Marriage or Mortgage? Behind the Scenes of Netflix’s Newest Reality Hit with Stars Raven & Antonio

Eight years together and two sons later, Nashville couple Raven Smith and Antonio Harper turned to Netflix to decide between buying their dream home or dream wedding.

For Raven Smith and Antonio Harper, getting married was long overdue. As college sweethearts, the couple got pregnant with a baby boy six months after dating and later had another son, putting the wedding on the back burner. On the other hand, with two young boys sharing their two-bedroom apartment, upgrading to a house is definitely a necessity.

Enter Netflix. Raven and Antonio are two of the stars of its newest hit Marriage or Mortgage, where couples are shown dream homes and weddings they could attain with their budget and tasked to pick one, along with the help of Nashville-based real estate agent Nichole Holmes and wedding planner Sarah Miller.

After seeing their engagement photos online, a producer reached out to the couple and asked them to be on the show.

“What’s so funny is we had even signed a contract with a realtor,” Raven said.

“We were in the process of kind of looking for a house as well, so it was all perfect timing,” Antonio added.

How to choose?

Going into filming, Raven and Antonio were torn on which way they wanted to go. They both want a bigger home with lots of space for the boys to play outside, but they also want to celebrate their eight-year-long love with their friends and family.

“In my spare time I would call Antonio way before the show like, ‘Hey, I found this really cute house. Let’s schedule a time to go look at it,’ and then my parents have been really big on trying to help me find my wedding dress,” Raven said. “So all that stuff is things I’m already interested in, especially in that time off we’re trying to buy a house, we’re also looking at our wedding, so going on the show really made perfect sense. It was the best time.”

After Nichole and Sarah wooed them with a lowered asking price for the home and a discounted wedding venue and party favors, Raven and Antonio decided on a wedding.

“We just feel like at the time it was overdue,” Antonio said.

“We didn’t know if we wanted to live in Nashville for a long time or not,” Raven added. “We’ve been together for so long and I’m ready to get married. I’m ready to have this wedding that I envisioned.”

Where are they now?

That dream wedding hasn’t come to pass yet, though. Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, Raven and Antonio decided to postpone their ceremony rather than pare it down.

“We did want the whole experience with our family there,” Antonio said.

As for quarantine, Raven said it’s been “crazy” with having all four of them at home.

“I don’t like it in the house. I’m an extrovert; Antonio is in between, he’s okay with being a homebody,” she said. “I really enjoy getting up, going out, hanging out with my kids, just living the dream, and it hasn’t been that for us. We’ve been really cautious to a degree as far as how we’re living. So it’s not fun, but it’s working. We’re safe and we’re healthy.”

Also happening at home is wedding planning, which is a topic Raven and Antonio are just starting to revisit as they hope to have their wedding next year so everyone can be vaccinated.

“We just want it to be at the most healthy time for everybody, and next year will probably be that,” Raven said.

They say they’ve been planning as much as possible before they connect with Sarah.

“By the time we want to reach out to her again, we want to have the exact date in mind,” she said. “We’re very organized in that way, and we’re so hands-on with everything that we do and want to be prepared.”

While Raven and Antonio are excited to get married, as for their sons?

“They don’t care,” Raven laughed. “Like I was telling them, ‘You’re going to be on TV.’ My son was like, ‘I’m going to be on TV?’ I’m like, ‘You don’t remember us shooting that?’ They were like ‘Oh, that was so long ago. We were so young.’”

Raven says they’re starting to talk about finding a house again, too, and are deciding if they want to stay in Nashville or look elsewhere.

To find out where the rest of the couples from Marriage or Mortgage are now, keep following AfterBuzz TV for interviews with the cast. You can stream all ten episodes of Marriage or Mortgage on Netflix now.

About the Author

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Meagan Lynn

Meagan Lynn is a host and writer at AfterBuzz TV, actress, and social media manager. Outside of AfterBuzz, you can find her hosting and producing Ten Minute Talks. She loves singing, listening to inspirational podcasts and consuming copious amounts of movies and television shows.