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Why HGTV Shows Stopped Using This Popular Housing Term
If you’ve spent time viewing housing content online or on television, you’re likely accustomed to hearing the term “master bedroom,” but these days, this term is being phased out.
The master bedroom, which often featured an en-suite bathroom, walk-in closets, and seating space, has traditionally served as the largest room in the home.
Critics accused the word “master” of alluding to the United States' long history of slavery, in which slave “masters” resided in opulent quarters within their massive plantations.
The rise of conversations in 2020 about racial injustice and inclusivity has led some entities in the real estate world to drop the term “master” from their terminology.
HGTV has followed suit, choosing to eliminate the phrase from programs in exchange for more inclusive terms. Others in the industry, such as Lennar, made the switch as well.
Yet defenders of the phrase, like the National Association of Realtors, opted against replacing it, stating that there’s no confirmed connection to slavery in its current usage.
Over the past few years, other classifying phrases have been used instead. Property listings on realtor sites are opting for phrases like “primary bedroom” or “primary suite.”
Realtors and designers might also call these spaces the “main” bedroom, bathroom, and suite, while some builders switched to using “owners’ suites” as a more inclusive term.