How does Beachfront Bargain Hunt work? The show is one of HGTV’s most popular, but many viewers are either skeptical about the show’s production (thanks to the House Hunters debacle of several years ago) or honestly curious about how the whole process comes together. Thanks to a series of testimonials written by fans who’ve appeared on the show, we now have the answers to some of your basic Beachfront Bargain Hunt questions!
For example, one exposé written by a satisfied fan named Laura describes her experience working with the Beachfront Bargain Hunt crew after Laura and her husband Dave had purchased a home in Belize. (That part of the BBH process should surprise no one: yes, some of the people on the show already own their house when the crew comes to film them.) According to Laura, she and her husband were contacted by the show’s producers since they “had recently purchased a property on the beach that fit the parameters they were looking for.”
The interview process involved a thirty-minute conversation over Skype; two months later, Laura and Dave were chosen, and a film crew arrived shortly thereafter. All in all, the crew spent four days filming Laura and Dave’s house, two nearby properties, and a “Two Months Later” party scene for the wrap-up. (It’s not clear how the “Two Months” date was decided upon, though it’s possible that Laura and Dave had already lived in their house for that long.)
Similarly, the Cottones were featured in an episode a couple of years ago, though they didn’t own their house beforehand, and actually selected it during the jam-packed weekend of filming. According to Robin Cottone, a Beachfront Bargain Hunt shoot is actually a lot busier than it might look–”It was a lot of work,” she said, explaining that the four-day weekend consisted of 12- to 14-hour shoots every day, and that the producers wound up with 26 hours of film in total.
Robin’s husband Kevin also explained: “There’s stuff you don’t realize that you basically have to do everything three times,” he said. “The sound guy, every bit of background sound, he picks it up. And if there’s background sound, they basically stop it, and you have to do it again.”
“We’re outside, a plane was flying by or a dog was barking, ‘stop,’” added Robin. “So it was very tedious. It was exciting but tedious.”
The show’s producers also travel with an extensive collection of stuff–art, linens, books and magazines, and even some furniture–in order to decorate empty locations as needed. Contrary to popular belief, however, there is no script–not even a rough outline of what needs to be said over the course of the episode. What the show does boast, though, in addition to a production crew of approximately seven, is a drone, for otherwise tough-to-get aerial shots, and the occasional surreptitious close-up. (It sounds like most of the people on Beachfront Bargain Hunt either dislike the drone or have a hard time getting used to it.)
By contrast, one thing everyone on Beachfront Bargain Hunt does seem to like is the professionalism and down-to-earth nature of the crew itself. Said Jane Towle, a real estate agent from Maine who’s been featured on the show, “[The crew] came a couple of hours early without any work going on whatsoever—no filming or recording—and just hung out. We spent two hours getting to know everybody on the crew, laughing and getting a little back story on everyone. They put us at ease, and they were great people to work with.
“Everything was done in multiple takes,” Jane continued, “so you had the opportunity to say, ‘You know, I really didn’t like the way I said that’ or ‘Could I have said that better?’” he said. “They were wonderful about prompting and scripting a lot of what we did.”
Of course, the question How does Beachfront Bargain Hunt work presumes that the beach itself works as expected. And that is beconing quite the tricky issue, as an article in Slate points out. Thanks to continually rising sea levels and increasingly powerful (and frequent) storms, a placid beach locale is, by some measures, “the most reckless place to invest in property.” Worldwide sea levels are expected to rise between two and seven (7) feet by 2100, and insurance doesn’t necessarily cover a total loss–or even a majority of such a loss.