Herald on Sunday
Market Watch: Could The Block houses in Pt Chev sell for $3m?
Recent sales in Pt Chev suggest contestants will be making show history, writes LOUISE RICHARDSON.
T“I’ve been here for 25 years, and I swear that I have never seen the market like this. It’s always been popular, but this is crazy!”
wo weeks into filming The Block NZ in March last year contestants were forced to down tools as the country headed into Covid-19 lockdown.
The pandemic put the show on hold for almost a year – delay which has yet to unfold on screens. If teams used their unexpected hiatus to put in some extra planning, having already seen the houses – albeit briefly – that might become apparent in a week or two, when footage from 2021 kicks in.
Predictably, host Mark Richardson is promising “the biggest and most demanding homes ever”, as he reliably does every year, but a week into the show and all seems relatively calm.
Of course, that’s unless you count some issues around one team trying to nab another team’s plasterer, a hapless team cleverly arriving at a DIY store for vital materials just as the store was closing for the day, plus the strange case of the missing underpants. And of course, there was also news of site foreman Peter Wolfkamp suffering an eye injury, which may see him side-lined for the rest of the series.
Meanwhile, as all of this is unfolding, local residents and real estate agents are keeping a close eye on proceedings. In about 12 weeks’ times all four houses, whatever state they end up being in, will be auctioned.
The market has been running in Auckland’s Pt Chev, the location of the season’s homes.
The latest OneRoof figures show 37% lift in the suburb’s median property value in the last 12 months to just under $2 million. In 2021 no property in the suburb has sold for under $1m.
The last time The Block NZ was in Pt Chev, in 2014, the median value was just over $900,000, and the winning house sold for $1.552m – $227,000 above the reserve. That home has a OneRoof valuation of $2.39m and a 2017 CV of $1.825m.
In its eight seasons, no Block house has cracked $2m, let alone $3m but this season could change all that.
Pt Chev real estate agent Derek von Sturmer says the housing market is “crazy” right now.
“I’ve been here for 25 years, and I swear that I have never seen the market like this. It’s always been popular, but this is crazy!” he says.
The Professionals agent says that the shortage of quality stock is frustrating potential buyers, many of whom once entertained dreams of living in a character bungalow on a full section but are now settling for more contemporary houses on half-sites.
“There’s huge interest from expats, many of whom grew up in Pt Chev themselves and now want to come back and raise their families here.”
He says that the key to the suburb’s appeal is in large part due to the fact that it’s a peninsula, complete with parks and beaches, yet the CBD is just a seven-minute drive away.
“We’ve had some amazing sale prices in the last month or so – including a three-bedroom house on 368sqm on Walford Road which went for $2.705m, and a three-bedroom house on 404sqm on Moa Road which sold for $2.6m,” von Sturmer says.
“Based on these recent sales, and the size and quality of
The Block NZ’s houses this year, I would imagine that the sky will be the limit when it comes to reserves and selling prices, because that’s just the way things are right now.”