HGTV's 'Fixer Upper' Sparks Buyer Rush

December 28, 2016

It's been called the "Gaines effect." The popularity of the HGTV show "Fixer Upper," starring Chip and Joanna Gaines, has been credited for revitalizing the Waco, Texas, housing market.® researchers say the show is one likely reason why home buyers are targeting Texas locations in their online home search.

Texas ZIP codes, particularly those in Waco, dominated®’s top 10 list of most-searched ZIP codes on its site in 2016. Pamila Johnson, director of real estate at Magnolia Realty who has worked in Waco for 15 years, told® that since the HGTV film crews showed up, the city's housing market has been booming. Johnson says the Gaines' celebrity factor has brought positive attention to the area.

"If there were a people's choice award for listing popularity, Waco would win because of Chip and Joanna Gaines," says Jonathan Smoke,®'s chief economist. "The 'Fixer Upper' effect has been consistent for several years and isn't just related to new shows airing. Weekend marathons keep Waco on the minds of home enthusiasts, even if they have no intention of moving there."

Here are the ZIP codes that topped®'s most-searched list for 2016:

  1. 76712: Woodway, Texas
  2. 76710: Waco, Texas
  3. 76711: Waco, Texas
  4. 76707: Waco, Texas
  5. 75006: Carrollton, Texas
  6. 76054: Hurst, Texas
  7. 76022: Bedford, Texas
  8. 75023: Plano, Texas
  9. 75234: Dallas, Texas
  10. 76014: Arlington, Texas

Source: “Texas Trounces Rivals in Most-Searched ZIP Codes of 2016,”® (Dec. 28, 2016)