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living room with concrete floor and grey sofa with blue cushions from vault interiors

Real Estate Websites are my new Pinterest-Hole

Honeymoon periods tend to last, what, a year or so? It’s that blissful time when you still love everything about your beau and nothing seems to annoy you.

Well, the beau in question I want to discuss today is my new home. Not that it feels new anymore. I’ve been in it a year, and already the shimmer and shine of buying my first home is wearing thin. Sure, purchasing it filled me with a sense of achievement. But there is something that lives inside of me; a monster, if you will. He is perpetually unsatisfied when it comes to property and interior design, and he can never truly feel satisfied with what he’s got.

The result has been an addiction to real estate websites. And I’d like to know if you too have this monster living inside of you too.

french provincial bedroom with tufted headboard in grey linen fabric
When you wish the staged furniture came with the house

Online listings: It starts off innocently

Forget the Pinterest hole; that’s old news. I no longer find myself lost for hours at a time on that social media platform. Now, it’s all about realestate.com.au.

Any time I have a moment free (as especially if it follows me discovering something that annoys me about my home) you’ll find me typing that address into my search bar. Is it the same for you?

The adventure starts off as a mere gander; a little looky at what the houses are selling for in my area. It’s nice, after all, to find out how much my home might have appreciated in value over the 12 months I’ve been in it.

There’s nothing better than knowing you’ve made a good investment, right? So yeah… it can’t hurt to check out the value of like-for-like properties. Just to double check I’m as smart as I think I am.

open plan living kitchen and dining room with polished floorboards
The polished floorboards here caught my eye.

Then, things take a turn

Without hesitation, I find myself ticking the “surrounding suburbs” box. What’s the harm, I think; I wanna see what houses in the suburbs around me are going for. I mean, I can’t stay in this home forever. It’s a stepping stone home. I bought it with every intention of moving onto something better and closer to the city eventually. Is that time now?

So an hour has passed. It’s all good. This is important research. And I find myself able to tune out the whinging of the cats because they were meant to be fed. And I also have the uncanny knack of shutting out all other sounds and visual stimuli from the real estate hole I have planted myself in.

Nothing will get in the way of the constant scrolling. Until I hit the last page of search results. And then things get uglier.

ugly looking 80s kitchen with brown cabinetry
This home selling for over one million bucks. Seriously!?

The hole only gets deeper

Maybe I could move back to Sydney, I think. I’m like a gypsy, after all. Nothing is keeping me in Melbourne! If I broaden the search to look at listings in Sydney maybe I’ll find something I could fix up. Sure, I’m absolutely sh*t at DIY,  hate to break a sweat, and don’t know how to use power tools, but so what!? I’m keen. Let’s explore the Sydney property market.

We’re close to two hours being lost now. So many pretty pictures of properties! Sure, I’m completely aware that the real estate photographers can make a portaloo look like the size of a small town, but I’m still sucked further down the rabbit hole.

Maybe I don’t need a spare room after all. Maybe a studio could fit me, my partner and two cats. I see small-space-living shows on TV all the time and they look quaint. I’m sure I’ll get used to hearing every sound that comes from the bathroom at all times. People do it. I can too.

exterior photo of fish and chip shop on real estate website
I even click on listings like this. Who does that?

Coming full circle, back to reality

The only thing that pulls me out of this real estate hole is, quite simply, money. That’s the one conclusion I come to every single time I look at images of these homes online. I am constantly shocked by the prices people sell their homes for. And even more shocked that people will pay that much for them.

It’s those figures that snap me out of my endless scrolling eventually. And it’s at that moment I realise how much I truly love my own home. It’s the moment I tell myself that I’ll be staying where I am for a few more years, to let the home appreciate even further.

And then within a few days, I repeat this entire process all over again. I’m an addict, I’ll admit it. but hopefully I’m not the only one who does this.

charcoal grey sofa with fluffy white cushion and soft pink cushion
I could buy this based on the decor alone.


The hero image in this post is via Vault Interiors. All others via RealEstate.com.au 

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Chris Carroll

Outside of writing this blog, Chris is an interior designer, presenter and author. He’s also spent time on TV, on Channel 10’s Changing Rooms, as well presenting segments on Channel 7’s Sunrise and The Morning Show. If you’d like to book a design consult with Chris, you can find out more here

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I’m interior designer Chris Carroll, and at TLC Interiors we’re all about helping you create an amazing home without breaking the bank. It’s affordable designer style at its best, and we make the whole process easy and fun for clients & readers alike!

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