Cheryl Casone will present a new season of American Dream Home (Wednesdays at 9:00 and 9:30 PM/ET on FOX Business Network). The program shares the emotional and heartwarming stories of families’ achieving their American dream and finding their forever home. This season, Casone will place a special emphasis on aspiring homeowners as they explore waterfront and country living opportunities in "Beach Life" and "Gone Country" themed 30-minute episodes. We talk to Cheryl about the new season starting April 27:
Please tell us a little about your show, American Dream Home. How is your show different from other real estate shows?
American Dream Home is different than traditional fix them up, flip them, tear them down shows. Our show dives deep into the story of the individuals, couples, and families that are searching for their dream home. They've struggled in some cases, suffered in some cases a traumatic loss, and fought their way back to get their American Dream. This country gives us so much opportunity, no matter where we come from, to build a life. One couple lost their home in a fire, another a hurricane, and they fought their way back. It's so inspirational to me as a host, and I'm honored to share their stories with Fox Business viewers.
How did you transition from flight attendant to television?
I studied journalism and communications at Northern Arizona University, but when I graduated I had a thirst for international travel. My communications internship was with US Airways and I got a taste of the "non-revenue" lifestyle. But, after several years of traveling the world, I knew I was ready to go into the career I dreamed of. I flew weekends to pay the bills and did an intership at KPIX San Francisco during the week. I worked seven days a week, but in the end was offered a job in television and said my final goodbye to my flying career.
Any favorite travel experiences you’d like to tell us about?
I have so many! Probably it was an assignment here at Fox Media. In 2010, I traveled to Jordan, Syria, Israel, and the Palestinian Territories. (This was prior to Bashar Al Assad's regime declaring war on his own people) I had always been fascinated by the Middle East. To see the history in and around Jerusalem for instance, was something I'll never forget.
Where would your dream home be? Do you have a favorite home of the ones that have been featured on the show? What are some of your favorite destinations from the upcoming season?
My dream home is in Hawaii, the Garden Island of Kauai to be specific. My aunt and uncle have lived there since the 1970s and I've been visiting them there since I was a teenager. I'm actually going back in July, specifically to look for my own dream home.
Of the homes we have featured on the show, I was really struck by the homes we found in Key West, Florida. It had been several years since I'd been there, but the level of development, infrastructure, and new construction was astounding!
For the upcoming season, we are also featuring "Gone Country" and I have to say the horse farm in Kentucky really stole my heart. The family are professional equestrians, so the episode has an amazing property in addition to a spacious, beautiful home and of course beautiful horses. I'm originally from Texas and learned to ride as a child, so that episode was close to my heart.
How can Americans save and prepare financially for their American Dream Home. What are the top obstacles to buying a dream home or vacation home?
First, I'll say I think there is a real estate bubble in several markets right now, so for those that are discouraged, hang tight, and be patient, because I believe prices will continue to level off. As for saving to buy a home, I always say the "max" you should spend on your mortgage is 25 % of your income. Right now, the biggest obstacle is low inventory, bidding wars, and prices that are higher by 30 percent in some markets just in the last year. Again, I think that pressure is abating. For a vacation home, I would suggest trying to find markets that are less well known. That is the goal of American Dream Home Season 2. Finding those "gems" in places you many never have heard of.
The purpose of American Dream Home isn't to show our viewers conflict, problems, and drama that come with buying a home. The goal of my show is to inspire viewers to go for that dream by showing examples of real families, real people that were never handed anything. They worked, they saved, they are the stars of American Dream Home. I'm just the messenger.