With outlandish fashion, deluxe disagreements and two identical bald twin brothers, Selling Sunset is everyone’s favourite real estate-based docu-soap.
But what does escrow really mean? Who is this Christine they keep referencing? Does The Oppenheim Group have anything to do with the Christopher Nolan Box Office hit? (Not even slightly). And how many members of the office has Jason Oppenheim really dated?
Read on to have real estate jargon demystified through our Selling Sunset Glossary, get an overview of the office dynamics in the “drama tree” and meet The Oppenheim Group agents…
A Selling Sunset Drama Tree
Of course, across the seven series run there has been much more tension than would fit on this diagram. This just concerns all of the drama currently underway, and that which is dormant, bubbling away just under the surface.
A Recap of the Current Cast
Brett and Jason Oppenheim are joint presidents and founders of The Oppenheim Group (O-Group), focused on selling luxury properties across America.
Brett is largely silent throughout the series; he is too busy opening new O-Groups in territories such as Orange County, and genuinely selling houses, to get involved with the drama. He mostly makes small cameos, some of which may slip under the radar due to his looking exactly like Jason.
Jason plays a more active role in the office dynamics than his brother. He has dated three members of the current cast, Nicole Young, Mary Fitzgerald, and Chrishell Stause. He dated the former two agents around 10 years ago, well before the events of The O-Group office were filmed and televised, whilst Jason and Chrishell caused quite a stir announcing their relationship at the end of series five.
They swiftly broke up, and Jason has since moved on to model Marie-Lou Nurk, with Chrishell wedding her partner Australian singer G Flip earlier this year. The trailer for series seven implies some drama between Chrishell and Marie-Lou, as Marie appears to believe there is some unfinished business between Chrishell and Jason.
Fan favourite Christine is NOT a favourite amongst the cast. As you can see via the diagram above, she essentially has no allies remaining. Although she has now departed from both The O-Group and the show, she still lives in the minds of the cast rent free.
Christine was such a central part of the show, that it’s important for any new Selling Sunsetter to know who she is – she’s likely to be mentioned at some point.
The main event that led to her being let go from Selling Sunset was her rivalry with agent Emma Hernan, based off some prehistoric drama surrounding them dating the same man. This culminated in Christine *allegedly* poaching one of Emma’s clients, which is a big no-no in the real estate world, especially when said client was offered an *alleged* $5000.
Chrishell is so named because a man named Chris who worked at a Shell garage heavily assisted in her birth. Her mother then saw a great opportunity for a portmanteau and named her Chrishell.
As one of the longest running Selling Sunset cast members, Chrishell has been living her life on-screen for some time now. We have seen her through plenty of drama, from housing sales, to her divorce from This is Us star Justin Hartley, and more recently through dating her boss and co-star Jason Oppenheim.
Chrishell is often considered to be the main character of the series; histrionics often revolve around her. Notable present drama includes her drifting from her bestie Mary Fitzgerald after she felt she took Jason’s side following their rather devastating breakup.
Mary and her boss Jason dated well before Selling Sunset was ever on our screens. Herself and Jason maintain a healthy working relationship, referring to each other as best friends, and even sharing two dogs who they held an incredibly tense birthday party for, back in series four.
Although her and Jason have managed to stay friends across the previous seasons, tension has started to bubble due to Jason swanning off around the world with his girlfriend Marie-Lou and leaving all the work, and office tension, to his best pal Mary.
Nicole began her tenure in Selling Sunset last series, but she has been working at The O-Group much longer. For the audience, this means that Nicole comes with a whole lot of off-screen drama for us to catch up on, namely with Chrishell.
This stems from co-listings that Nicole and Chrishell shared, but which Chrishell allegedly took all the credit for. After some back and forth, this concluded with Chrishell accusing Nicole of something incriminating… and Nicole having to take a day out of her relaxing holiday to get a drug test.
Oh, and Nicole also dated Jason in the past… which definitely doesn’t add to the animosity.
Chelsea is our British representation. First joining The O-Group in series five, Chelsea was firm allies with the recently departed Christine. That doesn’t, however, mean she can’t act as a double agent and get along with everyone in the office. Apart from Bre.
Bre and her have had issues since Chelsea expressed concern over Bre’s parenting and open relationship, which snowballed into snidey comments over listings and general office rivalry.
Amanza often keeps the peace in the office, and hasn’t had many issues with others across her six series term. She even managed to maintain cordiality with Christine much longer than the rest of the cast, although that has since ended.
Cast your eyes towards the drama diagram at the top of this list and notice the dotted line between Amanza and Chrishell. During the break between series six and seven, it was revealed that Chrishell is now blocked by Amanza on Instagram. Why? Time will tell.
Alongside her real estate duties, Emma Hernan sells plant-based empanadas, and she won’t let you forget it! Emma entered the Selling Sunset family in a hurricane of drama, serving as arch-nemesis Christine’s maternity cover. Both Christine and Emma agree that they dated the same guy, however there was some debate over the timelines - Christine believes it was at the same time, and claims that her and the guy were engaged, but Emma claims that SHE was engaged to him, and there was no overlap.
Since this drama Emma has been peacefully selling houses whilst sitting comfortably in the peanut gallery for the series’ many arguments.
Heather Rae El Moussa
Heather has been in Selling Sunset through series one, serving up valuable moments such as sharing with Bre all the things Chelsea said behind her back in the last series. And then denying responsibility.
Heather is now happily married to America’s answer to Kevin McCloud (Grand Designs), Flip or Flop’s Tarek El Moussa. The two recently welcomed their first child, so Heather has been moved to cameo status this series, due to her maternity leave.
Davina has shifted in and out of the Selling Sunset cast more than any other agent. Starting as a recurring cast member in series one, she soon made her way up to the main cast status after the sheer mass of arguments she caused made it a necessity.
She parted ways with the agency at the end of series three, due to tensions between her and Jason Oppenheim after she couldn’t shift a 75-million-dollar listing. She was soon asked back halfway through series four and has been making argumentative appearances ever since.
Selling Sunset: The programme is so named because they sell houses located on or near the ‘Sunset Strip’ in West Hollywood. Thus, they are selling the sunset. Of course, it may be more accurate if they named it Squabbling Sunset, or Shouting at Each Other in the General Vicinity of the Sunset Strip, but that last one could be a little lengthy.
O-Group: A shortening of The Oppenheim Group, the real-estate agency owned by twins Jason and Brett Oppenheim, and who they all work for.
Real Estate Agent: A real estate agent is essentially a property middleman who works for the buyer and seller to ensure a smooth transition and ensure the property sells swiftly. Shockingly the agents are yet to use the line “they should call you a fake estate agent”, despite that word being thrown around near constantly.
Commission: The agents don’t get paid a regular salary, instead relying on commission to make money. Luckily for them they take a healthy cut of the house’s sale price. For instance, Chrishell Stause sold a $10 million property back in series five and bagged $300K commission.
Escrow: A legal arrangement in which money is held by a neutral third party after a real estate agent makes a sale. The money is held until necessary documentation is completed, protecting the buyer and seller from malpractice. When someone announces, “I’m officially in escrow!” it is often met with audible sighing and jealous eyerolls by the other agents – escrow is the club everyone is trying to get into.
Broker/ Brokerage: The main difference between a real estate agent and a real estate broker is that brokers have a higher-level license. This means they can practice independently or open a brokerage of their own and have real estate agents work under them. Davina made a lot of noise upon receiving her broker’s license, saying words to the effect of “I could walk out of here and open my own brokerage”, although this has yet to be seen.
Closed: When the closing of a sale occurs, they are out of escrow, and the sale has officially ended. In the O-Group office this means you get to ring the big bell. To explain the origins of the big bell, it came from a classic Chrishell moment where she declared they should have a bell to ring when they sell a house in series one, and thus the bell was born.
Co-list: When two agents share a property, and sell it together. Co-listing always signals a potential end to a friendship, and never goes smoothly.
Contingency: A set of criteria that if met, mean the buyer or seller can back out of the transaction.
Equity: How much of the house is owned by the seller – the amount paid on the mortgage and the amount paid in the deposit.
The Valley: The San Fernando Valley is a strip of land north from LA and Beverly Hills. Also nicknamed Silicon Valley for reasons pertaining to silicon. Chrishell and the Valley are almost synonymous in Selling Sunset, and sometimes the subject of light ridicule, as not many of the other agents sell here.
Congratulations, initiation is complete, and you are now free to watch Selling Sunset series seven without playing catch up on the former series. Watch out for surprise marriages, new agents, and plenty of Selling Sunset squabbles.