Some of the requirements contestants must follow to make it on TV are tougher than others, like meeting the show’s required minimum budget of $30,000 and finding a house within 40 miles of Waco, Texas. Other requirements are a bit more personal, as people must be “outgoing, energetic and fun!” and accept all final renovation choices. A rep for HGTV confirmed the casting call’s authenticity to HuffPost.
Not to burst anyone’s bubble, but the questionnaire also seemingly confirms a previous contestant’s admission that certain parts of the show are staged or reenacted. For example, the family’s home must have already been purchased before the show starts ― so the search for a house in the beginning of the episode is indeed staged.
In the casting call, some questions reference the house-hunting process as though it’s already begun before the show’s taping:
“Tell us about your home search. How many homes have you looked at? Please describe all of the homes & neighborhoods that you have looked at and why they have not worked for you.”
“Tell us about the home you are most interested in― what do you love about it, what do you dislike about it?”
“Talking about the home you are considering purchasing- If we could help you turn this home into your dream home, what would it look like? Please be descriptive (feel free to send tear sheets of things you’ve dreamt of for the space).”
Other questions mention the home as if it has already been purchased:
“Where are you in the escrow process?”
“What is the purchase price of your new home?”
“Are you aware of any construction/structural issues? If yes, please describe.”
And at the end of the questionnaire, future “Fixer Upper” stars are asked to submit multiple photos of their purchased home.
In 2016, Season 3 participant David Ridley told Fox News that you must have already purchased a home to be on the show.
“You have to be under contract to be on the show. They show you other homes but you already have one,” Ridley revealed. “After they select you, they send your house to Chip and Joanna and their design team.”
Drew and Jonathan Scott of “Property Brothers” recently said that certain parts of their show are reenacted.
“At the end of the day, it has to be interesting television,” Jonathan told the New York times. “But when we find a load-bearing wall, we are really finding a load-bearing wall.”
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