Get to Know 'Married to Real Estate' Hosts Egypt Sherrod and Mike Jackson
They've weathered 17 years of marraige, three kids, a pandemic and filming season 1 of Married to Real Estate together. We sat down with Egypt and Mike to get all the details on their hectic lives.
Egypt Sherrod has been gracing our screens since 2007 when she stepped into the host role of HGTV’s Property Virgins. Egypt's husband, Mike Jackson, has been along for the whole ride. He even shared the screen with her as a guest-star on her second HGTV show Flipping Virgins. However, it wasn’t until Egypt and Mike were both cast as blind judges on season two of HGTV’s Rock the Block that the couple began really sharing lines. But once they did, one thing became clear: The Atlanta transplants needed a show of their own.
Married to Real Estate (and Each Other)
While working together on Rock the Block season 2 and weathering the COVID-19 pandemic under one roof, Mike and Egypt became acutely aware of how well they handle life’s biggest struggles together. Knowing that they couldn’t be the only ones juggling a full work schedule and a hectic family life, they began sharing a behind-the-scenes look at their lives on social media. Instantly, the clips resonated with viewers and before the couple knew it, they were pitching their very own show based on the same premise: real-world, work-life balance.
“It’s wild how it all came about,” Egypt tells HGTV. “It really started with the pandemic, you know? Being sort of shut in together, and we’re both running our respective businesses from the kitchen counter, and we have our kids in virtual school at the other end. It was a little bit of a zoo here, but we were getting it done, and then Mike said, ‘Well, let’s film this.’ And we started making people laugh on social media with our daily shenanigans — trying to work and balance home life. Our management said, ‘Y’all really have something here, you should shoot a sizzle reel.’ So we did that and sent it to HGTV, and they loved it.”
And so, Married to Real Estate was born. Hosted by Egypt and Mike, the show follows the couple as they attempt to find their clients homes in seemingly unattainable, dream neighborhoods — all while managing they're own busy family.
“It’s so crazy to think [that] a year and a half ago, none of this was in the works,” Egypt says. “It really came out of just being resourceful and using what we had at the time to entertain each other and entertain the public.”
The Mike and Egypt Allure
It’s safe to say, many celebrities aren’t as they appear on TV — but not Mike and Egypt.
“We’re really just us," Egypt says, and Mike agrees. “Exactly what people see on television, that’s us around our house, with our friends, with our family, with our kids. And sometimes we just forget the camera’s there. So, it’s cool not to feel produced; it’s cool not to feel like the camera’s on. So, it doesn’t feel like work at all.”
As natural as it is for Mike and Egypt to film the series, there's another obvious reason why Married to Real Estate resonates so well with viewers.
“I think our audience sees themselves,” he tells HGTV. “It’s not just two hosts. You get to see the family; you get to see the mothers; you get to see real-life crises; you get to see the drama within the construction. And [viewers] can relate. They’ve been there before.”
Egypt expands on this, noting that the aspects of marriage and parenthood play a significant role in the show, too. “For those who have been in a coupleship, like Mike and I, for a long time — we’ve been together for 17 years — you know what it’s like. Every day you gotta make a choice that this marriage counts, and our relationship is worth it, and so I’m going to put in the effort,” she says. “When you’re trying to be a great parent at home and live out your dreams at work, you have to split time. We wanted to show balance and how we’re trying to balance our work and family life.”
In this way, Mike and Egypt are all about transparency.
As full circle as it feels for Egypt to finally have her behind-the-scenes partner of nearly two decades beside her on national television (Mike regularly worked on projects for both of her shows, just not on film), they both admit it took some getting used to — especially during the first week of filming.
“When you’re dealing with always having all the lines, there’s an adjustment there where it’s like, ‘OK, I don’t have to point out everything, say everything, do everything,’"Mike says.
As season 1 of Married to Real Estate wraps up, Mike and Egypt are eagerly awaiting the go-ahead for season 2. “What you’re documenting is the beginning of seeing us combine our businesses,” Egypt says. “That’s what you’ll see in season two — how we actually combine our businesses and grow into a mega one-stop-shop: real estate, renovation and design house. We’re speaking it into existence!”
But that’s not all. On Monday, February 28, Mike and Egypt are returning to Season 3 of Rock the Block — only this time, as competitors!
“It was high pressure, high stakes,” Egypt reveals. “We have a group chat with all the competitors so we’re like, ‘What do you think it’s going to show on the show? Do you think they’re going to use that time I had a meltdown in the middle of the street?’ So we’re all talking to each other and every last one of us is so nervous about what America’s going to see in Season 3. Even the producers told us that it was probably the hardest season yet. We had to build it from the ground up.”