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O.C. BUSINESS PLUS | HEARD ON THE BEAT / REAL ESTATE

Cable Show on New Homes Hits Viewers Where They Live

May 10, 2000|DARYL STRICKLAND | Daryl Strickland covers real estate for The Times. He can be reached at (714) 966-5670 and at daryl.strickland@latimes.com

Next week, Cox Communications, which covers most of south Orange County, will launch a cable television program showcasing new homes in the county--most of which are built right near its viewers.

Like an infomercial touting the benefits of an exercise video, the program is Cox's bet that its South County viewers will take more tours of model homes after watching "Homeview."

And for the home builders who help sponsor the program, the idea is to lure viewers to step up to a bigger home.

The half-hour program will allow Cox's customers to take a visual tour of new residential neighborhoods, with related segments on interior design and landscaping mixed in.

Viewers also can tap the company's Web site, OCnow.com, which is devoted to local events and online discussions. They also can find additional information about the neighborhoods profiled on the show and maps on how to get there.

Cox is preparing five shows that will be repeated during the upcoming 10-week season, said Dana Anton, Cox's creative services manager. She said Cox is committed to the show for "multiple" years, but declined to reveal the program's cost or expected revenue.

The cable company decided to create the program because Orange County is one of the nation's hottest real estate markets and families have a hard time finding housing, Anton said.

The program will air beginning Monday on Cox's local access Channel 3 and will be carried on the Home & Garden Television (HGTV) network.

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