A&E Thinks Climate Once Again Ripe for House Flipping

Green lights series starring former Survivor Russell Hantz

A&E has green-lighted seven episodes of a new reality series they’re calling Flipped, hosted by three-time former Survivor contestant Russell Hantz. The new series, slated to air later this year, features Hantz buying up houses at a discount in Houston, Texas, renovating them, and trying to sell them off at a profit.

In the last few years, A&E has mostly focused on nonscripted programming—buying up only one new scripted miniseries, which will debut this summer, but  introducing four new nonscripted series, including a spinoff of the reality show Storage Wars called Storage Wars: Dallas in advance of its upfront earlier this month.

Needless to say, a show about house flipping is a risky proposition in this economic climate—particularly one that focuses on the troubled Houston area housing market. But A&E has seen success with previous shows on similar themes  (though A&E isn't producing any new episodes of Flip This House, the series still airs in reruns )—and sources at the network say that the new show will focus less on the lavish riches to be earned from the housing trade (perhaps a theme better suited to the 2005 housing market) and more on the challenges presented by trying to make a profit on renovated housing in one of the worst markets in decades.