It is still on the market for $1.6.

Inquiring minds want to know - have you talked to your friend about their house being on the show?

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On 9/13/2020 at 4:54 PM, buttersister said:

I miss being there with the food, music and lovely people (we used to go annually in the 90s, staying in private condos). The strong Spanish,  French and Caribbean influences combined with pace of life (because it's too damn hot to move fast) a lot of the time) made it feel so different--in a good way.

I know this isn't a travel show, but the way Hometown gives the feel for Laurel, I'd like to feel a stronger sense of place here. I noticed the HGTV website is featuring a range of architectural features--in New Orleans and other cities--so perhaps Show will increase time spent on that.

That sounds nice.  I’ve never been there, so I wouldn’t know the pace is slower there (because the infamous Mardi Gras is crazy, or looks that way on tv).

you bring up excellent points about the cultural diversity and the way Hometown conveys a sense of community and place.

As far as the interested buyers being fake, a lot of real estate shows do this (Selling Mega Mansions among others).  I don’t mind.  It’s fun to rate people on their characterizations.  It’s fun to rate the chemistry of two strangers who are “a couple”.  It’s fun when one breaks character.  And the houses, of course, are the most interesting part!  

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10 hours ago, chessiegal said:

Inquiring minds want to know - have you talked to your friend about their house being on the show?

No, I haven’t talked to him about the show yet but do intend to do so soon.  What does inquiring minds want to know?

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I watched the latest episodes last night.  The realtor is unjustifiably full of herself; and the show itself is full of itself.  But you know what?  I don’t care...I watch for the house porn.  I don’t care that the show is fake; most of the HGTV shows are. Love the scenes from the bustling city; love the peek at historic houses.  I wouldn’t mind seeing some houses that were smaller, cottage-style that weren’t quite so glitzy.  But I will take this house-hunting show over the myriad flip shows, shows hosted by some of the couples that focus a lot on their familees; they all blend together.  But. I could do without the segment on staging a random house.

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9 hours ago, Blueberry Snobal said:

No, I haven’t talked to him about the show yet but do intend to do so soon.  What does inquiring minds want to know?

How were they approached to be on the show? Were they compensated? How long did the production crew take filming? What time of year was it filmed? If they had to sign a nondisclosure agreement, I'm guessing they can't say.

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