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Guest post by Melissa Andersen, CousinsTV

As Web Content & Social Media Manager for HGTV’s Cousins, Anthony and John, I’m in the unique position to see firsthand the blood, sweat, and passion that go into each and every home renovation they tackle – whether on air or off.  When I tell people that I work with the Cousins, the first question is, nearly without fail, ‘Are they the same in real life as they are on TV?’ – and the answer is, unflinchingly, YES!

On the set of “Cousins Undercover”

 Anthony and John are the real deal – what you see is what you get. When they’re getting emotional with the people they’re helping – it’s real. When they’re stressing about a deadline or construction setback – it’s real. And when they’re laughing and joking with each other, giving us a teeny glimpse into what a meal at the Carrino/Colaneri family dinner table is like – it’s real. They’re not actors, they’re not acting, and being genuine is at the very core of who they are and what they do.

When I joined the team to help manage their social presence, it was clear from the start that a connection with their fans – a real one – was their top priority. They didn’t simply hand me the reins and walk away from their most direct touch point to the people who got them where they are today… their social media was, and still is, a joint collaboration between all three of us. They bring the love, energy, and inspiration, and I tidy it up into a neat little package that makes sense for whatever platform we’re working on, whether it be Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest.  Our working relationship is easy because they trust my instincts and because I trust their authenticity.

The hour-long episodes of Cousins Undercover (which premieres this Sunday at 8/7c) follow Anthony and John as they navigate the unpredictable waters of surprise home makeovers in a matter of days. But the show is also about family and community – two things the Cousins know all about – and coming together to pay it forward to local heroes who have given so much of themselves, often at the price of their own needs.

More from the set of “Cousins Undercover”

We want the fans to feel like they’re part of the show. The stories of the people featured in each episode don’t stop at the end of the hour, but keep unfolding – and we want them to continue for you, too.

That’s why we’re getting super social with all you loyal Cousins fans! Not only will Anthony and John be live-tweeting every episode, but they also will be hosting LIVE Q&A sessions on Facebook (starting 10/13 and continuing for alternating episodes for the rest of the season). In the 30 minutes following the show, Anthony and John will answer your questions about that night’s episode (and even some design and renovation questions!) so you can get the inside scoop on what goes into super-sized, super-secret home renovations like you’ll see on Cousins Undercover. As usual, they’re keeping it real.

 We hope to see you there.


About the author…


27 Responses

  1. pamela mcguire says:

    Hello my name is pamela mcguire i live in Ohio i have a little house my dad helped me get cause we was homeless and really struggling i am disabled and i spend my time tring to help people get and stay off drugs i live on a very small income of 450. a month i try but i cant do it all my kitchen caught fire and the wall is gone we have it covered with a table cloth. i really need help i dont know if im a hero but i try to help everyone that is why this show caught my eye my fiancee of 12 yrs is disabled he has had two srokes but he still tries to mow grass or fix cars just to put food on table we have a ten yr old son who lives with us and three daughters out on own if you could please tell me how we can get help winter is comming on and we have no heat source in our house and we need dry wall in ketchen cause of the fire the house is falling apart butt its the only stability our son has ever had and its all we have. please if you can help cantact me GOD bless you for what you do

  2. Cindy K says:

    Hi I was wondering how you get on any of the shows on HGTV I live in Wisconsin and my housband has had 3 back surgeries now they say he has arthris in his hip and knees. We need help with converting our bathroom from a tub to just a shower. Lifting his legs over the edge of the tub to taks a shower is hard. And we also need help with our back yard. If you can tell me know how to apply for a show for the help I would greatly appreciate it.

  3. Cara says:

    I love watching the cousins – they seem very real and tons of fun! Plus, they do so much for the less fortunate! It's a great show and often makes me cry!

  4. becky says:

    love your show & getting new ideas. If you ever get to KS, I'd love to see what you would do with a craftsman bungalow. Especially the kitchen & bath. I love the episode where the mom said, NO and you both got turned down. But why do you always do WHITE cabinets? They get so dirty so fast.

  5. Marilyn Brandenburg says:

    I love HGTV !! I just sit here and dream and wish away…. Come to Florida !!!! AND surprise me! My house sure needs it… if you could see it, you'd understand!

  6. Marcia Almeida says:

    Marvelous write up Melissa and it is apparent that you all work well together. Their shows are full of style. It's no surprise to me that the Cousins are just as true in person as they appear on tv. Can't fake real.

  7. Linda Britt says:

    My name is Linda , I am 70 years young and in desperate need of some help with making our home handicap user friendly because I have a fractured L. Pelvic and I have to walk with a walker , there two step downs in the house and the kitchen is small needs lot of work . I love to cook and have fed a many of people in need and made meals for bible school students at CWC Worship Center in Alexander , LA and took people into our home when they had no place to live . I just pray for help so I can move through my house in safety and be able to cook in a kitchen with my special need met !!!

  8. Rick W. says:

    Seriously, how can anybody get help if they really need it, , I was told your house has to be paid for & when anybody from HGTV does anything they require you to take out a mortgage , is this true or please be honest & tell the American people the Truth.

  9. Christine Mereigh says:

    I really enjoy your show…it would be so great if you could come and do my kitchen…I really am desperate…for twenty-five years I have been trying to get a contractor to do my kitchen…we have had our kitchen measured,picked out cabinets,type,color,coutertops…through many home and at business locations of contractors there always come some kind of glich. Even people have recommend us to contractors for other jobs no problem,but when coming to kitchen there is always something…I don't understand and we have been willing to pay their price…but these contractors give us the run around. Help I would like to have a new kitchen and enjoy it before my Husband and I sell the house. Please help us…Husband handicap and me other disabilities. Please Please come and do out Kitchen….not that far from your New Jersey Location…We really love your Work…it's just beautiful…Thanks…we will be watching…

  10. Barbara S. says:

    Hello, I love HGTV and all of the people that put their blood, sweat, and tears, into helping others with updating homes, or finding new ones for people in need. It is awsome what the Cousins Undercover are going to do to help deserving people just like my daughter. I am asking for your help in cleaning up a problem that my daughter has with her house. My daughter is a preschool teacher and then works after school teaching a disabled student. She loves her work, but does not make a lot of money due to cut hours at school. Her husband is disabled so she is the only bread winner in the home. My daughter has many food and inhalant allergies that are very severe, yet she perseveres to go to work every day. She has a problem with mold in her bathroom and because of rain damage to her roof, she has had leaks in her living room and one bedroom. Now there is mold in one wall in the bedroom and the bathroom has mold growing on the ceiling and walls due to water damage. She has tried to clean the mold but she is allergic to the chemicals in the cleaners as well as the mold. I see her health going down so I don't know how much longer she will be able to stay in her home or be well enough to go to work. I ask that you consider helping my daughter by cleaning up the mold and giving her a new bathroom particularly. She is a wonderful teacher and loves to give to children even though she does not have any of her own. Please help her. Thank you for what you do for others and hopefully you will consider helping my daughter get her health back. God Bless you.

  11. We at New York Minute Magazine love The Cousins, John and Anthony, check out our exclusive interview at newyorkminutemag.com

  12. Patrice Walsh says:

    I love all the HGTV shows and now hooked into the NEW "Cousins Undercover" Show. It's amazing, inspirational and heart warming how John and Anthony transform people's lives. I was wondering who can I write to about a story idea. It's not about me or my family, but about my community where I live in Silver Spring, MD. Thank you in advance for letting me know or just letting me know if you aren't the right person.
    Hope you have a great day!~ Sincerely, Patrice Walsh, Mom of four kids

  13. Dee says:

    Hi! Random question, but I am very curious which kind of tablet Anthony uses on Kitchen Cousins and what sketching/drawing app he uses with it. Thanks!

  14. Maria Grazia says:

    Hello cousin
    I fallow your show and mostly I like see Antony (George Clooney) and John the help you give to the to people. That is a HEART GIVER rare to find in this generation and economy!!

  15. Cherise says:

    Hello My name is Cherise. My family have been in the flood last April in 2013 in Kokomo Indiana. We had a lot of health issues such as: Black, Green, white molds since the flood but we lived in the flooded house for 6 months and we just bought the house in Greentown Indiana. We have been having lots of problems with contractors lots due our fixed income and my mother is a widow. These contractors really took an advantage of my family. And our home needs help. I'm not asking a lot. I'm just wondering if you can come over to the house and give us some ideas how to improve the house if you're able to. With Blessing Cousins- Cherise, Donna and Joshua.

  16. Cherise says:

    Keep doing the best work guys!!!! With Blessing

  17. kellylovesjason says:

    I would like to have the cousins come do someone's house. A person whom lots of people would agree well deserves it. This person really deserves it he always watching the show and saying he gone take a vacation to do some work around the house. He will give the shirt off his back. And he will give up his last so the other person has it and not himself.

  18. kellylovesjason says:

    Hello. My name is Kelly I have a person whom I love dearly. Let me start with I recently stopped breathing and was brought back. And the outcome they brought me back and I was giving a second chance at life. This man works hard long hours and watch the show. And always saying he gone take a vacation to do the work around the house. It's never gone happen because I can no longer work and somebody has to work to pay the bills. I was blessed with this man in my life he was there when I didn't take any breaths and he still with me now when I can hardly catch a breath. Yes I have a trach to breath now and the ceiling had feel in when I first came home from hospital.And he tried to get that done.I just really love for the cousins to come make this home new and fresh well a breath of fresh air again. He does so much and I can't do nothing for him. This would make his dreams come true.

  19. Katie Manock says:

    Hey Anthony and John, recently I watched you guys pair up with Kathy Lee and in the kitchen you put up some reclaimed wood floating shelves. The wood was pretty thick and heavy duty looking, so I was wondering how did you hang those? I would love to put up shelves similar in our bedroom for books etc. hope I hear from you soon

  20. Sarah Trial says:

    Hi, my name is Sarah Trial, my sister lives with me, and we go back and forth and take care of our brother with dementia. He gets very violent with us. I have fibramyalga and 2 kinds of arthritus, and my sister has a pinched nerve in her back and cororitick arteriteries, so we as limited in what we can do. Our back yard needs a face lift badley, The priacy fence is falling down, and there are few trees due tornados, we have no trees in the front yard as they came down on my car. I have no money to redo the yard but, we need help. And our linolieum in the kitchen is curling up. I cry every night about this mess. Can you help us ?

  21. Sarah Trial says:

    My sister and I are both handicappied and drive from Athens, AL. TO Hartselle, AL. to take care of our brother who has dementia.He gets violent with both of us, so we come home, to our house as we live together with me paying the bills, with nothing left over. Our yard was hit by a tornado, so we have one tree on the side and two in the back. Our privacy fence is falling down, there is nothing pretty to look at. It is boring, Our lineluom is coming up in the kitcken. I cry myself to sleep wanting to do more but can't afford to. What can I do. Can you help? My sister's arteries are clogges and she has a pinched nerve in her back, and I have arthrithtus and fibrmyalgia/COPD. I need some help, before I have a nervous breakdown, I watch your show every week.

  22. Christine Bekiares says:

    Hgtv needs to focus on those who really need help, perhaps those with very small quarters needing modification for handicap accessibility! Forget the glamour and look at functionality and perhaps simple charm. By the way, I have a candidate for you in Boise, Idaho. Christine

  23. Jeanne Klotz says:

    Just looking for a much needed redo on my son's "Nickel and Diming to Death" older home here in Wisconsin..!
    He and his awesome wife both work 60 hr weeks with 3 teenage daughters all headed for College. In a small town like we live in, with every street in town with a home for sale, they will never be able to sell. He does all the remodeling himself. He built a 3 car man cave garage himself, and now is piece mealing all the major things that are wrong inside the house. When his 2 brother black labs 4 yr old dogs have never set a voluntary step down into their basement tells you there is some totally bleak issue's wrong. Its a disaster and it worries me so much! Heath wise! They work so hard, but it can be very depressing not ever getting ahead. And yes, watching HGTV, makes you truly dream of what could and should come true. We all should be so lucky to get chosen for your help……….! Anyone of your dream design teams would work for me. Havn't been much help for my son over the years, but he is my hero, and just figured I'd make an effort to improve his lifestyle.

  24. Grama Chickie Chick says:

    Greetings dear cousins!
    First of all I wanted to say I do not have a hard luck story here. Whew! This is just a note of sincere praise to the both of you boys for the fine example you set for all young men in good shape out there in the world. So many think this is an age where the man needs to be behind a desk; but, my father was a carpenter – stayed in shape his entire life and lived to be a healthy 89 yrs old before he passed, and mom was 95. Three cheers for Cousins who demonstrate the "art" of generosity, doing good for fellow man, and working hard with their hands! Bravo and may you live a long, long satisfied and happy life by doing what God asks of all of us!

  25. 9camels8 says:

    I hate the new idea of the show dealing with upgrades for cops.
    The public is currently really disgruntled with cops.
    Firefighters fine, Teachers great, Social Workers amazing.
    NO to cops!

  26. Dana Wagoner says:

    Our home is in great need of the kitchen cousins, we have lived in our home for 19years and have raised 3 beautiful daughters. We always thought we would sell our 2500 sq ft and down size. Everything changed when we found out we are going to be grandparents for the first time in May! We now have decided to stay in our home so we are able to have the space as our family grows:)) we are in desperate need of the cousins help, our kitchen is original to our home with white tile countertops, white cabinets that are starting to peel, white appliances, and a flow that just doesn't work. Please help us before the new addition to our family arrives!! Thank you so much!!!

  27. Sandy says:

    My husband and I are wanting to stay in our home. We would like a bigger kitchen but that's not possible so we would settle for a update. A bigger bedroom. We are a older couple and in the last few years my husband has had some major health problems and our kids live far away. Thank you for reading this email.

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