qatsi (qatsi) wrote,

Car Crash TV for the Middle Classes

As a pre-emptive strike in the merger discussions between Channel 4 and Channel 5, C4 this evening presented a new series demonstrating the multidisciplinary possibilities for combining "Car Crash" reality TV with the vogue for what uitlander colourfully describes as "Property Porn": The Property Chain. In which a first-time buyer has the opportunity to stitch up well-meaning Middle England, who in turn find the vendors of their desired property "didn't know" it was a Listed Building when they made major structural alterations and a barn conversion, and redevelopers of a half-a-million farmhouse who put the price up when the sale falls through after n months. It would be funny if it wasn't so sick and twisted, and accurate. I don't know what is worse: the way vendors and purchasers behave towards each other, or the way solicitors often seem to be able to ignore the nasty little details (which I naïvely thought that was what you paid for).

Curious also in this evening's escapade was the way that none of the vendors ever seemed to talk to their agent, but rather wanted their solicitor to talk to the other party's solicitor. This is contrary to my experience, and may explain the delays and negative outcomes in the programme: solicitors charge by the minute and have no great interest in completing the deal, whereas estate agents operate on commission and will generally do whatever negotiation is necessary to give a deal the best chance of completion.
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