News and Analysis

Magnolia Network Reinstates Canceled ‘Home Work,’ Says There Was No ‘Ill Or Malicious Intent’
Chip and Joanna Gaines
Cindy Ord/Getty Images for SiriusXM

It looks like “Home Work” is heading back to Chip and Joanna Gaines’ Magnolia Network after several days of controversy.

The series is being reinstated after no “ill or malicious intent” was discovered by Magnolia following an investigation. The new network is being run by Chip and Joanna Gaines, who rose to fame on their hit HGTV show “Fixer Upper.” Magnolia is their highly anticipated project which replaced DIY Network under the Discovery umbrella. Magnolia launched with a catalog of lifestyle programming in the same vein as the Gaines’ beloved renovation program.

But the “Home Work” controversy has cast a dark shadow on that rebranding effort. Several homeowners came together alleging that Utah-based home renovators Andy and Candis Meredith left them with unfinished projects and shoddy workmanship. This got so much attention that the network initially canceled the series, before reinstating them as of Thursday.

But the Magnolia execs are willing to make the situation right and help unhappy homeowners fix any issues they’re still having.

“Magnolia Network is dedicated to sharing hopeful and genuine stories,” Allison Page, president of Magnolia Network, said in a statement Thursday, according to NBC News.

“In doing that, we strive to meet people with compassion, and to cautiously approach difficult moments with honest understanding. After speaking with homeowners as well as Candis and Andy Meredith regarding renovation projects for ‘Home Work,’ and hearing a mix of both positive and negative experiences, we do not believe there was ill or malicious intent. Our commitment now is to provide appropriate resolutions for those whose experience with ‘Home Work’ fell short of our network’s standards.”

She concluded, “While ‘Home Work’ will return to Magnolia Network, we recognize the responsibility we have to act on how we can better support not only our talent, but those who put their trust in them and this brand.”

Three homeowners who worked with the Merediths went public with their allegations of bad business practices, including Aubry Bennion, who posted her saga to social media and quickly went viral. The Merediths rebutted her claims and all others on their own social media page, saying it was all a “one-sided narrative” and a series of “half truths and outright lies.”

“We have not heard from these clients in almost two years, and to have this come out publicly on the eve of the Magnolia network launch feels calculated and timed to hurt us the most. We have always been available for a resolution,” they said, according to BuzzFeed News. “We acknowledge that there were misunderstandings and hard conversations along the way, but just like with our many other happy clients, we did everything we could to resolve any issues that arose.”

Essentially, the homeowners involved in the controversy claim the Merediths took their money and then didn’t complete the work in a timely manner, or didn’t complete the agreed upon work at all. Meanwhile, the renovators push back on that claim, saying the scope of the project changed, which is what increased the cost. They stand behind all the work they did.

“Home Work” airs Saturdays at 9 p.m. and streams in the Magnolia section of Discovery+.

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