House Hunters International

You guys, I’m so behind on this whole television thing…don’t get me started, really, BUT I just started watching House Hunters International last month and am a total addict junkie. Every night, I can’t wait until the kids are sleeping so D and I can hop in bed and watch several episodes back-to-back. Addict junkie, I say!

First off, I mean, it’s AMAZING AND LIFE-CHANGING. How I lived without it for 37 years, I’ll never know. Some cities are so much less expensive than I thought! Some cities are insanely more expensive than I thought! Some cities are amazingly beautiful, and some make me want to stab my eyes out with a fork! Most importantly, I could listen to Brits say the word “property” all the live long day. “This is such a lovely prah-pah-tea.” “We’re looking for a 3-bedroom prah-pah-tea.” Say it with me, PRAH-PAH-TEA.

Secondly, I have a life list. (I’ve never shared it here. Yes, I know one of the best things about a life list is to SHARE it with others here on the interwebs, but I am a wuss and I don’t want to, ya hear?) One of my life list goals is to move abroad for at least a year. I am really wanting this to happen within the next 5 years.

(This very moment, my mom is yelling upstairs to my dad, “Ron! She’s really lost it this time! She wants to move to EUROPE. Hell’s bells!”)

(She’s never used the term “hell’s bells” before, but let’s just go with it.)

So! Europe. Want to get there soon, while the children are young. Of course, there are some technicalities to work out, like JOBS and SCHOOLS and NOT KNOWING ANYONE and NOT SPEAKING THE LANGUAGE, but hell’s bells! We appreciate a nice challenge.

Tops on my list right now – Denmark, Switzerland, Netherlands. (All ridiculously expensive, right? I mean, good god, Geneva! $10,000/month for a decent apartment?) Spain, France, and Italy are up there, of course, but as you can see by my DVR, I have lots more research to do.

Are any of you all HHI junkies as well? Let’s embrace.

(My other favorite show, which I can’t believe I’m admitting to you, is STORAGE WARS. Yuup! Orange County in the house!)

  1. Rebecca

    January 5, 2012 at 2:51 pm

    I highly recommend it if you can! We’ve been in Spain for 3 1/2 years (kiddos 9 and 4) and it has been a wonderful adventure! We’ve been able to travel all over Europe and expose our kids to many different cultures. Of course ours was courtesy of the U.S. Navy which isn’t really an option for you, but we have no plans to move back to the continental U.S. anytime soon!

    • whoorl

      January 5, 2012 at 3:44 pm

      Rebecca, I might have LOTS of questions for you. Due to the climate and learning Spanish (opposed to another language that’s not used as widely in the US), Spain is tops on my list!

  2. kristen [rage against the minivan]

    January 5, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    Living abroad is a HUGE goal of mine, too. Let’s do it. We can just make a ton of money blogging.


    (But seriously . . . )

    • whoorl

      January 5, 2012 at 3:43 pm

      Let’s do it!

  3. Mama Bub

    January 5, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    85 recordings!

    The thing about the American House Hunters is that I’m so filled with rage at the housing prices in almost every city they feature. They’ll be cruising through a GIANT PALACE with an asking price of $325,000 and they’ll cringe and go, “It’s just a bit out of our price range.” And then I fly through the TV and scream at them that they just don’t know how good they have it. Do not ask me what we paid for our dumb house or I will weep. WEEP.

    This doesn’t really happen to me with the international version, for whatever that’s worth.

    • whoorl

      January 5, 2012 at 3:42 pm

      Oh, don’t get me started on our housing prices. RIDIC. That’s why I’m so shocked at what we could get for our money abroad in some places…

    • Rebecca

      January 5, 2012 at 7:12 pm

      Totally. “5 bedrooms and $140,000! But my budget is $135,000! Guess this one won’t work out.”

      Oh — and my other pet peeve with the domestic HH — “LOVE THE STAINLESS STEEL APPLIANCES AND GRANITE COUNTERTOPS.” Always.

      This is why my Indiana in laws will never understand why we paid what we did for our humble mid-century pad in the bay area.

  4. Kristen

    January 5, 2012 at 3:13 pm

    Yep, I’m a total junkie as well. I’m obsessed with a few specific categories. First, the insanely expensive, incredibly tiny apartments (like Paris! Have you seen that one, with the itsy bitsy room?) which always make me feel SO GOOD about where I live. And then, you know, I love the insanely expensive tropical ones, where they’re buying, like, an island. And then, my very favorites are the ones that I consider true research, which are the ones that I can actually envision living in. Most of them are beach houses in tropical climates, but there have been a few cities that have made the list.

    Once again, I wish we lived closer. It’s even more fun to watch with friends while drinking wine!

    • whoorl

      January 5, 2012 at 3:41 pm

      For some reason, I’ve just never felt a huge affinity for France. Well, take that back. Paris, specifically. I bet the French countryside would be amazing, though.

  5. Pam

    January 5, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    This show does NOTHING to help curb my wanderlust. It’s BAD.

    I have living in different places on my LifeList, too! Because the kids are older/in school now, I’d like to just do it for a few summers – both in other cities in the US and other countries. Enough for them to realize people “live differently” in other places.

    And for me to gorge on great food, shopping and sites. Natch. :)

    • whoorl

      January 5, 2012 at 3:40 pm

      Yes, maybe I should start out with a summer or two…I’m all LET’S GO RIGHT NOW. ;)

  6. Roxanna

    January 5, 2012 at 3:30 pm

    What about Vienna? We’ll live in Vienna eventually. We can be expats together! (Hi! I sound crazy. But we really will live in Vienna someday, so you better visit.)

    My best friend lives in Berlin and I’m soo jealous of her life. I’ve lived in Spain and it’s fabulous. But Rome is the city of my dreams. I worked for French people, so we can talk about that anytime you want.

    • whoorl

      January 5, 2012 at 3:39 pm

      Oh, Vienna. VIENNA. Would die to live there. Let’s move next year!! Come on!

      I have to say, Spain is tops on my list, mainly due to the climate and the fact that Spanish would be the obvious second language choice, right?

      Even though I minored in Italian, I don’t see Italy as the place we’ll end up. I’m not sure why, but I just don’t. Weird. If I had to pick between France, Italy and Spain, it would definitely be Spain.

  7. Ash

    January 5, 2012 at 3:59 pm

    To say that House Hunters International is my crack would be an understatement. Every time they show an exotic place I’m always like “LETS MOVE NOW!”

    Yes, capital letters and all.

    But really, hello wanderlust.

  8. Amanda @ Ramblings of an Empty Mind

    January 5, 2012 at 4:16 pm

    Love, love, love the show. I am actually jealous that you have THAT many episodes on your DVR.
    I’m also jealous of the fact that you get the most recent episodes, we’re a little behind here in Canada. http://www.welivewhereweare.com/2011/10/secret-revealed.html – a blog I read…actually had HHI follow them on their move from London to Melbourne…the episode has been on in the US already.
    And yes, I would also love to spend some time living abroad, just don’t really know where, too many locations that tempt me. :)

  9. sizzle

    January 5, 2012 at 4:27 pm

    I love that show and the regular House Hunters (it speaks to where I am in my life right now). The reg HH show always surprises me with how CHEAP it is to live in other parts of the country. But yea, I don’t want to live in Florida. (Sorry, Floridians!)

    We were discussing this show with our real estate agent and she said a client of hers had applied to be on it. Apparently they require you to have already purchased your house and then when your segment is scheduled you have to set up two other viewings plus the one of the house you bought for when the camera crews come out. I don’t think you get any monetary compensation either- maybe like a new bedroom set. Weird, right?

    • whoorl

      January 5, 2012 at 5:17 pm

      I figured you had to have already rented/bought the place beforehand…it just doesn’t really make sense. But the new bedroom set??? Totally weird!!

  10. Carolie

    January 5, 2012 at 5:01 pm

    Maybe Gabrielle from designmom.com will give the scoop on her experiences with HHI? I loved the Blair family episdoe!

    • whoorl

      January 5, 2012 at 5:15 pm

      I can’t believe that out of 85 episodes on my DVR, Gabby’s wasn’t one of them! Still waiting to see that one…

  11. Jennifer

    January 5, 2012 at 5:17 pm

    I discovered both of these shows this fall and I love, love, love them! The downside is that we don’t have cable so I have to time my gym visits just right, wait until they are online/on Netflix, or we go to our friend’s house and make them have HHI marathons!

  12. Michelle

    January 5, 2012 at 5:37 pm

    We are a cable-less household, but I got addicted to Storage Wars on Netflix. LOVE it. I’m going to have to see if HHI is online!

  13. geri

    January 5, 2012 at 5:51 pm

    I love that show and watch it from time to time and I always laugh at americans wanting to love in europe when most europeans are moving to the US, inc us who made the move a year ago from the UK (because of my husband’s job). I’ve also lived in france, south africa and the french swiss border have settled in the US the easiest. I think most americans will be shocked to find out how unwelcoming europeans are and how claustrophobic life in european cities can be. I was coincidently talking about this to my friend who dreams of living in paris. There’s me dreaming of living in SoCal!! I think it’s important to experience different cultures but don’t forget that the grass isn’t greener on the other side :)

    • whoorl

      January 5, 2012 at 8:47 pm


  14. Seriously Sassy Mama

    January 5, 2012 at 5:55 pm

    It is nice to watch house hunters international and dream. Oh some of those places are awesome. I love American Pickers. My husband is a storage wars junkie.

  15. francie

    January 5, 2012 at 6:02 pm

    i watched 5 episodes of storage wars last night! barry is my absolute favorite, i enjoy his pizzazz.