Love It or List It Vancouver. My Interview with Co-Host Todd Talbot.

Todd Talbot
Love It or List It Vancouver’s Todd Talbot

A new twist on an old favourite, Love It or List It Vancouver, premièred on Monday, January 7 on W Network.  I’m sure you already know the premise of the show and if you have seen it, then you already love it.  It not, then you must tune it and see what the hype is about.

Love It or List It Vancouver showcases families in B.C.’s largest metropolitan city who are struggling with homes that no longer suit their needs.  They have either outgrown their home or the lustre has worn off which means the home owners are faced with the dilemma of whether they should love it (renovate it) or list it (put it up for sale).

The “Love it” side, features interior designer Jillian Harris, best known for her work in “The Bachelorette” and “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” pitted against the “List it” side, featuring West Coast realtor, actor, businessman and overall real estate expert, Todd Talbot.  Jillian’s challenge is to make the owners love the house again by delivering a show-stopping renovation while Todd is determined to get home owners to relocate by dangling temptation right in front of them with dreamy homes on the market.

I have caught all three of the episodes so far, and these shows have taken viewers on an emotional roller-coaster as Jillian and Todd implemented their plans to sway the home owners to their side.  The stakes are high as the home owners weigh the financial and emotional decisions of buying a new home or staying in the renovated one — will they love it enough to stay or is it time to list?  It’s a situation that most of us have encountered or currently are dealing with which is what makes the show even that much more fun to watch.

Todd and Jillian were in Toronto recently and I had the wonderful opportunity to speak with Todd about the show, his love of real estate, his acting and find out how he juggles all of this with two young children at home.

What many may not know about Todd is that he is a professional trained stage performer who grew up learning that real estate is more than just the house you live in.  At an early age he watched his parents’ involvement in the real estate industry, through buying, selling, investing and renovating properties and that was where he began to develop his understanding of the benefits of investing in real estate and his love for renovating.  Todd is also a self-proclaimed social media junkie whom you can follow on Twitter @ToddTalbot or see more information on his personal website, here.

But check out Todd’s personal website quickly because there is a new one coming… Bigger… Better… Stronger.

Stay tuned.

Before speaking with Todd, I carefully selected 15 questions to ask him and I suspected that I would need 20-30 minutes to get through them, but I was caught totally by surprise at how awesome he was to speak with and after an hour of talking I felt that I had taken up way too much of his time, yet I wanted to keep chatting – which is why posting this was so difficult – I had so much great information and very few of them tied into the questions I had originally set out to ask.

So if you have never heard of Todd before today, here is what you should know about him;

  • He’s a father of two young children whom he loves dearly and he is a devoted husband who credits the love, support and understanding of his wife with his ability to juggle fatherhood, the show and all the other stuff he does.
  • The other stuff… Yes.  He is a professionally trained actor and has appeared on stage and on TV too many times to list here, so you are going to have to follow the link to his blog and check it all out.
  • He has a real estate marketing business which he runs with a partner and their website can be found here.
  • He is passionate about real estate.  I referred to him as being a quintuple threat because of his in-depth knowledge and understanding of the markets, renovating, buying and selling houses, investing in real estate and marketing.
  • He has a hard time saying no to new business ventures.

This man does it all, and when you look at him on TV you would never know because he looks so darn young (and he’s only a year younger than I am).

But once he speaks, you understand how knowledgeable he is, how educated he is and how passionate he is.  This show is perfect for him because it ties his acting with his passion and that makes the show worth watching.

I asked him this question; “People may not be familiar with your considerable body of work, so how would you best explain yourself in 140 characters (or more if necessary).  What would you like them to know?” but very quickly realized that he had answered this over and over again throughout our conversation, and I think my bulleted comments above go a long way towards explaining what he is all about.  Plus he’s on Twitter, so follow him, and see for yourself (he’d love it).

I was also curious about the length of time, on average, that it takes to go through all the requirements for a show – from finding the potential couples, meeting them, showing them houses and / or renovating their house, etc. in order to get that one hour (or 42 minutes) of viewing ready?   In response to this question, I was astounded to find out that the shoot process (filming) is around six-weeks from start to finish, but the entire process from finding people, getting permits, the renovations, etc., take much longer.  Todd did share with me that in some cases he had provided the home owners with very detailed information on camera during the taping and when it came to air, his comment to them was edited to something like, “It looks nice”.    At least the home owners know the real story and used that to make their decision.

I asked him if he would be able to provide a general answer to someone who wanted to know if it made sense to move houses, or renovating their current house based on the current market conditions in Vancouver and would his advice change if interest rates were up at 5% instead of in the 1% range?

To that question, Todd provided me with the response I expected, which is that he would need to assess each situation on a case-by-case basis.  Obviously with interest rates being this low for so long, anyone who got into the market is reaping the benefit of being able to maximize their mortgage payments, however, jumping in at these low rates and just being able to make the minimum payment is never a good idea because when interest rates rise (and they will rise) it may force the home owner to sell or miss payments, which can lead to foreclosure.

We also spoke about the real estate “bubble” and whether the recent reduction in house prices in Vancouver was a sign that the bubble was bursting to which Todd and I again came to the same conclusion, that there was no bubble, and the bubble that economists have been predicting will burst for the past 10 years have to admit that even in such a depressed period, house prices are rising and that might be the way it stays for a long while.  Waiting for the bubble to burst is not a good reason to wait to buy a new house, I remember Todd saying, and for those who have waited and continue to wait, they are losing out on the satisfaction a new house would bring them.

And with that question, I thanked Todd for his time and told him I should be able to have this post in draft form in a day or two which could not have been further apart from how long it took me to take all this great information and put it into a post which did the show justice, him justice and explained why on Monday’s on WNET, you should be watching Love It or List It Vancouver.

I hope I just did.

Enjoy the show.


8 thoughts on “Love It or List It Vancouver. My Interview with Co-Host Todd Talbot.

  1. faye gebauer December 9, 2015 / 7:28 am

    I “love” the show!!! I always tape 6 programs to watch. DAVid has finally started being nicer to Hilary. He was such a meanie!! Good reno ideas. Learned a lot about renos to watch for when looking for a home. Have not seen Todd & Jilian on many shows lately. Miss them. Stay on cable forever!!


  2. Bert November 9, 2013 / 7:16 pm

    Most of the properties shown in the show are not in Vancouver at all but are in the outlying suburbs (Surrey, White Rock, Burnaby etc). So why call the show Love it or List it Vancouver? This gives viewers from other parts of Canada a false idea of the Vancouver property market.


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