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Local couple hopes Richmond Rehabbers TV show spotlights the city

RICHMOND, Va. -- "Imagine you've got to remodel with your wife, and she gets to design the house. Now imagine doing that 65 times."

That's RVA local Josh Romano, explaining his relationship with his wife, Breese, and their special and successful relationship with flipping houses in some of Richmond's older neighborhoods.

Those relationships - with Josh's dad for good measure - are the focus of the HGTV pilot "RVA Rehabbers" that aired May 7 and is scheduled to air again. If it's well-received, the couple - and Richmond - could become regulars in home and garden broadcasting.

From the start of the planning for the show they decided, "We're not going to be anything but ourselves," Breese explained. And that's a couple with real estate experience, not acting. She has no design training but a hunger and a knack for it, and Josh said he turned to flipping houses the day after being fired from a real estate management position.

Josh and Breese Romano

More than 65 houses later they're loving what they're doing - and each other - more than ever.

That's what stars on "Richmond Rehabbers."

It began when one of their friends who had worked on the TV show "Hoarders" contacted his production company and said "if you guys are ever looking to do a home show, I know this great couple in Richmond . . . ," Breese explained.

Screaming Flea Productions in Seattle reached out to them, and spent four days shooting a four-minute teaser to shop around.

HGTV liked it, and that led to nearly six months of filming the rehabbing of a house on Norwood Avenue in Northside for the pilot.

"I had a blast," Josh said. The production company hired a local film crew, which is what this couple and a lot of Richmond's new city dwellers are all about.

"A lot of locally owned businesses are coming in," Josh said of Richmond's resettling and revitalization.

"If we get picked up," he added, "we will be able to showcase what Richmond is doing. We get so many young entrepreneurs who want to build their businesses in the community and be a part of it. I would love to have the opportunity to be able to help to showcase what they're doing too."

"We couldn't be more proud to be a little tiny little part of Richmond growing," Breese said.

They are also designing their rehabs with a nod to younger or more modern buyers looking for older homes in the city that have been opened up visually and completely freshened.

Check out our video and their website to see what they're doing.