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Twin Cities: A Goldmine For DIY Shows

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(credit: CBS) Edgar Linares
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The Twin Cities are quickly becoming a goldmine for home improvement shows, as there are four home improvement shows being filmed in Twin Cities’ metro for DIY Network and HGTV.

“Our shows work because the Midwest is generally very relatable and the network really likes that,” said Anna Campbell, Executive Producer. “They like that we have a variety of different houses and different ages of houses.”

Campbell produces more than a half dozen shows with Magnetic Productions out of the warehouse borough of Minneapolis. The home improvement shows filmed in Minnesota are “I Hate My Kitchen,” “Rehab Addict”, “Renovate to Rent” and “Renovation Raiders.”

Campbell said another reason why the Twin Cities is such a great place to film is because the first-time home buyer market is active.

“We have a lot of young people who are buying homes here,” Campbell said. “You can’t do this as much in New York City because there are not a lot of homeowners.”

On their new show, “Renovation Raiders,” a lucky couple is sent out to dinner and by the time they return, they’re surprised with a new kitchen, basement or living room that’s been completely transformed. The Raiders don’t just paint, they remove walls, install wood floors and reroute plumbing and gas lines.

“’Renovation Raiders,’ plans their shoots out carefully,” Campbell said. “We have a warehouse where they build the entire room ahead of time and then they deconstruct it so they know exactly how it goes together.”

“I Hate My Kitchen” host James Young is from South St. Paul. This week he began filming his seventh season. The show on DIY Network turns a dated or cookie-cutter kitchen into something unique and functional.

“I’ve been in the industry for 26 years,” Young said. “I’ve worked everywhere — New York, Las Vegas, Los Angeles and Kentucky.”

Young said Minnesota homes are designed and are structurally different compared to places like Las Vegas or Los Angeles.

When it comes to renovation cost, most of the time the network picks up the tab. Each show is given a strict makeover budget, but sometimes the homeowner has to chip a few bucks.

Now you might be asking “How do I get my home selected?” Campbell said you need to be an energetic homeowner who’s open to new ideas.

For casting, click here.

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