Joe Gorga Apologizes After Posting Phony 'Before' and 'After' Flip House Photos: 'An Error'
Joe Gorga is apologizing after finding himself in hot water over a questionable Instagram post about his house-flipping business.
The entrepreneur, 40, who is married to Real Housewives of New Jersey's Melissa Gorga, 40, and the brother of cast member Teresa Giudice, has come under fire for a since-deleted photo shared on his personal Instagram page on Sunday, which featured a house-flipping project he claimed was completed by his company.
The post showed what Joe claimed was a before-and-after shot of the same home, writing, "Look at this flip worth $1.9m. Took me 6 months to turn this around. Ripped off the roof & added to the second floor. I think I might move in."
Soon after, however, Instagram user Caley Svensson, of Park Ridge, New Jersey, reposted the image on her Instagram Story, claiming that the "after" photo was her house — and it had not been flipped by Joe.
"When @JoeyGorga tries to rip off your house and claim he flipped it…. [eye roll emoji] can I get a Watch What Happens Live over here…" Svensson wrote, referencing Andy Cohen's Bravo talk show.
"It was a new construction, the foundation was new," Svensson told Good Morning America on Wednesday morning, noting that the home couldn't have been flipped by Joe because it was built so recently. "Everything about it was new, it was built from the ground up."
The "before" photo appears to show a completely different property located on the other side of town, according to property records acquired by Page Six.
A representative for Joe tells PEOPLE the post was simply an error made by his social media manager, and nothing more.
"Joe has flipped hundreds of properties since he was 20 years old," he said. "He has a very successful real estate business, and relied on a social media person in his office who helped him with all that stuff. Unfortunately, it was just an error that person made that Joe didn't catch."
The rep continued: "He never intended to do anything but be truthful, and is sorry to have been misleading to his followers. Joe had helped fund that project, and not flip it. It was a mistake and Joe's going to definitely be more careful with what he's posting in the future."
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Svensson told Page Six that she picked up on the mix-up when friends began tagging her in the comments of Joe's Instagram post. She said that she then commented and messaged him to take the post down but he never responded.
"We felt like he was using our house to advertise his business, and you can't be making mistakes like that," Svensson told GMA. "You have to check your facts and make sure anything you put out there is true."
Joe and Melissa, who wed in 2004, currently live in Montville, NJ, with their three kids — Gino, 12, Joey Jr., 8, and Antonia, 14 — in a home which Joe helped design and build.