Carla and Mark film a scene with their two daughters in tow.
Carla Perrotta (’01) and Mark Ferri (’00) were in Italy when they got “the call.” The University of Cincinnati graduates – she with a degree in international affairs, he with a degree in fine arts (sculpture) – had just been selected by producers to participate in an upcoming episode of the Home & Garden Television (HGTV) channel’s House Hunters program, which follows participants through the process of purchasing a new home.
“The producers called and emailed me. We were very excited, as was my family in Italy!” recalls Carla, an information technology/intellectual property attorney who resides with her husband in Troy, a suburb of Detroit. The couple had applied for the show through their real estate agent, who thought they would be a good fit.
“We wanted to move from our condo in downtown Detroit, to the suburbs,” Carla explained. “We have two young daughters, Elena (3) and Francesca (11 months). We needed a place where we could raise them, a yard where they could play.” Among the other features they sought in their new home: a large, open kitchen where they could entertain, and studio space where Mark, a design sculptor with General Motors, could work on his art.
The episode, which aired on Feb. 24, showed the couple touring three homes. While legalities prevent Carla and Mark from sharing many details of their experience, the year-long process – from application to air date – was a great time, and a source of pride within their circle of friends and family.
“Our friends, family and neighbors were very excited to see us, and themselves, on TV. I think we’re all really proud of how it turned out,” Carla said. “Plus, Mark and I had a blast filming the episode. The producer and crew were so easy and fun to work with!”
Carla and Mark pose for a quick shot with HGTV film crew.
Their days on TV now behind them, Carla, Mark and their girls are busy settling into their new home. “In the end, we found a great new house,” she says. “My advice to those who might want to participate in similar programming is just to relax and have fun.”
While the episode is not yet available on the HGTV website, it is available on iTunes for $1.99 – the episode is called “Growing Family Needs a House.” You can also read more about it on the HGTV website here.