08/11/2009 AT 12:00 AM EDT
The drama continues with the Real Housewives of Atlanta
, both on camera and off. Despite reports that Lisa Wu Hartwell and husband, Ed, were evicted from their Atlanta home, the housewife tells PEOPLE.com, "We chose to move, we were not evicted."
Adds Hartwell, 38, "It was decision that we made and not one that was made for us. But we were not put out." As for the TMZ report
that the couple defaulted on their bank loan, she re-affirms that an attempt to restructure the loan "didn't work out," but her family was "not evicted, it was a short-sell. It was not a foreclosure."
Admitting she has felt the pressure of the recession, she says the couple and their children have moved into a new "downsized" home in a neighboring community. Scrutiny and blog buzz "make me laugh," adds Hartwell, but it's nothing compared to the catfights on the show.
"I'm watching like, 'this is crazy,' " she says of the first two episodes. And Thursday's follow up to the fight between Kim Zolciak, Sheree Whitfield and NeNe Leaks promises to be hair-raising. "You haven't seen nothing yet!"-- Amy Elisa Keith