HGTV’s “House Hunters” to feature New Orleans Jewish newcomers tomorrow

Tomorrow night, Alexis and Brian Caughey will have a viewing party for friends at their new home, so they can all see the couple buy that home.

The newcomers to New Orleans’ Jewish community will be featured on HGTV’s “House Hunters,” airing at 9 p.m. (Central) and re-airing at midnight. The show follows a couple as they tour three prospective houses and have to select one of them as their future residence.

The Caugheys moved to New Orleans from the Dallas area, where Brian was born and raised, after he was transferred into a new position with 3M. His new position covers Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi.

They attended the University of Texas, where Alexis was in a sorority with Rachael Kansas. When Brian found out he was being transferred to Louisiana, they discovered that not only was Kansas in New Orleans, but she is also a Realtor, with Re/Max.

Kansas had recently learned from a high school friend that House Hunters was casting, and that friend was friends with the casting producer.

“One thing led to another and I was suddenly on the phone with this producer in Los Angeles,” Kansas said. She noted that they prefer to have agents “pitch” couples they are already working with, and who have a story line to work with.

Kansas told the Caugheys about the opportunity to be on the show, then the producers spoke with Alexis. All three filled out lengthy applications and were ultimately approved for the show.

While most reality shows have strict secrecy on what happens until the show airs, it’s difficult to hide where you live. “We know the outcome,” Brian said, “but they wouldn’t let us view it until it’s on TV.”

According to HGTV, the story line is that Brian was looking for a large house like those in the Dallas suburbs, while Alexis preferred smaller, vintage homes in historic parts of the city.

Kansas said the producers will be featuring New Orleans, including historic homes, Magazine Street, City Park, Harrison Avenue and other areas.

For the 22-minute show, filming took five days. Brian said it was “more filming than we thought, but it was a good experience.” They have no idea what parts of the experience will make the cut.

Two months ago, they moved into the house they picked on the show. Since then they have started to get acclimated into the community, attending the Jewish Newcomers events coordinated by the Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans, and visiting Touro Synagogue.