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Ahhh… Melissa Gorga… back in the press defending yourself. Last year it was stripper allegations, this year it’s financial woes! The Real Housewife of New Jersey star fell under scrutiny when she and husband Joe Gorga listed both their Montville, New Jersey mansion and their shore house for sale last week. Melissa claims the couple is just ready for a change and it has absolutely nothing at all to do with speculation that they can’t pay the billz!

“The rumors that Joe and I can’t afford our mortgage payments and bills are 100 percent false,” Melissa told The Huffington Post. “Since when does selling your house mean you are broke?” Well, I can think of a time or two that it has, I’m not saying this is one of them. I’m just saying it happens!

Melissa, herself, told Reality Tea that she and Joe have always been financially stable and there is absolutely no validity to the rumors, citing proof that their mortgages have always been sound. Melissa’s publicist provided documentation to Reality Tea which directly proves Melissa’s statements about their home ownership.

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According to Melissa’s interview with The Huffington Post, “We moved to Montville to be closer to Teresa [Giudice] and the cousins. We gave Montville a try, but ultimately we want to move back to Franklin Lakes before the kids reach an age where changing schools will have an effect on them. Plus, it’s closer to Joe’s work, and that’s where we see ourselves living in the long run.”

Melissa claims public documents showing a mortgage modification prove they are not facing financial strain. Nor are the allegations that the couple previously resided in a modest home before upgrading to a “spec house” to appear wealthy on the show.  “For the record, we moved into our current house in 2008 and lived there for two years before I was signed to Real Housewives of New Jersey in 2010,” Melissa insists to Huff Po.

“Joe built our last house in Franklin Lakes, which we sold for $2.45 million to former New York Giant LaVar Arrington. When we sell our house in Montville, we will move into a rental while Joe custom builds our next house.” That home was sold in 2006.

As far as the drama concerning underwater mortgages, Melissa’s publicist sent Reality Tea some documents verifying the status of their current mortgage on the Montville mansion. The Gorgas currently have a 30-year fixed rate mortgage on their home with a 5% rate which was locked in on April 11, 2011. The couple modified the rate because interest rates fell significantly. Makes sense to me!

As for the allegations that Joe initially built their home as a “spec” house under a construction loan, Melissa’s publicist confirms that is all true. They purchased the land in 2007 for $950,000 cash and then got the construction loan. While the home was being built they lived in a modest rental home.

In 2008 construction was completed on the Montville home and the couple moved in after obtaining a traditional 25-year fixed rate mortgage. There was no “balloon payment” due because the Gorgas had already converted to a traditional mortgage. Last April they modified to a 30-year loan with a lower interest rate.

Melissa also explained that the Toms River shore house is always listed on the market in the off-season with the hopes it will sell and they can build a larger home. Melissa maintains they have been doing this for the past five years.

“Joe is a builder and a businessman. He will sell pretty much any property for the right price and build again, bigger and better,” she contends. “That’s the truth and it’s all available through public records, but I guess it doesn’t make for as good of a headline,” she told HuffPo. I’m sure the Gorgas are totally stable financially unlike Teresa, but it leads me to wonder – does the lady protest too much?

SO – ARE THE GORGAS BROKE? OR IS THE MEDIA LOOKING FOR A GOOD STORY?

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