Preparations for The Block 2021 are well under way, following a mammoth season which saw winners Jimmy and Tam earn the highest profit in the show’s history.
Channel Nine producers have quietly bought five homes in a leafy cul-de-sac in Hampton, Melbourne, after offering residents ‘too-good-to-refuse’ payments.
As reported by Domain on Friday, The Block execs have spent $11.5million to buy next year’s properties for renovation – despite ‘none being for sale’ in the first place.
Sold! The Block producers have splashed out $11.5million on homes for the 2021 season. One of the five properties was owned by The Block auctioneer Nicole Jacobs, and sold in June for $3,025,000 (pictured in 2017)
One of the five homes was owned by The Block auctioneer Nicole Jacobs, and sold in June for $3,025,000.
Her next-door neighbours followed suit, and soon sold theirs for a cool $2million.
Public records show that three remaining homes have now settled. Two houses on Nicole’s side of the street sold for $2,072,500 and $1,815,000, while a home on the opposite side sold for $2.66million.
‘We paid a generous market price to purchase the properties in Bronte Court, even though none were for sale,’ said Julian Cress, The Block’s executive producer.
Getting ready: After a mammoth success from the 2020 season – which saw the winners break records by taking over $1million home in profit – the new season is set to be bigger than ever. Pictured: Neale Whitaker, Shaynna Blaze and Darren Palmer
‘We are looking forward to The Block 2021 delivering five incredible homes, in the beautiful suburb of Hampton, for five families to enjoy.’
However, the decision has riled up some neighbours, with one local resident pushing for heritage protection for one of the homes.
According to Domain, one property was designed by renowned Melbourne architect Neil Clerehan.
Location: In a bid to secure a large-scale site, producers gave residents of Bronte Court generous offers to buy their homes – despite none being for sale. Pictured: aerial shot of Bronte Court
‘It was identified as being of architectural and aesthetic significance to the City of Bayside in a draft study in 2008, but a heritage overlay covering the home was never introduced,’ reports Domain.
An interim protection order request was made to Heritage Victoria by a local committee member, but it was denied due to lack of evidence.
The member is now trying to take the case further by contacting the Victorian Planning Minister Richard Wynne and the National Trust to press the case.
Last week, Julian Cress told Domain that the show has ‘always celebrated’ heritage features and would not be demolishing the homes.
‘Some of the houses do have some lovely heritage features,’ he added.
Champions: This year’s winners, Jimmy and Tam, took home a whopping $1,066,000 – the biggest cash prize in Australian TV – after their home sold for $4,256,000
In preparation for last year’s season in Brighton – a neighbouring suburb to Hampton – producers snapped up a parcel of land from a developer for $14.96million.
The finished houses sold for almost $20million.
This year’s winners, Jimmy and Tam, took home $1,066,000 when their property hit auction – the biggest cash prize in Australian TV – after their home sold for $4,256,000.
Tidy profit: In last year’s season in Brighton – a neighbouring suburb to Hampton – producers snapped up a parcel of land from a developer for $14.96million. The finished houses sold for almost $20million. Pictured: teams from The Block 2020