It’s hard to escape The Block, which screens four nights a week on our televisions and appears all over our news sites and bus stops.
Whether you love it, hate it, or couldn’t care less about it, The Block represents a fascinating microcosm of the Auckland property market. Starting in 2012, the winner’s profits were substantial every year, tracing roughly an upward trajectory to a peak in 2016. That’s the same time the market itself peaked, and the winning contestants made $380,000 profit on their Meadowbank house. Last year, though, the contestants made between $1,000 and $31,000 only, despite working on the largest-ever houses in the show’s history.
So how will this year’s Hobsonville townhouses fare? If this follow-the-market trend continues, they’re not likely to get big profits. While the programme itself focuses on challenges and interior decorating, the bigger picture is what type of properties feature and where they’re located. Hobsonville is a lovely spot, but it’s even further from the city than Northcote. And you simply can’t add anywhere near as much value to a new property as you can to an old run-down one. We’ll be interested in the auction results; hopefully the contestants won’t have taken all that time off work just to come away with nothing.