HGTV has produced some top-notch reality stars, with two somewhat towering over the rest. Tarek and Christina El Moussa rose to fame with their television show Flip or Flop, a series where the duo would buy, renovate, decorate, and resell homes for a profit.
It wasn’t just the gorgeous homes that had viewers flocking to their program, though. It was the couple’s seemingly flawless relationship. So, when it was announced things turned ugly and they split, there was more than one rumor flying around. Now, get ready to learn the truth.
People Flocked To Flip Or Flop For More Than The Homes
Flip or Flop is one of HGTV’s more popular programs, having multiple spin-offs, a large fanbase, and two very popular hosts. And it was the latter that kept people coming back to watch more home renovations and flips.
Tarek and Christina El Moussa had charisma, passion, and, most of all, seem to have a flawless relationship that made the home renovation show about much more than just flipping houses for a substantial profit.
Tarek And Christina Met In The Real Estate Industry
Both Tarek and Christina El Moussa were savvy business people, knowing the real estate industry inside and out. But more so than that, they were happily married, making their chemistry on-screen as co-hosts look flawless and easy.
They bounced ideas off one another, considering one another’s thoughts while making their job look fun solely because they were together. So, what could have possibly happened to make the two split up?
They Had Real Estate Experience
If you’re familiar with Tarek and Christina El Moussas’ backgrounds, then it shouldn’t come to too much of a surprise to learn that they have a wealth of experience in the real estate industry.
Tarek had been in the industry since a young age, earning his real estate license at the age of 21. He immediately started working in the field, quickly moving up the ranks. It was also in this industry where he met his future wife and co-host, Christina.
The 2008 Crash
Both Tarek and Christina agree that their connection was instant. They became an “official couple” not long after their initial meeting, even deciding to enter the housing market together. But it was 2008, an unfortunate time for anyone to be entering the market with its crash.
Like many, the couple had to downgrade. Tarek and Christina wound up having to move out of their $6,000/month home and into something quite smaller and cheaper — a $700/month apartment.
Tarek And Christina Decided To Tie The Knot in 2009
While 2008 was a tough year for many, Tarek and Christina were able to figure things out through hard work and dedication to their new careers. It took some time, but the two were able to come out on the other side less than a year later.
Going through a huge lifestyle change, saving their careers, and working through the difficult times that come hand-in-hand with a crash, the two decided they didn’t want to wait any longer. They got married, tying the knot in 2009.
Taylor Reese El Moussa Was Born in September Of 2010
Tarek and Christina were making moves as a new family, wanting to have children right away. Unfortunately, they had a bit of trouble and had to look into Vitro fertilization, which ultimately worked for the young couple.
They welcomed a healthy baby girl in September of 2010, Taylor Reese El Moussa. Their life could only go up from here, right? With all of the snags and roadblocks they’ve run into as a couple, they could figure anything out.
The Couple Wanted More
Even with the start of their new family and successful careers, Tarek and Christina wanted more. So, they began brainstorming ideas for a reality television show, landing on the idea of flipping homes, i.e., renovations.
Everyone liked a good interior design show, right? So, they decided Tarek was going to explain the entire process via videotape, and they were going to send it into HGTV. Their hope was to get their own program up and running.
HGTV Executives Were On Board With Their Idea
To their surprise, the executives at the network loved their idea, wanting to run with it. And, once they found out Christina was Tarek’s wife and also happened to be in the industry, they wanted her to co-host.
The couple was over the moon, convinced they were about to become huge TV stars with their own series. Soon, they started filming, and the first episode of Flip or Flop aired in April of 2013.
The Show Was An Instant Success
The first episode aired on HGTV and became an instant success in the United States. But it wasn’t just the concept of the show people were falling in love with; it was also the concept of Tarek and Christina.
It was obvious the two had chemistry, making the show that much more fun and enjoyable to watch. They worked so well as a team; it was hard to imagine any sort of arguing going on behind the camera.
Tarek Found The Properties While Christina Picked Out Decor
While Tarek and Christina worked together on the show, they were in charge of different aspects. Tarek would go around looking for the properties they’d renovate on Flip or Flop, working on the homes himself when the time came.
Then, it was up to Christina to go out and purchase furniture and other decorations while making sure everyone and everything was on schedule. The latter, not exactly an easy task and one that was stressful at times.
A Viewer Noticed Something Strange On Tarek’s Neck
Everything was going perfectly for the El Moussa couple, and they couldn’t have been happier. Both Tarek and Christina threw themselves into the television show, making it the best possible program they could.
Unfortunately, they were about to get a cold dose of reality in the form of a registered nurse named Ryan Reade. After watching one of the Flip or Flop episodes, Reade noticed something of concern on Tarek’s neck. It troubled Reade to the point he decided to write the network.
Tarek Listened To The Nurse And His Production Team
The lump in Tarek’s neck was a cause for concern for the registered nurse. So, he decided to write the producers of Flip or Flop. The team took the letter seriously, speaking to Tarek and Christina about the nurse’s concerns.
They were fully aware of the lump, but it wasn’t causing Tarek any discomfort or pain. They left it alone. However, after reading Reade’s letter and listening to the producers, Tarek decided to see a medical professional.
Their Worst Fears Came True
Tarek admitted to the doctor that he had been having issues with his throat for a few years, but never thought much of it because he was in otherwise good health. Nonetheless, the doctor brought in the TV host and ran some tests.
He wound up confirming what the couple feared, Tarek had thyroid cancer. And, after going through some more tests, it was confirmed the disease had spread to other parts of his body.
Flip Or Flop Was Put On Hold
Of course, Christina did her best to stay positive, caring, and supportive during this hard time in her husband’s life. But she was scared. They had just had a daughter together, and now she was afraid Taylor was going to grow up without her father.
And if that wasn’t enough, the Flip or Flop production team decided to put the show on hold so Tarek could rest, and Christina could be there for her family.
It Was A Long Road To Recovery
It was a long road of migraines, nausea, and trying to raise a young daughter. So much so that the stress of everyday life began to take a toll of the couple, distancing them from one another.
Then, they got fantastic news. The treatment had worked, and Tarek was clear to begin working once again! It seemed as though their life as back on track. So much so that the El Moussa’s decided to try for baby number two.
They Weren’t Communicating
Once again, they had trouble getting pregnant, having to resort to In Vitro fertilization. It worked but classified Christina as a high-risk pregnancy. So, she was unable to go back to work, go on walks, or even lift anything heavier than a gallon of milk.
In the end, it paid off, and they welcomed a son, Brayden. And what should have been a happy occasion, left the couple separated and not communicating, even though Christina was now back at work.
Even so, everything in the El Moussa’s lives seemed to be perfect. But, in May of 2016, an incident happened that left many thinking there was more going on with the couple behind the scenes.
That day, a helicopter was circling the Flip or Flop hosts’ house with 11 police cruisers parked along the road and an ambulance on the way. People could only speculate what had happened behind closed doors that required all of those people!
It Was A Misunderstanding
As it turned out, Tarek had gone into his safe, grabbing his gun and sticking it into his backpack in front of a few people. He then left the house, headed towards a hiking trail, and no one could find him.
Everyone was afraid he was going to take his own life, but as it turned out, according to Tarek, he was being cautious. In an interview with People, he said it was a misunderstanding, and he was just protecting himself against wild animals.
Rumors Spread That Tarek Was Having An Affair
But that wasn’t the only incident that was coming to light about the “perfect couple.” TMZ reported that Tarek was spending an awful lot of time with their nanny, Alyssa, even though he and Christina publicly announced that their marriage was back on track.
In response, Christina forbid Tarek from spending time with Alyssa while she was working for them. His response: fire her so they could spend more time together. It’s assumed they split not long after since they stopped being spotted together.
In 2016, They Separated
Fans weren’t sure what to make of Tarek and Christina’s marriage. Then, in December of 2016, the news they’ve been waiting for was released. The Flip or Flop couple was separating. In a statement the two released to US Weekly, they explained that they weren’t getting a formal divorce.
They said they “had challenges in [their] marriage” and wanted to “re-evaluate the future of [their] marriage.” So, now it was a waiting game to see what would happen.
They Filed For Divorce In 2017
The separation didn’t last long, and only a month later, in January of 2017, the two filed for divorce. Thankfully, for fans, the two seemed to have an amicable split. And, during an interview with ABC, Christina chalked it up to them wanting to co-parent their children in a civil manner.
But there was a lot more that went into the split than fans initially thought. It seemed as though a lot went on behind their closed doors.
A Few Things Affected Their Marriage
As it turned out, the cancer diagnosis had way more of an effect on their marriage then anyone knew. Tarek wasn’t himself, being irritable, tired, and fluctuating weight due to his hormone medication.
On top of not discussing the situation with anyone, the couple began to drift. Taking into consideration this lasted three years, it’s no surprise they had a hard time bouncing back to who they used to be as a couple. They had stopped communicating.
They Stopped Communicating After Their Son’s Birth
But Tarek’s health wasn’t the only thing that drove a wedge between the El Moussa’s. Christina’s pregnancies also had a harsh effect on them, as she was unable to get pregnant easily and had a miscarriage before becoming pregnant with their son.
Christina also thought it was a mistake for her to go back to work only four weeks after their son’s birth. At this point, she and Tarek were so closed off they were driving separate cars to the Flip or Flop set.
Mo’ Money Mo’ Problems
According to a few sources, money was a huge issue between the couple as well. While Tarek was happy saving, Christina enjoyed to finer things in life, developing a sort of shopping habit her husband didn’t appreciate.
But there was also the fact that a few people accused the couple of not paying them, such as Jonathan Schmier, a contractor who was, supposedly, owed $5,000 for every house he found for the couple to flip. He never saw the money.
Fans Didn’t Know Who The Co-Hosts Truly Were
With so many stories buzzing around tabloids, newsrooms, and even the couple’s social media, it was hard to figure out what exactly happened to make the once-beloved duo split. But, if anything can be concluded, its that fans really didn’t know who The Flip or Flop co-hosts were.
Were they putting up a facade for the public? As one of their neighbors put it, the El Moussa’s were living in “the ultimate house of horrors.”
It Was Christina’s Fault….Maybe?
Often times, Tarek and Christina would scream at one another, accusing the other of cheating, keeping secrets, and spying. A neighbor said it would go on all day and night, with the result being them posting cute messages to each other online.
As it turned out, the couple was living the ultimate double life. And behind the camera was no different. Often, Christina would change her mind on a project, expecting Tarek to accommodate her ideas even though they were on a timeline.
News Articles Were Telling Conflicting Stories
With all of their so-called marital issues coming to light, fans still weren’t sure what to believe. Everything sounded more like rumors than anything, especially when it came to their neighbor’s testimony. And then there were sources saying Tarek blamed Christina for everything.
It went as far as saying Tarek wanted to keep everything out of the media, and Christina brought it upon herself to leak personal information. Obviously, Tarek thought it was her way of ruining his reputation.
Witnesses Say Tarek Had A Temper On-Set
Then there came articles claiming it was all Tarek’s fault! The reports stated the host had a short fuse, often yelling at Christina and calling her harsh names in front of people on the set of Flip or Flop.
But then one claim came out stating that HGTV knew about the couple’s marital issues but pressured them to make it seem like nothing was wrong. They believed the show was nothing without the two of them at the helm.
There were even rumors that Christian was having an affair with a former contractor Gary Anderson, as he stayed with her while people were searching for Tarek during the “gun incident.” And it was a text between the two that allegedly set his off.
Regardless, the two finalized their divorce in 2019, keeping their Flip or Flop empire running. Christina went on to marry a British television personality, Ant Anstead.
Christina And Ant Welcome A Son
In March 2019, Christina announced that she was pregnant with her third child. She and Ant welcomed their son Hudson on September 6, 2019. Ant also has two children from a previous marriage.
Christina told PEOPLE, “It’s so amazing that we get to raise a Chrtogether. All of the kids are so excited. I love all of the fun chaos and a full house. I always thought I would only have two, and now I’ll have five!”
Christina And Ant Split A Year Later
Just one year after welcoming their son, Christina announced that she and Ant were separating after two years of marriage. In September 2020, Christina shared on Instagram, “Ant and I have made the difficult decision to separate. We Are grateful for each other and as always, our children will remain our priority.”
The split follows a long period of time Ant wasn’t able to see his two eldest children due to COVID-19, as they live in the UK.
Tarek Foud Love Unexpectedly
Tarek wasn’t expecting any new whirlwind romance for himself. But then Heather Rae young walked into his life. After only one year of dating, Tarek popped the question, asking Young to be his wife while the two were on a boating trip to Catalina Island, California.
The HGTV star dressed in a tuxedo lined the beach with flower petals and flickering candles and got down on one knee, presenting an eight carat, colorless, emerald-cut diamond engagement ring to Young. She said, yes!