‘Fixer Upper’ Almost Never Happened Because Chip Gaines Thought It Was a ‘Scam’

It’s a frightening thought: the world was almost deprived of Fixer Upper. Without Chip and Joanna Gaines, farmhouse chic might not be a trend, Waco would be mostly unknown outside of Texas, and the nation would have no idea what shiplap is. Fans are so thankful that things turned out the way they did!

In a recent interview with Sunday TODAY, Chip and Joanna Gaines recalled how fame found them and the one tense moment when they almost let it pass them by. Read on to find out why Chip Gaines thought the whole thing sounded like a scam.

Chip and Joanna Gaines
Chip Gaines and Joanna Gaines | Daniel Zuchnik/WireImage

HGTV producers discovered Joanna Gaines from a blog post

It’s difficult to remember back when Joanna Gaines wasn’t a household name. But once upon a time in 2013, Joanna was just an unknown blogger sharing her little renovation projects with readers. In a twist of fate, however, the right people discovered her blog entry and liked what they saw.

Television producers reached out to Joanna and asked if she’d be willing to host a film crew in Waco to record a pilot episode for a potential show. Apparently, they’d been looking for a couple who like renovating so they could create a new series.

Chip and Joanna Gaines interview

Chip Gaines thought the idea sounded shady

As Joanna Gaines recalled during the interview, her husband was less than enthused by the whole idea. In fact, he thought it probably wasn’t real television producers at all.

“I called Chip, and he said, ‘Do not call that person back. It’s a scam. How much did they say you have to pay them to film you?’” Gaines explained to Willie Geist on Sunday TODAY.

Chip Gaines relented to filming the pilot

Even though he was skeptical, Chip Gaines eventually decided to take the risk and allow film crews to come and film a pilot. And we’re so happy he did. From the beginning, HGTV knew they had found something special.

In the very first episode, Chip Gaines tries to convince Joanna to move the whole family onto a houseboat. This episode highlights a couple of attributes we’ve come to love about the couple — their silliness, their authenticity, and of course, the sweet interactions they have together. Even when Chip has a crazy idea.

‘Fixer Upper’ became the most popular show on HGTV

They say everything happens for a reason. Even though Chip and Joanna Gaines couldn’t have predicted their success, they knew that taking risks was the only way to achieve results. Chip Gaines understood this instinctively as an entrepreneur. Otherwise, he might have never allowed that film crew to come.

Now Fixer Upper has come to an end but the legacy (and reruns) live on. And even though we can no longer catch up with Chip and Joanna turning the “worst houses in the best neighborhoods” into dream homes for their clients, we are looking forward to Chip and Joanna’s Magnolia network, which is launching next fall.

And it’s all thanks to a potentially shady film crew who changed the Gaineses’ whole lives.