On its surface, Chip and Joanna Gaines’ Fixer Upper seems like a pretty ordinary show. After all, between Chip’s down-to-earth sense of humor and Joanna’s knack for design, the two have transformed Waco, Texas, one renovation at a time. But is there more to the show than meets the eye?
According to Vanity Fair, a recent accident involving a contestant’s home from Season 3 reveals a darker side of Fixer Upper. Ken and Kelly Downs were recently sleeping in their renovated home when a car crashed into their living room. The vehicle was driven by a drunk man who had just left a bar down the road. The wreck caused significant damage to the house, which the Downs’ originally paid a hefty $215,000 to fix up.
The accident could be chalked up to bad luck, yet the family claims that it was only a matter of time before something like this happened. The couple, as it turns out, were not happy with the home after Chip and Joanna worked their renovation magic. Although they were satisfied with the décor, Today reports that the house’s location was a major problem. The Downs’ live in a seedy neighborhood and constantly complained to local authorities about the bars in their vicinity. Their complaints were never answered and they blame Chip and Joanna for showing them a home in such a bad part of town.
“This is what we’ve been saying,” Kelly shared. “There’s a big problem here. It’s not safe. This is Fixer Upper gone bad.”
That said, nobody stopped the Downses from doing their own research on the neighborhood before they applied to be on the show. Further, People reports that Chip and Joanna’s influence in Waco has created a booming industry for the small Texas town. In fact, the Downses themselves have taken advantage of the popularity of the show and rent out their home as an Airbnb.
Not everyone in Waco is happy with the changes. Kelly revealed that some individuals in her neighborhood are angry about the hike in taxes that occurred after their home was renovated. Some of her neighbors have even threatened and intimidated them over the past few years. The Downses, however, are doing their best to improve their neighborhood by working with the city of Waco.
Filming for Season 5 of Fixer Upper is currently underway.