Egypt Sherrod & Mike Jackson Tell All About HGTV's Married To Real Estate - Exclusive Interview

"Flipping Virgins" star Egypt Sherrod is back on HGTV, and this time, she's bringing her husband, Mike Jackson, along with her. Their new series, "Married to Real Estate," will follow the duo as they showcase the ins, outs, and in-betweens of what it takes to successfully balance marriage and a real estate business.


To their fans, the series will sound familiar. Throughout the pandemic, Sherrod and Jackson have been sharing their life online in their "Ask Anything" series — and the questions didn't end at house flipping. There, the couple has been open and honest about their relationship and even the challenges that come with working together. Now, it's all about to be on TV, too.

We got to sit down with the house-flipping duo for an inside look at their new adventure on HGTV. In an exclusive interview, Sherrod and Jackson spoke with The List about "Married to Real Estate," revisited the story of how they met, and shared the best advice they have for other couples who work together.

All about their new show Married to Real Estate

Congratulations on your new show "Married to Real Estate." I know it originally stemmed from the "Ask Anything" videos that you two were doing early on in the pandemic. How exactly did this show come to be?


Egypt: Well, sure. I obviously have been part of the HGTV family for years with "Property Virgins" and "Flipping Virgins," but, you know, like many, we were in the house, homeschooling, trying to work from home, and, you know, do the best with what we had during the pandemic, the early part of the pandemic, which was very trying for everybody.

And so during that time of just isolation, Mike and I turned to ourselves and said, "Let's entertain. Let's have fun, you know? Let's dig deep into our relationships, and invite people in, and find ways to put smiles on people's faces through social media." And so we did that [by] creating "Ask Anything," which was really just us, a long-time married couple having grown folks' conversation, considering the kids were with us 24/7. [Laughs] You know? Grown conversation anyway you could get it was important.


And it caught on. A few of them went viral, and it was just really, super fun. And our team said, "Hey! You guys should maybe take a couple of the best of these, put it together into a reel, and take some of your real work footage and some of your TV footage you've done, and let's see what we can make out of this." And we did that, sent it to HGTV, and they saw the same thing that our team saw, and that is how our show eventually went into development.

Here's how Egypt Sherrod and Mike Jackson met

How did you two originally meet?

Mike: Wow, that's a — I don't know if we have enough time for that.

Egypt: [Laughs] Do the abbreviated version.

Mike: The short version is actually, we met in what we do. I was doing construction, and she was trying to flip our house by herself.


Egypt: [Laughs]

Mike: And needed some extra hands, and the team that showed up was mine. And from that point on, we were inseparable.

Egypt: Yeah, we kind of fell in love through that renovation, but we did meet each other in the past. You know, we knew each other from our previous careers, but we just never — well, I should say, at that time, I didn't date in entertainment. So it was shortly thereafter that I found out he was also a builder contractor, and it just — it felt good. It made sense. That was now over 17 years ago, right?

Mike: Yeah.

Egypt: Yeah.

So you two have been working with each other ever since you got together?

Egypt: Yeah. [Laughs]

Mike: Yeah, for the most part. Yeah. If it had nothing to do with clients, it had to do with our own home renovation, so it's always something going on.


Egypt: I think that's what keeps it interesting, too.

Is there anything you wish you knew before you went into real estate and started renovating houses?

Egypt: Anything we wish we knew? Yeah. I mean, I guess on my end, I wish I had a crystal ball to know when the market was going to go up and down. I mean then — [Laughs] but don't we all? Don't we all wish we had that? What about you, babe?

Mike: I would have to say, to somewhat mimic her answer, it's literally just about knowing where the right properties were before everyone else did, literally. But I think that's everyone's goal even until this day. But other than that, no.

Egypt: It's been fun to just kind of learn it and grow together as we go, you know? Every property we do brings on a new challenge, and it defines us more as business people, but also, because we work together on everything — would you say, babe — would you agree it also defines us more in our relationship? We've grown more.

Mike: Definitely. Definitely. You know, it's amazing that we not only live together, work together, but, you know, through the pandemic — with the statistics, when you see high rates of people divorcing because they've never spent so much time with each other, and see that we surpass that and still are doing — actually not even doing, but progressing and being better as individuals and as a couple is a blessing.


The ups and downs of working together

What's the most challenging part about working with your spouse?

Egypt: [Turns to Mike] Would you say shifting gears? I would say shifting gears. I would say — I can't speak for him. I let him speak for himself. But I would say sometimes shifting gears, out of work mode, back into home lovey-dovey mode, you know? Because you have to have boundaries. We have to sort of compartmentalize things, so they don't bleed too much into one another, right? Because when we're at work, I have to have a stern eye, you know? I have to be sometimes critical for the betterment of business, but that should not reflect at all on our relationship. And then sometimes when we come home, even though we want to talk about projects and business, we've had to work on ways to do that shutdown, so that we can focus on family and just exist together as a family in love.


On the other hand, what's the best part about working together?

Egypt: What's the best part?

Mike: I mean the best — I mean, someone you love doing what you love to do. What tops that? You know, you get to become better together. You get to become more educated together. You get to experience things, because that's what a life is about for us. It's not about the tangible, material, financial things. It's about creating experiences and memories and to do [that] with the one you love. I mean, like I said, what tops that?

Egypt: Yeah. I mean, in the past, through my television career, Mike and I were together through all of that, and he would hear me come home, and talk about it, and tell stories, and then he would see it happen on TV, but we were still doing what we do now together, right? In business. And I was like, God, it would be so good for the world to be able to see this part of our life. But you know, things happen when they're supposed to. So now, it's so surreal. [Laughs] It's like we spoke — we worked for it, but we certainly spoke it into existence as well.


Have you learned anything new about each other from shooting "Married to Real Estate" and showing your relationship on camera?

Egypt: Yeah. I learned what my husband's foundation color is.

Mike: What?

Egypt: [Laughs] I had to do your makeup, remember? I had to do your makeup. He didn't like makeup. He didn't want to wear makeup, but I was like, "Babe, you will thank me later if you just let me touch you up a little bit and powder you up a little bit." So I had to learn ... [Laughs] What did you learn about me? Go ahead. Take your best shot.

Mike: Let's see. What I didn't already know? I don't know, to be honest.

Their favorite moment on set

Do you have a favorite experience you shared together while shooting it?

Mike: Shooting? Favorite experience?

Egypt: Mid-season. What do you think?

Mike: Man, let's see.

Egypt: Am I that open of a book? You can't think of anything?


Mike: No, I'm just really good at what I do. I know my wife, you know?

Egypt: You know your wife.

Mike: I know my wife.

Egypt: What was your favorite experience?

Mike: Favorite experience.

Egypt: Would you say it was the anniversary?

Mike: I would say the entire thing. Yeah, actually that was really good.

Egypt: You think so?

Mike: I would say being able to full-on surprise my wife with a night out as adults, celebrating our 11-year anniversary. Because throughout the entire season, we were hinting [about] it with each other and with the production, but there came a moment where she was like, "No, if we're not doing something big, if we're not doing our big party with everybody, I just don't want to do it," or, "If it's nothing special, or we're traveling, I don't want to do it." And I pretended like I was agreeing with it. I was like, "Yeah, okay. That's you. You're right. You're so right." And then I would pull the production to the side and said, "I don't care what she says. This is what we are doing. Okay?"


Egypt: [Laughs]

Mike: So totally threw her off and —

Egypt: Yeah, it was surprising.

Mike: She looked beautiful. It was a great night. That was a good moment.

Egypt: You got to understand the context. So our 10 year, you know — every couple kind of builds up to, "Wow, we made it 10 years." And we wanted to have this 10-year anniversary party that we planned, but obviously, COVID was hitting strong last September, and it just wasn't safe. It was pretty much a bummer. So what we had planned from that date was, "That's okay. On our 11 year, we're going to do our 10-plus-one anniversary." That's what we're going to call it: the 10 plus one.

And then it rolled around, and unfortunately, you know, although people are still out in the world, those who mattered most to us, those we loved, those we wanted to be present for us as we celebrated that, still didn't feel comfortable traveling. So it was a bit of a bummer for me in the middle of the season, and Mike was like, "That's it!" [Laughs] "We're going to do something." I was like, "No, not if it's not my party."

Is that something we're going to see in an episode?

Egypt: Yeah, it is. I think it's, uh — fourth episode in.

Here's their advice for other spouses working side by side

What is the best advice that you have for other couples who work together or are wanting to work together?

Egypt: Wow. I would say —

Mike: We could write a book on that.

Egypt: Yeah, we could. Continue to date each other is super important. Know when to shut it off — turn it on and when to shut it off.


Yeah. That balance.

Mike: Yeah, learn to balance. You spoke — you just mentioned balance. Learn to balance the control or leading. Meaning you — for instance, with us, we're both creative. We're very boss-like in our positions, but when you work as a couple, you have to understand that you got to give room for each other to lead, right? Without having to feel like you have to take it all on by yourself. Right?

Egypt: Yeah. There's things that he's better at. Yeah.

Mike: Right. And then there's also the aspect of, to speak to the continue dating, I would also say make sure you have fun. Make sure you do things with each other outside of work, so that when you're working together, it's not all about just work, work, work.


In "Married to Real Estate," we'll see some of your personal renovations in your home and you're also working with clients. Which one is more difficult: the projects you do in your own home together or the ones you do for a client?

Mike: Well, for me? I would say projects at home because my wife will change her mind 37 times, or I'll build something and she'll get on Pinterest or something and say, "You know what? I changed my mind and want to make it look like this." And I'm like, "Alrighty then." But for the clients, we take the project on, she'll sit with them, give them a design aspect, and we already — so we know what we're going to do. There's no changing. So I would say the home for me.

Egypt: Honestly, in our own home. I agree with that. I definitely say our own home because you always put your clients first and prioritize their needs first. And I can tell you that we have so many unfinished projects [Laughs] around our house that we have to work on. We find that, like, when we go down during the holiday season, for instance right now and just like last year, is when we are doing a lot of the projects on our own house. We're about to take on an owner suite, a full owner suite renovation right now.


What's coming up next for Egypt Sherrod and Mike Jackson?

You'll soon be seen competing on Season 3 of "Rock the Block," which you have both appeared on as judges. Did that experience help at all when you were actually competing? Knowing what the judges are looking for?


Egypt: It actually came back to bite us in our butt. [Laughs]

Oh, no! How so?

Egypt: It did because we were so hard and firm, right? On certain things that we believe, and we still to this day believe, but obviously, depending upon who the judge is, they may have a different perception based upon their experience or the part of the country where they practice their expertise. So we found that, you know, sticking to our guns as far as what we knew, several times came back to get us, so. [Laughs]

What else is coming up for you two?

Egypt: Well, we are certainly renovating many areas of our house right now. [Laughs] We are working on getting together — our 9-year-old, her name is Kendall, she just got her first investment property. And we're headed right after Christmas holiday to go and prepare her property for markets. She's going to do short-term rentals down near Disney. And so that's very exciting because we're trying to teach her, obviously, how to build wealth through real estate and she's just warming up to the business.


Mike: We're also going to get more "Ask Anythings" in the can and start putting some more of those out, too. So while the show, while both shows are airing, people can still relate to us on a, you know, intimate level via social media. So there's never a dull moment in this house. There's always something going on, so you won't be surprised if you see several other things come from us.

"Married to Real Estate" premieres on HGTV on Thursday, January 13 at 9 p.m. EST/PST.