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No Happy Ending for This Family’s Extreme Makeover Home Edition

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On Easter Sunday 2005, ABC's Extreme Makeover Home Edition aired an especially poignant episode. Five children, ages 14-21, from the Higgins family were orphaned. A couple from their church, with three children of their own, took them in. The result was 10 people living in cramped quarters.

The show finds families like these and, in the course of a week, rebuilds their home from scratch. The process is edited into a one-hour episode. In the beginning, we are told the tale of woe in as heart-tugging a fashion as possible. Also factoring prominently in every beginning segment are the horrible living conditions and the heroic nature of the people who are flourishing despite the hardship. Then the family is whisked off to a vacation, the house is razed and rebuilt, and the ending segment is the presentation of the house to the always overwhelmed family.

The ending segment is designed to be as heart-tugging as the first. The rebuilt home is always astonishingly beautiful and completely furnished. In the Easter Sunday special, the rebuilt home had nine bedrooms, including one for each child. The show also paid off the mortgage.

The Higgins' happy ending did not last. The family that took them in asked them to leave the beautiful nine-bedroom home because it did not belong to the Higgins.

The eldest child, Charles Higgins, who is also legal guardian for the minor children, contacted the producers of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, who could not help. Apparently the 24-page single spaced contract did not give the Higgins any right to the home built as a result of their tragedy. It did, however, give ABC the rights to their story and the episode was rebroadcast complete with happy ending after the Higgins children were already evicted.

As is often the case when good contracts go bad, the Higgins children sued both the couple that had evicted them and the various companies involved in making the show. The claims against the companies involved in making the show centered around the promise to provide them a home.

In a published decision yesterday, the California Court of Appeal ruled yesterday that the portion of the contract that required arbitration was unenforceable because it was both procedurally and substantively unconscionable. The Higgins will now be able to take their case through to a full-blown jury trial.

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About Justene Adamec

  • Wow, that’s amazingly atrocious behavior. If nothing else, that family should be shamed in public.

  • They should go through a “to the shame” as illustrated in The Pricess Bride.

  • Daron

    Perfect !

  • Conook

    I remember that episode and was very touched by the way the two families pulled together. it is a shame about what happened. I feel that abc should make it right in compensation in some way to the higgins family. the purpose of the show is to provide a new home and better life for the individuals involved. in the instance that occured between these two families abc should have factored that possibility into there contract either way.

    no matter what it is really a shame that the two families have two go thru what is about to happen in court

  • Ty

    I remember this case and thanks for the update from the CA appeals court. I am so glad this family of orphans (a heroic real life version of “Party of Five”) is going to be able to sue.

    I only hope that couple who took them in and used them to essentially get a new free loaded house end up homeless and hated by everyone they pass by.

  • chocolate

    I think that it is wrong. The Higgins used those kids to get a new home. The show should help or take the house back. The house was remodeled under false pretenses meaning the expansion was due to take care of the large family. Kids do not worry because when those taxes kick in those people will loose the house due to tax default.

  • fah q

    HA!!! thats what they get!

  • Katherine Bommarito

    I really hope those children get justice. I also hope the parents also get justice by loosing their home that was meant for those children not as their real estate investment.

  • Inmemoryofjames

    And to think, this was a couple from CHURCH that took in these poor kids.

  • The Higgins kids were lucky they weren’t sexually abused. You know those holier than thou church folk.

  • tboneandersen

    I do not remember that episode . I think that the premise of the show is meant to be a wonderful and humanitarian jesture for all involved.So with that in mind and the renovation /makeover was also done with the intent that to provide some security for the Higgins.The folks who took them in have had the mortgage paid off then it is and would seem equitable that the Higgins famly recieve a portion of that equity because had it not been for the circumstances and Misfortune of the Higgins family the Host family would never have gained the equity in the new home had it not been for the Higgins.So share in the wealth and show good will.

  • Lorie

    Like they say the devil walks in many forms. There’s good and evil. Hope their own children never have to walk the same path that the Higgins Children are going through. Prayer is very stong, Higgins Children keep praying and I will do the same. And you know, if worst comes to the point where you can’t get the house (although, it belongs to you all-which was also part of the reason on your parents lost), just see it like they needed it more than you all. Because, family is the most beautiful thing one can have. Never seperate and always love one another. As long as we have Jesus in our lives we have everything, especially our health. In the meantime stay together and fight for what is yours. My God, there’s enough child abuse everyday on the news for adults to act in such a vicious way. That’s what you call WICKED!!! That’s abandonment in my eyes.

  • kathleen and sean


  • Joyce IN AZ

    There is a saying “God don’t like ugly”. If the home was built as a result of the Higgins tragedy and as a result of one of the Higgins contacting Extreme Makeover. Why did the Higgins not have some sort of contractual agreement towards ownership of this house?

  • JD in SoCal

    ABC and the companies who donated products did nothing wrong to these people. They should not be held liable for the grievous actions of another. What this article doesn’t truly say is WHY they were kicked out. But it wasn’t ABC, et al, who kicked them out. Their only fault was in not protecting themselves fully enough from these frivolous, deep-pocket lawsuits.

  • Orlando12

    The house may be deeded to the unscrupulous foster parents, but weren’t the rooms custom designed for the kids? Weren’t the products in each room and the rest of the house given to the kids?

    The home should be stripped of all of its contents, and everything put in storage until the case is settled. That stuff belongs to the Higgens family !

  • I have seen this show a lot but not this episode and I hope this story shames the show into doing what is right for the kids that are who the home was really built for.

    I like that blogcritics comments do not want to have personal attacks but this is exactly what this kind of story is going to rile up in the readers of it.

  • Jessica in California

    The show–simply as a gesture of goodwill–ought to purchase a new property outright for the Higgins family, and do an extreme makeover on that property just for them. And after they do it, they should ensure the deed shows equal ownership by each Higgins child.

    The show can’t take away the home from those “good and charitable” folks that sheltered the Higgins orphans, because they were the owners of the original home and property that underwent the makeover.

    Because this family seemed willing to share their smaller and more humble home with the orphaned kids, one must wonder why they were unwilling to share their home when its size and amenties were better suited to such a large group.

    At the very least, I am sure the show has learned a valuable lesson from this, and–hopefully–will give close consideration to the circumstances of each family they assist, accommodating their needs and ensuring their best interests accordingly. I truly hope the show will see it is best, all the way around, to give the Higgins kids a home of their own.

    If they jump outside the framework of their usual format and do this, Extreme Makeover will not only follow through on their original intent and “promise” to help this family, they’ll bring peace and resolution to the kids’ aching hearts, and they will do much for their own image and that of ABC. Everyone’s interests would be best served–even the corporate machine’s.

  • Kinda sad what someone would do to cause much pain to someone else.

  • Susan

    It’s an unfortunate ending. However the companies involved with the rebuilding of the home did so as a charitable contribution and now they are being sued. So now not only are they out of pocket for their materials and labor they have to defend themselves for being charitable. As a business owner if asked to help with a donation like this I would have to think twice and I would probably decline based on this situation. It is sad when good intentions get turned into an ugly mess.

  • Ken

    I think the house should be taken away from the people that kicked the Higgins out, after all that house probably never would have remodeled by ABC if it weren’t for the Higgins kids.

  • JAck

    Gotta love Christians! hahaha

  • Terri

    A few comments:

    First, I have a problem with folk who bash Christians as a whole just because of what happened to the 5 Higgins who were “adopted”. There are fakes everywhere! Dishonesty by someone who “claims” to be a Christian does not make all christians bad. In fact, the offending person is probably NOT a christian, but just “pretending” to get something. Obviously, in this case, their deception worked. How sad for the family who really needed the help.

    Second, Extreme Home makeover was operating on the assumption that everyone was dealing honestly, therefore, their lapse in judgement as to NOT include the higgins family on the official paperwork, was just that, a lapse in judgement. They did what they came to do, took down a house too small for the needs of the ocupants, built a house that DID fix the need, and paid off the mortgage to help with finances. They could have had no idea what was to come, or the hardship that would once again, be placed on the 5 orphaned members of the Higgins family.

    Third, the couple (with 3 kids) that took the others into their home were NOT named Higgins. That was the 5 orphaned. That being said, I think the only “right” solution would be for the couple who got the new house through dishonesty to be evicted, and the house go to the family for whom it was actually built…the Higgins. With no mortgage, they would be fine. What about the couple that suddenly had no house? Well, they too, also have no mortgage, and they can go elsewhere and get another home. The Higgins family can’t. The older children (very yound adults) could never find jobs that allowed them to afford a 9 bedroom home. Since the “intent” of the show was to provide for the family that had been orphaned, that is what the courts should do.

    That’s just my 2 cents!!!

  • Ty

    It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out.

    If there is justice in the world, the oprhans will get that house, while the couple will somehow (if possible) be forced to buy a house resembling their original house BEFORE Extreme Makeover did anything.

  • brian from texas

    its religious people like this that give us christians a bad name

  • Conrad

    All Christians are fake, as far as I can tell Christianity is all about being fake. Pretend to be generous so you can criticize and feel superior to those whom you “helped”. Pretend you don’t need sex because you’re devoting your life to god, then rape children. Pretend to be holier than others, but hate people who are different from you. The people who took in the Higgins kids just to get a free nice new house don’t seem like atypical Christians to me.

  • myboulou

    1 ABC should go in that house and get all the higgins stuff that they put in it.
    2. abc should sue that family for all the new rooms that was added.
    3. put a lein on that house, so that family does not try and sell it.
    4. I will pray for that family, and hope they do not get crushed by our creator above.

  • Billy

    Bush is a Christian. Case and point.

  • Kate

    What a shame that people can be so cruel. These children have been through so much in their short lives, then to have this happen. The companies that helped abc build this house are not at fault neither is abc. Children, don’t give up your faith in humanity,not all people are this way. God is in control, he will find a way. You children have a great gift, That of each other and your faith in the One that matters. Somehow this will work out in your favor. God be with you as you go through this unfortunate mess.

  • Nan

    People, people – there is no justice in this situation. What the 5 kids will learn if they take this to court is that their “benefactors”, however dispicable, possess the deed to the property and the house.

    What the 5 kids should do, rather than sue ABC and the others, is team up with ABC and all of the contractors and sue their “benefactors” for fraud. Embroil them in so much litigation that they will have to take out a loan on that beautiful new house they swindled out of ABC. Sully their name and reputation in the courts and community so that they would not be able to show their faces in their “church” again — if they ever did go to church in the first place. With a sympathetic jury their “benefactors” may have to cough up the costs for building and furnishing the house and pay restitution to the kids — talk about a mortgage – on a 9 bedroom home — ouch! That would be the happy ending to this evil deed.

    Unfortunately, bad people often win in this world and with any luck the 5 kids won’t use their “benefactors” as an example on how to live their lives.

    As much as I’ve hated jury duty in the past, sitting on the jury to hear this case would be my pleasure.

  • Justin

    well the family should all fucking die for being such dicks no place needs people liek that and they should be fucking ashamed to call themselves people (not the higgins people) i believe they had every right to sue those greedy stupid fucking cunts

  • penny-pen

    this is sad,really but i’ve been there,i lost my parents,and adopted myself into a ready made family,now i really believed that they love me,what i found was that the minute u step out of bounds,u find how much in the family your not,now where these people just a temporary home,and were the kid a were of this if that was the case…the house should be sold and another house build,for those kid,it only fair!!!…penny-pen

  • Sarah

    First of all, please stop attacking Christians. There are bad people in this world, and they come from every single background imaginable. For example, someone in Europe could read this story, and say, “Now that’s Americans for you! All Americans are wicked, etc. etc.” That wouldn’t be fair, would it? Please do not generalize about others. And just a note, Christian only means “like Christ,” so this family is obviously not a family of Christians. Their actions are nothing like that of Christ’s.

    This situation is definitely a terrible injustice on those poor children. I have faith that they’ll be taken care of though. And like so many others said, what goes around, comes around. I’ll certainly be following the case as much as I can.

  • Sam from Detroit, MI

    This will be a good court case because the donations were gifts the suit will ask at least two guest ions, “Was the gifts given to the orphans and the property owners; 2) How much of the sale price will the evicting family have to pay to the Higgins because their presence in the house is the reason for the giving.

    Gifts are tax deductible if the gift giver by definition does not reap reward (thus the paying off of the mortgage), the contractors are safe but ABC and Sears are wishing that they had a better contract if you can attach a monitory value to advertisement fees and exposure.

    Don’t stop giving.

    The contract should state to whom the gifts were given. If the house was given to the land owner then the property owner can evict the non-property owner. If the evicted can prove that they have a vested interest in the property they can sue for their portion of the fair market value.

    Don’t stop giving.

  • Kay

    On the surface it appears the family is totally immoral and that ABC lawyers are totally inept. But the question that pounds at me is where do the Higgins children get all this money for lawsuits? I can’t help being cynical in thinking there is a lawyer out there looking for another deep pocket. If a lawsuit is successful in gaining an astronomical amount of money for ‘suffering’, the children will be no better off than they were, the lawyer will strike it rich, and Extreme Home Makeover may close its doors. That would be a pity.

    I agree with the sentiment that it would be best, if not cheapest, to just build the children a home. The 21-year-old is no child and could be the legal owner (but something should be in the contract about all the children being equal owners). As some have said, ABC could even take all the furniture that was earmarked for the children out of the first house and put it in the new home.

  • Bliffle

    Who are these “Higgins” people , and their team of loathsome Trial Lawyers to interfere with a properly incorporated Red White And Blue American entertainment business? And why are they harassing a Good Christian Family that managed to find a way to improve their lot in life? Some people just don’t know when to accept their place in life!

  • MrMalo

    The law will do what is provided for in the contract. Its that simple. If the contract sucks, thats too bad. The host family will in all probability keep the house and contents as provided for in the contract. The kids will get nothing, as provided for in the contract. The legal language will decide the issue.

    Calling yourself a Christian doesnt make you one. I happen to be an atheist, yet I try very hard to follow the example set by christ. Far more than most so-called christians I know. And most of them can rationalize even the most outrageous behavior alowing themselves to think they are morally superior to the rest of us. I’m sure the host family is patting themselves on the back for how much God loves them by having ABC renovate their house for them. And rest assured, when they win the lawsuit in court, they will accept that as Gods judgment PROVING that He was on their side all along. This is what is meant by “family values” by the right wingers.

  • Pam

    This is so very sad! However, it is NOT the fault of ABC or Extreme Home Makeover. It is unconcionable that someone could be so cruel to others. However, don’t forget there are two sides to every story, so we must let the courts decide and hear both sides. We have already made up our minds what horrible people those church-goers are. They better say their prayers and hope that they will be forgiven. They’re very lucky that we have a wonderful judicial system and that stones don’t get thrown at them!

  • gary

    So we are assuming that all who go to church are Christians???? Should we all assume that everyone that goes to a bar is a drunk? Nowhere in the above article does it mention that these people were indeed Christians. The Bible says that “you will know them by their fruits” meaning that Christians will be recognized by their life. They were simply church attending people. Judas also sat at the feet of Jesus, that no more made him a christian than someone driving their Ford to a Audi dealer thinking they now have an A8. So let’s get it straight. What happened to the Higgins children is a sad and true commentary of comtempt and greed that is bred here in America because of our bend towards an incredibly materialistic society. It has little to do with the fact that this family atended some church. What I don’t understand is how (with all the legalese that we have in America) provisions were not included on behalf of the Higgins. One would think that ABC would have thought past the ratings of the show and considered the fact that this family had no legal reason to keep these kids around. ABC – tear down your walls and build these kids a home! Talk about a great show! The rating would probably surpass American Idol.

  • Russ

    Do we know everything to make such quick judgements as you all are doing. Has the trial been completed? Has everything about this situation been heard from. Allevidence is in? It seems almost everyone here has gotten the full facts and have made your own decisions as to just who is right. I’ve seen friends become enemies to often to think a friendship like this was going to last. Maybe the kids gotto abve the fact that the property (land/original house) was really not theirs. Let the court decide what occoured. Watch courtTv. maybe.

  • Angela

    I don’t know why the show should be sued! If anyone should be a target for a suit, the host family is the one to shoot at. I hate that everyone wants to sue the deepest pockets. The show did something great for someone, now someone wants them to pay more! I’ll wait until I have more information about why they were told to leave before I pass judgment.

  • don

    its a shame that it happened, but theres good and bad in everyone. my wife watches this show-personally, i can’t stand it. they get one family, tell their tale, and then you have 50 minutes watching the teary eyed hosts tell you how great they feel by helping those poor people,and in the end,a poor family of 4 ends up with a 20 room mansion full of overblown items and a $40,000 suv. i’m sure all the stuff they put in the kids rooms end up in the trash after one or two years after the kids interests change. if abc wanted to do a good deed, they should have an extreme makeover for a whole block of katrina victims ! i’m sure all the money they waste on one house could have made a real impact in new orleans and helped a dozen families down there. sure, it may not be a ratings giant, but all those millions would be put to good use

  • lisa morgan

    To whom it may concern,

    I love that show “Extreme home make over” . I believe that the producers acted in good faith on that episode. I remember it. It was heart wrenching to say the least. I would agree 150% that the so called “christians” that took this family in and then used them to get a new paid for home.Should loose the house. I hope that the courts find in favor of the children and give them the house.To use children as a weapon for their own personal gain is horriable.Im sure that the parents of these children are looking down from heavon and casting stones at these people.I personally wish I could help these children. My family and I may not have much but we have never turned a child in need away. I was taught to help thy neighbor as thy friend. I believe that what goes around comes around.I know that these evil people will get their just deserts.God will repay them ten fold.
    God Bless the little ones they are our tomorrow!

  • TCA

    Unfortunately, I have to agree with these comments about the family being Christians. It’s not their choice of faith that is at issue, but the fact that there is a whole base of people that are so dead set on pushing their way of life on others and 99% of the time they justify it with their faith. The people in this thread who are unhappy with that fact should take it to their congregations and try to affect change from the inside. The rest of us are tired of hearing empty preaching. And I’m sure these poor kids are too.

  • no unnecessary language please

    this site needs a moderator prior to posting. ref # 31

  • Nancy

    I loathe organized religion in general, and dislike Christianity in particular, but I must say my dear neighbors are Christian, and demonstrate the very best of what practitioners of that religion should be. Whenever I’m inclined to bash Christians, I have to stop & think of them. Of course, they’re human, too, and have their “bad” days, but on the whole, they are exemplars of their faith. It’s a pity more people don’t seriously practice the religion the way my neighbors do.


    EMHE looks for families who are giving back to their community, going above and beyond, doing the right thing, but need help with the home they own. The family already owned the home, it was their’s before the makeover and after the makeover. They were chosen for the show because they had reached out to the Higgins family and taken them in, at their own expense and the result was a very cramped house that really couldn’t hold all of them. It is easy to see why EMHE chose this family. What caused the family to ask the Higgins’ to move out? Was it just greed or something else? The sad part is that the house is and always was the family’s and the makeover was done to help them out because of taking in the Higgins. All of it was true at the time. I don’t think the courts will have any recourse but to dismiss the case because the Higgins’ have no legal standing. Where is the social justice?

  • phatjack

    There’s something fishy here. How come we haven’t heard more about this case? Was there actually an episode as described? Why isn’t the name of the adopting family mentioned? And why isn’t the congregation doing something? With all the outrage these actions deserve, I would expect the new family would be tarred and feathered and rode out of town on a rail.

  • Jeanette

    I don’t see where the full story has been told here. All of these “I think they should do this or that” is based on what little information is given here. Which isn’t much. And as far as the Christian bashing goes, you act like Christains are supposed to be good people and ignore the fact that the bible that their religion is based on says Rom 3:10-12 “There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.” So therefore if you know a “christian” who is self righteous maybe you should remind them of Romans 3:10-12. It it were possible for us to do good, we wouldn’t have needed Jesus in the 1st place

  • tboneandersen

    First—I find it disturbing that #31 must find it important to us such vulgarity. To share such thoughts to me this is lack of knowledge and ignorance and inexsperian.I have a fowl mouth of my own at times,but I am at least or try to be civil.Time and place for everything but not here.

    2nd—The Host family may supposedly practice being Christians or Agostic-Athiest-Muslim and with respect to any of the other religions out there or if they are Heathens.This is not the point.They are people for what ever reason have had a change of heart and perhaps learned they had made a mistake or just saw $$$$.They are only Human, we do do strange things and greed plays a major role world wide so it is not just religion

    #3. The Host family owned the home originally. The intentions hopefully meant well but for some reason things did not work. This does not mean they are bad people nor does it say the Higgins were Angels.All of the contributors and program people should not be penalized for trying to do a kind Humanitarian jesture and reap profit at the same time that is their business along with all the sponsors.
    Focus—there is a Moral and Ethical issue and I know contracts dont reconize that at least most of the time .The intent was to do good.
    Bottom line—Host family owned property.They should get their investment back and some equity that they made or should have made on the original homestead and a portion of the new equity.
    once again the Higgins are displaced for whatever reason and deserve a portion of the new equity as it was because of their misfortune others have reaped in a round about manor whether it be intentional or not.
    So just hope the courts make the wrong right and fair all around and others dont be so judgemental as we do not know all the facts legal or not. Crap happens.

  • John I

    The show does not exist to do great humanitarian deeds for unfortunate families – it exists to make money for ABC and it’s advertisers. If this story gains traction I’m sure they will schedule a new episode building the orphans a new house.

    Producing one of these shows is dirt cheap compared to a top drama or sitcom show with high-paid actors. It’s basically a giant product placement for Sears with a tear-jerker plot edited in.

    Call me cynical, but the resolution to this case will have little to do with christian values, and a whole lot more to do with bottom-line.

  • Blue Meanies

    Kay wrote: On the surface it appears the family is totally immoral and that ABC lawyers are totally inept. But the question that pounds at me is where do the Higgins children get all this money for lawsuits?

    Attorneys usually work on contingency; that means they require no payment from their client and instead collect a percentage (something like 33%) of any settlement. If they lose in court the attorney collects nothing. So attorneys are very careful, of course, in selecting contingency cases they are highly confident about winning.

    That said, I think there will be justice for the orphan kids and a suitable comeuppance for the other family. It will take time but it will in all likeliness happen. I believe it was Ralph Waldo Emerson who said “Beware the wrath of a patient man.”

  • The kids were all minors, no? So it’s difficult to include them in contracts, which is probably why ABC didn’t.

    The folks with the title to the house are morons, though. Their church should shame them, ABC should shame them, let’s all get a nice long look at the fraudsters.

  • kel and aidan’s mom

    I really feel terrible for the Higgins. The horribly cruel “people” who took them in may have done them a favor by giving them a home at first, but those monsters have, essentially, left those poor children “orphaned” once again. As a mother, I wouldn’t care if those children were biologically mine or not. They are still in my home, still looking for my guidance and love, and still needing me. The children will wind up in far better shape then if they had stayed with the family, and the family will get what’s coming to them. What goes around, comes around. And the Lord works in mysterious ways.

    And as for no. 31, please don’t use such language. It is not appropriate or called for.

  • Momx3

    This is unbelievable. How atrocious!!!! Those people should be ashamed of themselves. Church going people? I think not. If they were members of my church I’d get everyone together to tell them they were no longer welcome. A Christian would have left and let the children stay in that home and given it over to them. Of course if Extreme Makeover had just put the house in the oldest Higgins child’s name this wouldn’t be an issue. I think the show ought to put clauses in their contract for situations like this one so that if a family takes in an orphaned child that the house will automatically go to that child if that family decides they don’t want to care for them anymore. I am appalled that these people have done this to these children. They lost their parents, this family took them in, they got a dream house built for all of them and then the family decided not to care for them anymore and kicked them out and now they don’t have a family or a house. PATHETIC! ABHORRENT BEHAVIOR! It just makes me sick. My thoughts and prayers are with those children and I hope they win their case. What happened to morals????? There ought to be someway to get those people out of the house since it was built specifically for the Higgins children. Is there no loophole somewhere? Technically that home was built for them, not this wonderful Christian family who decided to take them in out of the kindness of their heart. Guess that family pulled one over on Extreme Makeover as a way of getting themselves a big, brand new house. SHAME, SHAME ON YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    God Bless you Higgins children. Hang in there. Everybody who’s anybody will be on your side on this one.

  • John

    Kerry was also a Christian. Case and point.

  • I think 3 were minors. The eldest was guardian for them. From the Court of Appeal decision, it appears that the producer met for an hour with the host couple only. The host couple stepped out and handed the 24 single-spaced page contract to the eldest, who signed it in “5 or 10” minutes, not enough time to read it.

    The Court of Appeal was very very clear though that they were throwing out only the arbitration clause, not the whole contract, though.

  • trumpeter

    If I were to say hateful things about Jewish, Islamic, African-American, or gay people as several of you have said about these supposed Christians, I would be condemned as intolerant and bigoted. Why is it OK to bash Christians when it is unacceptable to bash anyone else?

  • ConcernedMom

    What a gready thing to do for the family that took them in. The only reason that the family got their mortgage paid off and a new home was because of the 5 kids. They always say what comes around goes around, I hope so. Unfortunately not soon enough for the 5 children. I do really hope that the family who took them in really, really has to pay. I hope now that the 5 children keep their faith that not everybody is like that! I hope the best for the 5 children. How wonderful they are with all there tragedy that they are still together. Take it one day at a time, and something will workout.

  • John

    Lets just keep this simple, what goes around comes around. The show should step in and do whats right by building the Higgins another home. That is what the shows all about, right? And if Karma plays its part then the former host family’s shiny new deck out home will burn down.

  • angie

    Well there’s your church people for you. I know that statement will probably get me flogged, but it seems to be a pattern as of late on these shows. First it was the florida family on the Amazing Race that showed their true colors, now its the the Fogals on Treasure Hunters. I wonder how they sleep at night?

  • anonymous

    Welcome to almost reality TV. Although it is unfortunate, it was not unscripted. the Higgins were evected before the show aired, but the producers choose the “Happy Ending”. I am sure the producers wish this would just “go away”, they are at fault for not revealing the truth. Maybe they will decide to air this saga on an episode of The Peoples Court, or Oprah.

  • Angelo

    WOW! I feel really bad for those kids. They were promised a home, a family and an opportunity to live a full normal life like we most of us have. The family that did this should be very guilty and ashamed for what they have done to these kids. And I also think that ABC should do something about this, putting there financial greedy minds aside to do something that is humanly and morally right. These kids are victims and they do not deserve such wrongful treatment.

  • Megan

    Here’s some more information on the lawsuit, including an interview with the eldest Higgins child.

  • I believe in Karma and what comes around goes around. Shame on that family for using someones elses tragedy for their personal gain. They will get what is coming to them eventually.

  • stan

    although this sounds terrible, we haven’t been given the whole story. many of you seem to be condemning this family without knowing all the facts. they may be bad people, but they may also have valid reasons. i think we should get the complete story with boths sides arguments before we start name calling.

  • Don

    Hmmm – has anyone heard the OTHER side of the story? Maybe the Higgins kids were absolute, horrible destructive brats who beat up the family’s kids, etc etc – maybe they had a reason and everyone is jumping to conclusions too quickly??

  • Let’s go burn their house down. 😉

  • amc8764

    I think that the Higgins will rise in the end. Be the better people. And it is true, what goes around comes around. For #31, you can say things without the bad words.

  • trumpeter

    Does anyone care to comment on #59?

  • I love this show, but this is so sad that someone would do this to these kids. This house was built because of them. Kick out the family and let the Higgins kids move back it, for had it not been for them this house would have never been built. I hope this couple realizes just how selfish and stupid they actually are.

  • Rich

    I think that the real suite should be with the owning family. They are the ones who made the implicit promise to take the Higgin’s family into their home. Maybe a lesson learned by ABC and other families they help, is to make sure every possible (with reasonable probability) outcome is covered in the contract. This is one of the cases that involves two families and one home. Advice for future episodes, be careful about who you are actually helping and make it clear up front.

  • Dusk12

    People like those are fake and deserve no affection; I hope the Higgins do win their case and get the house back…they deserve it!

  • Vic

    I used to visit this site a lot, as a matter of fact I was contributor. I came here from popurls.com because I was interested in the Home Makeover story, but reading the comments in this thread remind me why I left and still stay away from this site. I think you’d actually have to find an athiest themed website to see a more hateful group of people when it comes to Christianity.


  • T Leigh

    we can ask why and will never recv an answer. The truth is that there is no rhyme or reason just the fact as other comments stated that there is dishonesty everywhere and just think How can they sleep at night. Sick. Just sick.

  • stan

    TRUMPETER….#59 is absolutely correct. unfortunatly, it seems that only white christians know that. if white people say or do anything bad about another race, it’s racism. this is only for white people though. nobody else has to worry about being called racist. i guess we can thank the liberal media for that. i can’t figure out why christians are attacked so much. there are bad people in every religion, however, it seems the muslims are the only ones killing innocent people and bragging about it.

  • adders

    The point is not that these people were supposedly Christians, bad and good people come from all walks of life. I believe the most important thing is how we treat other people. It is ignorant to say that all Christians are bad people or fakes and also ignorant to say that atheists, agnostics, etc. are terrible for not believing in or ignoring God. The point is what kind of person we are and what we are trying to become. These companies should not be penalized for trying to be “good samaritans.” We can only hope that they try to make things right for these poor children.

  • Carolyn

    I did not see the segment nor do I know all the facts. However, I have suspicions that this so called “church family” had ulterior and selfish motives in their so called “christian” assistance. It is a great disservice to those persons who truly give unselfishly to others. This “church” family should not be able to continue to have the benefits of a new home at the expense of the Higgins children. The Higgins children have undergone a traumatic experience in initially losing their family and home only to be subjected to a second tragedy of rejection and possibly being taken advantage of by this “church” family.

    One must always use intelligence, logic, reasoning, and judgment and when evaluating “church” people. There are many selfish and “unchristian” people wearing the guise of “church affiliation.” This church should stand up and be counted — for the Higgins Children AND seriously question this family who took advantage of the situation.

  • chikkin

    #59 is right. It is acceptable in this day and age to bash Christians and wrong to do so to any other religious group. Being a jerk is something you can be when you are of any faith or of no faith. Lets remember that here, people. Leave the host family’s faith out of it and leave bigoted thoughts where they came from. What it sounds like they did was unacceptable. Do we know both sides? No, not yet, and because we were not in the home, the real truth will never be known. We were not there. One good lesson I learned in church was judge not lest ye be judged yourselves. It is up to God to judge. What I learned in government class was all charged are innocent until proven guilty. Remember that one?

  • wayfer760

    In the gist of many of the angry responses were some good points. ABC and the show itself may have their hands tied due to the contract, however, misrepresentation (fraud) is a crime on any front, especially if someone profits from it. I say receiving a brand new, newly furnished mansion (that’s what we call a 9 bedroom house in my part of the US), with no mortgage, constitutes profit. The local, state and federal governments should tax them heavily, especially, since the conditions by which this gift was received no longer exists. Also, whoever volunteered their time and energy, be it neighbors, friends, etc., should consider some action if they are not bound by the show’s contract. They, too, have been victimized. As for the Higgin’s children, they should sue for the personal property that was donated for their own use plus a percentage of what was donated for shared use, including any cash. I’ve seen the show on occassion and I know they spare no costs for those in need. If the victims were elderly, every government agency, or subsidiary would look into this.

    As for the show, keep up the good work!! Just try to be more protective of the innocent.

  • chikkin

    You know, I just scrolled up and saw that what was there as #59 is now #58.

  • Ty

    “I don’t know why the show should be sued!”

    I do. ABC is in the business of making money off of the misfortunes of others. Check out Smoking Gun, there is an e-mail where an ABC Casting Director is told to find certain ailments to depict on the show. They are told they want kids with diseases, etc, etc.

    Anyways, in this situation, ABC aired a repeat of this show at a time after the Higgins had been kicked out of that house. If I were a Higgins kid, being kicked out of the pimped out house was bad enough, but to see the episode re-aired is deplorable.

    The blame also is two-fold. The horrible couple that should be killed, along with ABC not making sure this situation would not happen. I agree with the statement that ABC lawyers are inept. Since this was a case where there was no relation between the couple and the orphan kids, ABC should have mandated that the couple deed to the house to the Orphan kids + couple, as tenants in common (it’s a legal term).

    Then the couple would not have been able to evict the kids, but rightfully have their fair share of ownership in the house. This way the couple would not own the whole house + improvments, but rather just a piece of it. In fact it would have been fair if the couple’s ownership stake was 50%, and the orphan kids’ stake all together was 50%.

    Of course ABC goofed by not doing this (the lawyers should have thought of this!), and now ABC has some blame, even though the lionshare of blame goes to that awful couple.

  • Vic, you’re missed. And rest assured that we’ve got plenty of Christians around to help balance out the ardent anti-theists. It’s all about an open forum.

  • amy

    typical christian family…takes them in, then throws them out….man, i want to be a christian.

  • AMY


  • KJ

    Firstly, I’m a Christian and I have no problem doing for others, even if it means I use the last of what I have. This family was not Christian, believe me. I saw the episode and I have to say that since they used the Higgins family tragedy for their gain, the Higgins family should reap the benefits. Those children lost their parents within months of each other and then they lost their home too? No. I say give them what is theirs: the house and everything inside of it.

  • Yaya

    The devil does not come in form of a green-eyed monster with 7 horns and a tail. The devil operates through people!!

    I hope this whole mess ends well.

  • furman

    I hate kids!

  • Personally, I would have thrown them out too. They think they are entitled to the house just because they are orphans? Please!

  • Don’t become a victim

  • taoist

    Christian, in this day is a lable, and it does not reflect the contents, Just like Harley rider in the 60 is not the same as today, the image is put on like a piece of clothing, few look any deeper that the surface image, and miss the vanity of the wearer. Gripe about Christian bashing being invogue while other remain unscathed? Might it not be that people are comfortable doing so, knowing that a christian will “turn the other cheek”. Is this bad? People are offended when others criticize their children, but are guilty of the same deed. What ever the outcome, I hope the Higgins’s can laugh about this someday, and the rest need to wake up, the image on your screen is a source of revenue, not a source of truth.

  • RAY

    Since the host family owned or was paying for their home before the show, they should keep the ‘new’ home, although the free mortgage should be taken back and they should have to pay for it. With all of the empty bedrooms maybe they could rent them out to pay the house payments. The original mortgage should be used to build the Higgins kids a home of thier own, with a ‘free’ mortgage and clear, unmistakeable contract.

  • Vegassue

    An absolutely horrible turn of events for those orphan children. They have already been through enough. Whether they were pawns used in a sophiticated scam by the “foster family” or not, the end result was still heartbreaking for them. Some pointed comments were made about “Christians” and there you are. Wake up people, scumbags cut across all religions, races and creeds. It is unfair to “whitewash” all people of a certain group because of the deplorable actions of the few!

  • zep

    The classic of how everyone uses everyone to get gain.

  • This is an amazing series of comments. Wouldn’t it be better to wait until the facts are known before damning the family that took the kids into their home. Isn’t it possible the kids were sore that the house wasn’t in their names and left the house, while claiming to have been evicted? On the other hand, maybe the family that took in the kids is as venal as everyone seems to think. The point is that it’s too early to know the right or wrong of the situation. The truth may be different than everyone seems to think it is. I’m withholding my judgment for now.

  • ASSume

    The knee jerk reaction to this is to understanably side with the kids. But…what REALLY HAPPENED to get these kids evicted…? This day and age CHILDREN think they have a RIGHT to tell an Adult WHAT TO DO. The OWNER of the house is an adult and the Higgins are CHILDREN. They live by the Adults (Owners) Rules. Once you turn 18 you are LEGALLY AN ADULT. Charles Higgins is an ADULT. He and his siblings might have been ungrateful little brats once they moved in, in the first place. My guess is that He and the owners got into a heated argument over who was exactly in charge around there. So now that push has come to shove he was shown the door, and miscalculated that he was also in charge of his siblings. Did they get out of line ALSO…? Who knows…? Then you might want to consider at what point do the owners say “OK Kids time to move out” once the last one turns 18. What happens then…? Bottom line is, is that it’s NOT the Higgins’ house. PERIOD! Going to church has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with this case. I’ll bet they Have a Driver’s license and are right handed also, but that doesn’t have anything to do with the house either does it…? So why bring it up…? One way or another THERE WILL BE JUSTICE. If the owners are found to be the monsters that they are accused of being then they WILL PAY. Just don’t ASSume anything until you know ALL the facts. Sounds like ABC will be doing a follow-up show during sweeps week, eh?

  • Sam from Detroit, MI

    This will be a good court case because the donations were gifts the suit will ask at least two guestions, “Were the gifts given to the orphans and the property owners; 2) How much of the sale price will the evicting family have to pay to the evicted Higgins because their presence in the house sparked for the giving.

    Gifts are tax deductible if the gift giver by definition does not reap reward (thus the paying off of the mortgage), the contractors are safe but ABC and Sears are wishing that they had a better contract if you can attach a monitory value to advertisement fees and exposure.

    Don’t stop giving.

    The contract should state to whom the gifts were given. If the house was given to the land owner then the property owner can evict the non-property owner. If the evicted can prove that they have a vested interest in the property they can sue for their portion of the fair market value.

    Question? Does that state require gift tax payment?

    Don’t stop giving.

  • Dave

    This really does not surprise me. I have found that almost without exception that church going people are among the most evil and corrupt people in the world. Anyone that needs moral guidance from an external entity is inherently untrustworthy.

  • sleepless snowman

    ABC should start a new show, Extreme Make Over: Demolition Edition.

  • It just goes to show you that not everything we see on reality TV is real.

  • JustinCase

    I’m lovin’ it!!! This is damn funny! I guess the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away.
    I feel sorry for the homeowners, they are stuck with a house full of Sears furniture! lol

  • Guy Incognito

    While my initial reaction was to consider the logistics of getting my friends (professional house movers) to ‘relocate’ the house, I have to wonder what we’re not being told here. Sure it’s bad that the Higgins are no longer in the home that was expanded specifically to make them more comfortable, and the way the story is presented makes the Leomiti family look like grade-A jerks, but it’s easy to jump to conclusions when you only know one side of a story.

    Something similar happened when my family took in a family from our church who (we thought) had been evicted from their home unfairly. At the time we had a second house and we let them live there for several months without charging them rent or utilities. They trashed the house and the parents regularly left their 3 kids (all under 7) home alone for days at a time with little or no food. They’d go to neighbors asking for food cause they were hungry, but the parents were always back just before the police. When my dad went to see for himself and found the kids alone, he called the cops as well. The parents returned while he was waiting and they tried to have my father arrested as a burglar (the cops knew he owned the house though). The kids were taken by CPS and we evicted the parents (who tried to burn the house down before leaving but got caught), so they went on TV and claimed we kicked them out and lied to CPS because we were racists and they were a ‘mixed race’ family (no explanation for why they lived there for almost 6 months without problems). We suffered death threats and my father was attacked twice before the truth became widely known.

    Last I heard they went on to do pretty much the same thing at least twice more in other parts of the country, glomming off someone trying to be nice, then trying to claim they were the victims of prejudice when they got in trouble. Each time they severely damaged someone’s reputation with their false claims.

    All I’m saying is that there’s two sides (at least) to every story, and it’s usually bad to make judgements when you only know one side.

  • Paragon Complex

    Sucks for them.

  • Josh Lewis

    Latest update:
    Charles Higgins is now claiming that the house is legally owned by the Higgins family and not the family that bought and paid for the house.
    He claims it is the shows responsibility to find a home for the displaced family.
    The trial will loads of laffs.

  • Lived Next Door to Them 4 Decades

    I agree with this reply:

    “Since the host family owned or was paying for their home before the show, they should keep the ‘new’ home, although the free mortgage should be taken back and they should have to pay for it. With all of the empty bedrooms maybe they could rent them out to pay the house payments. The original mortgage should be used to build the Higgins kids a home of thier own, with a ‘free’ mortgage and clear, unmistakeable contract.”

    Now, regarding why are so many people attacking Christians? Because so many of us have suffered under them for decades (I can sadly carry on for hours with my personal injustices, but will refrain), and FINALLY have a chance to stand up and fight back, just as they are gaining so much momentum, and are about to run our country into ruins. Bonnets versus burkas, what’s the flaming difference?

    Religion is a ruse of the powerful to distract the populous while their pillaging runs rampant. Look, Fido, gay marriage! Go get ’em, boy, while I take away your health, job, land, house, resources below your soil, and personal freedoms! Good boy, praise the Lord, Amen Ra! Pat, pat.

    None of the other groups named above ever trashed my life like the Hypocrites have. That’s why I never bash them. I absolutely abhored being forced to say “Under God” every day in school. I would fall silent for those two words. Not after what they were doing to me and my family and my friends. Forcing someone to pay lip service to you, and live their lives according to your choice, not theirs, is not very Christian, but it’s exactly what so many of us have had to endure for years, and damned if I’m not going to fight back with every thread of my being. I give and give and give and the hypocrites take and take and take and think they deserve more and more and more.

    It’s called TACIT ACCEPTANCE. If you don’t instantly excommunicate someone for their trespasses, they assume that you support them. If a member of the KKK in Indiana lynches someone, and their fellow Klansmen in Ohio don’t immediately stand up and object to his actions, they are JUST AS GUILTY. Individuals act assuming the support of the silent. Enforce the rules, among yourselves, that you use to tell the rest of us that we are inferior.

    UNTIL YOU CLEAN YOUR OWN HOUSE, AND UNTIL YOU STOP ELECTING CROOKS WHO SUCK THE LIFE OUT OF OUR COUNTRY, DON’T EXPECT OUR RESPECT. We could have established a complete country wide infrastructure or two for alternative fuels with the money we’ve spent in Iraq (I’m an automotive engineer, I KNOW), funneling the cash into the hands of the few. Viet Nam flaming all over again. We never learned a blessed thing.

    There are a few wonderful countries that have balanced budgets and wonderful health care, yet aren’t overwhelmingly strangle held by either Muslims or Christians. I plan to retire in one of them the second it can recover from being raped by the price gouging of the very same US oil barons who didn’t have to take an oath before testifying.

  • Lived Next Door to Them 4 Decades

    Oops, typo … Religion is a ruse of the powerful to distract the _populace_ while their pillaging runs rampant.

  • I am very disturbed by this article. That family got their house rebuilt for taking in 5 children that needed a home. They should not be allowed to keep it. They probly adopted the kids so they could get on the show. If this can be proven these people should be held accountable. Someone needs to help these kids make sure their case is proplerly made! Help the Higgins!

  • Robbie3

    Thank you, Megan #64, for that useful information provided in the Abrams interview, which I just read.

    Here is my take on the situation.

    1. The Host family would not have received so lavish a home expansion (mortgage paid: Thank You) were it not for the 5 childrens’ dire need. The host family, therefore, was “Unjustly Enriched” – Something is owed to the 5 children.

    2. For those amoung us, including Abrams himself, who believe that ABC should not be held liable, as they were only trying to “do a good deed” Consider this: ABC chose to air this heart-rending show, as the Abrams interview indicates, several times, in spite of the “true ending”, of which they were aware. ABC, therefore, was “Unjustly Enriched” by the extra advertising revenue this (fraudulent) episode generated. Therefore, don’t decry the “deep pocket” chase of the, all too many, attorneys. They work hard for the money. …And they assume the initial risk. – Again: Something is owed to the 5 children.

    I agree with the California Court of Appeal’s finding portions of the contract “unenforceable and “unconscionable”. This legal phrase has been a long-standing contractual remedy. Nothing new.

    3. … And this is indeed sad. The children have now been forced to live apart. Surely, something should be done on their behalf.

    4. My complements to the person suggesting a solution worthy of Solomon, himself. The best way out of this for ABC is to build another home for the 5 children. Agreed. The ratings would be though the roof.

    Thanx for reading.

  • Robbie3

    To: #106
    Lived Next Door to Them 4 Decades.

    Great post. I agree. Christians (and other tighty rightys) Please, WAKE UP! There’s more work to do on the “right to life” agenda than just defending it’s endpoints …

  • OMG … it is stories like this which validate my faith in humanity.

  • waitaminute

    I agree with 106 – sorta. We Christians neglect certain responsibilities. Like leaving bible tracts instead of money for tips. The heart of Christ, the serving, the giving is dead in religion. Greed catches so many. Temptation is not quick to leave. This family will end up blessed with more character, the stuff money cant ever end up buying. Like the story of Joshua in the bible. He was thrown in a pit, sold into slavery, tossed in jail; nearly king by the end of his life. Thats justice. These other dudes will end up serving at their feet. Doing the right thing never goes unnoticed.

  • ela

    “No good deed goes unpunished” -Clare Boothe Luce

  • 1. Christianity has never been about charity without some gain. Look at the WEALTH of the CATHOLIC CHURCH.

    2. The Media has never been charitable without expecting something in return “YOU SORRY PEOPLE IN THE WORLD WHO WATCH STUPID TV…GET A LIFE !!!


  • WOW! And I thought American people could get any more ****ed up. I hope the orphans take it to ’em in court and get the house for themselves. And as for the parents… I think they might need a good ‘ol Irish lesson in manners.

  • It sounds like this couple obviously used the Higgins childern for their own gain. Unfortunately, this sort of thing happens all too frequently to kids placed into foster care, etc..

    It doesn’t matter what religion these people were though, as bastards can be found in all of them. A lot people just use religion as a front for a good con. It happens all the time.

    I do hope the Higgins childern win in court though, but I dont feel ABC is really to blame for their situation. Even so, it would be good PR and ethics for ABC to ‘do right’ by the kids by building them their own home and suing the con-artist couple.

    People! Gotta love ’em. 😉

    Happiness and Ease to you all,
    Nirodha (Bill Gray)

  • Mr. Damon Miller

    A Cat in the hand is a bird in the bush.

  • searchlight

    The Lord giveth….The Lord taketh! Your time will come! You foster parents should be ashamed of yourselves kicking out those poor orphans after getting what you wanted from extreme makeovers! I bet a lot of people wish they could bash your faces right smack on the walls of your house! But instead it is best to leave it in God’s hands! As it says in one of the scriptures in the bible “Vengeance is mine, only I will repay says the Lord” Every room in your house is now possessed with demons besides yourselves! You are now cursed! How could you sleep at night and live filthy lives?

  • queen orange

    Higgin Family…As you can see, all of us here writing comments one way or another feel for all of you. We pray for all of you! The family friends that took you in are in the wrong! They are nobody! You’ve been through a ENOUGH hell losing both parents. Your family friends have no right to make it worse and add salt to your wounds! I pray that God will help you all through this and bless you all with a more beautiful house that your family friend’s. Your house will be blessed. And your family friends will have to answer to God! I don’t understand how people can do other people wrong as though they will get away with it! They think they can deliberately commits all the sins they want or do people wrong, because God or the people they did wrong HAVE TO forgive them! NOT!

  • Admittedly, I haven’t read every comment to this post, but from what it looks like, I’ve made it down to #120 or so without one single person noting that it might not be the foster parents’ fault.

    For all we know, the Higgins kids are pyromaniacs, and they had to be asked to leave because they kept setting the new house on fire.

    I don’t know what’s going on at all, but it isn’t necessarily fair to just assume that the foster parents are to blame when we only know part of one side of the story. It just seems unlikely to me that the same people willing to adopt in cramped conditions would evict their tenants willy-nilly after the fact. Yes, it’s possible they just did it to game Extreme Home Makeover and get a new house, but the likelihood of that is slim, considering they never had any guarantee that EHM would even bother to visit them.

  • Andrew Ogier

    Despicable. It’s obvious that the Higgin’s were kicked out so the owners of the House could sell of their newly remodeled house, make a fortune to live off, and buy a cheaper house that suits them and their 3 kids.

    I think that ABC should sue for Fraud, put the house on the Auction block, sell it, and pay back the owner’s the same amount as they paid for the original house. All the extra money for the new fittings and new rooms and all extra added value that the EHME makeover would add to the house should be given to those poor Higgin’s kids to buy their own house with. That way the other family gets what they had originally, and EMHE would give the additional benefits to the Higgin’s kids as they originally intended, just in a different way.

    The home owner’s should also be named and shamed in their community for being the money grabbing evil manipulative bastards that they are.

  • Meghan

    I didn’t see this particular episode, but it seems to me that if they hadn’t taken in the five children the house would never have been remodeled. So those children should be entitled to something. If they were true Christians then they wouldn’t have done what they did. I myself being a Christian am appalled that a fellow “Christian” would have done something so repulsive.

  • jacksonville, fl

    This is a prime reason why people are very reluctant to help anyone. You try to help and you end up getting sued. People have a weird sense of entitlement that breaks all laws of reason or morality and only adds to the countless other heartbreaking stories that are out there. This isn’t some “Christians are bad” story; it’s a story that proves that people more often than not seek their own personal gains. I’m not even sure why those old people being Christians or whatever makes any difference… they aren’t perfect, and that’s a fact no Christian, Buddhist, Muslim, etc will deny. The need to always turn something against Christians only makes me think people feel uneasy about their own place in the world… If they are so obviously hypocritical and evil as some people here perceive, then it would probably be a universally accepted fact that doesn’t need to be reiterated. People are people, God is God, let’s not get them mixed up.

  • Jimmy

    There is far too many posts so i couldnt read them all. But did the Higgins family win their court case?

  • boogiemama

    dont hate one the church going couple there comes a time and a place when it is time for others you are helping to PUSH ON .HELP — doesnt always mean perminant i wish they would drop the lawsuit its very petttttyyyy!!! REMEMBER WHOSE HOME IT WAS be thankful for the time they stayed and received hepl because some people will not step forward to help they would have been in a shelter.I only say this because i once lived next to a christian young couple with 3 children who took in a couple with 7 children so a total of 14 people were living in a 3 bedroom home with a finished attic .they had to be TRUE christians because the 9brought them roaches so bad all the iinsulation had to be pulled outta the home.they knew the couple had roaches before they moved them in i dont think i could have tolerated it myself .THATS WHAT LETS YOU KNOW THE LORD SURLY CAN WORK IN MYSTERIOUS WAYS . I think there is a time and a place for everything and maybe it was time for them to go their separate ways CHURCH GOING FOLKS OR NOT.BUT DONT PUNISH A SHOW THATS DOING GOOD FOR THE PEOPLE IN NEED BECAUSE I WANTED TO TELL THEM OF SOMEONE WHO IS IN DIRE NEED OF HELP MYSELF

  • Sheri

    When this episode originally aired, the eldest Higgins was20 at the time, and the siblings wereall minors. From what I have read elsewhere, the Leomiti parents started calling the Higgins kids all sorts of vile, racial slurs and negative names, and started essentially evicting them. Sounds like real nice people huh? Phil Leomiti says in the beginning of the episode that Samoans are ‘proud, humble people’…PROUD in the wrong ways…humble – apparently not. ABC/EMHE gaves each of the kids – Higgins too – theme specific rooms, clothes, cars, etc. The Higgins at the very least, should go back to that house with a police escort, and get everything that is rightfully theirs. The cars all had personalized plates on them. Humility isn’t in the Leomiti’s venacular. Greed, however, apparently is.

  • Mark

    Of all the human weaknesses, I would think the most common weakness in capitalism is the lust for money. The fact that Christian church people took these kids in at all says alot. This blog proves that Christian persecution is still alive and well. Lets add up the capitalism. ABC makes money, the owners of the house make money, and the kids who had nothing are allowed to sue the two parties with money. Aint America great!

  • Sheri

    Yeah, some ‘Christians’ took the Higgins in, only to untimately take unfair advantage of a sad situation (Higgins kids are orphans) just to get a new house, mortgage paid, and new everything, including cars for the Leomiti kids. The Leomitis even kept the cars that were clearly designated for the Higgins. It is sad that so much greed exists, and do this to a family that lost everything. The Leomitis saw a situation and their greed and sel;fishness took over HUGE and they ran with it. I hope the Higgins win in court. And then some.

  • Buford Toxiprego

    I’m surprised that ABC didn’t see this possible outcome. The contract should have been written with this possible result, and the house should have been sold with the proceeds split between the two families, with maybe 25%/75%, the kids getting the 75%. I hope the kids that were kicked out are awarded the full price of the house. I’d also like to know why the kids were kicked out.

    ABC is loaded, and makes millions from sponsors of this show. Local builders probably donate most or all of the house which is excellent PR for their companies. Then there’s all those no-cost volunteers from the community. Except for Ty, I bet the rest of the cast is paid modestly by Hollywood standards and told they are easily replaceable. I’m surprised ABC didn’t immediately fork over the money to these kids, putting it in some kind of fund for them, just to protect their image, knowing this would be a big splashy story that would not reflect well on the network.

    In the early 60’s, I used to watch a show called Queen for a Day. Three ladies would vy a price for telling the biggest sob story. The audience would clap for the most deserving and the winner, getting the highest on the applause meter, would take home a washer/dryer or a new TV set. The losers would go back to their famlies of six and jobless husband with a carton of DASH (or some soap powder).

    What I love about Extreme Makeover is that the gift the families are given can make a significant difference in their lives. It is very moving although sometimes I’m a little suspicious of the before video condition of some of the homes, wondering if people sometimes contribute to the problems of the home to gain sympathy.

    At the end of the episode, two weeks ago — a repeat I think — when they posted at the end that the father of the family they built the Craftsman-style home for, died of his battle with cancer, I wept. How bittersweet for the family.

    I sometimes wonder when it comes to cleaning time, whether some of the mothers wish their kids rooms didn’t have all the junk hanging off the walls, with some of the over-the-top fantasy rooms they do.

  • Sheri

    Buford –

    The episode with the Craftsman tools and such was indeed a repeat. It was a Season 3 episode. Prior to the repeat I had read a blog post someone made indicating the father in the episode – Gordon Harrison – had passed away. Then, I saw at the end of the episode what you and everyone else saw, the post script note indicating the Mr. Harrison had indeed passed away. I have the episode taped from when it aired originally, and I doubt I will be able to watch it any time soon, knowing what we all know now. My heart goes out to his wife and kids.

    AS for this other family who kicked the Higgins kids out…I have yet to see what the Leomiti’s justification was for calling the Higgins kids vile names and such. If it weren’t for the Leomiti’s taking them in in the first palce, ABC would have never bothered. But, because they used a double tragedy for their own greed, they got a brand new home, mortgage paid, and stocked full of stuff, and new cars.

  • Sheri

    PhatJack – yes therewas/is such an episode about these 2 families. The reason why you will not find it listed in any of the seasons (I think they are a Season 2 or 3 families) is because of the pending litigation. Thus, on the official EMHE website, if you look through all the seasons thus far, you won’t find this episode in question, because ABC was/is listed in the Higgins’ lawsuit. The reason was because the Higgins said that they got kicked out/evicted and called all sorts of names by the Leomitis, and that ABC was continuing to show their particular episode, and list them on the EMHE site, making it like all was well and good, when it wasn’t. Thus, nothing on them on the EMHE site. I have the episode in question on videotape.

  • Pat

    Alot of people are blaming ABC for all of this… ABC was only trying to help all of the people involved. As stated in earlier comments…maybe none of us know what really happened between these two families…however if the “host” family would have had hearts at all they would never leave anyone without a place to call home and without any of the things that were given to them. I have had numerous of people/friends live with us. Some have worked out and some have not. Regardless of the situations ..I would never leave someone out in the cold. That is not the human thing to do. The thing is about what is going on now a days with all of these reality shows is that everyone wants it to be them. If the economy was not so bad then people would be able to build things for themselves and not have to lie or manipulate people. Maybe that was not their intentions were in the beginning, however that is what seems to have happened. Do NOT blame ABC, they were only trying to do the right thing. I hope that the Higgins family finds a place to call “home” regardless if they do it on their own or if someone helps them again. EVERYONE needs a home…Do on to others as you would want done onto you. If everyone thinks about those words before doing anything then this world would be a much nicer place.

  • Heather

    There are liars and cheaters in this world…it does not matter of what relgious background they have. I believe their is a heaven and a GOD. However I am not a bible thumper, I do not attend church every week or anything of the sort, however I do not agree with the people who slander people. You believe what you believe and let others believe in what they believe. No matter what this family has gone through it is up to them on how their future plays out. I feel really bad for the Higgins family. It seems like now a days a lot of people are hiding behind their religion to do dirty things to people. My mom lost her family when she was young,..there were no reality shows then to help her or her siblings….hopefully they will find it in their own hearts to try their hardest to get a good job and come together as a family and make their home together. You do not need a 9 room home to be a family or to be happy. Those are all “materialistic” items…love and family makes a “home” not the size or the amount of items in it.

  • Lynette

    I did not see this episode but have enjoyed what I have seen. I cannot believe adults would use children to prosper. I believe these people will get what they deserve. The children should not have to worry about being together and growing up as a family, the adults should be the ones to suffer. Extreme Makeover has done their best to bring these children a future, but due to this misforune they still have to worry. I hope justice will prevail.

  • this whole situation is sad honestly. i feel really bad for the kids who were left without a home. i can only imagine how hopeless they must feel to be put through such a double tragedy.

    i hope they are blessed with a beautiful home.

  • i hate this show

    i hate this show. It’s total bullshit. They give a person a house so they can make a shit ton on ratings. Yes it’s wrong. Don’t tell me it’s not. I know it is. It’s exploitation, manipulation, and lots of other -ations I’m sure. I hate the host too. I hate all of you for liking it. Bunch of pawns.

  • i hate this show/you guys

    what’s so awesome about living in a massive expensive house in the first place/?? those low income people are just gonna trash it in the end. Low income people are low income for a reason. They mostly choose to live that way and don’t mind it too much. quit giving them big houses that they won’t really care for in the long run. the houses are probably built to shit anyways. It will probably collapse in a strong wind. wtf guys come on. this show is CRAP.

  • this show is what’s wrong with America

    damn straight. a bunch of “hosts” claiming to be humanitarians giving their best Oscar performances on camera. They ain’t got love for little handicapped people or low income black people. They have more love for their own haircuts. The main host/fucker has more love for his six pack and tan than he does for any of those duped families. what a bunch of tripe.

    In the end, giving people lots of “stuff” isn’t doing shit for them. It’s all a big horrible show and it puts me in a bad mood.

  • the ends don’t justify the means

    the ends don’t justify the means…

    ….ESP. if the ends aren’t virtuous to begin with.

  • For what it’s worth, the last four comments came from one IP address so it may well not be four different people…

  • Sheri

    “I hate this show/you guys” – guess what…I could so care less if you hate me. I have been hated by far more important people than some little loser like you. You are just jealous because you aren’t the one getting a new home for free. As for choosing to live low income, nice try there. Not all jobs pay $10 + per hour nor the salary of a Donald Trump buttmunch type, ok? So get over that one. Besides your posts have nothing to so with what really is going on between the Leomiti and Higgins families.

  • Sheri

    Here’s the update, for now: Enjoy…

  • julie

    To bad I can’t read the article because there is a big advertisement from your menu going right through the middle of it.

  • Gina

    We should go on strike against Extreme Makeover until they make the Higgins Children/family a home of their own.

    We will never view Extreme Makeover with the same respect.

  • Julie – the page looks okay to me, hope you can read it ok now..

    Justene – Big Hi from España! Miss you!!

  • Money Pit Owner

    I hate my house. Everything that I try to fix only leads to more problems discovered. Everything that composes my house has issues. I would love to have this show do an episode on it. Send me on vacation, pay off my mortgage, and rebuild by money pitt. It would be a dream come true. Better than winning the lottery. I would sell it for a nice profit and move to a place that is more suiteable for raising my family. I might even do whatever it takes to provide a better home for my children….But not what appears to have been done to the Higgens Children.

    I do not know all of the facts but it does look like greed on both ends. The Leomiti family for using the children (if that is what happened) and the Higgens Family for suing the builders. It appears that we all want something for nothing.

    Keeping in mind that the facts are not completely revealed to us. We do not know the true intentions of anyone involved. It is a rather sorry picture though.

  • Holly

    I feel for the Higgins children. I do what I can to make a difference and help others. I follow God’s will and read the Bible regularly. However, my children and I no longer go to church because of past experiences.

    Back when my daughter was a toddler, we went to church. Back then she couldn’t hear and her eyes could not focus. She was a quiet, reserved, well-behaved child and never gave anyone any problems. The nursery staff made comments that because she is disabled that she was a “devil child”. The minister did not want her in “his church”. I tried taking my children to other churches and recieved the same type of comments. My daughter had extensive medical treatment and now leads as close to a normal life as she can but she still has limitations.

    My daughter is one of the best behaved children in school. She has never been a problem child. We still don’t attend church because too many pretend to be christians in our society yet they are quick to judge and put others down because they want to prove they are better they everyone else. But in reality they are worse than everyone else because they do not live by the standards true christians do.

    The standard that is a priority to me is

    God First
    Others Second
    Myself Last

    I also follow the ten commandments. If you walk into any church in America on Sunday Morning, you will sadly find that almost everyone there only cares about themselves. They are not there to worship God, they are there to show off and put others down. God’s house no longer belongs to him. I choose not to get caught up in the unchristian environment that church has become. I choose not to bring my children to a church that can’t accept everyone. BUT WE ARE STILL CHRISTIANS!

    The family that used the HIGGINS children for their own gain are the same type of people we encountered in our attempts at attending church. That is the reality of many churches in America.

  • lee

    I think that it is terrible what this foster family did to those children. How can they call themselves Christians? I hope that the saying “what goes around comes around” certainly rings true in their case. Their house was ill-begotten and may they have nothing but heartache within it.

  • ABC ought to make a future episode featuring the further hardship that the Higgins Family have gone through. Of course, we are assuming that there isn’t a reason why the family chucked them out. They do seem to be out for a free ticket, suing ABC is a bit on the crappy side after all they tried to do for them.

    I totally understand ABC broadcasting the episode complete with Happy Ending. You have to realise that EMHE helps a lot of people and that relies on the continuing good name of the show. If they updated the episode with the subsequent bad ending, you wouldn’t have nearly the support that they currently enjoy.

    Even the bits that are a bit forced or the dodgy editing, or the sports stars that get 2mins face time on the show just because they donated a jersey or something crabby like that despite earning multi-million dollar salaries are not so bad because we realise that these things are what allow Ty and the team to keep helping people!

  • Monica

    Its amazing how many people are prejudiced in this world….. true there are alot of people who claim to be Christian and do horrible things….there is no doubt.. But there are many that are real Christians who do live their lives according to the teachings of Jesus. But these people who rag on Christians and claim they are all “evil” are the very same people who claim to be so enlightened and feign unbiased belief systems and equality for all…… How your true colors show….. saying Christians are all evil is like saying all blacks are criminals and lazy and all Mexicans irresponsible breeders….. Society really has not crept up from the ooze as it claims to have… Christian bashing is just another form of racism…… It just has another face….. But is still ugly just the same…… This has nothing to do with my personal beliefs about Christians one way or another….. I just see it for what it is…..

  • kat

    All the facts should be known before judgement… but the kids are definetly entitled to something, i think …because them being orphaned was the whole reason for the show… they shouldnt be left homeless

  • faith

    i beleive in my heart GOD has a purpose for everyone. Not just the higgin’s family but things like this happen for a reason to show us everything that glitter’s aint gold but this family has had enough turmoil in their lives like none of us probably we can judge them all we want but the meaning of this whole show is to help families. And in this one case something like this could change others lives. In life decisions we choose to make day to day GOD help us ALL!

  • John W.

    It is with a heavy heart that I have learned of the tragic events of this episode of Makeover.
    As far as I am concerned the Higgins family was delt another bad hand which appears irreversible because of the ownership of the original house.
    Having said that, I am not aware of the cause of eviction of the Higgins children but I would be interested in seeing them compensated for all the
    material things that were donated out of the goodness of caring people who were duped under false pretense. These items should be removed from the home and stored until such time that the Higgins’ have proper living facilities. Obviously
    compensation should be persued for this family through the court system and hopefully some kind of restitution will be made.
    PS: Please don’t let this setback hinder the continuation of the work being done by the Makeover crew. You are a blessing and a Godsend
    to so many deserving people. One bad apple won’t spoil the hole barrel if it is removed in time.
    Keep up the great work.

  • DCrissey

    In referance to comment [ #10 — June 29, 2006 @ 23:19PM — charles almon ] WHAT DOSE THIS HAVE TO DO WITH THE ISSUE AT HAND? Frankley I’m suprised you would post your name associated with such garbage!

  • DCrissey

    Another referance [#26 — June 30, 2006 @ 04:01AM — Conrad] WHAT’S WITH THIS ALSO? How about school teachers, social workers, Doctors? Why do you stereo-type Christians?

  • John R

    For the love of God, it’s “LOSE”, Not “LOOSE”. You LOSE your house, your dog gets LOOSE.

  • Evy

    I feel very bad for the Higgins Family. What is embarassing is that these people used their church membership to make themselves appear to be caring people but, they took advantage of this situation and had a house built for themselves. The home was intended to reward the family that took the Higgin’s family in but, also to help provide for the Higgins family and to help them heal from life’s pain. Then these vultures took and kicked the Higgin’s family out. They put on a great show but, God says when you get a megaphone and shout out your good deeds you have received your reward. They are all about show and they used people down on their luck to get what they did not deserve. This house should be sold and the original owners should get fair market value for their original house and the rest go to the higgins family. The sad part is they will not get to enjoy that home. God will return the favor because vengence is God’s. He will settle this because Lies and deception are very wrong, Shame on you!!

  • Kathy

    The foster parents could not have known that they would end up on Extreme Makeover, so I don’t think this STARTED with deception. Greed being greed, it grew inside. (For God’s sake, I hope they’re tithing…..LOL).

    I would be honor bound if I were those foster parents to make no moves with those children without discussing it with them and selling the house. Certainly, the “kind hearted” foster family should keep SOME of the equity, but more of it SHOULD go to the Higgins children, in trust if necessary.

    My .02 cents.

  • Jeff

    This story is difficult. I can’t help but wonder if there were other compromises in the home after the show. When I have helped someone by bringing them into my home, I set boundaries and guidelines for behavior and care of the home. Healthy respect levels are also designated. Were those set by the owners of this home? Were those boundaries compromised because of a bad contract or egos from both families? I am not advocating for either side, but I think other questions need to be asked before anyone can judge this correctly. Otherwise we are rambling at the mouth. I hope the truth is found and is situation judged correctly. It seems we have only heard a one-sided story.

  • Joyce

    To the guy who says “this is what is wrong with this country”, this is what is right with this country. People helping people who are in need.
    To the people who say “I hate the show, I hate the people on it”, etc, you have a choice and I’m sure there is a switch on your TV,USE IT if the show offends you so much. I don’t care if the cast is worried about their hair,tans, and the other things mentioned in the comments. Yes they get paid, the network makes money, but the bottom line is THEY ARE HELPING PEOPLE WHO NEED IT.Keep up the good work and I don’t feel the show is in any way responsible for what occured after the makeover, it should be kept between the two families and the court system

  • joanne

    not all christians are like that. dont ever compare christians to bad people. just because they did that. doesnt mean all christians are like that.

  • Kyt

    The Only reason why I even believe Jesus is God is because God himself witnessed to me. If it was left to the so-called Christians to witness to me, I would have been a devout Christian basher because of the hypocrisy, selfishness, back biting, gossiping, putting God on a very short timeline (1 hour service with a 15 minute feel good sermon), refusing to help anyone who is disabled grocery shop. I, a disabled person takes my disable friend grocery shopping when I can. The other believers refuse because they don’t have the time. They have plenty of time to sit on their duffs eating at fine restaurants for 2 hours. At the so-called Christian Northwestern college, I had to walk an hour to catch the bus for a year, because NO ONE could drive 5 minutes out of their way to take me. I finally had to take out more student loans and buy a car. The song that plays on KTIS about why aren’t my hands feeding drives me up the wall, because Christians say how awesome that song is and then turn around and refuse to use their precious hands to do a thing for the poor communities in their backyards. They will only send people and money to Mexico. What about the homeless in your own country? What about the disabled people who need help shopping? What about taking time out to take two people in wheelchairs out to eat 2 times a Year? People on disability can’t afford to eat out much, if at all. The Higgins deserve to be sent to Hell for their selfishness. Wait until judgement day. The Lord will give them their just desserts then. They will then know how bad they were and how awful of a deed they did. I’m sure the people at their church are divided over the behavior as well. Gossip mills are probably speaking ill of the kids on one side, and speaking highly of the kids on the other side. Satan opened a door that will take God to close.


    I find it interesting that no one seems to be interested in what caused the home owners to “evict” the Higgins children. Everyone seems to want to blame them without hearing the “other side” of the story. Did the Higgins children become “unmanageable” because they felt that they owned the house, even though it was not their house or property that was rebuilt? Just a thought.

  • All these commenters here who think that the show is a charity, NO, the goal of the show is to make money for ABC.
    And the sadder the story the more money they’ll get.
    As for the “they’re christian” / “no they’re not” comments, do grow up, if it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck well then it is a duck.
    You can’t have it both ways christians, if someone calling them self a christian does something good (like take in those children) then they’re rightly praised and added to the christian list, well then if that same christian does bad you cannot say that he or she is not a christian because of that, they are and as long as they call themself christian they are as much a christian as you are.
    Be honest about your faith you might be surprised about the result!

  • kaitlyn

    i realy want to give my mom a nice home. could e-mail me info about how to get sined up. please this is coming from a 10 year old.

  • Barbara

    One person commented that the couple that took these children in were “CHURCH PEOPLE”
    Honey going and standing in a church no more makes you a christian than going and standing in your garage makes you a car!!! These people should be charged with fraud!!!
    Real christians don’t behave in such a way because they have God in their heart!!!
    These people are the worst of the worst… And God will punish them for what they have done! ~~Barbara~~

  • A

    Hello!!! ABC does not accept donations…they are not a non-profit org. They do this for money, plain and simple. If that were not the case, they would go back and help the families that were burdened or screwed by the new home situation, i.e. bills, taxes, and in the case of the Higgins family. If you do not believe in the show, do not watch it…

  • JH

    Has Homemaker Over responded to all these comments? Have they at least made any attempt to assure this atrocious behavior can not happen again? I know contracts are legally binding, but I would expect ABC, who can afford to help so many, could at least go back and help the Higgins children, regardless of the contracts and the past. I still believe the intent of the program is altruistic, but please ABC do not let this happen again.

    Making the Higgins have to go to court and file lawsuits is also wrong. Even if you do not build the Higgins a new home, why not just buy them a home and/or arrange for scholarships for these kids? Come on ABC, just do what is right. Ignore your legal team. Only the lawyers benefit from litigation. Use some common sense. Give the money being spent on legal fees to the kids. You would probably save money.

  • Isabella

    This is awful and should not have happend and it is soo bad that i think i will not get involved but i would and it would not be pretty because if you take in orphans you do NOT kick them out after you take them in and get your house redone because “it dosent belong to them” shame on you!

  • Bryan

    All of you are responding to just one side of the story and every argument has two sides. Before you throw the homeowners under the bus, remember that they helped the Higgins when no one else would. So now you all hate them? What hypocrites. Should they be forced to put up the Higgins forever now? No matter what the Higgins do? Get real.

  • sharon rich

    now now yall we havent heard the church peoples side maybe they kicked them out 4 a good reason maybe the eldest was doing illigal things out of the house or un-christian like things in front of their kids and they gave him many warnings after warnings and he didnt listean maybe they kicked the eldest out and said the others could stay and he choose 2 take them for he is their guardian and the checks come 4 them under his name

  • Eugene

    First, let’s get off Christians? We were all born Christ-like! This is what you must/need to understand. Freewill is where you have the problem! Our choice to do right or wrong, to be selfish, uncaring, greedy and stupid! Unfortunately it’s a part of life for many of us. If you don’t know who you are and where you come from these become your guides. When you do find out life becomes seemingly harder. Living in this world you are often put in a situation to make this choice. Some decisions are little and some very big. There is a force here meant on tempting you every chance it gets. Educate your self! Stop thinking God won’t talk to you, the thing with him is he has a thing about fake people! It’s very important to have a one on one relationship with God. You must believe he is the first and no other comes before him! Before you can have one of anything you must have that (first one). Believe, no, know that he is it! Don’t try to name him or define him. Just live your life day by day trying not to have to ask him to forgive you for anything my may have done that day! Believe that we are all a part of each other and a part of him. Believe in you heart and mind every step you take he’s right there with you. Know that he sees all! Know that he will give you the shovel but he won’t dig the whole for you! Know that we should have each others back! Stop believing asking for forgiveness means your gonna get it! Hell, wasn’t created for nothing! Remember you don’t belong here; one day your time card is going to be punched, final destination Heaven or Hell! If you don’t believe in some kind of after life then answer the question, why are you here? I’ve often heard it said it’s better to be safe now than sorry later! This world will get you side tracked, you think it has what you need, but I’m gonna have to tell you everlasting life can’t be bought!

  • mixie

    has this court case finished

  • elanosa

    how sad that happened. Greed can be very powerful but I believe that “you get what you give”.

  • Judi

    I have not read all the comments..way too extensive…but I personally think that the family that gives Christians such a bad name be held responsible to some degree.

    Yes, it was their origninal property. How about ordering the 9 bedroom home be sold, and the monies split between the property’s family, and the Higgins family. It’s a shame the kids from the couple have to deal with this. Their parents are indeed selfish.

    I don’t know why the Higgins’ were kicked out, I have not seen anywhere why, but some type of contract should have been created, stating that the family has an obligation to provide for the Higgins kids until they are on their own, in return for the home being rebuilt to accomodate such a large family. If they failed to do so, the home would be sold and proceeds divided between the two familes.

    Just my thoughts

  • Yo Paulie!

    I think the whole show is stupid. All it consists of is a bunch of fruity guys and a ditzy broad showing up to blubber over somebody living in a moldy house or somthing. There is too much crying and too little actual construction on the show. They should change the name to EXTREME MAKEOVER FAG EDITION!

  • mike

    well, first off the children living in the home were taken in out of charity. and in no way should the family that took them in be punished when they decide to stop being charitible. yeah its very wrong and grossly horrible that they did kick them out but where the children doing something illegal such as selling drugs or doing them. where they bringing home people of the opposite sex and sleeping with them. maybe the family wanted to kick out the oldest but him not thinking about whats best for my siblings but instead they need to be with me. i would ultimatly bet that they did something that the other family couldnt take or wanted to risk. but as far as abc giving compensation no! why should they. they already gave them enough. and the owner family couldnt in any way be in trouble for retaining their property and they have the right to do and choose what they wish with it (its part of american freedom) yeah its horrible what happened but they need to think of that time honored phrase DONT TRUST ANYONE. and made sure that they took care of it.


    hell is very hot

  • lb

    you are right william,hell is very hot. these people will burn in hell for what they have done.

  • Scott

    I think that it sucks for everyone in this circumstance. Well not for the family that took in the Higgins in the first place, cause they are just a disgrace. I don’t think that the companies involved in improving the home should be sued. I think if the Higgins simply submitted a new application to ABC for Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, about their original misfortune as well as what happened with being kicked out of their new home, then they will likely receive a new home of their own from ABC. Personally, I think that this is a circumstance well worth a new home for this show. I think that would be the best thing to do for everyone. For the family who took them in, they are terrible for doing what they did, but it seems that nothing could happen to them. As for ABC and the companies involved in the show, I think their best interest would be to help this family directly and all would be good.

  • I think this is pathetic and totally disgusting. A family used the kids and ABC to scam a new home. I am also surprised that ABC didn’t lay fraud charges against them. As it is a form of mis representation and illegal. ABC shuold sue the parents for return of the home and if they see fit give it to the Higgins’ who tryluy deserve it.

  • lb

    I am with you Paula. Give the house to the Higgins and the family who kicked them out should be jailed!

  • Munky, Glendale CA

    I know it’s been quite sometime ago that the last comment was written about this situation with the Higgins family, but made the decision to leave my own comment based on some of the comments left by others.

    First off… What does religion have to due with anything regarding this situation? The only religious aspect of this whole ordeal is the that both families went to the same church. The fact is that kindness should be for the sake of good and not because some religious figure/teachings says to be good or else–that totally negates the point of being good (most people just don’t get that fact)… It is the misunderstanding of what it is to be a Christian (or any other religious/spiritual background) that cause so many problems. The problem lies in both those within and outside of religion and spirituality, so do not think you are above it.

    Now, some other individual wrote a comment expressing how they believe the possible lawsuit is frivolous. The reason for the Higgins family’s being kicked out is a question I too would like to know the answer too. However, unless the Higgins family were responsible for something that caused a substantial loss to “the home owners”, why shouldn’t the Higgins family be entitled to monetary compensation? Isn’t the reason “the home owners” benefited from ABC and Home Makeover due to the Higgins and “home owners” SHARING a struggle? ABC, the producers of Home Makers and its affiliates made money from this show by telling of the struggle of the Higgins family and the home owners. At what point did ABC and/or Home Makeover place a disclaimer, indicating that the story, as they (Home Makeover/ABC) were telling it (since it is pre-recorded and edited), was no longer the true circumstances which the Higgins found themselves to be in (in reality the Higgins family were now in a worse position then when ABC/Home Makeover intervened)????

    ABC is at fault for portraying the family in a light that was not reality. The Higgins family signed a contract allowing ABC to show that they (ABC and participating companies in the production of this particular episode of Home Makeover) helped to better the lives of the Higgins family. However, in reality, whether intentional or not, ABC and those participating companies unknowingly put the Higgins family into a worse situation than the one they found themselves in before the Home Makeover intervention. Just because there was no intent has no bearing as to whether or not ABC (and, if any, affiliates) is responsible for the situation the Higgins family is now in. I’m not saying that ABC is responsible, what I am saying is that this is for the courts to decide and is therefore NOT FRIVOLOUS. The person saying that this is frivolous really needs to learn the definition of the word.

    As for those saying the home owners need to be kicked out, you don’t know the circumstances and should really reserve judgment until all details of the case have been laid out in court… You may be right, but why not wait until you have something that proves you to be correct in your assessment? I for one wish to know the truth, regardless if it justifies what it is that I feel.

  • JD in FL

    ABC might have a fraud claim against the foster family, but no way can they reclaim the house. The foster family is still the rightful owner of their old property, regardless of the facelift. They would have been stupid to sign over any portion of their property to a group of children they had gratuitously taken in when they fell on hard times. Sad as it is, the Higgins have no claim here. The other family got lucky. But I bet you’ll never see any unrelated family units get a makeover again! ABC owes nothing more to this terrible situation.

  • donna

    I thought the purpose of this show was to help families. If they couldn’t afford the shack then how can they afford the mansion. The only way to truely help these families, build the house and ABC pay the MORTGAGE OFF. This show is fake. It hurts the people more. Give them a dream and take it away. SHame ABC, Ty and the WHole gang!!!!!!

  • suehorton

    i am need help to boyfriend happy he don’t long to live he has als in wheel chair trying made his day be happy makeis drean come true i seen show on tv?i would like ask a guest if help to help him get house he have room tomove around be happy his name carl hastings he just found out last year i am do all god will let doto help him i doing thank in your prays thank for people live god take care of people ? sue

  • carolinalady

    How can you even show p in church after that.

  • lisa. indiana

    wow that just blowes me away how anyone could be so cruel i watch the show all the time always brings tears to my eyes . sounds like the couple took advantage of the kids and extreme make over. they help so many people and i hope this doesnt mess things up for others who really need help there is so much evil in the world. its refreshing to know that people like extreme make over can help so many people. that couple should be ashamed i hope they have to move . i just also feel sorry for thier kids for haveing such rotten parents. home edition keep up the good work.not every one is such jerks…..god will judge them what goes around comes around

  • Jeramie50

    No good deed left unpunished. Shame on the foster parents. I wish the house could be given to the Higgin children.

  • LOVE

    This is very sad. How could this couple do that? Shame on them! And I believe that God will judge on his own way at his own time. It is a disappointment for Extreme Home Edition not helping the Higgin kids to flight back the fair. They did the good then make sure keeping it to the end!!

  • Tess Baker

    I cannot personally stand people who bash others for their religion. This has really nothing to do with the issue. It comes right down to honesty, integrity, etc. Obviously, you people who label others ought to look at yourselves first and judge. You never judge a book by its cover. I love this show and respect what they are doing for truely needy people. It is a shame that someone is taking advantage of this terrible situation and going after the very people that make it possible. My family knows what it is like to struggle and I can honestly say that even though we are poor, have 6 kids and adopting 1 or 2 more that life is in the living, laughing, and most important of all LOVING!

  • johny

    Another proof that money and big house doesn’t bring happiness. Remember John Edward and everybody else..

  • hava from Holly Ridge

    I’m a Christian,and i’m a firm believer in that “you reap what you sew”.I do’nt know what happened to these two families but God say’s “vengeance is mine” ,”i will repay”.He’s a Sovereign God who deals fairly.A person’s relationship with God is a personal thing and only God really knows the intent of each one’s heart.we all must deal with God on a one on one basis.Christian’s are not perfect.we are very imperfect’ but God expects us to be honest with him,allway’s.we do’nt allway’s make the right decision’s at certain times.I pray that these two families ,who must have cared about each other, can come to a Godly decision that would benefit all involved.Pray for them all!

  • anne

    i think this family the higgins should be ashamed of themselves i think they should leave the children and buy themselves a new home
    anyway i love you abc team

  • Seriously?

    You’re kidding me, right? Someone please say this was a hoax. I cannot believe that they would push these children out. With a home that big, they could manage just about anything. Certainly if they had genuinely good hearts, they would have sold the home and given part of the funds to those children to restart their lives.

  • Yadi from Jalisco

    I don’t know what the status of the Higgins case is but I believe there is a God and he will make justice for the Higgins family. Sooner than later the family that kicked out the Higgins will get what they deserve. They are the meaning of the words SHAME, EVIL and SELFISH. We will continue praying for u Higgins Family.

  • Nancy

    Well since this now four yrs later that I’m reading about the Higgins family. I truely hope that all has worked out ok for them, and that because there was a family that was wolves in sheeps clothing @retending to be Christians, My prayer is that they did not cause 5 new lambs to be slaudered & That the only ones that needed to be taken to court was they false Christians who took in the higgins children Not the Makeover people, But the Makeover Peoples Atty’s could have stepped in to help file the suite against the Fake Christian Family & help the higgin children to know that not all Christians are like the family that used them for their gain then threw them out..But also They have toface God on Judgement Day & give account for what they did!

  • diana

    the family has to put an application in 1st and get picked. They got picked and ABC heard there story and Ty and his team built this house for them under good circumstances. Unfortunately the family got selfish and greedy and decided now that they have the house they dont need to take care of these kids anymore because they were not theres.ABC should take the house back and the aHiggins should live in it and not the other ones. They will get there’s and I hope that the whole neighborhood should p0ut a wall of shame in their front yard…Shame on them!!!!!

  • alex

    i seen the show a lot and love it and all the smiles but i need help my dad is in and out of the hospital because of his hernyas he had 15 serjorys we are very scared for him so he has a hole in his stomic. i have 2 brothers. 3 dogs we live in a small trailor park . we are not looking for much we want a place to run and play and see natcher as is we want are dad too in sted of the hospital so it is a call and cry out for help. so i hope and pray that you read this please. and some times we can not aford are need but we do not give up or let are gards down so help please love alex

  • Angel

    Yeah, some ‘Christians’ took the Higgins in, only to untimately take unfair advantage of a sad situation (Higgins kids are orphans) just to get a new house, mortgage paid, and new everything, including cars for the Leomiti kids. The Leomitis even kept the cars that were clearly designated for the Higgins. It is sad that so much greed exists, and do this to a family that lost everything. The Leomitis saw a situation and their greed and sel;fishness took over HUGE and they ran with it. I hope the Higgins win in court. And then some.

  • Speaking my mind

    One the Higgins didn’t win in court. Two, two of the Higgins are locked up for burglerizing a home in Downey on May 6th of 2010. Joshua’s bail is set at $1,115,000.00 and Jeremiah’s at $80,000.00 Wow did someone say they were good kids? Remember the Leomiti’s got them as ADULTS and LATE TEENS. Had then been brought up to be law abiding and productive citizens..then why are they in jail for burglerizing someone’s home. In the upper part of Downey I might add. Something smells fishy here. Maybe the Leomiti’s were telling the truth after all. They wanted to do as they please, they did as they please with no regards to rules or consequences and NOW look where they are at. Where are those other families they were supposedly taking such “GOOD” care of them? HMMM? Oh yeah the kids didn’t get anything out of the lawsuit so of course the love has run out. NICE! Well you gotta give it to the Leomiti’s for trying. Now I see what kind of kids they were really dealing with. Don’t believe me go to Los Angeles Inmate information and type in those boys names. It’s all there clear as day.

  • concerned

    Having just worked directly with ABC Extreme Makeover, I can tell you that all they do is exploit the people they give homes to, the volunteers who help them and the small vendors who give their product time and services for a very generous profit. ABC pay for NOTHING. Everything is donated. In the end, a big paycheck from the advertisers. They can more than afford to give these children a home. They were young and innocent victims who suffered at the hands of a big corporation and a greedy family that used them. MAKE THIS RIGHT ABC. sometimes, it’s not always about the paycheck.

  • breanna

    this is insane. These kids were so excited about. Getting there new rooms and such. The fact that people could be this heartless is just pathetic if you’re that type of person then you are ugly. Ugly isn’t based on appearance its based on who you are. My heart goes to the family

  • JimE

    The lord works in mysterious ways. I guess those poor orphans were meant to live a life of poverty.

    too bad, so sad.

  • michelle wilson

    how but in the longrun the final judgement shall not be ours…..god will bless those kids…..

  • trish nall

    Again, for every door that closes another will open for the Higgins, why not help those in such need with providing land to build only for the Higgin family, after all
    the oldest was 21 years, to them extreme would not had to been that big. Also, spread the wealth a little more, go smaller, and therefore helping more. Wow, 9 bedrooms, look at how many cannot afford their new extreme home makerover, not to mention neighbors taxes going up, but not to be able to sell their home at tax prices. Please rethink your home make over and come down to earth for everyone, and help more in need.

  • Sherri

    The Higgins should not have to sue. ABC should build them the home that they were promised. How much hardship are they supposed to endure.

  • false charity hater

    Personally, I belive that the guilty family should lose their home and it should be given to the Higgens because the stuff was meant for them and the other family doesn’t deserve such a big house anyways, since the small house was mortgaged. However the other family shouldn’t become homeless either so they should get like a condo or something else smallish.

  • 679girl

    yeah like a barn,where they belong,you don’t use children like that. Those children were used by those people to get a bigger home and then threw the kids out with the bath water.ABC to the rescue again.

  • SE

    You probably didn’t know this.. but ABC doesn’t give the money or the house. The CONTRACTORS and builders.. do.

  • AMH

    I agree, Brian from Texas. I also agree with the person who said, “the devil comes in many forms.” That is biblical truth.
    Those pretending to be Christians are called hypocrites and/or pharisees.
    I had a question too: Isn’t the Higgins family just the couple with the three kids? That’s what I thought I understood.

  • AMH

    I say put your trust in God alone. Seek Ye First the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness and all these things will be added unto you. Hallelujah!
    Do not worry about your life. Your God in heaven knows what you need and will provide it for you if you trust in The Lord Jesus first.
    I do agree with the commenter “LOVE” who said God will judge in His own way.
    God will judge each of us. Thank God Jesus gave His life for everyone’s sins. Then He came back and will come again!

  • wayne mullinax

    you never no both sides of a story and if you do is all of it ture.

  • neva ford

    Im ask for a extreem make over for my mom home was in a fire in irvington nj the house that she own she had to move from a house to a appartment she help so many people now she should have her time now she help over million of people

  • The heart that speaks

    God will deal with every human being, that walks the face of the earth.We as adults should want everlasting and happiness for the childrens of the world.I believe we as God children should not for sake him by not doing as planned for us.I am a example is why I believe and know that we must walk with FAITH.When you believe all things will come to light.We shouldn’t fight nor turn on our sisters and brothers.I pray for the Higgans family have faith and believe thats not what he has instored for you and your family.GOD HAS MORE THAN HE OFFERED THAT FAMILY WHO TOOK YOU AND YOUR SIBLING IN.That was a test from God and indeed they failed.Only our father above know what he has instored for them.Its greater than what the Higgins are feeling.GOD GOT YALL BACK.JUST PRAY AND KNOW ITS MANY MORE WHERE I COME FROM THATS WATCHING OVER YALL.WE ALL LOVE YALL AND KNOW THAT YOU THE OLDEST YOUR FIRST BLESSING WAS YOUR SIBLING AND MANY MORE TO COME GOD BLESS AND TAKE CARE.YOUR DREAM IS COMING SOON

  • melissagail over

    my name is melissa over im asking for your help my family has selverul proublems money very tight my husband was an achole and drug abusevcounciler for pompano beginners we cant get med and not enough money to live i myself have ms very panful dasease could you please help us live in hollywood [personal contact info deleted by comments editor] thank you mr william over

  • se

    You never judge a book by its cover. I love this show and respect what they are doing for truely needy people. It is a shame that someone is taking advantage of this terrible situation and going after the very people that make it possible. My family knows what it is like to struggle and I can honestly say that even though we are poor, have 6 kids and adopting 1 or 2 more that life is in the living, laughing, and most important of all LOVING!

  • rodney yocum

    my house was in the fire could we build it

  • Sherry from Missouri

    Ok I understand everyone being upset about the 5 orphaned kids being kicked out. Next question since it does not seem to be addressed anywhere…were the kids ever truly adopted into the family or were they helping the children and providing for the children? Were the children be distructive or bringing harm or negativity into the home? First off the way this article is written is made to sound like the kids were thrown out into the streets. Also the home and land was the owners prior to the new home being built. And without knowing with the economy being as it is was this family faced with not being able to support this huge of a family? I believe there is more out there and how can we judge and say what should be done??? Just think there needs more info…

  • Jane

    I call it Extreme Makeover bullsh*t edition. They did it here and the contractors that didn’t pay ABC money weren’t allowed to show anything about their branding. All of it is acting. They put producers in the house and tell the family “you might be chosen”. In the latter days they gave the families money to pay the increased taxes on the houses, but a LOT of families lost their new homes. The other thing is that they build new rooms for little kids and forget about the fact that little kids grow up. I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t want the ballerinas from my 1st grade room in my 11th grade room. I was in one of the scenes. We stood around for TWO HOURS for a 30 second scene. It was total bullsh*t. The people in the area ended up being disgusted. I know I’m not the only one who stopped watching the show.

  • Maria Kamieth

    i hope the Higgens family wins and gets what they deserve, good luck kids

  • jessie

    This is old. But this is what happens when churchy preachy bastards get glorified for their acts. Karma can be a bitch and I guarentee she will be knocking down the door to that beautiful house and running through their lives like a tornado. B-holes.