What Only Big HGTV Fans Know About Yard Crashers

With a whopping seventeen seasons, "Yard Crashers" is one of the longest-running HGTV shows — and for good reason. As part of the "Crashers" series, "Yard Crashers" focuses on transforming neglected backyards into homeowners' dream outdoor spaces. While "House Crashers" and "Bath Crashers" each focus on indoor transformations, "Yard Crashers" is one of just a few HGTV shows that involve landscaping and outdoor renovations.

Each "Yard Crashers" episode follows the same format: The crew walks into a home improvement store and searches for the perfect person to surprise with a backyard makeover. Once they've found the perfect candidate, the "Yard Crashers" crew works with the selected homeowner to create a backyard that surpasses everyone's expectations — installing things like decked out, outdoor kitchens, and custom fire and water features in just two days.

As entertaining and impressive as the show is, not everything on "Yard Crashers" is exactly as it appears. If you're interested in getting the scoop on some little-known facts about "Yard Crashers," you've come to the right place.

Casting is not as random as it appears

One of the best parts of "Yard Crashers" is its fun premise: You walk into a big box home improvement store for a can of paint, and you may walk out with the opportunity to have your backyard completely revamped. While the show makes it appear that the "Yard Crashers" hosts choose people randomly, the homeowners who end up on the show are vetted beforehand to ensure they're a good fit. A homeowner on the show revealed in a Reddit post: "Well, they do go into stores and look for people. However, there are plants. They make sure that if they go to a Lowes on a Thursday at 10 AM that there are a few qualified homeowners, or they've wasted a trip. However, even if you've been told to show up, there's still no guarantee that you will be on the show."

Along with some technical requirements, your attitude is one of the biggest factors that make or break your shot to be on the show. Host Chris Lambton told Popsugar, "At the end of the day, I have to work with these people for two days. And they're long 12- to 15-hour days, so the biggest thing for me is that they have to be happy and goofy and make the experience fun." Lambton can get a good sense of peoples' personalities during the vetting process since "Ninety-nine percent of the vetting process is just talking."

People frequently ignored Chris Lambton in stores

Imagine browsing your local Lowe's when a man and a camera crew approach you and start asking questions. If you know nothing about "Yard Crashers," there's a good chance you may be thoroughly confused and not want anything to do with the situation. And according to host Chris Lambton, this exact scenario happens pretty frequently.

"It's funny how many people when I walk up to them just say 'no' to me or walk away without talking much," Chris told Popsugar. "That was one of the biggest surprises I found from doing Yard Crashers, how many people don't even want to talk to me." However, finding people who don't know about the show — versus people who have heard that the "Yard Crashers" crew is in town and are camping out at their local Home Depot — does tend to be a better experience, according to Chris: "It makes it that much better to just bump into somebody and make their day."

The backyard makeover isn't 100% free

Though it's true the show pays for all the labor, materials, and renovations, homeowners are responsible for paying for the taxes associated with the value of the home improvement project. According to Bill Cunningham, who was on "Bath Crashers," the renovation is considered a gift from Big Table Media (the company that produces all the "Crashers" shows) and is thus taxable. While this may be disappointing for those who assumed the renovations were truly free, it's safe to say that the homeowners who are gifted with a renovation end up with a pretty sweet deal — not to mention a significant increase in the value of their home.

Cunningham reflected on his experience on "Bath Crashers" and noted just how generous the producers were."On our project the producers paid for breakfast, lunch and dinner for every single person on the project. If the plumber or painter was there, even for 30 minutes, they were fed," he said. Cunningham added that "it wasn't ever fast food — the producers asked where my wife and I ate when we went out for dinner and ordered from those restaurants." Ultimately, Cunningham had nothing but good things to say about his experience, saying, "Everyone related to the show was really amazing."

You must meet criteria to be on the show

Your yard is neglected and boring — seems like the perfect candidate for "Yard Crashers," right? Not quite. In addition to only casting people who have a good and upbeat attitude, the "Yard Crashers" crew only works on homes that are owned, not rented — and swimming pools are a big no-no. "I've fallen into way too many pools — it's not good for the microphone," host Chris Lambton told Popsugar.

Additionally, your backyard actually needs to be in pretty rough shape to be considered, and preferably, not too large; the crew has to stick to a certain timeframe, after all. To help narrow things down, people will often show Chris a photo of their yard to give him a good idea of what it looks like and if they'd be a good fit. "It's weird, people always have a picture of their backyard no matter how bad it is," he told Popsugar. And if they don't have a photo of their yard? "I jump onto Google Earth and zoom into their backyard," Chris revealed.

With all these criteria in place, you may be thinking that the "Yard Crashers" team has trouble finding a candidate who checks all the boxes — and well, you're kind of right. According to Popsugar, it takes 15-20 people before the crew finds "the one" for the show!

The host is very involved in the reno process

In some shows, the host is there for commentary and good vibes more than participation in the show. But that is not the case for the "Crashers" series: According to a former guest on the show "House Crashers," the host is a major player in the process. "The host is VERY involved," the former guest said in an "Ask Me Anything" thread on Reddit. "We both (my fiance and I) were given 2 special projects to do with the host so we spent a lot of time with him. To be honest, the first day was really boring and we sat around for the majority of the day as the professionals went in and ripped things out and started installing some stuff. The host is very skilled and is involved with the whole process from start to finish." The former "House Crashers" guest added that his role in the reno actually wasn't very involved. "I didn't really know what to expect but basically you are not involved nearly as much as they make it look on tv." Despite this factor, he writes that "they were all fun to work with and it was a great experience."

Though the host of "House Crashers" is Josh Temple, while the hosts of "Yard Crashers" include Ahmed Hassan, Matt Blashaw, and Chris Lambton, from what we can tell, it appears all the hosts of the "Crashers" shows take an active role in the home renovations.

The original host, Ahmed Hassan, was fired from the show

O.G. "Yard Crashers" fans will remember the original host of the show, Ahmed Hassan. After hosting the show for six seasons, Hassan was replaced by contractor Matt Blashaw in 2011 after apparently ruffling some feathers when he asked to change up the format of each episode (per Cleveland.com).

Hassan told Cleveland.com, "I was in essence fired, though that word was not used. I was no longer able to produce my shows and the network re-cast my role with current host and DIY network host Matt Blashaw. Because my shows were great and I have a large fan base, the network continues to air both my older episodes alongside the newer episodes with Blashaw. There has never been any open discussion on the matter of me no longer hosting the show." While Hassan indicates that he was fired, the DIY Network said that his contract expired.

These days, Hassan has a landscaping company in Sacramento, California, according to Culture Map. Though he's based in Sacramento, he works wherever he can. "I do consulting wherever I can touch the ground with my own two feet. In Dallas, I'm going to Steve Harvey's ranch to put in a putting green," he added. And though things didn't necessarily end well with "Yard Crashers," Hassan seems to be doing well for himself. "I work hard to be credible, and I'm comfortable in my own skin," he said.

There may be flaws in the renovation

It's easy to look at the dramatic transformations on "Yard Crashers" and imagine that since everything looks so good, it's also structurally sound and perfectly made. This isn't always the case.

According to a Reddit thread created by a person who was on "House Crashers," "there are things that weren't designed perfectly. Cabinets were the most rushed it seemed and they are poorly made but I did a little fixing of things so they are good now." In the same post, the former "House Crashers" guest said that there was also a glass feature wall that "has lights behind it and we were left with no way of getting behind there to change them." Despite these small errors, the former guest said he is "95% pleased with everything that was done." Another Redditor revealed that "the materials used are the easiest, whether or not they are the best for the job," which may mean that the quality of some of the materials may not stand the test of time.

In any case, when you're working on a short timeline as you see on "House Crashers" and "Yard Crashers," we'd be surprised if there weren't a few minor glitches in these two-day renovations.

The show has had multiple hosts — and this may have affected ratings

After 17 seasons, it's unclear whether "Yard Crashers" will return for its 18th season. The show's most recent episode aired in June 2017, and while the show has not been officially canceled, five years is a pretty long break between seasons. As of 2022, the show has not been officially renewed for an 18th season, per Tonight's TV.

The show has very good ratings — a 7.7/10 on IMDb — and with seventeen successful seasons, one would think that the producers would want to continue filming. Additionally, "Yard Crashers" is just one of very few landscaping shows on HGTV, making it a valuable option in that niche. However, there is some speculation that the multiple changes in hosts — from Ahmed Hassan to Matt Blashaw to Chris Lambton — have caused the show's ratings to go down, which would explain why there haven't been new episodes (via Hooked on Houses). The host of any show has the ability to set the tone for every episode, after all, so if viewers didn't connect as well with the newer hosts, this might be the culprit for the lack of new episodes.

The experience may not be so fun for the renovation crew

When you're watching a show about a home makeover, or in the case of "Yard Crashers," a yard makeover, you're not thinking a ton about who is actually doing most of the renovation projects. But when it comes down to it, the dramatic transformations we see on "Yard Crashers" are often completed by people who don't get a lot of time on air, and, in turn, we don't have a good idea of what the experience is like for them.

According to a Redditor who "worked with guys that did work on Extreme Home Makeover," another HGTV home reno show, the renovation crew isn't always having the best time. "They said it was absolute hell and they'd never do it again. They have EVERY trade in there at the same time. People are constantly in your way and people are there 24 hours a day working," the Redditor wrote. "You work until you can't anymore, than someone else from your trade takes over. You go home and rest, and come back and pick up where they are at. Everything used is 'rapid setting' materials." This person added that there's also quite a lot of touch ups that have to happen after the reveal is filmed. "A lot of time, materials are still 'wet' when they do the walk though, like paint, grout, tile, texture, etc. There is also a TON of touchup work and repair when they are done."