Entertainment the winner in The Renovators as some of the six struggle

Entertainment the winner in The Renovators as some of the six struggle
Entertainment the winner in The Renovators as some of the six struggle

As we look to what's ahead for 2012, Property Observer is republishing some of our most noteworthy stories of 2011.


The six houses in the Channel 10 series The Renovators have all been sold under the hammer – and the overall results weren’t pretty.

Only one of the six sales did really well. It was an auction where there were dozens of competitive bids. The least enthusiastic offering attracted just the one offer, which was accepted.

The reserve prices are undisclosed, so even the most ardent auction attendee won’t necessarily know the winner until the series finale scheduled to air around October 9.

Property Observer was not a signatory to keeping secrets for the next fortnight, as some media organisations have agreed.

And we don’t wish to spoil the enjoyment of laboured countdown to the finale for the viewers.

We did report the initial two results of the public auctions (spoiler alert) – but not the contestant details – as the prices gave a terrific indication of the state of the Sydney property market.

It’s unquestionably a buyers’ market.

Based on the costs of purchase and renovation – on which there was welcome disclosure – some of the six offerings only just broke even, and in one case fell well short.

This presumably means the collective prize money pool will be less than anticipated, if the reserve prices match the expenditure cost.

Of course the series is much about entertainment – highs and lows in what’s almost a game – and sadly so this aim even spilled to the listing agents, who when asked for indicative pre-auction price guides gave none under instructions from Channel 10.

While many were turned off by the hours spent watching varnish dry, there are valuable property lessons in the outcomes, just like The Block 2011 in Melbourne. 

Just one of the four Block cottages sold under the hammer, and all in quick time afterwards, and now they are possibly rented at terrific gross yields.

For expert commentary and analysis on lessons to be learnt from property reality TV, download our e-book Lights, Camera, Auction!

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor is one of Australia's most respected property journalists, having been at the top of the game since the early 1980s. Jonathan co-founded the property industry website Property Observer and has written for national and international publications.

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